We got to spend much of our day at McConnell Air Force Base where Joey was Pilot for a Day.
It was amazing - they put a ton of effort into it and made it as special as possible for him. He turned shy when people were really watching him, but he loosened up and had fun with everything. Praise the Lord, he was feeling really good and had more energy than I've seen for a long time. It couldn't have gone better. We are so thankful to everyone there who made it happen. They were so good to us!
Here was the schedule of events:
Presentation of his own Joey-sized flight suit and patches
Climbed the stairs to the control tower and watched a touch-and-go of a KC-135
Visited the control tower simulation room
KC-135 flight simulator - presented with his wings and his own helmet and got to "fly"
Toured a real KC-135 - learned how to use the boom and sat in the cockpit
Visited the base fire department to shoot water with the "snozzle"
Met some attack dogs, saw a real demonstration, and got to pet the sweet boy, Adam (at least he's sweet to the "good" people)
Pizza and cake party where we (mostly Joey) were presented with gifts and got to meet more awesome people
I'll get more pictures from the base photographer and will share them then, but I'll share some of the ones I took for now.
Looking at maps during a tour
They told him that he should wear his hat whenever he goes outside and take it off when he comes in and he was determined to follow the rule. (He only had it on here for the picture.)
In the control tower watching a KC-135 come in for a touch-and-go
He got to sign his name in the tower.
He got the Commander's parking space while we were there. (I think it's the Commander's)
Receiving a special coin
Getting his wings from the pilot he flew with in the simulator (a shy moment, but he loved it)
Another shy moment getting his helmet, but he loves it and can't wait to show it off.
In the simulator - he really wanted to sit there by himself, but he wasn't tall enough to see out of the windshield. I guess tankers aren't made for pilots who are 39 inches tall.
After "flying" - he made a couple of landings and did some spins.
A real KC-135 (his eyes are really sunlight sensitive right now)
Looking at the boom
At the fire station, after shooting the water
He's helping empty the hose.
Adam - the dog who can love you or kill you, depending on what he's told to do :) (Actually, I don't think the dogs are trained to kill, but he certainly could!) I've never seen a dog so well trained in my life. It was amazing.
I believe this was made by an Air Force wife. Joey wanted the wings, so they cut them out and sent them with us to eat at home.
Joey fed live goldfish to the piranha's - I think the men thought it was funny that he wanted to do it - they are gathered around to watch. Notice Katherine hiding behind her dad - she didn't think it was as cool as Joey did.