U of I Graduate and Ely Native To Lead Kinnick Flyover on Saturday
Nothing beats a flyover at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City. The National Anthem enters the homestretch, and people begin to look around. You don't want to miss the flyover! It things time out just right, the jets will soar over Kinnick Stadium just as the anthem wraps up! It's an honor to lead the flyover formation, and this week a native Iowan has the task prior to the Iowa vs. Minnesota football game.
The Cedar Rapids Gazette reports that Col. Craig Andrle, commander of the 388th Fighter Wing based out of Utah, will lead a four craft flyover of F-35A Lightning II's prior to Saturday's Iowa vs. Minnesota game. Andrle told the Gazette that the F-35A is one of the "most advanced aircraft in the world". He noted that it is a great chance to show people what the United States Air Force can do.
The 43-year-old Andrle grew up on a farm in Ely, Iowa. He graduated from Prairie High School and attended the University of Iowa where he studied computer science. He joined the ROTC before graduating in 2000. The Gazette reports that while a junior at Iowa, Andrle applied for a spot to train with the Air Force. Once accepted, he got his private pilot's license and then went to the Air Force for pilot training. Andrle completed two tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan completing more than 1,000 combat hours in an F-16.
Back when he was a student at Iowa, Andrle directed cars into Kinnick parking lots, taking donations for the ROTC. Saturday, he'll let the flyover. A well-deserved honor for one of our military's and Iowa's best! Congratulations Col. Andrle, and GO HAWKS!