This aviator just got married in a US Air Force C-17 Globemaster III

Who wouldn’t want their marriage to be capable of intercontinental flight, with a narrow track turning radius and strong enough to carry a battle tank? This could be the symbolism behind Air Force Tech Sgt. Jonathen Guzik and his wife Angela tied the knot in a C-17 Globemaster III cargo plane last month at West Virginia Air National Guard Base in Martinsburg, West Virginia.

Oddly enough, when Angela first suggested that they were getting married on the plane, Guzik’s first thought was “no luck,” according to one. recent air force press release.

Aviation metals technician from the 167th Guard Maintenance Group, Guzik spends a lot of time working with C-17s, and knowing how strict the security around a flight line is, he thought it would be difficult. to coordinate a ceremony aboard a. But Angela, a Navy brat, was excited about the idea.

“Everything went smoothly,” she said. “It went really well and we are super happy.”

Known for its strength and reliability the C-17 is an excellent platform to associate his marriage. Perhaps that’s why at least two other couples got married on the jet as well.

“To finally bring everything together, where we were allowed to have our families join us and our squadron available to celebrate our union on the plane that took off. [served] so many of our friends and service members, was beyond an honor, ”Capts. Derek and Amanda Martindale, two flight nurses from the 315th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron, said about their marriage aboard a C-17 at Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina in May 2018.

Capts. Amanda (left) and Derek Martindale raise their hands after being pronounced husband and wife during their wedding ceremony May 19, 2018, aboard a Joint Base Charleston, SC, C-17 Globemaster III. The two are both flight nurses with the 315th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron at JB Charleston, SC (US Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Rashard Coaxum)

“It was very unique,” said James Speer, father of Airman 1st Class Michelle Speer, of 436 Airport Squadron, who married Airman 1st Class Joshua Brewer, of 736 Aircraft Maintenance Squadron. , aboard a C-17 at Dover Air Force Base, Delaware in January 2019.

“Yeah … but it was Michelle,” said Jennifer Speer, Michelle’s mother. “I think it’s in his personality.”

Another romantic reason to have a wedding aboard a C-17 is its nickname, “The Moose”. The plane earned this nickname because when it is refueling, the machine’s pressure relief vents make a distinct sound resembling that of a cow moose in heat. Personally, I find it very romantic (just like the bull moose), but whatever the reason, weddings aren’t the only major life event that has taken place aboard the C-17.

For example, earlier this year, after fleeing war-torn Afghanistan, an Afghan mother named her daughter “Reach” after the call sign of the jet she was born on as she flew. from Qatar to Ramstein Air Base, Germany. At least one other child was also born to Afghan refugees aboard a C-17, and a mother gave birth aboard another before giving birth in a hospital in Doha, the capital of Qatar.

For nearly 120,000 other Americans, Afghans and other allies who were evacuated from Kabul in August, the C-17 probably represented a symbol of hope: a ticket out of dire straits.

“Many see it as a simple cargo plane. For me, it has always been a source of hope, ”said a pilot who flew evacuations out of Afghanistan to Task & Purpose in September.

“Hope for returning soldiers, hope for foreign aid in times of natural disasters and national crises,” he said. “I hope for the families who will no longer be able to keep their sons and daughters, but who will receive the closure. For more than 100,000 Afghans, the ’17 has become a vessel of hope and freedom.

Air Force technical sergeant just married in the back of a C-17 cargo plane
US Air Force Tech. Sgt. Joseph Rice, 436th Airport Squadron supervisor of ramp operations, officiates a wedding ceremony for U.S. Airmen in the cargo bay of a C-17 Globemaster III Jan. 29, 2018, at Dover Air Force Base, Delaware. Rice has been ordained a priest for 10 years, but it was the first marriage he celebrated on a plane. (U.S. Air Force photo by Roland Balik)

When it comes to organizing weddings, the Moose may have some competition. A documented Air Force press release a wedding that took place aboard a C-130 Hercules, a smaller, though still legendary, turboprop transport aircraft that has been in military service since 1956.

“Flying for me has been therapeutic, it’s relaxing and I feel like I belong up there,” said 1st Lt. Lyndsy Harrison, a navigator with 700 Airlift Squadron, when she married the Pilot Captain Will Jones, also with the 700th AS, aboard a C-130 at Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Ga., in November 2020.

“I never gave up on my dream of flying and chased it,” Harrison said. “Meanwhile, Will and I started dating. He encouraged and supported me to achieve my goals that I had been told to be impossible. He continues to motivate me and inspire me to be better.

The couple got married after performing a training mission aboard the C-130 that day, and they wrote “just married” on the back of the fuselage in chalk.

Air Force technical sergeant just married in the back of a C-17 cargo plane
Captain Will Jones, a pilot with the 700th Airlift Squadron, and 1st Lt. Lyndsy Harrison, a 700th AS Navigator, pose for a photo with Harrison’s two sons shortly after a wedding ceremony held in the back of a C -130H3 Hercules at Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Ga., Nov. 10, 2020. The couple had the idea of ​​getting married in the back of a C-130 to honor their love of flying. (U.S. Air Force Photo / Andrew Park)

Of course, you don’t need to fly an airplane to get married inside one. At Guzik and Angela’s wedding aboard a C-17 last month, their fellow aviator, Master Sgt. Justin Watson was the best man, Watson’s son was the ring bearer and Tech Sgt. Corey Chaney performed the ceremony in front of the cockpit access stairs. Angela’s son accompanied her down the aisle – the cargo hold – while the parents of the newlyweds and Guzik’s children stood near the outboard passenger seats.

“I was truly honored to be able to be a part of their big day,” said Chaney.

Clearly, there is no start to a marriage more uplifting than a strategic airlift.

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