LOVELAND, Colo. (CBS4) – A global pandemic couldn’t stop the city of Loveland from celebrating Veterans Day and honoring the countless military members who have served to protect the United State of America. And, for the first time in years, the Buckley Air Force Base F-16’s flew over the Loveland celebrations at 11:11am, to commemorate an agreement to end World War I.
“That was supposedly signed on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month,” said Rex Berg, a veteran.
Berg, and members of the Loveland VFW and American Legion posts, helped coordinate the celebration of Veteran’s Day amid the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. While the annual parade was canceled, many still drove a route through the city ringing bells, which also was to honor the end of WWI.
A gathering at a local memorial where veterans and civilians alike paid tribute to veterans while keeping socially distant. Taps was played, and a 21-gun salute was performed in honor of those lost.
“It’s a wonderful thing. It gets people back together again, and I’m glad for that,” said Randy Colby, a 21-year-veteran of the United States Air Force. “The civilians that come out to support, it makes you feel good.”
While attempts to have a F-16 flyover in previous years fell short, Berg said 2020 was the perfect year for them to finally come through. They were able to fly over at exactly 11:11 a.m., on Nov. 11.
“There’s nothing more impressive than the sound of those jets coming over close,” Berg told CBS4’s Dillon Thomas. “It meant a lot.”
“It was great. I love to see them flying. I always do, always have. I love to see them airplanes,” Colby said.
The flyover in Loveland was only one of three locations the F-16’s intentionally flew over. The other two were in Grand Junction and Durango. The flyovers come at no additional cost to the public, as the USAF intentionally schedules them in to their regular training.