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Creech Airmen showcase RPA at Canadian air show

Senior Airman Derek Lee, a 432nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron avionics technician, and Staff Sgt. Craig Stewart, a 432nd AMXS MQ-1 Predator crew chief, assemble an MQ-1 Predator static display July 24, 2015, in Lethbridge, Alberta province, Canada. The MQ-1 Predator is a multirole aircraft used primarily for intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance and can also be used for kinetic strikes. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Christian Clausen)

Senior Airman Derek Lee, a 432nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron avionics technician, and Staff Sgt. Craig Stewart, a 432nd AMXS MQ-1 Predator crew chief, assemble an MQ-1 Predator static display July 24, 2015, in Lethbridge, Alberta province, Canada. The MQ-1 Predator is a multirole aircraft used primarily for intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance and can also be used for kinetic strikes. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Christian Clausen)

From left to right, a C-5M Super Galaxy, KC-135 Stratotanker and C-17 Globemaster III sit on the flight line July 25, 2015, in Lethbridge, Alberta province, Canada. The aircraft participated in the 2015 Lethbridge International Air Show as static displays allowing spectators to see how the aircraft operate and talk to the crews as well. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Christian Clausen)

From left to right, a C-5M Super Galaxy, KC-135 Stratotanker and C-17 Globemaster III sit on the flight line July 25, 2015, in Lethbridge, Alberta province, Canada. The aircraft participated in the 2015 Lethbridge International Air Show as static displays allowing spectators to see how the aircraft operate and talk to the crews as well. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Christian Clausen)

Airmen from the 415th Special Operations Squadron stand on top of a C-130 Hercules to watch the Royal Canadian Forces Snowbirds perform July 24, 2015, in Lethbridge, Alberta province, Canada. The C-130 static display and Snowbird performance were part of the 2015 Lethbridge International Air Show. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Christian Clausen)

Airmen from the 415th Special Operations Squadron stand on top of a C-130 Hercules to watch the Royal Canadian Forces Snowbirds perform July 24, 2015, in Lethbridge, Alberta province, Canada. The C-130 static display and Snowbird performance were part of the 2015 Lethbridge International Air Show. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Christian Clausen)

CREECH AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. (AFNS) -- The MQ-1 Predator made its debut in Canada among 30,000 Alberta locals in Lethbridge July 23-25. It's the second time it was showcased at an international air show.

Fifteen Airmen from Creech Air Force Base participated in the 2015 Lethbridge International Air Show and educated the civilian population on the Predator's capabilities.

"We brought the MQ-1 Predator and members from different career fields like maintenance, intelligence, sensor operators and pilots so we could educate the public in every facet of the mission," said 2nd Lt. Joel, the 11th Reconnaissance Squadron chief of intelligence. "We wanted to show everyone that the plane is not 'unmanned' and it takes a lot of manpower in every stage of operating the aircraft."

Among the high-flying maneuvers and exciting explosions of other demonstrations, the remotely piloted aircraft held the attention of many intrigued spectators and at any given time was surrounded by curious parents and children.

"We were really well received by everyone," said Capt. Reed, a 15th RS pilot. "We really wanted to dispel any misnomers and put faces to the plane and provide open communication to educate people on what we do, which is ultimately saving lives, and I think we did that."

The surprisingly large Predator has a 55-foot wing span, yet it fits in a 27 feet long, 4.5 feet wide, and 4 feet tall casket, and was transported by a C-5M Super Galaxy and aircrew from the 22nd Airlift Squadron.

"It's a really cool plane. I thought it was a lot smaller, but it's actually quite big," said Wayne Burndred, a Calgary, Alberta, resident.

For most spectators, this was the only time they have seen the aircraft up close.

"I loved seeing the Predator here and being able to see it in person and talk to the guys who actually operate it," said Doug Kakuschke, a resident of Brooks. "It was great having the American presence here again and I hope we can continue to have them participate in the years to come."

The 20-year semi-annual air show included demonstrations from a Canadian Forces F-18 Hornet, B-17 Flying Fortress, biplanes, and the Royal Canadian Forces Snowbirds.

"Overall the air show went great," Reed said. "It was a great opportunity to work with our coalition partners and even Airmen from other U.S. bases to develop partnerships and set the foundation for more international events in the future."

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