Baseball champs link up with JSTARS
By Capt. Sandy Smock, 116th Air Control Wing
/ Published December 04, 2007
ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. -- Playing local little league baseball doesn't usually qualify for world fame.
But the Southeast Little League Baseball World Series Champions certainly are celebrities in Middle Georgia and were flying high on Oct 9.
The local heroes participated in a training refueling exercise with the 19th Aerial Refueling Group's KC-135 and the 116th's Air Control Wing's E-8C.
The 116th Air Control Wing took part in a visit from the twelve member team on a Robins Air Force Base visit.
"The boys have not been bored since the win," said Mrs. Dee Scott, mother of Kendall Scott, relief pitcher for the team. "They have had many autograph signings as well as events to attend which honor them. These opportunities have been amazing."
Since Aug 26, 2007 this group of 11 and 12 year olds has experienced a lot of attention and gotten to participate in some really special events.
The team has seen government at work, both in the political and military fields. They have been honored by professional sports teams and have met many young children who look at them in awe.
"The boys and their families have not had much down time but the activities they have attended have been once in a lifetime experiences that most children will never have the chance to do," said Mrs. Kendall.
In addition to the base visit the team eagerly awaits attending a NASA space launch. Until that scheduled launch, they were able to fill their aviation curiosity by participating in a military training mission.
"We've gotten to do a lot of things so far but this one is really different," center fielder and catcher David Umphreyville said.
The baseball team, coaches and their families started their tour with base leadership and members at the Museum of Aviation for a quick breakfast.
The day was packed with activities for the players. After a quick visit to the museum, the group traveled to the flightline to take a group photo in front of the JSTARS aircraft with 116th members. The team was given a tour of the aircraft and got an educational lesson on the JSTAR mission. After, they were transported to the 19th Aerial Refueling Group to receive the pre-mission brief.
The team members observed the operation of the refueling boom probe aboard the KC-135 and witnessed the refueling of an E-8C.
"We at the 116th Air Control Wing were thrilled to be able to host a visit from the Little League World Champs," said Col. Domenick Eanniello, 116th ACW Vice Commander. "They are an inspiring group of young men and we were proud to let them meet some of our great warriors, show them the E8-C JSTARS aircraft and see a glimpse of their Air Force at work."