Chicago Air and Water Show 2022: Romeoville native flies in KC-135 Stratotanker, refueling jets like US Navy Blue Angels mid-air

Chicago Air and Water Show 2022: Romeoville native flies in KC-135 Stratotanker, refueling jets like US Navy Blue Angels mid-air

CHICAGO (TOC) — A Romeoville native has a novel job at this 12 months’s Air and Water Present: He is answerable for refueling the jets that will probably be seen whizzing by Chicago’s skies all weekend — mid-air.

Not all of the planes featured on this weekend’s Air and Water Present are speedy jets: The KC-135 Stratotanker, for instance, is accountable for refueling navy plane mid-air.

This beast was in-built 1959.

The U.S. Air Power KC-135 Stratotanker has been hovering 1000’s of ft above the Chicago lakefront, forward of the 2022 Chicago Air and Water Present.

ABC7 had the uncommon probability to fly aboard the KC-135, because it refueled U.S. Navy F-35 Lightning fighters.

“Every single day it is totally different. It is an superior feeling,” stated Grasp Sgt. Paul Fusek, with the Illinois Air Nationwide Guard. “I at all times say I’ve the most effective workplace view on the planet.”

That workplace is on the underbelly of the KC-135.

It is his job to verify jets needing gas join with receiving plane.

On Thursday, it was the F-35 fighter.

SEE MORE: Chicago Air and Water Present returns this weekend with Blue Angels, Golden Knights performing

“You are again there, and all the stress is on you. You are retaining all people protected,” Fusek stated.

His job actually has him mendacity on his chest, as he rigorously controls the hose that connects to different plane flying lots of of miles per hour.

Should you’re claustrophobic, this isn’t the job for you.

“We refuel quite a lot of plane, starting from fighters such because the F-16, F-15, the cargo planes, just like the C-17, C-5,” Fusek stated.

Fusek grew up in Romeoville, and is grateful to be flying as soon as once more within the Chicago Air and Water Present.

“I adore it. It is a thrill for me to return again up right here to the Air and Water Present, to see Chicago, see household and associates. It is past phrases,” he stated.

You can see the KC-135 this weekend, because it soars over Chicago.

“For me, it is only a good reset. I simply take pleasure in it. It by no means will get outdated,” Fusek stated.

It isn’t First Class, however the Stratotanker comes with the smallest microwave, rest room paper and occasional makers, simply to make the mission somewhat extra homie.

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