FIGHTER PLANE || ‘Nose art’ on C-130 has Pavlik leading the way


Kelly's C-130 Nose Art

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A likeness of Kelly Pavlik adorns the nose of a military aircraft at the Youngstown Air Reserve Station. Painting artwork on the noses of a military aircraft is a time-honored tradition. Among others, there was famous “Memphis Belle” of Hollywood fame and the “Enola Gay” of Hiroshima fame.

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GHOST FLIGHT: Pavlik and daughter, Sydney, 4, peek out of the cockpit of the C-130. The artwork was unveiled at the base Tuesday.

‘Nose art’ on C-130 has Pavlik leading the way

By JORDAN COHEN

VINDICATOR CORRESPONDENT

VIENNA — A likeness of Kelly Pavlik adorns the nose of a military aircraft at the Youngstown Air Reserve Station.

Painting artwork on the noses of a military aircraft is a time-honored tradition. Among others, there was famous “Memphis Belle” of Hollywood fame and the “Enola Gay” of Hiroshima fame.

Now there is a nose-painted airplane of Youngstown fame.

“I couldn’t believe it when they first told me about it,” Youngstown’s middleweight boxing champion said Tuesday just before the “nose art,” as the military calls it, was unveiled. “This is quite an honor.”

The drawing of the Pavlik logo, with the boxer’s face over a spectral image in red and white boxing gloves, appears on a C-130 Hercules cargo transport plane. Above the image are the words “Kelly ‘The Ghost’ Pavlik” with “Pride of Youngstown” displayed underneath.

There has never been nose art in the history of the 910th Airlift Wing, according to Col. Karl McGregor, wing commander.

“This is the first one, and I advocate more art on all 12 of our aircraft,” McGregor said.

Pavlik, wearing a blue shirt and shorts, arrived for the ceremony accompanied by his parents, wife, Samantha, daughter, Sydney, 4, and son Kelly Jr., 5 months. He told the large crowd of military looking on that he is appreciative and grateful for their service.

“I only lay my life on the line two or three times a year, but all of you do it every day,” Pavlik said.

The nose art was drawn by senior airman Michele Kennedy of Warren, who has been in the Air Force Reserve for four years.

“I used to doodle on tables for the guys, and when the subject came up, everyone sort of came to me and asked me to do it,” said Kennedy, who is a crew chief on another C-130.

“I used the authorized image, and it took about 21‚Ñ2 days to finish it,” Kennedy said, adding that she is painting a mural on another base building.

Also drawing the attention of onlookers and media was Pavlik’s left hand, heavily bandaged from the thumb to his wrist. The boxer explained he had undergone surgery in last week for a staph infection.

“It started with a small cut, and I kept ignoring it, but it continued to open up and when it became really painful, I decided to get rid of the problem.” Pavlik said. Doctors drained the infection, and he hopes to return to training in several weeks.

As for the newly adorned airplane with Pavlik’s ghostly image, the C-130 will be on display at this weekend’s Thunder Over the Valley Air Show.

SEE ALSO: Pavlik has surgery, still eyes Oct. 3 bout.


AIR SHOW

Thunder Over The Valley

The Saturday and Sunday schedule for the Thunder Over The Valley Air Show and Open House at Youngstown Air Reserve Station, Vienna. The performers and schedule are subject to change. All tickets for both shows have been distributed.

9 a.m.: Gates open

9 a.m.-12:45 p.m.: Displays and ground exhibits. Special air events will include RC Plane Demos and War Birds Air Parade.

11:15 a.m.-12:45 p.m.: Pre-air-show entertainment.

1-4 p.m.: Air-show demonstrations. Featured acts include U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute-jump demo team, 910th Airlift Wing C-130 Hercules formation and airdrop demo, Bill Leff’s T-6 aerobatics demo, F-15 “Strike Eagle” tactical demo team, F4U “Corsair” aerobatics demo, U.S. Air Force Reserve jet car show, Manfred Radius and Glider demo, Air Force Academy Wings of Blue parachute-jump demo team.

4-5 p.m.: U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds aerial demo team.

5-7 p.m.: Post-air-show entertainment.

Source: Youngstown Air Reserve Station

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