B-1 Bone Shreds Cadet Ears Prior to Recognition Event

Flyover kicked off three days of intense training before freshman cadets get recognized.

The B-1B Bone flew a loud, afterburner-fueled low-pass that kicked off recognition.  For freshman cadets who were about to endure a relentless three-day exercise known as recognition, the flyover gave them hope.  The next three days of their life would suck, but one day it could be them flying an instrument of our nation’s power.

What’s recognition?

Freshman at the Air Force Academy go through an eight-month long training program that is designed to prepare them for battle.  The purpose of the intense (somewhat open for debate these days) training is to instill a sense of confidence and fortitude such that no physical pain or mental distress in combat could dissuade an airman.

The regimented life involves running on certain pathways (known as ‘the strips’) to classes, requiring every freshman to greet upperclassmen by name and rank, and keeping dorm rooms in inspection-ready shape at all times. Afternoons after class frequently involve training sessions with upperclassmen requiring the “four degrees” to recite knowledge under stressful mental and physical conditions.

Air Force photo showing the Run To the Rock.  Taken by Bill Evans in 2015.

The training culminates in a three-day exercise known as recognition.  The event is meant to physically and mentally drain every freshman such that teamwork and a positive attitude is the only thing left.  At the conclusion of the training, the cadets ‘run to the rock’.  When they arrive at the rock, they are recognized by their upperclassmen as peers.

The flyover took place on Thursday March 9th. Video is by the Air Force Academy’s Facebook page.