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Aquino to lead PAF anniversary Monday; OV10s no longer part of flyby

June 30, 2013 8:08pm
President Benigno Aquino III will lead the 66th anniversary of the Philippine Air Force (PAF) in Pampanga province on Monday, the Presidential Communications and Operations Office (PCOO) said in a news release Sunday.

Aquino will be joined by Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin and Armed Forces chief of staff Gen. Emmanuel Bautista.

Expected to highlight Monday's event is a flyby of PAF aircraft.

Missing will be the OV-10 Broncos originally planned as part of the flyby, despite the PCOO's statement that the aircraft would be part of the lineup.

According to PAF spokesperson Col. Miguel Okol, the OV-10s will not be part of the air show, adding that the PCOO statement "might have been drafted before the crash."

The PAF had grounded its OV-10 fleet following the crash of an OV-10 aircraft that was conducting a proficiency night flight over Palawan last week.

Search efforts are still ongoing for the plane and its two pilots.

The PCOO statement said that this year's flyby will include more aircraft than last year's anniversary, consisting of "nine T-41D Mescaleros, three S-211 jet aircraft...two Aermacchi SF-260TP, three NOMADs, three Fokker F-27, three Lockheed C-130s, six UH-1Hs, one Sikorsky S-76A, one Bell B-205 helicopter, one Huey II, six W-3A Sokols, and four MG-520 attack choppers."

The PAF was founded on July 1, 1947, and traces its lineage to the Philippine Army Air Corps which was established in 1941. — with a report from Andreo Calonzo/BM, GMA News
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