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NEWS | June 13, 2014

'Take Flight!' visits Joint Base Charleston

By Staff Sgt. William A. O'Brien Joint Base Charleston Public Affairs

Forty students from the Take Flight! Aviation Camp visited Joint Base Charleston June 12, 2014.

The two-day visit showcased a multitude of aviation career fields for the students.

"This camp is held to get young people interested in aviation careers and show them what's available to them here in the low country," said retired Lt. Col. Robert Hughes, an original Tuskegee Airman. "This event went so well they hope to be able to do it again next year."

The students began their tour at the Boeing factory adjacent to Joint Base Charleston, where they visited the facilities and listened to presentations from Boeing representatives.

On JB Charleston students toured a C-17 Globemaster III and participated in an open question and answer forum with Hughes. The forum was hosted by Col. Dennis Dabney, 437th Maintenance Group commander.

"I'm standing on the shoulders of giants. If it wasn't for this man (Hughes) and the expertise he brought to the Tuskegee Airmen experience, I certainly wouldn't be where I am today," Dabney said.

"The visit introduced the students to potential careers in aviation as well as emphasizing the importance of education and pursuing goals," said Maj. Joshua Pugliese, 437th Operations Group deputy director. "Additionally, the students were able to interact with several group commanders and squadron members who spent time mentoring and talking with the students."