My Experience in a Blackhawk

Sept. 8 seemed like a normal Thursday. As I went into my 9:30 a.m. class, I met Alex Chase, public relations for ROTC, who pitched the idea to Julie Lewis and I about a chance to ride in a Blackhawk helicopter. 

  The event was getting to ride in the helicopter for a certain amount of time. We decided to take this opportunity as a news-press. After the chat, I grabbed equipment for photographers and videographers. We left by 11 a.m. to head to the volleyball courts behind the Multipurpose building. 

  When we got to the fields, it was a fast turnaround and everyone had to get started quickly. All of the ROTC cadets were lined up and ready for orders. We waited for the helicopters to come in and we got orders on how to enter the helicopter. We had to put earbuds in to avoid damage to the ears. I got many shots and angles of the day but the best part of the day was the flight. There were many cadets, faculty, staff and students that had the chance to fly in the Blackhawk. 

  Even though we had to wait to get on the helicopter, it was worth it. 

  I had butterflies in my stomach the whole day because I was very excited and nervous about what I was going to do. The flight was interesting because it was close to flying in an airplane. I thought the ride was shakier than an airplane. Taking off was interesting because you go straight up in the air instead of an airplane takeoff form. The view of the sky was amazing to see. The aerial view of Warrensburg was beautiful. I got to see the houses, stores and the UCM campus. 

  My favorite part of the flight was when we were around Skyhaven Airport. The helicopter looked like it was going to land, but it didn’t. The pilot moved the control wheel all the way down which made the helicopter incline to the sky. My stomach jumped as that happened, similar to the feeling when you ride on a roller coaster. 

 This opportunity was special and it helped me move out of my comfort zone. I had to work more on the news side and less on the sports side. I created a video on the experience which you can check out on our Youtube page. I worked with other colleagues to get the story and photos published quickly. 

 As Sports Editor, these opportunities do not come to us often. We usually focus on sports stories and sports press releases, not going in a Blackhawk helicopter. I enjoyed my time on the Blackhawk because of the aerial view of Warrensburg and the fact that this was once in a lifetime experience.