Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Air Force One Visits CID Today


Presidential election season brings candidates to 42N's Cedar Rapids (CID) area quite often. This morning the President of the United States (POTUS) came to Iowa City to address a closed session for roughly 5,000 University of Iowa students, faculty and media. After the ground entourage left the airport bound for Iowa City, the daily air traffic resumed. It was also an opportunity to see Air Force One and the support plane for aviation buffs.

Air Force One (USAF 28000) parked away from the main passenger terminal near the overnight parcel service terminal. For security concerns the tarmac fence line was obstructed by cargo containers, equipment and other vehicles making it near impossible to see the entire plane. However there were few places to see portions of the huge 747. Air Force One is, as you would expect – shiny, clean and impressive, and guarded by a security detail.

While looking for best area to photograph the plane, a member of Cedar Rapids’ finest drove up and asked the small crowd to leave the area for security reasons. He was polite and the five people took a souvenir photo of the plane and left. He then positioned the squad car in the general area as to ward away more onlookers. Other airport property and nearby roads were patrolled by police, sheriff, homeland security, airport security and unmarked, large black vehicles.

At a different section of airport property, a C-17 Globemaster III sat. This plane probably delivered the special presidential limo and security vehicles. C-17 (23291) is home based with the 62nd Airlift Wing at McChord AFB in Washington.


While the 2012 election season continues, the opportunity to see Air Force One again at CID may be frequent. That opportunity depends on how the campaign is progressing. Know that.