LEAD | Visitors to Mt. Rushmore National Memorial in South Dakota’s Black Hills look up to see the faces of four of America’s most notable presidents. On Oct. 8, the view changed significantly. As nine jets from the Royal Air Force Red Arrows flew in formation over the Memorial, visitors gasped and pointed, delighted by the unexpected appearance.
The Arrows were on the final leg of an 11-week North American tour, during which they visited nearly two dozen cities and did 22 airshow displays, performing for millions of people. The flyby occurred as the team headed to Ellsworth Air Force Base from Southern California on their way to the UK via Canada, Greenland and Iceland.
“The flypast of Mt. Rushmore was the piece de resistance of the Red Arrows appearances at numerous American landmarks,” said Kyle Dolan, Head of Science & Innovation at the British Consulate-General in Chicago. “The Red Arrows’ visit celebrated the close links between the United Kingdom, the United States and Canada, particularly our economic, defense, and science and technology relationships.”
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“This was an amazing opportunity to show our UK partners our facility and to discuss current and future international collaborations in science. And what a treat to meet the Red Arrows demonstration team," said Mike Headley, executive director of Sanford Lab.
“Our visit to Sanford Lab was simply amazing,” Dolan continued. “We learned about the amazing history of the facility, going back to the Davis experiment on solar neutrinos, and how it remains today a leader in particle physics and cosmology.”
Dolan said both he and Rennie were thrilled by the experience of traveling nearly a mile underground to learn more about how scientists from around the world are working together to answer fundamental questions about matter and the universe.