Navy's Blue Angels Aerial Team Turns 60

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Touring with the Blue Angels was supposed to give Ernie Christensen a respite between deployments as a combat pilot in Vietnam.

But Christensen, a retired rear admiral who went on to command the Navy's Top Gun fighter school, said flying with the Blue Angels was sometimes more demanding than combat.

"In your last 30 seconds coming aboard a carrier, you have levels of concentration, and in combat there are those few moments of stark terror when you have intense concentration, but with the Blues you have intense concentration the entire time," he said.

Christensen and dozens of other former Blue Angels will gather for a Nov. 10-11 reunion and air show to mark the 60th anniversary of the Navy's elite aerial-demonstration team at its home base of Pensacola Naval Air Station.

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