Memorable Bethpage Air Show Wows The Masses At Jones Beach

CBS2's Kiran Dhillon recaps the exciting day and spectacle on Long Island.

Video Transcript

DICK BRENNAN: Good evening on this Memorial Day. I'm Dick Brennan.

JESSICA MOORE: And I'm Jessica Moore. Kristine and Maurice are off tonight. Memorial Day was marked by tributes and traditions today, from somber ceremonies to parades with pomp and circumstance.

DICK BRENNAN: At Arlington National Cemetery, President Biden marked the somber occasion at a ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, where a wreath was placed.

JESSICA MOORE: We have team coverage of the events across the tri-state area for you today. We begin with CBS 2's Kiran Dhillon and a first on Long Island for Memorial Day, the Bethpage Air Show.

KIRAN DHILLON: As the United States Air Force Thunderbirds flipped, and members of the US Army Golden Knights parachute team jumped, thousands of people marveled at the magnificence of military planes and members during the Bethpage air show at Jones Beach.

- I like the Thunderbirds because they're just fun and exciting to see.

- I love the way that the parachuters come out.

KIRAN DHILLON: The performances, showstoppers, and crowd-pleasers. Mom Amanda Bennett from Long Island says for her son Michael, watching the planes was inspiring.

AMANDA BENNETT: He hopes to serve in the military when he's older and be a fighter pilot. He loves the jets and the Thunderbirds.

KIRAN DHILLON: Because the weather canceled the show this weekend, this was actually the first year the event was held on Memorial Day since it began in 2004. Organizers say when the Thunderbirds offered to do their performance on Monday instead, they jumped at the chance.

GEORGE GORMAN: We got right on the phone. The New York air traffic controllers, they said yes right away. The FAA approved it right away. All of the agencies involved, without a hesitation, they said, yes, we'll be there. Same commitment, same resources. So that is amazing. And that is great for Long Island and New York residents.

KIRAN DHILLON: The Thunderbirds, meanwhile, say the air show means as much to them as it does to the attendees, so they weren't going to give up a chance to fly.

KATIE MOORKAMP: We represent all the airmen who are currently serving both in the United States and deployed around the world, and it is an absolute honor to fly.

KIRAN DHILLON: Organizers say because the air show had to be canceled last year due to the pandemic, this year it was more important than ever to make sure it could go on. They say having it on Memorial Day gives it even more meaning.

MEGHAN SULLIVAN: We wanted to be here to just show our gratitude for the troops, what they do for us.

- We are all here, and our freedom is because of the men and women that fought so hard for us.

KIRAN DHILLON: These New Yorkers say there was no better way for them to spend their Memorial Day and to celebrate and honor those who serve. At Jones Beach, Kiran Dhillon, CBS 2 News.