The 20th anniversary of “Operation Desert Storm” will be recognized during the 37th annual Sun ’n Fun International Fly-In and Expo, March 29–April 3 at Lakeland Linder Regional Airport (LAL) in Lakeland, Fla.
United States Army Brigadier General Rhonda Cornum and her husband, United States Air Force Brig. Gen. Kory Cornum, both served in Desert Storm and will provide their perspectives on the military strategies and their successful conclusion during the First Persian Gulf War.
“It’s hard to believe that it’s been 20 years since Desert Storm,” said Sun ’n Fun President and Convention Chairman John Burton. “We are honored to have these two high-ranking military veterans who so honorably served in Desert Storm and who remain in service to our country to this day. Their program will be one that Sun ’n Fun participants and guests will be talking about for a long time.”
The two generals (who are also medical doctors) will offer their insights and experiences relating to the conflict from the Army (Rhonda) and Air Force (Kory) perspectives and provide additional information on the critical roles played by other branches of the military. Both served in Desert Storm: Rhonda as a flight surgeon with the Army’s 2/229 Attack Helicopter Battalion flying AH-64 Apaches and UH-60 Blackhawks and Kory as a flight surgeon with the Air Force’s 58th Tactical Fighter Squadron flying F-15s.
During the last week of February 1991, while performing a search and rescue mission for a downed Air Force F-16 pilot, Rhonda’s Blackhawk helicopter was shot down. Five of the eight-person crew were killed. The three survivors, including Cornum, were captured by Iraqi forces and held for eight days before being rescued.
Currently, Rhonda serves as director of the Army’s Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program, a new Army program she has built to make people emotionally strong, mentally tough and physically fit. Kory is the commander of the Air Force hospital at Keesler Air Force Base in Mississippi.
It has been 20 years since the United States and Great Britain led a United Nations-authorized coalition force of 34 nations to reclaim Kuwait, which had been invaded by Iraqi forces led by Saddam Hussein in August 1990. Beginning with an aerial assault on Jan. 17, 1991, and followed by a ground assault that began on Feb. 23, 1991, and lasted less than 100 hours before coalition forces achieved strategic victory, the offensive military activity known as “Operation Desert Storm” brought the first Persian Gulf War to an end.
For more information: Sun-n-Fun.org