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Reservists Thank Student Pen Pals With Tour of Cargo Plane

May 22, 1991

ALBANY, Ga. (AP) _ Three Air Force reservists thanked schoolchildren for their letters during the Persian Gulf War by giving them a tour Wednesday of a military transport plane.

″I thought it was real interesting,″ said 13-year-old Danielle Dawkins, one of 61 children from the southwest Georgia farming town of Camilla, Ga. ″There’s thousands of little-bitty gadgets in the cockpit. How can they tell the difference?″

The airmen from the 914th Tactical Airlift Group in Niagara Falls, N.Y., arrived Tuesday for a plantation tour and a fish fry.

During the gulf crisis, seventh-graders at Mitchell County Middle School had sent posters and Christmas cards that ended up with the 250-member New York unit.

Upon the unit’s return, Lt. Col. Lorin Rockwell arranged the visit to Camilla with teacher Kay Hall.

The mail meant a lot to them, said 1st Lt. Jim Muscatello. ″It was nice to know the kids were interested and it put some humor in the day,″ Muscatello said.

The airmen seemed to enjoy Georgia hospitality, especially ″streak-o- lean,″ baconlike strips of fried pork. ″We ate about 11 pounds of that and it went straight to my waist,″ said 1st Lt. Don Langiewicz.

The New Yorkers went home Wednesday with bushel baskets of sweet Vidalia onions, Georgia peaches, frozen quail, cornmeal and grits.

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