Major Paul “Loco” Lopez

Major Paul “Loco” Lopez is the commander and pilot for the 2019 F-22 Raptor Demo Team. He is the first African-American F-22 Raptor Demo pilot and will showcase the full capabilities of the aircraft at the Fort Lauderdale Air Show on May 4-5, 2019 over Fort Lauderdale Beach.   Growing up in Virginia Beach, Air... View Article


Major Paul “Loco” Lopez is the commander and pilot for the 2019 F-22 Raptor Demo Team. He is the first African-American F-22 Raptor Demo pilot and will showcase the full capabilities of the aircraft at the Fort Lauderdale Air Show on May 4-5, 2019 over Fort Lauderdale Beach.

 

Growing up in Virginia Beach, Air Force Maj. Paul “Loco” Lopez Jr. remembers the thrill he got from seeing Navy fighter jets flying over his house. His parents bought him books on aviation and took him to air shows to encourage his growing passion, and he joined the Navy Reserve Officers Training Corps at Salem High School.

 

Lopez received his Air Force commission after graduation from North Carolina A&T University and flew the F-15C before transitioning to the stealth F-22 Raptor. After being assigned to Elmendorf Air Force Base in Alaska for the last several years, Lopez has returned home to Langley Air Force Base and his hometown where he was raised.

 

 

For Loco, flying is like a little kid going to the toy store. “Your adrenaline is pumping, your blood is going,” Lopez said. “You’ve got the butterflies in your stomach, especially when you’re about to do the demonstration because you’re about to perform for thousands of people. It’s not so much that you’re looking at the crowd but you just want to make sure you’re flying the best airplane possible.”

 

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  1. Philipp "Paul French Dad" says:

    Be ready Fort Lauderdale for enjoying the Raptor’s Demo.
    The team was in Beaufort last weekend and it was stunning. I’m still amazed by what Major Paul “Loco” Lopez can do with his F22, and how kind, nice, and much more if my English was better, he is on the ground.
    What a great example for the kids. Thank you the Air Force for having us have the chance of meeting such a Great Man.
    I hope that my little Paul will be so inspire by you, that he will be able to do his dream of becoming a C5 pilot.
    Thank you Sir
    Philipp

  2. Maria says:

    Looking forward to the Ft. Lauderdale Air Show! The F 22 Raptor is my favorite plane. Nice article on the Team pilot.??

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