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I can't really tell what that's supposed to be...

I'll give them some credit...it's not some clip-arty Red Baron type with a leather helmet, goggles, and a handlebar moustache twirling a red, white and blue basketball.

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The thing is, in terms of military history and jargon (as well as Pensacola's own history and industry), the tie-in to the Air Force is all wrong. "Aviators", though now a rather generic term, was originally applied to NAVY fliers, in order to differentiate them from Army Air Corps (and later, Air Force) pilots. It's been a point of pride for the Navy for years. That's why you rarely hear people refer to "naval pilots"; it's usually "naval aviators" or sometimes 'Navy fliers'.

The Pensacola place-link to the name is that Pensacola is home to the famous Pensacola Naval Air Station, where most Navy aviators are trained. In fact, the station has the nation's Museum of Naval Aviation (which is a great visit, btw). There was some syndicated TV show a few years back about navy aviators entitled "Pensacola". Also, if you remember the movie "An Officer and a Gentlemen", in addition to some dialogue about 'aviators' versus 'pilots', the movie also mentioned that the graduates of the OCS (Officer Candidate School) were moving on to Pensacola for actual flight training.

Now, in the nearby area (several mile to the east, north of Ft. Walton Beach/Destin) there is the HUGE Eglin Air Force Base. But that's a little far away and not usually associated with Pensacola, certainly not to the extent the NAS is.

This all begs the question, what genius let Pensacola's ECHL team be named the "Ice Pilots"?

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One little fact you forgot to mention is that the Blues Angels are trained and their home NAS in Pensacola.

My dad work on Eglin and it is the largest AFB (land wise) in the world. It spans 3 Counties and takes about half of each one.

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