Aeronautics acrobat John Klatt will fly in the NAS Pensacola Blue Angels Homecoming Air Show, which is scheduled for Friday and Saturday.

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PENSACOLA — Somewhere over the Gulf of Mexico off Pensacola Beach, a little red plane spins and careens toward the water, barreling through its own smoke.

The plane then makes a quick turn up toward the clouds, performing a few inversions along the way, before leveling out upside down for about 15 seconds.

It’s no flight malfunction — it’s the aeronautic antics of John Klatt, a retired lieutenant colonel in the Air National Guard who now spends his days touring the country as an air show performer. This weekend he’ll fly in the NAS Pensacola Blue Angels Homecoming Air Show, which is scheduled for Friday and Saturday.

“The Blue Angels, what a first-class team they are, they have probably over 100 men and women that make that team work, and we’re really honored to be a part their homecoming this year,” Klatt said.

Klatt said he got his love of planes when his mom took him to air shows as a child. As an adult, he honed his flight training during a 15-year stint in the military in which he served three deployments to Iraq before retiring and becoming a stunt pilot. He’s been doing aeronautic acrobatics for the past 15 years.

Klatt now flies a Jack Links Extra 300L and an aerobatic Screamin’ Sasquatch Jet Waco modified biplane. His exhilarating air show performance features inverted formation flying, aileron rolls and lots of flips, spins and stomach-churning dives.

Klatt said being a stunt pilot lets him let loose his “wild side,” and he especially hopes the young kids who come out to his air shows catch the flight bug just like he did.

“I think it’s great to ... be able to inspire maybe the next generation of pilots, and young boy or a young girl interested in aviation," he said. "It’s really delightful for me to be able to be a part of that.”