Reno, Nev. -- Airman Breanna Crisp is not a San Francisco 49ers fan.
She’s not even a football fan.
“I don’t watch sports,” said Crisp, a hydraulic mechanic in the 152nd Maintenance Squadron.
But when Crisp got the chance to help unfurl the American flag during the singing of the National Anthem at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. for the 49ers Jan. 1 game against the San Diego Chargers, she knew it was the chance of a lifetime.
Crisp’s boyfriend, Vincent Karr, a staff sergeant at Travis Air Force Base, received an invitation to unfurl the field-sized flag with other people from the base. He asked if Crisp could also attend and get free tickets for the game.
“The sergeant in charge of the organization informed us that they needed extra military members to participate in the event, so I eagerly decided to do it, unwilling to miss such an amazing opportunity,” said Crisp, 26, who enlisted in the Nevada Air Guard in 2015.
For Crisp, it didn’t matter that the 49ers and Chargers had poor seasons and weren’t going to the playoffs.
“Having never been to a professional sports game, I thought it was phenomenal to spend my first time in the stadium on the actual playing field,” she said. “Holding the flag during the National Anthem in front of the largest crowd I’ve ever seen had me stand a little taller, proud to not only to be an American, but an American Airman. Afterward, we stored the flag and were given tickets to enjoy the rest of the game. Watching the game in person was exciting and a great way to finish off the event.”
When asked if the experience turned her into a football fan, Crisp said, “It made me feel more in tune to the game. It definitely was a great experience.”
“Now I know a little more about what everyone is getting so excited about when they watch games on TV.”