Twenty-two Blackhawk and Apache helicopters flew through Los Angeles and stopped to refuel at John Wayne Airport in Orange County as as part of a training exercise Tuesday, according to the airport.
The cavalry unit from the 25th Combat Aviation Brigade were flying to San Diego from Fort Irwin, where they had spent the past month training for desert warfare.
The 2-6 Cavalry Squadron Task Force Saber was headed to San Diego for further preparation and deployment.
During their flyby, the unit got a view of the iconic Hollywood sign.
Flying the fourth helicopter was California native and returning combat veteran Chief Warrant Officer Joe Hudson, who was seen in Sky 5 footage waving to the news helicopter through his window.
While refueling at John Wayne, the unit drew curious residents who came to watch what was happening.
Resident Tom Simrak drove his motorcycle to the airport after reading about the exercise on Twitter.
"I wouldn't have missed it if I had to," Simrak said.