US Navy’s first Black female tactical jet pilot gets her ‘wings of gold’

Swegle was named a naval aviator and awarded her gold naval aviator wings with 25 classmates throughout a small ceremony at Naval Air Station Kingsville in Texas, according to the Navy.

“I am excited to have this chance to work tougher and fly excessive efficiency jet plane within the fleet,” Swegle mentioned. “It could’ve been good to see somebody who regarded like me on this function; I by no means supposed to be the primary. I hope it is encouraging to different individuals.”

Swegle grew to become the Navy’s first Black female strike pilot after finishing tactical strike coaching at NAS Kingsville on July 7. A strike pilot flies the Navy’s strike plane, together with fighter jets just like the F/A-18 Tremendous Hornet and the F-35C Joint Strike Fighter, or the EA-18G Growler digital warfare plane.

“Lt. j.g. Swegle has confirmed to be a brave trailblazer,” mentioned Vice Adm. DeWolfe “Bullet” Miller III, the commander of Naval Air Forces. “She has joined a choose group of people that earned Wings of Gold and answered the decision to defend our nation from the air. The variety of that group — with variations in background, ability and thought — makes us a stronger preventing drive.”

Swegle’s landmark accomplishment follows the footsteps of different groundbreaking girls and minorities within the US Navy, like Rosemary Mariner, who grew to become the primary feminine jet pilot in 1974, and Brenda Robinson, the primary Black lady to turn out to be a Navy flight teacher, evaluator and VIP transport pilot within the 1980’s, according to the non-profit organization Women in Aviation International.
“I believe illustration is vital as a result of we’re a really various nation,” Swegle mentioned in a video launched by the Navy earlier this week. “I would love everybody to consider that they will obtain no matter they wish to do.”

Swegle graduated from the US Naval Academy in 2017 and accomplished preliminary flight screening at NAS Pensacola. She accomplished main flight coaching at NAS Corpus Christi and completed her superior strike coaching at NAS Kingsville. She accomplished her plane provider {qualifications} within the Atlantic Ocean off the Florida coast on Might 20.

Swegle will now report back to Electronic Attack Squadron 129 at NAS Whidbey Island in Washington to start coaching as an EA-18G Growler pilot. The squadron trains new naval aviators, naval flight officers, and naval aircrewmen in digital warfare ways, strategies, and procedures in preparation for his or her fleet assignments, in accordance with the Navy.
The EA-18G Growler is an electronic warfare aircraft, a specialised model of the two-seat F/A-18F Tremendous Hornet fighter jet, and relies on US plane carriers.

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