|F/A-18F Super Hornets of Strike Fighter Squadron Thirty-Two (VFA-32)|
(The WSO's old outfit)
|USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) in the Persian Gulf|
U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Ricardo J. Reyes
But aircraft carriers and their embarked air wings are NOT the sum total of Naval Aviation. No Sir. No Ma'am.
Mustn't forget the hard working men and women of the maritime patrol squadrons! The P-3s...
|P-3C Orion of Patrol Squadron Nine (VP-9) - "Golden Eagles”|
U.S. Navy photo by Photographer’s Mate 2nd Class Elizabeth L. Burke
|P-8A Poseidon of Patrol Squadron Sixteen (VP-16) - "War Eagles"|
U.S Navy photo by Personnel Specialist 1st Class Anthony Petry
As most of you know, I'm all about military aviation, having served 24 years in the US Air Force. You might also remember that my youngest (The WSO) is a Naval Flight Officer (NFO, think back seater), currently assigned to VFA-2 "The Bounty Hunters" out in California. Her husband (Big Time) is a Naval Aviator (think pilot) assigned to VFA-122, "The Flying Eagles" as an instructor pilot, also in California. NAS Lemoore to be precise.
While Master Jet Base Lemoore doesn't have quite the same allure as Master Jet Base Oceana (in Virginia), it's kind of grown on me. Sure, no beaches anywhere in sight but hey, it has gray painted birds of prey which go very fast. That makes up for a lot!
|F/A-18F Super Hornet of the "Bounty Hunters", Strike Fighter Squadron Two (VFA-2)|
(The WSO's current outfit)
U.S. Navy photo by Midshipman John Ivancic
|F/A-18E Super Hornet of the "Knighthawks", Strike Fighter Squadron One Three Six (VFA-136)|
(Big Time's old outfit)
Photo by Nick Thomas
Of course, there are birds no longer in the fleet but I mention here because they served with distinction. (And the next photo is, of course, Tuna's old ride.)
|S-3B Viking, Submarine hunter, surface warfare and tanker|
Jack of many trades
|E-2C Hawkeye, Airborne Early Warning, the carrier's "eye in the sky"|
|EA-6B Prowler, Electronic warfare and attack are it's specialties.|
|EA-18G Growler, Electronic warfare and attack - will eventually replace the Prowler|
|A-6 Intruder, Designed to put bombs on target.|
First time, every time.
|AV-8B Harrier of Marine Attack Squadron Two One Four (VMA-214)|
The Black Sheep
|U.S. Navy V-22 Osprey aircraft operate from the flight deck of the USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7)|
Photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Mike Jones, U.S. Navy.
|CH-46 Sea Knight of Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 364 (HMM-364), the "Purple Foxes"|
While it's not glamorous and it doesn't fly in combat, how do you think the ship's company and the air wing get their mail while out at sea?
|C-2 Greyhound (aka the COD, Carrier Onboard Delivery) of Fleet Logistics Support Squadron 30 (VRC-30), the "Providers"|
|US Coast Guard MH 60 Jayhawk Helicopters|
|Coast Guard HH-65C Dolphin helicopters from Air Station Miami.|
And of course, no post on Naval Aviation would be complete without that arm's best recruiting tool...
|The Blue Angels|