Wings Of Gold Awarded To First Black Female Tactical Air Pilot For The US Navy

Madeline Swegle is a Lt. J.G at the Naval Air Station had their first black female earned her Wings of Gold July 31, 2020.

She achieved her goals even with the training challenges the Navy faced during Covid-19. She said “ I’m excited to have this opportunity to work harder and fly performance jet aircraft in the fleet. It would’ve been nice to see someone who liked me in this role; I never intended to be the first. I hope it’s encouraging to other people.”

Regardless of the small ceremony, Swegle and the other 25 graduates represent the largest qualifying class strike aircrew in almost a decade, the navy stated.

Swegle is a Virginian native who graduated from the US Naval Academy in 2017, will now be designated to the Redhawks of training squadron 21 based out of Texas.

Qualifiers of the TACAIR program usually go on to fly F/A -18E/F Super Hornets, EA-186 Growlers, or the F-35C joint strike fighters.

Commander of the Naval Air Force Vice Adm. Dewolf “ bullet” Miller III stated that “ Lt. J.G Swegle has joined a select group of people who earned Wings of Gold and answered the call to defend our nation from the air. The diversity of that group – with differences in background, skill, and thought – makes us a strong fighting force.”

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