Virginia woman makes history as U.S. Navy’s 1st Black female Tactical Aircraft pilot

Nation/World

The U.S. Navy has welcomed its first Black female Tactical Aircraft pilot.

“MAKING HISTORY!” the U.S. Navy tweeted Thursday in response to a post that Lt. j.g. Madeline Swegle had completed naval flight school and would later this month receive the flight officer insignia known as the “Wings of Gold.”

In this photo provided by the U.S. Navy, student Naval aviator Lt. j.g. Madeline Swegle, assigned to the Redhawks of Training Squadron (VT) 21 at Naval Air Station Kingsville, Texas, exits a T-45C Goshawk training aircraft following her final flight to complete the undergraduate Tactical Air (Strike) pilot training syllabus, July 7, 2020, in Kingsville, Texas. Swegle is the Navy's first known Black female strike aviator and will receive her Wings of Gold during a ceremony on July 31. (Anne Owens/U.S. Navy via AP)
In this photo provided by the U.S. Navy, student Naval aviator Lt. j.g. Madeline Swegle, assigned to the Redhawks of Training Squadron (VT) 21 at Naval Air Station Kingsville, Texas, exits a T-45C Goshawk training aircraft following her final flight to complete the undergraduate Tactical Air (Strike) pilot training syllabus, July 7, 2020, in Kingsville, Texas. Swegle is the Navy’s first known Black female strike aviator and will receive her Wings of Gold during a ceremony on July 31. (Anne Owens/U.S. Navy via AP)

The Naval Air Training Command tweeted that Swegle is the Navy’s “first known Black female TACAIR pilot.”

According to Stars and Stripes, Swegle is from Burke, Virginia, and graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 2017.

Officials said she is assigned to the Redhawks of Training Squadron 21 in Kingsville, Texas.

Swegle’s milestone comes more than 45 years after Rosemary Mariner in 1974 became the first woman to fly a tactical fighter jet, according to news outlets.

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