Blue Angels select first female fighter jet demonstration pilot

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Blue Angels select first female fighter jet demonstration pilot: The US Navy’s finest flight demonstration unit, the Blue Angels, has chosen the first female fighter jet display pilot for the forthcoming season.

According to a Blue Angels press release, Lt. Amanda Lee and Lt. Cmdr. Thomas Zimmerman was chosen to be the F/A-18E/F display pilot. Lee has been chosen, but she must still finish a five-month intensive training program with the Blue Angels, which all new recruits must do.

The F/A-18E/F is one of six planes that fly during most Blue Angels displays.

In total, the Blue Angels revealed six new squad members. The Blue Angels also announced the addition of an events coordinator, a C-130J Super Hercules pilot, an aircraft maintenance officer, and a flight surgeon “to replace outgoing team members.”

While Lee will be the team’s first female pilot, “for over 55 years, hundreds of women have served with the Blue Angels representing the very finest of the Navy and Marine Corps,” according to the statement.

“We had an incredible amount of candidates from all around the world this year,” Blue Angels commanding officer and flight leader Capt. Brian Kesselring stated in a release. “We are excited to teach our outstanding new team members, pass the torch, and witness the incredible things this team will do in 2023.”

According to the statement, these six new team members were chosen to be interviewed at Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola, Florida, during the week of the Pensacola Beach Air Show, which took place July 6-9.

According to the statement, the new team members will report to the squadron in September and will begin the five-month training program in November at NAS Pensacola, Florida, and Naval Air Facility El Centro, California.

According to the statement, the Blue Angels’ objective is to “showcase the teamwork and professionalism of the United States Navy and Marine Corps through flying demonstrations and community outreach.” The Blue Angels were created in 1946 and perform numerous showcases in the United States each year.