KINGSVILLE, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) — The United States Navy is welcoming its first Black female fighter pilot and she’s stationed in South Texas.
Officials with the Navy confirm Lt. j.g. Madeline Swegle made a final flight on a T-45C Goshawk to complete her undergraduate Tactical Air training.
“Swegle is the @USNavy’s first known Black female TACAIR pilot and will receive her Wings of Gold later this month. HOOYAH!” the Chief of Naval Air Training tweeted, wishing the pilot “BZ,” short for “Bravo Zulu,” the naval signal for “well done.”
BZ to Lt. j.g. Madeline Swegle on completing the Tactical Air (Strike) aviator syllabus. Swegle is the @USNavy’s first known Black female TACAIR pilot and will receive her Wings of Gold later this month. HOOYAH! @FlyNavy @NASKPAO #ForgedByTheSea #CNATRA #CNATRAgrads pic.twitter.com/FKSlURWQhJ
— Naval Air Training (@CNATRA) July 9, 2020
According to Stars and Stripes, Swegle is from Burke, Virginia, and graduated from the Naval Academy in 2017. She is assigned to the Redhawks of Training Squadron 21 at Naval Air Station Kingsville — about 45 miles southwest of Corpus Christi.
Swegle’s milestone comes some 40 years after trailblazer Brenda Robinson became the first black female naval aviator in 1980. Women have only been serving on U.S. combatant ships since 1994.