The Blue Angels were originally formed as the Flight Exhibition Team
in March 1946 at Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Florida (NAS JAX) by Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Chester Nimitz, in an effort to raise awareness of naval aviation and boost morale. The team performed their first flight demonstration on June 15, 1946 in Grumman F6F-5 Hellcat aircraft. The squadron was officially redesignated as the United States Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron
in December 1974.
2018 NAS JAX Air Show
United States Department of Navy
Naval Air Station
October 27, 28, 2018U.S. Navy Blue Angels
by Paul Sager
, on Flickr
Lieutenant Commander Roy Marlin "Butch" Voris, a World War II fighter ace, was named Officer-in-Charge and Flight Leader for the newly formed flight demonstration team. Voris selected other WWII veterans into the team and they spent countless hours in early 1946 developing their airshow maneuvers. The group perfected its initial maneuvers in secret over the Florida Everglades so that, in Voris' words, "if anything happened, just the alligators would know". The team's first demonstration took place before Navy officials on May 10, 1946 and was met with enthusiastic approval.
The team's 1946 demonstration thrilled spectators with low-flying maneuvers performed in tight formations, and (according to Voris) by "keeping something in front of the crowds at all times."U.S. Navy Blue Angels
Blue Angel pilots serve two to three years, and position assignments are made according to team needs, pilot experience levels, and career considerations for members. After serving with the squadron, both officers and enlisted personnel return to fleet assignments.U.S. Navy Blue Angels
The team leader (#1) is the Commanding Officer and is always a Navy Commander, who may be promoted to Captain mid-tour if approved for Captain by the selection board. Pilots of numbers 2-7 are Navy Lieutenants or Lieutenant Commanders, or Marine Corps Captains or Majors. The number 7 pilot narrates for a year, and then typically flies Opposing and then Lead Solo the following two years, respectively.U.S. Navy Blue Angels
Commander Eric C. Doyle, Blue Angels No. 1, has been a commissioned officer in the U.S. Navy since 1996. He was designated a Naval Aviator in 1999 and made two deployments aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln. He was selected to attend the Navy Fighter Weapons School (TOPGUN) in 2003 and remained as a staff instructor. Following TOPGUN he served aboard the USS Harry S. Truman in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and later aboard the USS Carl Vinson in support of Operation Inherent Resolve. Cmdr Doyle joined the Blue Angels in September 2017 having accumulated more than 3,000 flight hours and more than 600 carrier-arrested landings.U.S. Navy Blue Angels
All team members, both officer and enlisted, come from the ranks of regular U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps units. The demonstration pilots and narrator are made up of Navy and USMC Naval Aviators. In the U.S. Navy, most Naval Aviators are unrestricted line officers (URL), eligible for command at sea. U.S. Navy Blue Angels
The team flies fighter aircraft which have formerly served in the fleet and are maintained to nearly combat-ready status. Modifications to each aircraft include removal of the weapons and replacement with the tank that contains smoke-oil used in demonstrations, and outfitting with the control stick spring system for more precise aircraft control input. The team has flown the Boeing F/A-18 Hornet since 1986.U.S. Navy Blue Angels
The first airshow at the Naval Air Station Jacksonville (NAS JAX) occurred in the 1930s when the station was under control of the Florida National Guard. The first U.S. Navy airshow occurred on October 15, 1945 when the base opened to the citizens of Jacksonville to display the aircraft that had won WWII. This was the only show at NAS Jacksonville where the U.S. Navy Blue Angels did not perform as they has not yet been formed.U.S. Navy Blue Angels
The mission of the United States Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron is "To showcase the pride and professionalism of the United States Navy and Marine Corps by inspiring a culture of excellence and service to country through flight demonstrations and community outreach."US Navy Blue Angels
The images are sized to fill your wide-screen display. Try using <F11> to maximize your browser window for the full effect. If the images overshoot your display, such as a laptop, just click on the image or the URL link and they'll resize to your screen from the host Flickr site. You can click a bit further into the image details on the Flickr page, if desired. EXIF data is available from the host Flickr pages as well. On the Flickr site, use your <L>key for Large and the <F11> for the full-screen.
If the images are not filling your widescreen display due to recent UHH changes, follow this link and update your UHH profile: https://www.uglyhedgehog.com/t-572300-1.html