The U.S. Navy is planning to fly an operational F/A-18C for the last time on Feb. 1 at Naval Air Station (NAS) Oceana.
Strike Fighter Squadron 34 (VFA-34) ‘Blueblasters’ is the last combat unit within the service to operate the Legacy Hornet.
As we have already reported VFA-34 returned to NAS Oceana on Apr. 11, 2018 from their final deployment flying the F/A-18C Legacy Hornet. They’ll be the last U.S. Navy squadron to transition to the F/A-18E Super Hornet.
The single-seat F/A-18 Hornet is the U.S. first strike-fighter. It was designed for traditional strike applications such as interdiction and close air support without compromising its fighter capabilities.
The F/A-18 demonstrated its capabilities and versatility during Operation Desert Storm, shooting down enemy fighters and subsequently bombing enemy targets with the same aircraft on the same mission, and breaking all records for tactical aircraft in availability, reliability, and maintainability.
Hornets taking direct hits from surface-to-air missiles, recovering successfully, being repaired quickly, and flying again the next day proved the aircraft’s survivability.
The F/A-18C and D models are the result of a block upgrade in 1987 incorporating provisions for employing updated missiles and jamming devices against enemy ordnance. C and D models delivered since 1989 also include an improved night attack capability.
The U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels Flight Demonstration Squadron proudly flies the F/A-18 Legacy Hornet. The Hornet comprises the aviation strike force for seven foreign customers including Canada, Australia, Finland, Kuwait, Malaysia, Spain and Switzerland.
Photo credit: Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Sean M. Castellano / U.S. Navy
Artwork courtesy of AircraftProfilePrints.com
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