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Aircraft dedicated to fallen Navy aviator

  • Published
  • By Joel Fortner
In observance of Women's History Month, base officials dedicated the F-14D Tomcat static display aircraft at the main gate Friday, March 30, in honor of a fallen female Navy aviator. 

Lt. Kara Hultgreen, the Navy's first female carrier-based combat fighter pilot, was killed in a crash in October 1994 in the F-14 she was piloting. 

She was assigned to the Black Lions of Fighter Squadron 213 aboard the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln. The F-14 dedicated in her honor was assigned to the same squadron. 

The unit was conducting training operations in preparation for deployment to the Persian Gulf when the crash occurred. The Tomcat she piloted experienced engine failure on final approach and crashed in the Pacific Ocean. Her crewman survived. 

She is buried in Arlington National Cemetery. 

The guest speaker was retired Navy Capt. Rosemary Mariner, the first military woman to command an operational fleet squadron. During her 24 years of military service, Captain Mariner logged more than 3,500 military flight hours in 15 different naval aircraft and made 17 carrier landings.