by Stephen Cohen, SeattlePI.com
EA-18G Growler (file picture)
Navy officers acknowledged that one in all its air crews was liable for skywriting a penis over a rural Northern Washington county Thursday.
The crew has been grounded.
Local media started receiving studies of the phallic image above the skies in Okanogan County Thursday afternoon.
“After it made the circles at the bottom, I knew what it was and started laughing,” Okanogan’s Ramone Duran instructed The (Spokane) Spokesman-Review. “It was pretty funny to see that. You don’t expect to see something like that.”
Officials at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island later confirmed that one in all its plane was accountable, saying an an F/A-18 Growler flew in a sample “that left a condensed air trail resembling an obscene image to observers on the ground. “
“The Officers and Sailors of the United States Navy are professionals, held to the highest standards, while serving our nation with pride around world,” Lt. Cmdr. Leslie Hubbell, the bottom’s media officer, mentioned in an announcement. “The actions of this aircrew had been wholly unacceptable and antithetical to Navy core values. We have grounded the aircrew and are conducting an intensive investigation — and we’ll maintain these accountable accountable for his or her actions. The Navy apologizes for this irresponsible and immature act.
“The Navy apologizes to anybody who was offended by this unacceptable motion,” the statement continued. “An investigation into this flight will likely be carried out and if applicable, the aviator(s) accountable will likely be held accountable.”
Later Friday, Vice Admiral Mike Shoemaker, commander of Naval Air Forces, issued his personal badertion.
” The American folks rightfully anticipate that those that put on the Wings of Gold exhibit a stage of maturity commensurate with the missions and plane with which they have been entrusted. Naval aviation frequently strives to foster an surroundings of dignity and respect. Sophomoric and immature antics of a badual nature don’t have any place in Naval aviation in the present day. We will examine this incident to get all of the details and act accordingly.
“This event clearly stands in stark contrast to the way our aviators and sailors are performing with utmost professionalism, discipline and excellence from our carrier flight decks and expeditionary airfields around the world today.”
A Federal Aviation Administration official instructed KREM there was nothing the FAA might do concerning the drawing because it posed no security danger, including the FAA “cannot police morality.”
NAS Whidbey Island is the house to all the Navy’s squadrons of the Growler digital badault jets, similar to the F/A-18 Hornets utilized by the Blue Angels. The station can be house to 4 P-Three Orion Maritime Patrol squadrons and two Fleet Reconnaissance squadrons flying the EP-3E Aries.
Okanogan County sits on the U.S./Canadian border northeast of the Wenatchee National Forest.
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