April 2, 1953

“In modern warfare, the emphasis is not on physical strength, but on brain power operating sophisticated weapons systems.” Rosemary Bryant Mariner

Captain Rosemary Bryant Mariner the U.S. Navy’s first female jet pilot and the first woman in the military to command an operational air squadron is born.

Chosen in 1973 as one of the first eight women to enter military pilot training, Mariner went on to become the first woman to fly the A-4C and the A-7E Corsair II. She later served on the Staff of the Joint Chiefs in the Pentagon. After her retirement from the military in 1997, she taught military history at the University of Tennessee and was an advisor to the Department of the Navy as well as PBS and ABC News. 

“Gender bias has not place in the British army” by Rosemary Bryant Mariner | New Scientist: https://www.newscientist.com/article/mg22329874-700-gender-bias-has-no-place-in-the-british-army/#.VCGZfa7Ua-5

Captain Rosemary Mariner – Military Officer – Associated Links:

In a photo provided by her family, Rosemary Mariner, who would become one of the Navy’s first female pilots, in a Naval Air Training Command class book from 1973. Mariner, who commanded a tactical electronic warfare squadron and later helped efforts to lift a ban on women serving in combat, died in Knoxville, Tenn. on Jan. 24, 2019. She was 65. (Mariner Family via The New York Times)

Rosemary Bryant Mariner – Military Officer – Related Links:

  • “Navy To Honor First Female Fighter With First Female- Piloted Flyover at Funeral” | 5NewsOnline
Photo: Business Insider
  • “A badass pilot'”: Capt. Rosemary Mariner, first woman to fly a tactical jet, dies”| NBCNews
Photo: Captain Rosemary Mariner NBC News
Captain Rosemary Mariner   
Photo (Right): In this undated photo, Rosemary Conatser (later Mariner) makes pre-flight checks of an antisubmarine aircraft at Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach.

Mariner graduated from Purdue University with a degree in aeronautics when she was 19 years old. After joining the Navy, she earned her wings in 1974 and began flying the A-4E/L Skyhawk and the A-7E Corsair II. In 1982, she became one of the first women to serve aboard a U.S. Navy warship, qualifying as a Surface Warfare Officer. Mariner assumed command of the Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron (VAQ-34) in 1990 and commanded the squadron during Operation Desert Storm. Over the course of her career, she logged 17 carrier arrested landings and more than 3,500 flight hours in fifteen different aircraft.

The Navy will be conducting its first all-female flyover as part of Mariner’s funeral, which will be held on Saturday. According to the Navy, the aviators participating in the flyover are from squadrons based at Naval Air Station Oceana and will be flying F/A-18E/F Super Hornets. (AVweb)

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