Immediately after the performance of the National Anthem on Sunday, February 12, three tactical aircraft squadrons of the United States Navy flew over State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.
According to military officials, the flyover at Super Bowl LVII celebrated 50 years of women pilots in the U.S. Navy and showcased the advanced aircraft’s electronic capabilities.
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Lt. Arielle Ash of Abilene, Texas, Lt. Naomi Ngalle of Springfield, Virginia, Lt. Jacqueline Drew of Waltham, Massachusetts, Lt. Suzelle Thomas of Birmingham, Alabama, and Lt. Kathryn Martinez, also of Springfield, Virginia, make up the fly-over team for Super Bowl LVII. Prior to Sunday’s game, Sen. Tommy Tuberville lauded Thomas for his time spent serving in the Navy.
According to the Navy, Thomas, a native of Birmingham, Alabama, graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 2018. According to officials, women make up the majority of the aircrew and support personnel working with the squadrons on the ground.
Alabama is proud to see one of our own, Lt. Suzelle Thomas, flying over the #SuperBowl tonight as a part of the first all-female flight crew in game history.
Congratulations to Lt. Thomas and all of our @USNavy pilots.https://t.co/GLGIGqe5j7
— Coach Tommy Tuberville (@SenTuberville) February 12, 2023
The anniversary in 2023 occurs 50 years after the first female enlistees in the American Navy flight programme in 1973. The next year, six of the eight inaugural trainees, referred to as “The First Six,” received their Wings of Gold.