Nine female pilots at Naval Air Station Oceana, Virginia, say they feel privileged to be selected as volunteers to perform the “missing woman” formation this Saturday for an aviator who paved the way for their success: U.S. Navy Capt. Rosemary Mariner, who died last week at 65.
“We’re fortunate to be chosen,” said Cmdr. Leslie “Meat” Mintz, executive officer of Strike Fighter Squadron 213 (VFA-213). Mintz, a career weapons system officer on the Super Hornet, spoke to Military.com on Thursday ahead of the flyover.
The tribute, announced by the Navy this week, will take place as Mariner receives a full military graveside service at New Loyston Cemetery in Maynardville, Tennessee.
The pilots have performed other flyovers, Mintz said. But “it’s certainly the first time I’ve done this for a female aviator. Everyone is truly humbled to be a part of it.”