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    Navy Flies High at Cape Girardeau Air Festival

    Strong Navy Presence at the Cape Girardeau Air Festival

    Photo By Petty Officer 1st Class Chris Williamson | 190518-N-JH293-1274 CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (May 18, 2019) Lt. James Cox, left wing pilot...... read more read more



    Story by Petty Officer 1st Class Chris Williamson 

    Navy Talent Acquisition Group Mid America

    CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. – The U.S. Navy made its presence known to the tip of the Midwest in southeast Missouri during the 2019 Cape Girardeau Air Festival, May 18-19, 2019.

    In attendance were recruiters and future Sailors from Navy Recruiting District (NRD) St. Louis, the Navy Partnership with the U.S. Navy’s national virtual reality asset — the Nimitz, and the reason thousands of people were there — the U.S. Navy flight demonstration squadron, the Blue Angels.

    According to Julia Dacy, the air festival coordinator, locals affectionately refer to it as the Cape “G” Air Fest, and it has been a staple in the area since 1995.

    “With the festival being around for more than two decades now, it’s now known as the best airshow in the Midwest,” said Dacy. “Which is completely understandable, because we’ve had so many amazing performers here to rival even the bigger U.S. cities’ air shows. People always have such a good time here and I look forward to doing it every year as well.”

    The festival featured 13 different types of aircraft, a jet-powered truck that raced airplanes, and cars available to test drive that went faster than 150 mph. More than 18,000 people showed up to the two-day event.

    And so with so many aviation enthusiasts in attendance, NRD St. Louis recruiters made it a point to talk to anybody who would come their way.

    “We’re always looking for people who are considering careers in aviation,” said Boatswain’s Mate 2nd Class Matthew Pierson, a recruiter at Navy Recruiting Station Cape Girardeau. “Since we have the most tactical aircraft out of any military branch, we need hard-charging people to be pilots, maintainers, ordnancemen, and more in order to help the Navy maintain a strong aviation presence.”

    The NRD’s recruiting booth was right next to the Nimitz to spread Navy awareness and to pique people’s interest about America's Navy.

    The Nimitz is an immersive virtual reality experience of what it’s like to be a U.S. Navy warfighter. The experience starts with a short mission briefing, donning on rumble packs and virtual reality headsets, and instantly getting into the mission, which consists of a virtual high-speed water extraction of a Navy SEAL team pinned down under enemy fire. Once people complete the mission, they’re graded on how they responded to five separate mission commands.

    “I love coming to these types of events and showing off the capabilities of this highly immersive experience,” said Andrew Loferski, account executive with the Navy Partnership. “Everywhere we go, people are excited to go inside and see and feel exactly what U.S. Navy Sailors see and feel.”

    As the grand finale to the festival, the U.S. Navy Blue Angels were the last performance for both days. However, the crowds stuck around the whole time, leaving only after the Blue Angels had finished their demonstration.

    “It's a dream come true to lead such an amazing team,” said Capt. Eric Doyle, the commanding officer and flight leader of the Blue Angels. “We all individually have to fly the plane, but we all have to do it together, especially when we're in formation. We have to know that we all are going to perform and react in the same way.”

    The Blue Angels will be performing in 32 shows this year, with Cape Girardeau having been their eighth stop.

    NRD St. Louis' area of responsibility covers more than 200,000 square miles, encompassing Missouri, Kansas, central and southern Illinois, and a portion of Kentucky. More than 200 officers, enlisted personnel and civilian staff operate 30 recruiting stations, two Navy Officer Recruiting Stations and the headquarters in St. Louis. Additionally, two Military Entrance Processing Stations; one at the headquarters in St. Louis and one in Kansas City, Mo., handle applicants' processing, classification, and physical examinations.

    Commander, Navy Recruiting Command consists of a command headquarters, three Navy Recruiting Regions, 18 Navy Recruiting Districts and eight Navy Talent Acquisition Groups that serve more than 1,300 recruiting stations across the world. Their combined goal is to attract the highest quality candidates to assure the ongoing success of America’s Navy.

    For more news from Navy Recruiting District St. Louis, visit or



    Date Taken: 05.19.2019
    Date Posted: 05.20.2019 16:39
    Story ID: 323159
    Location: CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO, US 

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