F/A - 18 Super Hornet and its Impact on History

March 10, 2023

Streaking into the Hammond Northshore Regional Airshow is the Navy’s F/A-18F Super Hornet, flown by Lt. Joe “Jamboy” Kirksey.

The F/A-18 Super Hornet is a twin engine Naval Aircraft designed for speed and maneuverability. The powerhouse is designated F/A, where the “F” stands for air-to-air fighting capabilities and the “A” stands for ground-to-air attacks. The F/A-18F Super Hornet has an amazing range of uses for a plane that was first introduced over 40 years ago! The scope of mission capabilities include but are not limited to reconnaissance, air defense suppression, in-flight refueling, fighter escort, close air support, and precision strikes.

The original F/A -18 Hornet first flew in 1978 and was introduced into service with the Marine Corps in 1983, followed by service with the U.S. Navy in 1984. The F/A-18 Super Hornet arrived on the scene in 1991 larger in size, yet more efficiently designed in time to enter the Persian Gulf War. The Super Hornet’s operational services encompass two decades of missions which include Operation Southern Watch, Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Enduring Freedom, and Operation Inherent Resolve to name a few.

Kirksey is a native of Thousand Oaks, CA and graduated from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University with a bachelors in aeronautical science in 2012. Jamboy earned his wings of gold out of NAS Meridian in February of 2015. He then went on to serve in VFA-97 Warhawks from 2016 to 2019 executing two deployments in support of Operations Enduring Freedom and Inherent Resolve.  LT Kirksey is currently an instructor at VFA-122 Flying Eagles training the next generation of Naval Aviators in all tactics of the F/A-18 Super Hornet.

The Hammond Airshow Foundation is delighted to bring the Rhino Demo Team to the 2021 Airshow to demonstrate the abilities of  the amazing aircraft that is shaping the naval military landscape of a generation.The goal of the foundation is to foster community appreciation for the area’s rich heritage and the sacrifices made in the name of freedom and democracy. It is our hope this demonstration will encourage future generations to increase an interest in science, the military and aviation.