The Commanding Officer of USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78), Capt. J.J. Cummings and Commander, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 8, Capt. Josh Sager, announced the largest air wing embark to date during a teleconference, on June 1.
CVW-8 embarked seven squadrons and is operating nearly 30 fixed-wing aircraft and both of their Helicopter Sea Combat squadrons. Cummings said this embark serves as an opportunity to stress and test Ford’s unique design and demonstrate her ability to conduct integrated air wing operations.
“This is a historic underway – we embarked nearly 1,000 Sailors, the largest air wing embark to date, and we were able to commence cyclic operations and it’s proven successful,” said Cummings. “It’s exciting to have the air wing onboard and get into their spaces and berthings so they can help us tighten things up to where they want them to be.”
In a ‘crawl, walk, run’ approach the air wing has ramped up to 3 day and 2 night integrated events with only a short break between day and night events. Sager said this is first time CVW-8 squadrons have been able to execute all of their missions aboard Ford.