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Navy Supports Bahrain International Air Show

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS100125-01
Release Date: 1/25/2010 9:28:00 AM

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Rachel McMarr, Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/Commander, U.S. 5th Fleet Public Affairs

MANAMA, Bahrain (NNS) -- Three U.S. Navy squadrons provided support for the first Bahrain International Air Show (BIAS) at the newly opened Sahkir Air Base in Bahrain Jan. 21-23.

Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 41, known as the "Black Aces," stationed aboard the USS Nimitz (CVN 68), provided the jets; VFA-106, the "Gladiators," a training squadron stationed in Oceana, Va., provided pilots; and VFA-103, the "Jolly Rogers," embarked aboard USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) provided maintenance and personnel for the static displays at this inaugural event.

"The support of our squadrons to make this happen shows the dedication the Navy has to the Kingdom of Bahrain and the confidence we have in their future as a leader in the aeronautical industry," said Vice Adm. Bill Gortney, commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command (NAVCENT).

The inaugural air show attracted more than 5,000 people, which included Sailors and family members stationed at Naval Support Activity Bahrain and its tenant commands.

Electronics Technician 1st Class Jennifer Kelly, stationed at NAVCENT, said she was proud to see the "Hornets" flying among the airplanes from so many nations.

"I'm coming from Oceana," said Kelly. "The jet noise was surprisingly comforting - it's the sound of freedom to me."

For more news from Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/Commander, U.S. 5th Fleet, visit

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