By Glenn Sircy
APR, Navy Office Of Community Outreach
A 2010 Middleton graduate and Riverview native is serving with Patrol Squadron Sixteen (VP-16), also known as the “War Eagles.” The Jacksonville-based squadron operates the Navy’s newly-designed maritime patrol aircraft, the P-8A Poseidon.
Each aircraft has an aircrew of nine, is nearly 130 ft. long, may weigh up to 188,200 lbs. (max gross) and can travel over 560 miles per hour and nearly 1,380 miles on a tank of gas.
As a seaman, Holman is currently training for a job assignment.
“Right now, I launch aircrafts and park them, and work as a plane captain doing interior and exterior inspection,” said Holman.
The Navy’s replacement platform for the P-3C, the P-8A Poseidon, is designed to secure the Navy’s future in long-range maritime patrol capability, while transforming how the Navy’s maritime patrol and reconnaissance force will man, train, operate and deploy.
“The P-8 is really quiet compared to the P-3 and getting to see all of the firsts with this is awesome,” said Holman.
The P-8A provides more combat capability from a smaller force and less infrastructure while focusing on worldwide responsiveness and interoperability with traditional manned forces and evolving unmanned sensors.
Holman also said he is proud of the work he is doing as part of the squadron’s 260-member team, helping to protect America on the world’s oceans.
“Camaraderie and professionalism is great, and I like being a part of a unit that is always striving to be the best,” said Holman.
The P-8A leverages the experience and technology of the P-3C’s capabilities and assets to meet the Navy’s needs of developing and fielding a maritime aircraft equipped with significant growth potential, including an extended global reach, greater payload capacity, higher operating altitude, and the open systems architecture.
The War Eagles were the first squadron to deploy with the new P-8 platform. One of their first major missions had international attention as they participated in the international search effort for Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean.
As a member of one of the U.S. Navy’s newest maritime patrol aircraft platforms, Holman and other VP-16 sailors are proud to part of a war fighting team that readily defends America at all times.