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CHIPS Articles: On this Day in Navy History — First Four Women Pilots Begin Training

On this Day in Navy History — First Four Women Pilots Begin Training
Photo album
By Naval History and Heritage Command - March 2, 2016
On March 2, 1973, the first four female U.S. Navy pilots begin training. The women are: Lt. j.g. Barbara A. Allen; Lt. j.g Judith A. Neuffer; Ensign Jane M. Skiles and Ensign Kathleen L. McNary.

To read more about milestones of women in the U.S. Navy, please click here.

To learn more about U.S. Navy history, please go to the Naval History and Heritage Command website: www.history.navy.mil/ or visit the NHHC blog: The Sextant.

The first four Navy Women chosen for Flight Training Pose at Pensacola, Florida in March 1973. Lt. Barbara Allen became the first Navy woman to earn her wings on 22 February 1974. (left to right): Lt. j.g. Barbara Allen, Ensign Jane M. Skiles,  Lt. j.g. Judith A. Neuffer and Ensign Kathleen L. McNary.  The Naval flight officer program was opened to women six years later. NHHC Photograph Collection, NH 106751
The first four Navy Women chosen for Flight Training Pose at Pensacola, Florida in March 1973. Lt. Barbara Allen became the first Navy woman to earn her wings on 22 February 1974. (left to right): Lt. j.g. Barbara Allen, Ensign Jane M. Skiles, Lt. j.g. Judith A. Neuffer and Ensign Kathleen L. McNary. The Naval flight officer program was opened to women six years later. NHHC Photograph Collection, NH 106751

Lieutenants Junior Grade Judith A. Neuffer, left, and Barbara A. Allen get the feel of helmets they will be wearing during early flight training in the T-34 mentor trainer aircraft in the background. These women are two of the first four women officers to be chosen to undergo aviation training, March 1973. NHHC Photograph Collection, L-File, Women Topics – Aviation.
Lieutenants Junior Grade Judith A. Neuffer, left, and Barbara A. Allen get the feel of helmets they will be wearing during early flight training in the T-34 mentor trainer aircraft in the background. These women are two of the first four women officers to be chosen to undergo aviation training, March 1973. NHHC Photograph Collection, L-File, Women Topics – Aviation.

The first four women chosen to undergo aviation training report for their flight physical exams at the Naval Aerospace Medical Institute and Research Laboratory at Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida. From left, LTJG Judith A. Neuffer; LTJG Barbara A. Allen; Ens Jane M. Skiles, and Ens Kathleen L. McNary, March 1973. NHHC Photograph Collection, L-File, Women Topics – Aviation. U.S. Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery
The first four women chosen to undergo aviation training report for their flight physical exams at the Naval Aerospace Medical Institute and Research Laboratory at Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida. From left, Lt. j.g. Judith A. Neuffer; Lt. j.g. Barbara A. Allen; Ensign Jane M. Skiles, and Ensign Kathleen L. McNary, March 1973. NHHC Photograph Collection, L-File, Women Topics – Aviation. U.S. Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery

Three of the first four Navy women chosen to undergo flight training commence reporting-in-physics exams with other students as part of the academic training of the flight program. From the foreground the women are: Lt. j.g. Judith A. Neuffer, Lt. j.g. Barbara Allen, and Ensign Kathleen L. McNary, March 1973. NHHC Photograph Collection, L-File, Women Topics – Aviation.
Three of the first four Navy women chosen to undergo flight training commence reporting-in-physics exams with other students as part of the academic training of the flight program. From the foreground the women are: Lt. j.g. Judith A. Neuffer, Lt. j.g. Barbara Allen, and Ensign Kathleen L. McNary, March 1973. NHHC Photograph Collection, L-File, Women Topics – Aviation.

Ensign Kathleen McNary holds a model of the TS-2 Tracker aircraft, which she hopes to learn to fly at Naval Air Station Corpus Christi, Texas. Photographed by PH1 Jim Haynes. NHHC Photograph Collection, L-File, Women Topics – Aviation.
Ensign Kathleen McNary holds a model of the TS-2 Tracker aircraft, which she hopes to learn to fly at Naval Air Station Corpus Christi, Texas. Photographed by PH1 Jim Haynes. NHHC Photograph Collection, L-File, Women Topics – Aviation.

Ensign Kathleen L. McNary waits for her turn for a flight physical at the Naval Aerospace Medical Institute and Research Laboratory at Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida. She is one of the first four women to be chosen to undergo aviation training, March 1973. NHHC Photograph Collection, L-File, Women Topics – Aviation.
Ensign Kathleen L. McNary waits for her turn for a flight physical at the Naval Aerospace Medical Institute and Research Laboratory at Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida. She is one of the first four women to be chosen to undergo aviation training, March 1973. NHHC Photograph Collection, L-File, Women Topics – Aviation.

Captain Ronald White, left, and “Pappy” Byrne, both pioneers in Naval Aviation, met the pioneer female aviators at the first Mini-Reunion of the Golden Eagles held at Naval Air Station South Weymouth. Left to right: Ensign Jane Skiles, Woman Naval Aviator (WNA No.3); Lt. j.g. Judy Neuffer (WNA No.2) and Lt. j.g. Barbara A. Allen Rainey, (WNA No.1). Photographed by JO3 Brent M. Jaquet, 10 May 1974. NHHC Photograph Collection, L-File, Women Topics – Aviation.
Captain Ronald White, left, and “Pappy” Byrne, both pioneers in Naval Aviation, met the pioneer female aviators at the first Mini-Reunion of the Golden Eagles held at Naval Air Station South Weymouth. Left to right: Ensign Jane Skiles, Woman Naval Aviator (WNA No.3); Lt. j.g. Judy Neuffer (WNA No.2) and Lt. j.g. Barbara A. Allen Rainey, (WNA No.1). Photographed by JO3 Brent M. Jaquet, 10 May 1974. NHHC Photograph Collection, L-File, Women Topics – Aviation.
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