On Oct. 19, the Commander of the Navy’s Patrol and Reconnaissance WING ELEVEN hosted a group of 24 NJROTC Cadets from Port St Joe High School at Naval Air Station Jacksonville.
The cadets were met Thursday evening at the hotel by their sponsor and tour guide, AWOC (NAC/AW) Justin Blaylock, CPRW-11 P-3 Training LCPO, son of Patti and Dewey Blaylock of Port St. Joe.
The cadets’ tour began with a formation just off the flight-line to observe the morning launch of the P-3 and P-8 flights for that day, followed by an extremely fascinating tour of Hangar 511, with a close up look at the P-8, the latest addition to Wing 11’s inventory.
Chief Blaylock explained the many GSE, and the operational equipment housed there. He explained the maintenance spaces were located just off the hangar bay on the ground floor. A trip topside showed the cadets where the operations, training and administrative functions were carried out. One cadet noted that the squadrons were set up “just like our NJROTC Unit”
After a short visit to the aircraft static displays in the park across from Hangar 511, it was on to the bus for a quick tour of all the facilities at NAS Jacksonville. Cadets found out that a Naval Air Station is pretty much self-contained and houses many more commands and functions than just aviation squadrons.
The cadets were treated to lunch at the NAS JAX Galley and later visited the brand new P-8 simulators, which gave cadets a first-hand look at state- of- the- art technology in action. It was see and don’t touch, but the cadets were truly amazed at the latest in training aids the Navy has to offer.
The cadets also visited the P-3 Simulators, where they were given the opportunity to experience the feel of flying. These fledgling aviators got hands on experience that few will ever experience.
The cadets were treated to dinner and bowling by the Chief and his wife after the long day of learning.
The young men and women wish to thank Patti and Dewey Blaylock and “The Chief” for providing the cadets with this awesome opportunity. The cadets are already planning their next trip, and who knows, in a few years, one of them may be the tour guide.