Over six years ago, a Navy sailor from the Nuclear Power Training Center in Charleston showed up on the USS Yorktown at Patriots Point and asked if he could volunteer. Frank Napier from Mesa, Arizona, was a young sailor away from home, with time on his hands and a fascination with the old Essex class carrier. He quickly became an active volunteer, climbing around the ship, asking questions and using his new found knowledge to talk with our visitors.
One day Frank told us that he was applying to get into the Naval Academy and his dream was to fly. We told him to be careful what he wished for and sure enough… Frank soon said his goodbyes and headed off to Annapolis. Yesterday, Ensign Frank Napier, United States Navy, and his father came by to say hello and to catch up with old friends. Now an Annapolis graduate and commissioned officer, he is heading to Pensacola, Florida, to pursue his dream. Ensign Napier will be assigned to VT-10 the first step for new student Naval Flight Officers (NFOs).
He will get a chance to earn his civilian pilot’s license and began to earn his wings of gold from the Navy. Most of our NFOs are assigned as crew members in the F/A-18 Super Hornet, E-2C Hawkeye, P-3C Orion and a few other smaller aviation communities. It will take Ensign Napier around four months to complete primary training and two more months to complete intermediate at VT-10. After VT-10 he will either be sent to a replacement air group (RAG) training squadron or to VT-86 for advanced training preparation for the strike/fighter (Super Hornet) community. After this additional training of six months to one year, Ensign Napier will finally arrive at his first fleet squadron assignment. We’ll keep you up on his progress! Good luck Frank, looking forward to your continued service to our nation in Naval Aviation, 100 years and going strong!