Charleston Native Keeps Navy Wing Flying

A 2012 Military Magnet Academy graduate and Charleston, South Carolina native is serving in the U.S. Navy aboard Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, the premier naval air installation in the Pacific Northwest region.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Jered Thornton is an intelligence specialist serving with Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10.

A Navy intelligence specialist is responsible for analyzing data that the P-3C aircraft bring back from missions and sending the information to the rest of the fleet.

“I like the access to the fleet that this job offers me,” said Thornton. “It’s not just tied in to what is happening here but I can see what is happening with the rest of the world with just a click of a button.”

According to Navy officials, Wing 10 has continued to fly combat missions in direct support of the troops on the ground and delivered traditional maritime capabilities, real-time intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.

Beginning in the 1960s, the P-3C Orion, a land-based, long-range anti-submarine warfare patrol aircraft, replaced the P-2V Neptune fleet.  After 50 years of faithful service and the 50th anniversary of Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Force, the P-3C Orion is being phased out of the fleet and replaced by the P-8A Poseidon, according to Navy officials.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Jered Thornton

The P-8A is a modified Boeing airframe featuring a fully connected, state-of-the-art, open architecture mission system designed for long-range anti-submarine warfare; anti-surface warfare; and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions, Navy officials explained.

“Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10 mans, trains, and equips P-3 and P-8 squadrons to deploy anywhere, anytime,” said Capt. Robert W. Patrick, Commodore of CPRW-10. “These forces are the nation’s first choice for broad area maritime surveillance and rapid response around the world. This is critically important, as we are the eyes and the ears of our national defense, putting pressure on strategic locations around the world. Our sailors are the single biggest asymmetric advantage that allow us to succeed at our missions. Without our sailors’ agility and expertise, we would not be able to do what we do.”

Thornton is part of a crew striving to be the best Naval Aviation Wing in the United States, according to Navy Officials. Their mission is to safely build and maintain a team of sailors capable of conducting prompt and sustained combat operations.

“I like being able to travel around the world with this command,” Thornton said. “Most people have to pay to travel the world and I have gotten to go to eight countries in a year because I joined the Navy.”

According to Navy officials, the Navy continues to meet milestone after milestone on this world-class mission and is providing an aircraft with superior capabilities to the men and women in uniform that will have a lasting legacy promoting a global maritime strategy.

“Serving in the Navy means being a part of something bigger than myself,” Thornton added. “I am actively contributing to this organization. We make sure that people on the ground are safe during deployment and that’s important to me.”

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