Blue Angels Commanding Officer Steps Down

Blue Angels
screen shot from www.blueangels.navy.mil/aircraft/
Screen shot 2011 05 28 at 10.30.11 AM
Screen shot from www.blueangels.navy.mil/aircraft/

The commanding officer of the Naval Flight Demonstration Squadron stepped down on Friday following a “lower-than-normal” maneuver during the team’s last performance at an air show on May 22.

“With deep personal regret I shared with my command today that I will be voluntarily leaving the greatest flight demonstration team,” Commander Dave Koss said in a statement.

“I performed a maneuver that had an unacceptably low minimum altitude,” Koss continued.  “This maneuver, combined with other instances of not meeting the airborne standard that makes the Blue Angels the exceptional organization that it is, led to my decision to step down.”

Koss will be replaced by Capt. Greg McWherter.

With Koss resigning that means other scheduled Blue Angels performances at the Rockford Airfest June 4-5 and the Evansville Freedom Festival Air Show June 11-12 have been cancelled.

The team will remain in Pensacol, FL for training and air show demonstration practice.  Any changes to their future schedule will be announced at a later date, according to a statement.

“I have the utmost respect for the Sailors and Marines of the Blue Angels organization and all that they embody,” Koss said in the statement.  “The reason this team is so successful, brings thrills to millions of fans across America, and represents the U.S. Navy so superbly is because of the absolute commitment to safety and perfection by every member of the team.  I am honored to have been a part of this organization and I look forward to watching its success in the future.”