The Navy has its first female Carrier Air Wing commander. And the writer at the local paper is smart enough to catch on that the call sign of CAG of ComCarWing Three is (and has been for at least 40 years) Battleaxe.

Capt. Sara Joyner laughed when she realized that as the first female fighter pilot to command a carrier air wing, she would answer to the call sign “Battle Axe.”

“If you look up the word ‘battle-axe,’ it is a slightly overbearing and domineering woman,” Joyner told reporters Friday after assuming command of Carrier Air Wing 3 – nicknamed “Battle Axe” – during a ceremony at Oceana Naval Air Station. “I found that humorous.”

It’s also rather refreshing to see that she doesn’t try to make the occasion a big Diversity Industry celebration.

“I don’t think that it needs to be said; it’s out there. My hope is to be as good as the best of the best CAGs that I’ve had,” Joyner said, referring to the Navy’s acronym for the commander of an air group. “It doesn’t matter what you look like; it matters how you do the job.”

Successful command of a carrier air wing, along with her previous successful command of a strike fighter squadron, doesn’t guarantee an Admiral’s flag in her future, but in Naval Aviation, it is one of two well worn paths to the stars, the other being successful squadron command, followed by the nuclear power pipeline and eventual carrier command.

Good luck to Captain Joyner and CVW-3.

6 thoughts on “BattleAxe”

  1. CAG call signs are named after mothers in law now. Rim shot.

    Seriously, mission accomplishment and personnel management are still the touchstones of success. Good luck, Captain Joyner!

    1. Hmm … NaCly, is this where I’m supposed to ask “what the devil is a Reuben James?”

  2. If memory serves, unless she has held ship commands as well, she’s about as high as she can go. Lex could have become a CAG, but there are only so many slots available. Given she’s a woman, it played heavily in her favor. The diversitycrats are always on the look out for opportunities such as this.

  3. After CAG (if succesful) won’t a surface command be the next route? An AO and then maybe a LPD?

    Just wondering.

    Regardless….best of luck.

    And may her traps equal her launches!

    1. I’ll wait for a squid to give the definitive answer, but I think not. I think CAG is her one shot at major at-sea command. If she’d screened for a major surface command, that would have taken her out of the running for a wing.

      Of course, presuming she has a good CAG tour, she’s competitive for screen for flag and for further at-sea commands such as an ESG.

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