Wilbraham native, naval flight officer proud to direct crew of P - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Wilbraham native, naval flight officer proud to direct crew of P-8A Poseidon

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Lt. j. g. Kyle Galarneau serves as a naval flight officer. (U.S. Navy) Lt. j. g. Kyle Galarneau serves as a naval flight officer. (U.S. Navy)
JACKSONVILLE, FL -

A graduate of Minnechaug Regional High School Wilbraham native is serving with Patrol Squadron Sixteen (VP-16), otherwise known as the War Eagles, in Jacksonville, Fla.

Lt. j. g. Kyle Galarneau is a naval flight officer with VP-16, which operates the Navy's newly-designed maritime patrol aircraft, the P-8A Poseidon, according to Navy officials.

Each plane has an aircrew of nine and is nearly 130 feet long. The aircraft may weigh up to 188,000 lbs. and can travel over 560 miles per hour and nearly 1,380 miles on a single tank of gas.

“I direct the crew on the plane in conducting all the various mission sets on the P-8A while we're in the air,” said Galarneau.

The P-8A Poseidon is designed to secure the Navy's future in long-range maritime patrol capability, while transforming how the Navy's maritime patrol and reconnaissance force will man, train, operate and deploy, officials said.

“It's exciting to fly in a brand new platform for the Navy,” said Galarneau. “I'm excited for the future capabilities coming to an already very capable platform.”

The P-8A provides more combat capability from a smaller force and less infrastructure while focusing on worldwide responsiveness and interoperability with traditional manned forces and evolving unmanned sensors.

Galarneau also said he is proud of the work he is doing as part of the squadron's 260-member team, helping to protect America on the world's oceans.

“The camaraderie with the fellow officers in the wardroom is great here, we're a tight knit group,” said Galarneau.

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