WASHINGTON, D.C. — Officials with the U.S. Navy have confirmed today that George Washington was not only the first President of the United States of America, he was the first winner of one of the Navy’s earliest and most coveted prizes awarded to its aviators.
“In 1780, George Washington was given the opportunity to train in the Navy’s new elite fighter pilot program known as, ‘Top Flintlock,'” Navy Assistant Junior Media Chief Shel McMichaels told reporters today. “It was noted at the time that Washington flew better, faster, and cleaner than all the other pilots in the Top Flintlock program at the time.”
Washington’s career as a naval fighter pilot is, of course, already legendary in America. Students are taught in elementary school about how Washington, call sign “Big Wood,” undertook a solo bombing mission and stopped the first Bowling Green Masscare. In high school, students are exposed to even more of Washington’s legendary aeronautical endeavors. But heretofore, the existence of Top Flintlock, and the fact that Washington had been the first pilot to win the trophy for it, had been kept under tight wraps.
“We didn’t frankly want the world knowing that we had advanced flight technology back then,” McMichaels admitted, “because that opens up all kinds of avenues of questioning from the public. But when your commander in chief lets the cat out of the bag, there’s not much you can do.”
While McMichaels said that much of Washington’s time at Top Flintlock must remain a tightly guarded government secret, he could reveal some details that even the most avid Washington biographers might not know.
“Big Wood had quite a reputation with the other pilots, let’s put it that way,” McMichaels said. “He had a history of five high speed passes over four control towers and one British admiral’s daughter, Patricia Benjamin. He was also famous for an incident in which he flew inverted with a Royal British fighter plane just below him, giving the lobsterback pilot the middle finger. His co-pilot was there and got a great shot on his Polaroid.”
His time at Top Flintlock wasn’t without personal tragedy, however. During a routine training operation, something happened that nearly caused Washington to quit Top Flintlock and perhaps even the Navy itself.
“Washington had been flying a training mission over the Potomac river when he flew through a flock of geese, killing one,” McMichaels divulged. “When that goose died, it shook him to his core. Even though the Navy ultimately cleared him of any wrongdoing in the death of that goose, it still was quite a challenge for him to overcome the emotional toll from it. He prevailed in the end, and wound up winning the Top Flintlock trophy.”
Before ending the press conference, McMichaels revealed one more piece of brand new historical fact.
“We were in the ladies room cleaning out the stalls when we found the plaque for the alternates,” McMichaels said, “and it turns out John Adams was runner up that year. It was quite a historic time, as you can imagine.”
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