F-35B impresses many at Cherry Point Air Show

The F-35B hovers at the Cherry Point Air Show on Sunday.

The F-35B hovers at the Cherry Point Air Show on Sunday.

Drew C. Wilson/Havelock News
Published: Monday, May 19, 2014 at 02:34 PM.

Hovering Harrier jets have long been a familiar sight at Cherry Point, but this past weekend, a new jet from a new era took center stage with the air station’s first public display of the F-35B Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter.

Tens of thousands of spectators witnessed the Marine Corps’ most modern addition to its fleet in brilliant, blue skies at the Cherry Point Air Show.

“It looks sleek and it’s loud,” said Mark Montgomery, of Atlantic Beach, who watched with his family as the new jet went through a series of slow takeoffs, hovers and high speed-passes to show the jet’s versatility.

“It was a nice demonstration,” said Brian Dorn, of Newport. “The hovering part was our favorite part.”

Dorn said he was very familiar with the Harrier and the F-35B was “just as dramatic in noise.”

Harriers are being phased out of the Marine Corps and will be replaced by the F-35B. Several squadrons of the new planes are scheduled to arrive at Cherry Point in 2021 or 2022.

Aryanna Miller, of Havelock, said seeing the plane was good.

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