Lexington COO Loren Thompson was quoted in an article by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch detailing Boeing’s decision to indefinitely halt its production of F/A-18 Super Hornet fighter jets. Boeing’s reallocation of manpower and resources toward the production of T-7A pilot training systems and MQ-25 Stingray refueling drones played a significant role in their decision to discontinue the F/A-18. The termination of the F/A-18 program comes as the latest step in the Pentagon’s plan to replace dated iterations of aircraft as designers continue to deliberate on the next generation of military jets.
For decades, the F/A-18 was the cash cow of St. Louis’ defense industry and its high demand provided a bevy of job opportunities for the local workforce. Now, their livelihoods have been jeopardized without ample warning. According to Thompson, Boeing’s announcement served as “the first time we’ve gotten a definitive timeline.” For the time being, Boeing has committed to hiring in St. Louis, but has provided little insight regarding the roles of its regional employees in the years beyond.
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