Captain Manning Montagnet is a native of Pass Christian, Miss., and a 1995 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy with a bachelor's degree in Computer Science. In 2009, he completed a master's degree in National Security and Strategic Studies at the U.S. Naval War College, Newport, R.I.
After Manning was designated a Naval Aviator in 1997, he reported to the "Black Stallions" of Helicopter Combat Support Squadron (HC) 4 in Sigonella, Sicily for sea duty. He deployed throughout Europe, the Mediterranean, North Africa, and the Middle East. In 2001, Montagnet transferred to Milton, Fla., and reported to the "Shooters" of Training Squadron (VT) 6, where he was the student control officer, Naval Air Training and Operating Procedures Standardization (NATOPS) officer, and designated as an instructor pilot in all phases of flight.
In 2003, Montagnet returned to Italy and reported onboard USS LaSalle (AGF 3) as the air boss and safety officer. Prior to the ship's decommissioning, his flight deck fire party received accolades as "Best in the Atlantic Fleet".
Upon completion of training with the "Merlins" of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 3 in San Diego, Calif., Montagnet was re-designated as an MH-60S pilot. He completed his department head tour with the "Dragon Whales" of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 28, where he served as the administrative officer, detachment officer-in-charge, and operations officer.
Following his department head tour, Montagnet volunteered for individual augmentee duty as operations officer, Camp Lemonier, Djibouti, in charge of air operations, port operations, security, ammunitions and emergency management. He aided the base transition from Central Command to Africa Command and supported the first detachment of forward deployed Japanese maritime forces since WWII.
In 2009, Montagnet reported to Newport, R.I., where he completed a master's degree in National Security and Strategic Studies. While in Newport, he was selected for command. In October, 2011, he reported as the executive officer of the Helicopter Sea Combat Weapons School Atlantic in Norfolk, Va. He assumed command in January 2013.
In April, 2015, Montagnet reported aboard USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) as navigator and senior watch officer. After the full work-up cycle and U.S. Navy Board of Inspection and Survey (INSURV), he guided the ship from its home base in Bremerton, Wash., to and throughout the South China Sea and back.
In May, 2017, Montagnet returned to the U.S. Naval Academy to fill the position of deputy director of Leadership and Character Development. He taught ethics, was assigned as the officer representative for the intercollegiate sailing team and also served as the director for the Powered Flight Program.
Montagnet has logged over 3600 hours and his awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal (three awards), Naval Commendation Medal (four awards), and the Navy Achievement Medal.