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HistoryVP-50 HistoryHistory

Circa 1969

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraMeritorious Unit Citation "...Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces Meritorious Unit Citation (Gallantry Cross)..." Official U. S. Navy Records (National Archives and Records Administration) via Fold3 http://www.fold3.com/ [14DEC2012]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation June 1969 "...On Patrol - Page 30 to 31 - Naval Aviation News - June 1969..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1969/jun69.pdf [17SEP2004]

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Circa 1968

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...1968 Cruisebook - NS Sangley Point, Philippines / NAF Cam Ranh Bay, Vietnam..." Contributed by TRIEBOLD, AT2 Bruce mtnlivin@sti.net [02DEC2000]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation December 1968 "...On Patrol - Page 30 to 31 - Naval Aviation News - December 1968..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1968/dec68.pdf [15SEP2004]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation July 1968 "...On Patrol - Page 30 to 31 - Naval Aviation News - July 1968..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1968/jul68.pdf [15SEP2004]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation June 1968 "...On Patrol - Page 30 to 31 - Naval Aviation News - June 1968..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1968/jun68.pdf [15SEP2004]

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Circa 1967

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation December 1967 "...End Of Seaplane Tenders - Page 13 - Naval Aviation News - December 1967..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1967/dec67.pdf [13SEP2004]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation August 1967 "...Fleet Air Wings On Patrol - Page 28 to 29 - Naval Aviation News - August 1967..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1967/aug67.pdf [11SEP2004]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation January 1967 "...Fleet Air Wings On Patrol - Page 28 to 29 - Naval Aviation News - January 1967..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1967/jan67.pdf [08SEP2004]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Squadron Awards..." Contributed by Mahlon K. Miller mkwsmiller@cox.net [23APR2001]

  • Meritorious Unit Commendation
    17 Nov 70 - 22 Nov 70
    10 Oct 82 - 28 Oct 82
    08 Dec 82 - 17 Dec 82
    Mar 88 - Mar 89

  • Navy Unit Commendation
    01 Jan 67 - 31 Mar 68

  • Republic of Vietnam Meritorious Unit Citation (Gallantry)
    16 Sep 66 - 20 Sep 66
    01 Oct 69 - 31 Jan 70
    01 Sep 70 - 21 Nov 70

    VP-50 Det Guam
  • Humanitarian Service Medal
    02 Apr 75 - 21 May 75

    VP-50 Participating Aircrew
  • Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
    23 May 72 - 28 Jun 72
  • Navy Expeditionary Service Medal
    10 Jun 81 - 20 Jul 81

    Circa 1966

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Left Picture: Me, Fred Minteer standing buoy watch on SG 6 in Cam Rahn Bay, Vietnam. 1966 deployment to West Pac. Center Picture: Crew 6 waiting as standby crew for another crew's patrol, again in Cam Rahn Bay Vietnam. Cannon's Caribous, as crew 6 was known. Right Picture: crew 6 buoy watch practicing to repel boarders..." Contributed by MINTEER, Fred fhminteer@verizon.net [03APR2005]

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation August 1966 "...Fleet Air Wings On Patrol - Page 28 to 29 - Naval Aviation News - August 1966..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1966/aug66.pdf

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation May 1966 "...A Vietnam Coastal Patrol with VP-50 - Page 32 - Naval Aviation News - May 1966..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1966/may66.pdf [05SEP2004]

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation March 1966 "...Fleet Air Wings On Patrol - Page 36 to 37 - Naval Aviation News - March 1966..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1966/mar66.pdf [04SEP2004]

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: VP-50 History "...This is a Xmas card I sent my folks in 1966 while I was serving with VP-50..." Contributed by TEATER, AMEC Donald dwteater@hotmail.com [27DEC2001]


    Circa 1963

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation August 1963 "...Air Crew Flies Record Hour - Page 29 - Naval Aviation News - August 1963..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1963/aug63.pdf [27AUG2004]

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation News February 1963 "...NavAirPac Winners Named - Page 2 - Naval Aviation News - February 1963..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1963/feb63.pdf [25AUG2004]

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: VP-50 History ThumbnailCameraVP-50 Inspection "...VP-50 personnel stand in ranks at NAS North Island, San Diego, California on 23 July 1963 during the squadrons Administration and Material Inspection. Photo from the Base Libary at NAS North Island, San Diego, California..." Contributed by Mahlon K. Miller mkwsmiller@cox.net [07FEB2002]


    Circa 1965

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation June 1965 "...On Patrol With Pacific Air Wings - Page 26 to 27 - Naval Aviation News - June 1965..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1965/jun65.pdf [01SEP2004]

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation April 1965 "...On Patrol With Pacific Air Wings - Page 26 to 27 - Naval Aviation News - April 1965..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1965/apr65.pdf [31AUG2004]

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...VP-50 Cruisebook for WestPac 65-66: CDR Humphrey B. Lansden, USN...The squadron, under the command of Commander H. B. Lansden, flew the Martin P5M aircraft on ocean surveillance patrols while based at the Naval Station Sangley Point in the Republic of the Philippines. While working from seaplane tenders, which afforded a mobile base of forward operation, the squadron flew surveillance patrols off the coast of South Viet Nam in participation with "Market Time" operations. Through this campaign most of the squadron personnel were awarded the Viet Nam Service Medal. The market time operation has had a very significant effect on curtailing the infiltration of muntions to the Viet Cong in South Viet Nam. The squadron flew over eight hundred hours in combat missions during the month of October, a high time month. Patrol Squadron Fifty not only contributed to the overall success of the market time operations, but at the same time maintained a high readiness index indicating a highly proficient anti-submarine warfare squadron...." Contributed by CARLSON, Jim carjimbo@TheRamp.net [26JUN2001]


    Circa 1964

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation March 1964 "...VP-50 Sets Safety Mark - Page 18 - Naval Aviation News - March 1964..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1964/mar64.pdf [28AUG2004]

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Circa 1964...Shipmate Pix...North Island Unit Gets New Leader...Cmdr. H. B. Lansden (right picture) has relieved Cmdr. W. A. Van Train Jr. (left picture) as commanding officer of Patrol Squadron 50 based at NAS North Island, San Diego, California...Lansden, a 1947 graduate of the Naval Academy, has been serving as executive officer of the squadron since last July...Van Train, who served as operations officer and executive officer of Patrol Squadron 50 before becoming its commander in 1962, is moving to Washington, D.C..." Contributed by Al Fowler af03838@mail.navix.net [30MAY98]

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...1964 Cruise Book..." Contributed by Al Fowler af03838@mail.navix.net [01JUN98]

    In June of 1950 the North Korean Communists poured across the 38th parallel and opened the floodgates on the bloodiest " police action " in history. In September, VP-892, later to become VP-50, was activated at NAS Seattle, Washington. The squadron made three Korean deployments flying the PBM " Mariner ", a World War II veteran. On the last deployment the squadron was re-designated VP-50.

    The cessation of hostilities in Korea saw VP-50 as a regular member of the U. S. Seventh Fleet. The squadron was assigned a home port of NAS Alameda, California, and was placed on the regular WESTPAC deployment schedule. Upon return of the squadron from one of these deployments, it was given a new home and a new seaplane; in August 1956 NAS Whidbey Island, Washington, saw VP-50 and its new P5M-1 Martin " Marlins " for the first time.

    During the remainder of the Fifties VP-50 was engaged in a continuous cycle of WESTPAC deployments, fulfilling its mission of antisubmarine warfare and patrol across the Pacific from Whidbey to Japan to the Philippines.

    In May of 1960, there was a radical change in this cycle when VP-50 "deployed" for the last time to MCAF lwakuni, Japan, to be stationed permanently there with their new P5M-2's.

    Under the capable direction of Cdr. William H. Locklin, USN, VP-50 capped a long list of noteworthy operational achievements, including passing the 25,000 accident-free flight hour mark, by being declared the most outstanding seaplane squadron in the Pacific Fleet. In recognition of this, the squadron was presented the Commander Naval Air Force Pacific Fleet "E" for Battle efficiency for 1962, and with it the Captain A.J. lsbell Memorial Trophy for excellence in anti-submarine warfare.

    The present commanding officer, Cdr. Hugh W. Smith, USN, assumed command in June 1963. Under Cdr. Smith, the squadron achieved 30,000 accident-free flight hours while continuing the strenuous round of daily operational patrols, constant ASW exercises with other units of the Seventh Fleet, deployments to Buckner Bay and Sasebo to work with COMTAIWANPATFOR Seaplane Tenders, and a successful typhoon flyaway to NAAF Opama in the face of typhoon Della. [01JUN98]


    Circa 1962

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation News December 1962 "...VP-50 Logs 20,000th Hour - Page 3 - Naval Aviation News - December 1962..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1962/dec62.pdf [24AUG2004]

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation News January 1962 "...Five Squadrons Patrol China Coast - Page 15 - Naval Aviation News - January 1962..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1962/jan62.pdf [22AUG2004]

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    Circa 1961

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...USS Salisbury Sound (AV-13) - Circa 1961. Squadrons Mentioned: FAW-6, VP-40, VP-42, VP-48 and VP-50..." WebSite: USS Salisbury Sound http://www.salisburysound.com/index_Page555.htm [09JAN2007]

    Salisbury Sound operated as a unit of the Seventh Fleet from 1 April 1961 until 17 July 1961. During this period, the ship performed her primary mission of providing an advanced base for seaplane squadrons and served as flagship for U.S. Taiwan Patrol Force. Most of the ship's operations were conducted in Buckner Bay, Okinawa where units of VP-40 and VP-50 were supported for periods of short duration. In addition the ship visited the following ports while deployed: Hong Kong, Kaohsiung, Taiwan, Iwakuni, Kobe, Sasebo and Yokosuka, Japan. The ship departed WestPac on 17 July 1961 and arrived in San Francisco on the 31st of that month.

    On 21 August, the ship's mid-cycle overhaul period began in Williamette Shipyard at Richmond, California and continued until 22 September. After the yard period, the ship was engaged in type training and independent ship exercises while operating out of the NAS Alameda, California.

    On 6 November 1961, Salisbury Sound established a seadrome at White Cove, Santa Catalina Island and operated with P5M aircraft from VP-42 for three days. Other operational exercises of short duration were conducted with VP-48. Type training and independent ship exercises were continued throughout the spring as the ship prepared for her next WestPac deployment. During the period the ship assisted in the Administrative Inspection of USS Currituck (AV-7), and was given an Operational Readiness Inspection.

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...A Routine Patrol..." Contributed by Jeff Guttenberger jwguttenberger@lucent.com [05NOV99]

    During my 5 year tour of duty in the US Navy I was assigned to Patrol Squadron Fifty [VP50]. The squadron was located at the Marine Corps Air Facility in Iwakuni, Japan. With a year at a T28 base, and avionics school completed I was eager for my new assignment. After a long sea voyage from San Diego I arrived at the base in July of 1961, and was soon assigned the job of fourth tech in Crew 2.

    The squadron operated P5M seaplanes. The 40 ton aircraft were powered by two, 3200 horsepower piston engines. The aircraft were well equipped with search radar, antisubmarine weapons, and electronic surveillance gear.

    One day in the summer of 1961 we were flying on a routine patrol over the China Sea. Commander Deal our squadron XO was the plane commander. I was operating the electronics countermeasures equipment. Our mission was to log shipping in the area, track any submarines encountered, and to characterize Chinese Communist air defense radar.

    Our search radar operator detected a large ship, and the aircraft flew toward it to investigate. The copilot observed the ship through binoculars, and noted that it was a large warship. My sensors then detected the unmistakable signature of gun fire control radar. There was little I could do about it as my equipment was passive.

    Then all hell broke loose! First the fire control radar locked unto us. Then every gun on the ship opened fire in our direction. The pilot took evasive action by putting the aircraft into a twisting dive. Everyone seemed to be talking on the intercom at once. I reported the fire control lock-on. Right in the middle of all this the port engine back fired loudly. [This was usually a prelude to an engine failure.] The copilot described the huge gun flashes, and we all hung on as our aircraft dove for safety. Soon we were skimming over the waves and out of the range of fire. The port engine was now running smoothly, and we all breathed a sigh of relief. No one had seen any shell splashes or air-bursts.

    An emergency message was sent back to base radio -FIRED UPON BY UNIDENTIFIED WARSHIP-. That must have caused quite a stir back at Fleet Air Wing 6 headquarters. We turned back toward the ship to investigate further. That made me pretty nervous as the fire control radar was still chirping in my head set and pulsing on the screen. Our navigator was looking over my shoulder [as usual], and flew into a snit when he saw it.

    Then we received a message from base radio - SHIP IS THE SAINT PAUL-. The flag ship of the Seventh Fleet was having gunnery practice, and we had flown into the general line of fire. The cruiser was not shooting at us, but aiming at a target in the water. The ship was out of the designated firing range area, and we notified them of this by radio.

    We returned home, and after landing in the bay, taxied back toward our beaching ramp. I stood by an open hatch listening to the engines rumbling like a diesel locomotive, the fresh salt air smelled good. It felt great to be alive.


    Circa 1960

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...FASRON-12, VP-1, VP-2, VP-17 and VP-50) - Naval Aeronautical Organization OPNAV NOTICE 05400 for Fiscal Year 1960 dated 1 February 1960 is: DECLASSIFIED per Office of Chief of Naval Operations on 1 February 1965 by Op-501 - Atlantic Fleet Support Stations..." WebSite: Naval Historical Center http://www.history.navy.mil/a-record/nao53-68/fy1960-feb60.pdf [12MAR2007]

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation News October 1960 "...Tender Hoists 31-Ton P5M - Page 32 - Naval Aviation News - October 1960..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1960s/1960/oct60.pdf [18AUG2004]

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...I served on the USS Pine Island from 1960-1963. We operated with VP-40 and VP-50 primarily out of Buckner Bay Okinawa. I made a few flights on the P5M Marlin out of Buckner on JATO. Quite a kick in the rear. I retired as a CWO4 after thirty years in Naval Aviation and I must say that my time on the "Piney Maru" was some of the best..." Contributed by CWO4 George Case, Retired casegs@nc.ispec.com [18SEP2000]

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...The U.S. Navy/U.S. Coast Guard Vietnam Unit Memorial Monument, will be located on the Council International Sport Military Field on the US Naval Amphibious Base, Coronado, CA. This monument will be a personal detailed, and heart-felt tribute to all Naval & Coast Guard personnel who died serving their country in the South East Asia Theater of the Vietnam War from 1960-1975. A few of the military squadrons represented are: VP-1, VP-2, VP-4, VP-6, VP-17, VP-26, VP-40, VP-42, VP-48, VP-50, VAH-21, VAP-61, and VO-67. WebSite: Vietnam Unit Memorial Monument..." Contributed by BAILEY, AO3 Bob flynavy10@comcast.net [Updated 21DEC2000 | Updated 02JUL2000 | Updated 14APR2000 | 03APR2000]


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