A BIT OF HISTORY: VP-46 History "...Wing 10 Change of Command Season Wraps Up by LT(jg) Daniel MacCabe Wing 10 - Thursday, June 4, 2009 (Squadrons Mentioned: CPRW-10, VP-1, VP-40, VP-46, VQ-1 and VQ-2)..." WebSite: NorthWest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ [05JUN2009]Circa 2008
Photograph Caption: Following VP-46's change of command ceremony May 22, four of the five new Patrol and Reconnaissance squadron commanding officers flank Capt. Ken Seliga, commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10. From left the new skippers are Cmdr. Brett Coffey, VQ-2; Cmdr. Mark Hamilton, VP-46; Cmdr. Michael Giannetti, VQ-1; and Cmdr. Mark Rudesill, VP-1. Not pictured is Cmdr. Michael McClintock, VP-40. Photograph by LT(jg) Daniel MacCabe
The Grey Knights of Patrol Squadron 46 celebrated their 73rd change of command May 22. After serving one year as commanding officer and guiding the squadron through a combat deployment in the 5th Fleet area of operations, Cmdr. Carlos Sardiello was relieved by Cmdr. Mark Hamilton.
For Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10, VP-46s change of command ended a very compressed turnover season that began May 1 with Patrol Squadron 40 "Fighting Marlins" changing hands as Cmdr. Michael McClintock relieved Christopher Saindon. VP-40 has since departed for a six-month deployment with 5th and 6th Fleets supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Enduring Freedom and other European Command missions.
The following week, Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron 2 "Rangers" celebrated their leadership's turnover as Cmdr. Brett Coffey assumed command from Cmdr. Robert Pauley, May 7 and the Patrol Squadron 1 "Screaming Eagles" followed suit the next day with Cmdr. Mark Rudesill relieving Cmdr. Christopher Corgnati.
The season continued May 14 as the Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron 1 "World Watchers" held their change as Cmdr. Michael Giannetti took over for Cmdr. James Gibson.
"It is with a great sense of pride that we celebrate the end of each commanding officer's extraordinary level of commitment, sense of duty and superb leadership each brought to bear within the command during their tours," said Capt. Ken Seliga, Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10. "We look forward to the energy and leadership each new commanding officer will bring in the year ahead."
© 2009 Sound Publishing, Inc.
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...Wing 10 Honors best, Brightest By MC2 Elizabeth Acosta - NPASE Det. NW - Thursday, April 30, 2009 (Squadrons Mentioned: CPRW-10, VP-1, VP-40, VP-46, VP-69, VQ-1 and VQ-2)..." WebSite: NorthWest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ [01MAY2009]
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing (CPRW) 10 held its annual ceremony to recognize the contributions of their Sailors, April 23.
This is the 14th year CPRW-10 and the Oak Harbor community honored the significant accomplishments of Wing 10 Sailors.
"Each of you earned your command's nomination because of your selfless sacrifice and commitment. Your work has made us a better wing and I hope each of you finds pride in your many contributions," Capt. Ken Seliga, commodore of CPRW-10.
The CPRW Sea Sailor of the Year (SOY) was Personnel Specialist 1st Class (AW) Gladys Willis, of VP-1, who was also recognized as the Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Group (CPRG) Pacific Sea SOY in January, and Junior Sailor of the year was Naval Aircrewman Operator 2nd Class (AW/NAC) Mark Hill of VP-1. The Shore Sailor of the Year was Aviation Electronics Technician 1st Class (AW) Danyall Benavides, of CPRW-10, whose contributions also led to recognition by CPRG as their Pacific Shore SOY, and Junior Sailor of the Year was Information Systems Technician 3rd Class Blake Hausman, of CPRW-10. The Reserve Sailor of the year was Naval Aircrewman Operator 1st Class (AW/NAC) Stephen Daley, of VP-69.
"It's pretty big; It feels really good to get this award. It was a very honorable experience" said Benavides.
Gifts were presented by Jim Slowik, Mayor of Oak Harbor, Patrick Travenetti, director, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, Marjean Knokey, Columbia College, Barbara Bockman, Chapman University, Mike Sevy, USAA Insurance Company, Kim Braylens and Robin King, of Navy Federal Credit Union, to further recognize the contributions these Sailors make.
The Battle Efficiency award was presented to VQ-2, the Commander Naval Air Pacific Isbell Trophy, VP-1, and the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Aviation Safety award, VQ-1. Also honored at the ceremony was the Aviator of the Year, Lt. Ronald Rumfelt, of VP-40, and Flight crew of the Year, Combat Aircrew 2, of VP-46.
"As we congratulate the winners of each category this morning, I ask that you take a moment to appreciate the momentous commitment and sacrifices our Sailors made during the past year to ensure we were prepared for, and executed, each mission we were asked to complete. And may you especially recall the commitment to excellence of our award winners today- those who went above and beyond to earn the endorsement of their respective command," said Seliga.
© 2009 Sound Publishing, Inc.
A BIT OF HISTORY: Photo by MC2 Tucker Yates "...World Watchers mark 16 years of reconnaissance - By Lt.j.g. Ely Infante - World Watchers reporter - Thursday, July 31, 2008..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ [01AUG2008]Circa 2007
Photograph Caption: Lt. Joshua Krieg conducts a preflight inspection of the forward landing gear with the assistance of Lt.j.g. Greggory Thorpe, seen at left.
They fly alone and unafraid. For 16 years, Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron (VQ) 1 have been a consistent presence in 5th Fleet's area of responsibility. There have been aircraft modifications and even changes to homeports, but it maintains the pace of forward-deployed operations that support the intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance needs of U.S. Central Command.
The World Watchers continue to distinguish the EP-3 as the reconnaissance asset of choice for U.S. and multi-national forces. The aircraft's ability to remain on station for extended periods has proven to be an invaluable resource to troops on the ground. They are in high demand but relatively short supply.
World Watchers' support in-theater cannot be understated. "Our job is to make sure nobody goes down," said Senior Chief Aviation Electronics Technician Craig Olson (AW/NAC). With over 21 years of experience, he recalls exciting and hazardous times in and out of combat environments.
"We were usually one of the first squadrons in and one of the last ones out. There have been lots of moments of boredom, followed by moments of sheer adrenaline. We would take off and never know what to expect."
The right attitude and mission readiness has established VQ-1 as the Navy's premier Electronic Reconnaissance Squadron. Its track record of extraordinary operational success and mission effectiveness has been proven in Desert Strike, Southern Watch, Vigilant Warrior, Vigilant Sentinel, Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. They trace their success to a long tradition of teamwork and service that began with two PBY-5A Catalina Black Cats modified for electronic reconnaissance during World War II.
Lt. Joshua Krieg, an electronic warfare aircraft commander with two previous deployments to the Middle East and currently embarked on his third, said, "As a member of the VQ-1 wardroom and a naval aviator, I feel a great sense of pride in contributing to the legacy of the squadron. We constantly fine tune ourselves to perform to the best of our abilities. We have a lot to live up to, and it is an honor to have an opportunity to lead a crew of 24 in today's global war on terror."
As an EP-3 mission commander, Lt. Patricia Shaw is responsible for the effective employment of the aircraft in support of combat operations.
Currently en route to her fourth deployment to the desert, she feels the pace of operations for VQ-1 in the "sandbox" is consistently demanding but can be professionally rewarding.
"Because we are in [Fifth Fleet AOR] year-round, we have a strong presence. But that doesn't change the fact that the dynamics of the area are just as challenging today as they were 16 years ago. It definitely makes things very interesting for us out there, and it's good to have a diverse aircrew that can provide different levels of experience and perspective," she said.
Cmdr. James Gibson was there at the beginning as a young navigator aboard the EP-3. Today, as its commanding officer, he reflects on his experiences over 16 years, "When it started, conditions were very austere and exciting because we were in an AOR that we were not all that familiar with, doing constant surveillance with crews flying long missions. But the bottom line is that when we got there 16 years ago, we knew we were going to be a part of something big and that our role was going to be important not only to the Navy, but to the nation as well."
As an experienced naval flight officer, Gibson saw the squadron change to accommodate the geopolitical landscape. He feels VQ-1 will always play a part in providing critical combat intelligence to commanders prosecuting this global war on terror. "Our missions may change, as far as what we're doing there, but we are still going to have a mission, we are still going to have a responsibility and people are still going to want us there."
Harry Harris, former commodore and commander of Task Force 57, added, "VQ-1 has flown in harm's way more than any other Task Force 57 squadron since Operation Enduring Freedom began and has aggressively met critical reconnaissance needs in this time of war."
© 2008 Sound Publishing, Inc.
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Group - RADM Brian C. Prindle, USN. Wings of Gold - Spring 2008 - Page 6-8. (Squadrons/Wings Referenced: VP-62, VP-69, VQ-1, VQ-2, VPU-1, VPU-2, VP-1, VP-4, VP-5, VP-8, VP-9, VP-10, VP-16, VP-26, VP-30, VP-40, VP-45, VP-46, VP-47, CPRW-2, CPRW-5, CPRW-10 and CPRW-11..." WebSite: Association of Naval Aviation http://www.anahq.org/index.htm [23APR2008]
Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Group Article 166KB
A BIT OF HISTORY: CDR Catherine Phillips "...World Watchers welcome Phillips - By Lt.j.g. Sean Lawson - World Watchers Reporter - Friday, April 27, 2007..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ index.php/ navigator/whidbey/ world_watchers_welcome_phillips/ [27APR2007]Circa 2006
VQ-1 World Watchers said farewell to commanding officer, Cmdr. Michael Carsley, April 13, when he passed the baton to Cmdr. Catherine Phillips, previous executive officer.
The Navy's largest operational squadron is composed of approximately 100 officers and 380 enlisted personnel deployed to two detachment sites around the world.
Carsley assumed command of VQ-1 May 12, 2006, and has since guided the command to unprecedented levels of operational reconnaissance supremacy. While under his command, VQ-1 was awarded the Battle ‘E' and the Silver EAWS Pennant. He was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal for his efforts guiding VQ-1.
Carsley's next assignment is at the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations in Washington DC.
Phillips has logged over 2,880 flight hours in 23 types of aircraft.
© 2007 Sound Publishing, Inc.
A BIT OF HISTORY: Photo by MC2 Elizabeth Acosta "...Wing 10 recognizes its best - By Lt.j.g. Evan Larsen - Wing 10 reporter - Friday, March 30, 2007 - Squadrons Mentioned: , VP-1, VP-46, VP-69, VQ-1 and VQ-2..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ index.php/navigator/whidbey/ wing_10_recognizes_its_best/ [31MAR2007]
Photograph Caption: Award-winning CPRW-10 squadrons and individual personnel take the spotlight for their impressive work over the past year.
CPRW-10 honored its top squadrons, flight crews and personnel March 23. Capt. David Taylor, Commander, CPRW-10, hosted the ceremony alongside distinguished visitors to present the awards to the awardees.
VP-46 and VQ-1 won the Pacific Fleet Battle Efficiency (E) award for 2006. The Battle ‘E' focuses on a naval unitís overall readiness to complete assigned warfare missions.
The Grey Knights of VP-46 returned from a Western Pacific Deployment last December, during which they demonstrated superior readiness and combat operations in support of Operation Enduring Freedom-Philippines and Exercise Valiant Shield.
Throughout 2006, VP-46 maintained sustained their commitment to professionalism and aviation safety reflected with more than 292,000 mishap-free flight hours spanning 43 years of service.
The World Watchers of VQ-1 maintained a continuous 365-day presence in the Fifth and Seventh Fleet Areas of Responsibility, contributing vital intelligence the respective Regional Combatant Commanders.
In 2006, VQ-1 flew over 4,000 mission hours spread among over 500 sorties, demonstrating unit efficiency and flexibility with limited assigned aircraft.
Other mentionable unit awards included VP-1 receiving the Arleigh Burke trophy, as well as VQ-2s nomination for the Chief of Naval Operations Safety Award.
The Flight Crew of the year honor went to VP-1s Crew 10, while the Electronic Warfare Crew of the Year honors went to VQ-2s Crew 26. Also recognized was VP-46s Crew 4 as the Order of Daedalianís Crew of the Year.
For individual awards, Lt. Jamie Delcore of VQ-1 was recognized as aviator of the year. Additionally, his nomination as Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Groupís Naval Flight Officer of the Year was recognized during the ceremony.
Likewise from VQ-1, Aviation Electronics Technician 1st Class Joseph Medina was recognized as CPRW-10 and Patrol and Reconnaissance Groupís Aircrewman of the Year.
Among the maintenance awards, VP-69s Aviation Structural Mechanic 1st Class Gerald Campbell was recognized as CPRW-10s Maintenance Professional of the Year for his leadership while on a Search and Rescue detachment to Guam.
Taylor emphasized the importance this yearís ceremony placed in recognition of CPRW-10s many 2006 accomplishments, but he stressed the need to remember those Sailors unable to attend who are forward deployed in harmís way.
© 2007 Sound Publishing, Inc.
A BIT OF HISTORY: AW1 (AW/NAC) Matthew Robinson "...Wing 10 selects year's top Sailors - By Lt.j.g. Evan Larsen - CPRW-10 reporter - Friday, January 26, 2007. (CPRW-10, VP-1, VP-40, VP-46, VP-69, VQ-1 and VQ-2 menioned)..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ index.php/navigator/whidbey/ wing_10_selects_years_top_sailors/ [01FEB2007]
Photograph Caption: AW1 (AW/NAC) Matthew Robinson is seen on patrol in Iraq during Individual Augmentation duty.
Aviation Warfare Systems Operator 1st Class (AW/NAC) Matthew Robinson was recognized, Jan. 19, by Commodore David Taylor as the 2006 CPRW-10, Shore Sailor of the Year.
His selection came as a result of his tremendous professionalism and steadfast sacrifice exerted during a 300-day Individual Augmentation while supporting the U.S. Army's 13th Sustainment Command in Iraq. As a member of the Joint Crew Composite Squadron One, and aligned with ground combat troops, he utilized his electronic warfare expertise to develop training and maintenance programs for ground forces which mitigated the radio-controlled improvised electronic device threat.
While conducting a routine ground combat patrol, he demonstrated uncommon valor during an attack on his patrol by stabilizing the wounded and preparing a landing zone for a medical evacuation helicopter.
Additionally, he showed the initiative to continue the patrol and search for secondary IEDs, resulting in a Meritorious Service Medal awarded from the Brigade's Commanding General.
Aviation Ordnanceman 1st Class (AW/NAC) Robert Parish of Patrol Squadron 69 (VP-69) received top honors as CPRW-10 Senior Sea Sailor of the Year for 2006.
A consummate expert and extraordinary leader, his enthusiasm, professionalism and dedication to his shipmates' career advancement and education resulted in his selection as the Sea Sailor of the Year.
One of only five full system Quality Assurance Representatives, he proved invaluable during a number of engine changes and the quality inspection of countless work center repairs which directly contributed to the high level of operational success achieved by the six operational squadrons assigned to CPRW-10.
The award for CPRW-10 Shore Junior Sailor of the Year went to Aviation Warfare Specialist 2nd Class (NAC) Carey Langley of CPRW-10.
Her expertise proved crucial in supporting 36 forward-deployed aircrews, as a result of her keen analysis from over 260 missions. As a leader in her field, Langley's attention-to-detail led to critical enhancements in our national security.
CPRW-10 Junior Sea Sailor of the Year honors went to Avionics Electrician Mate 2nd Class (AW) Justin Leetham, currently serving in VP-46. Leetham recently returned from deployment with VP-46 in which he proved to be an exceptional leader.
He demonstrated honesty, integrity and an absolute dedication to duty. While at VP-46, his actions increased aircraft availability that executed 220 combat sorties and over 2,000 mishap-free flight hours in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Oak Harbor Mayor Pro-Tem Danny Paggao, along with several local business and educational organizations, took time to pay homage at all the Sailors of CPRW-10.
As in the past, they provided gifts to recognize the winners and participate in recognition of the finest examples the Navy has to offer.
Every command in CPRW-10 had their senior and junior Sailors of the Year present for the presentation ceremony. These included;
-- VP-1 Senior Sailor of the Year, PS1(AW) Jared Zdrojowy; Junior Sailor of the Year, AW2(AW) Michael Headings;
-- VP-40 Senior Sailor of the Year, AM1(AW) David Anderson; Junior Sailor of the Year, AM2(AW) Matthew Vitello;
-- VP-46 Senior Sailor of the Year, AW1(AW) Gamorro Cameron; Junior Sailor of the Year, AE2(AW) Justin Leetham;
-- VP-69 Senior Sailor of the Year, AO1 (AW/NAC) Robert Parish; Junior Sailor of the Year, AT2(AW/NAC) David A. Smith; Selected Reserve PR1 (AW) Mark Wilde;
-- VQ-1 Senior Sailor of the Year, AM1 (AW) Luigi Giugliano; Junior Sailor of the Year, YN2(AW) Nicholas Hulse;
-- VQ-2 Senior Sailor of the Year, AM1(AW) John Bouquio; Junior Sailor of the Year, AT2 (AW/NAC) Peter Benninger;
-- Mobile Operations Command and Control Center Golf Senior Sailor of the Year, ET1(SW) William Lewis, Junior Sailor of the Year, ET2 Colleen Colver; and
-- CPRW-10 Shore Sailor of the Year, AW1 (AW/NAC) Matthew Robinson; Junior Sailor of the Year AW2 (NAC) Carey Langley.
© 2007 Sound Publishing, Inc.
A BIT OF HISTORY: 061018-N-3003C-108 Southwest Asia (Oct. 18, 2006) "...Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) Joe Campa Jr., answers questions from the Sailors assigned to Patrol Squadron Nine (VP-9) and Fleet Air Recon Squadron 1 (VQ-1), relating to the upcoming merger of rates in the Navy aviation community. MCPON Campa is touring the 5th Fleet Area of Responsibility (AOR) in order to gauge the mission effectiveness of CTG 57.2, survey the working and living spaces of the Sailors, and to discuss the future of Maritime Patrol and Airborne Reconnaissance within the 5th Fleet AOR. CTG 57.2 consists of four Patrol Squadrons (VP), VP-9, VP-8, VP-16, and VP-46. The primary mission of CTG 57.2 is to conduct reconnaissance and maritime patrol operations throughout the 5th Fleet AOR in support of the global war on terrorism. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Brett A. Custer (RELEASED)..." WebSite: Navy News Stand http://www.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=40058 [22OCT2006]
A BIT OF HISTORY: 061018-N-3003C-116 Southwest Asia (Oct. 18, 2006) "...Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) Joe Campa, Jr., discusses Individual Augmentation (IA) matters with Sailors assigned to Patrol Squadron Nine (VP-9) and Fleet Air Recon Squadron 1 (VQ-1) during his visit to Southwest Asia. MCPON Campa is touring the 5th Fleet Area of Responsibility (AOR) in order to gauge the mission effectiveness of CTG 57.2, survey the working and living spaces of the Sailors, and to discuss the future of Maritime Patrol and Airborne Reconnaissance within the 5th Fleet AOR. CTG 57.2 consists of four Patrol Squadrons (VP), Nine, Eight, Sixteen, and Forty Six. The primary mission of CTG 57.2 is to conduct reconnaissance and maritime patrol operations throughout the 5th Fleet AOR in support of the global war on terrorism. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Brett A. Custer (RELEASED)..." WebSite: Navy News Stand http://www.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=40059 [22OCT2006]
A BIT OF HISTORY: Cmdr. Michael Carsley "...Carsley takes command of World Watchers - By Lt.j.g. Jordon Voss - World Watcher Reporter - Friday, May 19, 2006..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/carsley_takes_command_of_world_watchers/ [19MAY2006]
The men and women of VQ-1 said farewell to Commanding Officer, Cmdr. Garner Morgan Jr. May 12 when he passed the baton to Cmdr. Michael Carsley, the squadron's former executive officer.
The Navy's largest operational squadron is composed of approximately 100 officers and 450 enlisted personnel, deployed to two detachment sites around the world.
Rear Adm. James Hart, director, Total Force Programming and Manpower Management Division Office of the Chief of Naval Operations was guest of honor and keynote speaker.
He praised Morgan for his exceptional leadership of VQ-1 through his continuous combat mission in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
Morgan assumed command of VQ-1 on May 2005, and has since guided the command to unprecedented levels of operational reconnaissance supremacy. He was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal for his efforts guiding VQ-1.
Morgan's next assignment will be in Cuba, where he will serve as the executive assistant.
Carsley graduated and was commissioned from the U.S. Naval Academy in May 1988 with a bachelor's degree in economics. Upon commissioning, he began flight training in the summer of 1988 as a student naval aviator.
After completing the advanced maritime pilot pipeline in 1990, he received orders to fly the C-130 with VRC-50 from NAS Cubi Point, Philippines where he participated in Desert Storm. In VRC-50, he held various assignments and completed his tour as assistant maintenance officer with a NATOPS instructor qualification in the C-130.
In 1993, he was granted a transition to the EP-3 and proceeded to VQ-2 in NS Rota, Spain. While in VQ-2, he attained his warfare designation as an Electronics Warfare Mission Commander flying missions over the Balkans during the Bosnia conflict.
He also achieved an instructor pilot qualification in the P-3. He ended his tour in VQ-2 as the assistant operations officer. In March of 1997, he departed VQ-2 for NAF Naples, Italy.
From 1997 until 1999, he worked for Commander Task Force 67 as reconnaissance officer handling all pertinent issues for reconnaissance platforms to include VQ-2 and special projects units working within the Sixth Fleet area of operations.
Most notably, he assisted in operations planning during the Kosovo conflict and developed new reconnaissance reporting areas in the Mediterranean.
Returning to Spain in 1999, Carsley reported for his department head tour to VQ-2 where he participated in Operation Northern Watch and held positions of officer in charge detachment Souda Bay, assistant operations officer and maintenance officer.
In October of 2001, he returned to the United States and was assigned to VP-30 as operations officer.
While operations officer, he became a Fleet Replacement Instructor Pilot and qualified as formation lead and formation instructor.
In March of 2003, he was assigned to Norfolk, Va., with orders to U.S. Joint Forces Command. While there, he held the position of deputy for intelligence operations, working to transform intelligence at the operational level of war in such areas as counterintelligence and battle damage assessment.
Carsley has logged approximately 3,500 hours in various U.S. Navy aircraft. His awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, three Air Medals (one Specific Action and two Strike/Flight), three Navy Commendation Medals, the Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal.
© 2006 Sound Publishing, Inc.
A BIT OF HISTORY: 060309-N-3207B-006 Al Udeid, Qatar (March 9, 2006) "...Sailors assigned to Patrol Squadron Four Seven (VP-47), Patrol Squadron Two Six (VP-26) and Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron One (VQ-1) gathered to take the Navy-wide Advancement Exam at the Desert Eagle Lounge on board Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar. VP-47 is currently on deployment to Qatar in support of maritime patrol operations and the global war on terrorism. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 2nd Class Jennifer L. Bailey (RELEASED)..." WebSite: Navy Newsstand http://www.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=32665 [26MAR2006]
A BIT OF HISTORY: Wing 10 Photo "...Heroes declared this President's Day - Friday, February 24, 2006 - Squadrons Mention: CPRW-10, VP-1, VP-40, VP-46, VQ-1 and VQ-2..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/heroes_declared_this_presidents_day/ [27FEB2006]
Photograph Caption: Lt. Cmdr. Steven Richards and Aviation Structural Mechanic (Safety Equipment) 2nd Class (Air Warfare/Naval Aircrewman) Kyle Musto, VP-46, just two of the Wing 10 aviation professionals recognized at the recent annual awards ceremony, stand ready by the P-3 Orion.
Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing Ten (CPRW-10) held its annual awards quarters Wednesday. The heroes we recognized on President's Day, like our forefathers, exemplify what it means to be a patriot; giving of themselves to make this a better country, one shipmate at a time.
"There are few duties more rewarding than the opportunity to thank these tremendous performers who are flying and maintaining our combat aircraft," said Capt. John Dziminowicz, commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10. "I treasure these opportunities to acknowledge the excellent men and women who make our Force a capable, formidable tool for war fighting commanders across the globe."
Command Support Professional
Awarded to Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class(AW) Maurice Brown, of Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron Two (VQ-2). Brown ensured squadron medical readiness in the midst of a complex homeport move from Rota, Spain to NAS Whidbey and with consistent attention to detail, enabled the smooth and on-time deployment of 22 detachments,
Awarded to Aviation Ordnanceman 1st Class (AW) Donald Weatherby of Patrol Squadron One (VP-1). Weatherby achieved numerous qualifications including Safe for Flight (releasing aircraft for flight), a position not normally achieved by a first class petty officer. His leadership in Maintenance Control was instrumental in executing over 40 percent of VP-1's flight hours, and resulted in zero discrepancies for the ordnance shop during the most recent Aviation Maintenance Inspection.
Aviation Electronics Technician 1st Class (AW/NA) Joseph Medina of VQ-1 was recognized for his leadership as president of VQ-1s 1st Class Petty Officer Association, leading 77 first class petty officers in numerous volunteer efforts. He authored and taught 15 avionics presentations, trained 29 aircrew, significantly increasing the squadron's operational readiness. As Aircrew Detachment leading petty officer he trained and led eight aircrewmen in the repair of 40 in-flight discrepancies, resulting in a 100 percent sortie completion rate.
Aviation Structural Mechanic (Safety Equipment) 2nd Class (AW/NA) Kyle Musto, VP-46s top Flight Engineer, played an integral part in training 18 flight engineers, instructor pilots, and observers. As an instructor and handpicked as primary Flight Engineer Evaluator, he administered check rides and proctored positional exams, while racking up over 390 aircraft hours and 200 simulator hours as an instructor.
Lt. Edward Kribs, also of VP-46, recognized as the officer instructor of the year, attained every qualification available to a first tour pilot, with 450 hours as an aircraft commander and over 200 as an instructor. Leading the VP-46 training department, often under challenging conditions, he directly contributed to the qualification of 15 plane commanders and pilots and sat on 28 qualification boards.
Lt. Jeffery Walker of VQ-1 is a fully qualified Senior Evaluator and Mission Commander and has been an outstanding performer during unit evaluations, achieving his warfare qualification 10 months ahead of the Wing 10 goal. While accumulating over 900 flight hours, including 263 combat hours, he remains committed to mentoring other junior officers. His guidance as NFO training officer significantly reduced training time for NFO "upgraders."
Electronic Warfare Crew
VQ-2s Combat Reconnaissance Crew 24 has flown 233 mishap-free combat hours in Operation Iraqi Freedom and for the Coalition Forces Maritime Component Commander in the Arabian Gulf. They spent 71 days in the Central Command Area of Responsibility, during which time they were the sole provider of threat intelligence that saved American lives during an OIF combat mission. As the first to arrive in response to troops under fire, they increased the situational awareness and security of ground forces under attack.
VP-40s Combat Aircrew 6 flew over 170 combat flight hours in support of Operation Enduring Freedom-Philippines, providing real-time imagery and data collection for forces on the ground. Due to their professionalism and dedication to performance, they maintained 100 percent readiness throughout the home cycle and qualified three designated aircrew instructors.
Junior Officer Leader Excellence
Lt. Michael Haymon of VP-40 is a combat-tested veteran, who flew over 107 flight hours in support of OEF-P, and is directly responsible for his crew's unprecedented success in providing crucial information to ground forces. As the senior naval flight officer instructor he ensured compliance and currency of all 26 NFO's, leading them through the last Seventh Fleet deployment.
The Navy and Marine Association recognized the following individuals based on votes by their peers.
E-7 to E-9 category, Senior Chief Aviation Machinist Mate (AW/NA) Glenn Grimmer, VP-1
Junior Officer (O-1 to O-3) category, Lt. Dennis Jensen, VP-40
Department Head (O-4) category, Lt. Cmdr. Steven Richards, VP-46
Command (O-6) category, Cmdr. Raymond Keledei, VP-46
Dziminowicz closed the ceremony with thanks to all the men and women of Wing 10 who faced and mastered the numerous challenges in 2005, both here at home and around the world.
© 2006 Sound Publishing, Inc.
A BIT OF HISTORY: Photo by Lt.j.g. Karie Johnson "...VQ-1 bat logo tells of long history - By Lt.j.g. Karie Johnson World Watchers' reporter - Friday, February 3, 2006..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/vq_1_bat_logo_tells_of_long_history/ [09FEB2006]
Photo Description: Photo by Lt.j.g. Karie Johnson - Tail art of "Barney" the bat.
Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron One (VQ-1) carries on a long tradition of electronic warfare squadrons of using a bat in their insignia.
The U.S. Navy first used a bat on its official squadron insignia in the 1920s. The Observation Squadron, VOS-3S, flew the Vought O2U-1 Corsair, which was poorly suited for the mission and caused the crew to complain that they were "blind as bats".
The bat insignia caught on and was used by the squadron as it changed designation until it was disestablished in 1937.
During World War II, various patrol and reconnaissance squadrons, including the predecessors to VQ-1, used bats on their insignia to symbolize the type of flying they did.
These flights were flown when the moon was not full and often in stormy weather to provide cover. This was back when most countries did not have radar and aircraft intercepts were done visually.
Coincidentally, the navigation equipment then used aural tones to provide direction, similar to the way a bat finds food. As you flew toward a navigation station, the tone would get stronger and as you flew away the tone would get weaker, with a cone of silence directly over the station. This allowed crews to locate foreign stations and it worked as well at night as it did during the day.
All of this added to the use of a bat as official squadron insignia. As the squadron was re-designated and new platforms were introduced, use of the bat was continued. The bat represented the electronic countermeasures origin without depicting what the aircrews did.
VQ-1 adopted the bat as its insignia after being established as Electronic Countermeasures Squadron One in 1955. A stencil of a bat was often taken on deployment and little bats would spring up wherever they landed.
After VQ-1 moved to NAS Agana, Guam in 1971, they kept a live fruit bat in the hangar as a mascot. His name was Barney and he was the responsibility of the squadron duty officer. He was kept in a cage located near the squadron's snack bar, so everyone passing by kept him well fed. Unfortunately, after he passed away the squadron was unable to replace him, but the legacy of the bat lives on.
© 2006 Sound Publishing, Inc.
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...//NO1650// - MSGID/GENADMIN/CNO N09F/10A/APR// - SUBJ/CNO ANNUAL AVIATION SAFETY AWARDS// - REF/A/DOC/OPNAVINST 1650.28// - NARR/REF A IS CHIEF OF NAVAL OPERATIONS AVIATION-RELATED SAFETY AWARDS// - POC/E. K. THOMPSON/CIV/NAVSAFECEN 10A/LOC:NORFOLK - /TEL:DSN 564-3520 X7226// - GENTEXT/REMARKS/1. PER REF A THE FOLLOWING COMMANDS HAVE BEEN SELECTED AS WINNERS OF THE CALENDAR YEAR 2005 CNO - AVIATION SAFETY AWARD (Few Squadrons Mentioned: VP-10, VP-92, VPU-2, VQ-1, VQ-2 and VX-1)..." WebSite: Safety Center http://safetycenter.navy.mil/awards/CNO_SafetyMsg05.txt [05JUN2006]Circa 2004
A. COMNAVAIRLANTB. COMNAVAIRPACC. COMMARFORCOM
MARINE TRANSPORTATION SQUADRON 1D. COMMARFORPAC
MARINE LIGHT/ATTACK HELICOPTER SQUADRON 167
MARINE MEDIUM HELICOPTER SQUADRON 264
MARINE TACTICAL ELECTRONIC WARFARE SQUADRON 1
MARINE FIGHTER ATTACK SQUADRON 251
MARINE MEDIUM HELICOPTER SQUADRON 266
MARINE LIGHT/ATTACK HELICOPTER SQUADRON 269
MARINE FIGHTER ATTACK SQUADRON 115
MARINE AERIAL REFUELER TRANSPORT SQUADRON 252
MARINE ALL WEATHER FIGHTER ATTACK SQUADRON 533
MARINE LIGHT ATTACK HELICOPTER SQUADRON 369E. COMNAVAIRFORESF. CG FOURTH MAW
MARINE MEDIUM HELICOPTER SQUADRON 364
MARINE HEAVY HELICOPTER SQUADRON 465
MARINE MEDIUM HELICOPTER SQUADRON 262
MARINE ALL WEATHER FIGHTER ATTACK SQUADRON 242
MARINE AERIAL REFUELER TRANSPORT SQUADRON 152
MARINE HEAVY HELICOPTER SQUADRON 363
MARINE HEAVY HELICOPTER SQUADRON 466
MARINE FIGHTER ATTACK TRAINING SQUADRON 101
MARINE ATTACK SQUADRON 211
MARINE MEDIUM HELICOPTER TRAINING SQUADRON 164
MARINE MEDIUM HELICOPTER SQUADRON 161
MARINE CORPS AIR STATION YUMA
MARINE LIGHT ATTACK HELICOPTER SQUADRON 773G. NATRACOMH. COMNAVAIRSYSCOM
MARINE MEDIUM HELICOPTER SQUADRON 774
MARINE MEDIUM HELICOPTER SQUADRON 764
MARINE FIGHTER ATTACK SQUADRON 142
MARINE AERIAL REFUELER TRANSPORT SQUADRON 452
AIR TEST AND EVALUATION SQUADRON 202. REQUEST CONTROLLING CUSTODIANS DISSEMINATE INFO TO ALL WINNERS. CITATIONS AND PLAQUES WILL BE FORWARDED TO COGNIZANT CONTROLLING CUSTODIANS FOR PRESENTATION.
3. THESE AWARD WINNERS ARE RECOGNIZED FOR THEIR COMMITMENT TO PROFESSIONALISM, SOLID LEADERSHIP AND COMPETENT RISK MANAGEMENT THAT LEAD TO SAFE AND EFFECTIVE OPERATIONS. VERY WELL DONE TO ALL HANDS.//
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...World Watcher is lifesaver, hero By Lt.j.g. Jordon Voss World Watchers reporter - Friday, November 18, 2005..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/world_watcher_is_lifesaver_hero/ [18NOV2005]
When Aviation Structural Mechanic 1st Class(AW) Jerry Lego sat down for dinner Oct. 28 he did not anticipate that an otherwise mundane day would see him become a true hero.
While eating dinner in the Qatar chow hall, Lego noticed a woman choking and immediately sprung into action. He followed the choking patient protocol perfectly. First, he asked if the woman was "alright," to which she shook her head side-to-side. Lego then asked if the lady could speak, to which she shook her head "no" again. Lego took swift and decisive action, telling the woman he was going to help. He calmly performed a model Heimlich maneuver and successfully dislodged the obstruction- a piece of potato. After asking if the woman was okay, Lego simply went on with his business.
The story is particularly ironic because the woman Lego helped was Lt. Col. Lois MacDonald, Commander of the 379th Expeditionary Medical Group Medical Operations Flight. MacDonald was especially impressed by how proficient Lego was and how he acted like his life-saving act was, "just another day at the office."
Lt Col. MacDonald, a life-saver by trade, saw fit to award Lego with a certificate of appreciation on Nov. 1. "I am so very grateful for the actions of Petty Officer Lego," she said, "As a medic myself, I have the deepest respect for his actions and reaction to the situation. He is truly a hero."
Saving lives is not the only way that Lego has been getting attention lately. He has been the leading petty officer of his detachment supervising 33 maintenance personnel during surge operations. He personally planned VQ-1's detachment site relocation, including detailing each individual pallet's exact size and weight with remarkable precision.
His plans also consisted of coordinating the shipment of tools and pack-up-kits, ensuring that both detachment sites could operate independently by sharing manpower talents, tools, and qualifications.
© 2005 Sound Publishing, Inc.
A BIT OF HISTORY: Photo by Lt.j.g. Carlos Evans "...World Watchers recognized for their experience - By Lt.j.g. Marla Davis World Watchers' reporter - Friday, October 21, 2005..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/world_watchers_recognized_for_their_experience/ [21OCT2005]
Photo Description: AEC Jeff Houk and AEC Aaron Swoyer continue to build flight hours after completing a routine training flight.
Two VQ-1 World Watchers were recognized recently for their experience in the P-3C Orion airframe.
AEC Jeff Houk and AEC Aaron Swoyer were awarded 5,000-hour pins signifying their years of flying experience in the VP and VQ communities.
Houk began his 15-year career with the P-3 when he attended Flight Engineer school at VP-31 in 1990. His first assignment was to VP-47 in MCAS/NAS Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii. Since he began flying the P-3C, he has flown many different versions. During his tour at the Navy Research Lab, he was a flight engineer for the RP-3, NP-3 and UP-3 variants and now, in VQ-1, the EP-3 SSIP.
While the bulk of his flight hours came from flying the P-3C with VP-47 and VP-1, Houk prefers the shorter VQ det cycle and increased flight time.
"Flying with VQ is very different," he said. "Our missions involve more high flying vice low-level ship and sub hunting. While I don't miss going on the six-month VP deployments, I do miss the crew building that comes from long deployments."
Swoyer also divided his time between straight-stick P-3Cs and the EP-3E. His flying career began in 1992 as a Flight Engineer Apprentice assigned to VP-16. He qualified as a Flight Engineer and remained in VP-16 until 1996. His next tour was in VP-45, where he achieved instructor FE qualification followed by tours at VP-5, VP-30 and VQ-1. Both men commented on how the aging P-3 fleet has affected the flying, the hours and the training of the junior aircrew.
"There are a lot less planes," said Houk, "which inevitably effects training and experience. People are getting qualified with very little flight time, and at one time that was unheard of."
Swoyer added, "There are aircraft commanders, mission commanders and qualified flight engineers that don't have the experience flying that I had while I was still an Airman."
Over the years, there have been numerous changes in the mission of the P-3 fleet and this has also had an affect on the aircraft.
"My first detachment was at the tail end of the Cold War," Swoyer noted. "We deployed to Iceland and frequently were called upon to fly missions on Soviet submarines and surface vessels. Maintenance crews and aircrews were constantly on the go and were able to keep the aircraft in the air routinely, alleviating a lot of the maintenance issues that come up when aircraft sit parked."
While the mission has evolved and the aging fleet introduced new challenges, Houk and Swoyer have adapted to the changes. The World Watchers are lucky to have the experience of these two seasoned flight engineers to execute the mission and train new flight engineers in the EP-3E and P-3C aircraft.
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...Navy Marine Corps News - Aug 13, 2005 - Quality Of Life - VQ-2 and VQ-2...VIDEO..." WebSite: Navy News http://www.news.navy.mil/management/videodb/player/video.aspx?ID=5352 [14AUG2005]
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...Navy Marine Corps News - Aug 13, 2005 - EP-3 - VQ-1 and VQ-1...VIDEO..." WebSite: Navy News http://www.news.navy.mil/management/videodb/player/video.aspx?ID=5351 [14AUG2005]
A BIT OF HISTORY: Cmdr. Garner D. Morgan Jr. "...Morgan takes over World Watchers - By Lt.j.g. Charles Shehadi - World Watchers' reporter - Friday, May 20, 2005..." WebSite: Northwest Naviagor http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/morgan_takes_over_world_watchers/ [20MAR2005]
The men and women of Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron One say farewell to Commanding Officer Joseph K. "Sully" Sullivan today when he passes the baton to Cmdr. Garner D. Morgan Jr.
VQ-1, the Navy's largest operational squadron, is composed of approximately 90 officers and 430 enlisted personnel continuously deployed worldwide.
Rear Adm. Kenneth William Deutsch, Commander Patrol and Reconnaissance Forces Seventh Fleet, guest of honor and keynote speaker, praised Sullivan for his exceptional leadership of VQ-1 through continuous combat missions in support of Operations Enduring Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
Sullivan assumed command of VQ-1 on May 28, 2004, and has guided the squadron to unprecedented levels of maintenance and operational excellence. Since his arrival, VQ-1 has been awarded the Global War on Terrorism Service and Expeditionary Medals, the Battle "E" Ribbon, the Navy Unit Commendation, the CNO Aviation Safety award, AVCM Donald M. Neal Aircraft Maintenance Golden Wrench Award and has maintained a phenomenal 85.7 percent retention rate.
His next assignment will be at the Industrial College of the Armed
Forces located in Washington, D.C.
Morgan graduated from the University of North Florida in May 1987 with a bachelor degree in computer information science. He was commissioned through Aviation Officer Candidate School in January 1988.
Upon completion of NFO Flight Training and S-3B Fleet Replacement training, his first assignment was to the Scouts of Air Anti-Submarine Squadron 24 at NAS Cecil Field, Jacksonville, Florida.
He deployed onboard USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) and participated in Operation Desert Storm and Operation Provide Comfort. He served as electronic warfare officer, nuclear weapons training officer and NFO NATOPS evaluator.
In November of 1993, he reported to VS-41 at NAS North Island, San Diego, California, as a Fleet Replacement Squadron Instructor in the S-3B aircraft.
There he served as Sea Control Wing Pacific Tactical Development and Evaluation officer, aviation electronics-ordnance division officer and quality assurance officer.
In June of 1996 he was assigned to Carrier Air Wing EIGHT at NAS Oceana, Virginia Beach, Va., as a member of the AWS. During this time he served as the Battle Group Surface Warfare Commander Watch Captain and completed a second deployment to the Mediterranean and Arabian Gulf onboard USS John F. Kennedy (CV 67).
Returning to San Diego in January 1998, he reported to Commander Naval Air Forces, U.S. Pacific Fleet as Flight Hour Program Manager and Flag Aide. There he earned Joint Professional Military Education through the U.S. Naval War College non-resident program.
In October of 1999, he was assigned to the Topcats of VS-31 and deployed on board USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) for a third Mediterranean and Arabian Gulf Deployment. During this tour he participated in Operation Southern Watch and served as squadron Administration Officer, Training Officer and Maintenance Officer.
In January of 2002 he reported to Commander, Naval Air Forces, U.S. Atlantic Fleet in Norfolk S-3B readiness officer and flight hour program manager.
Selected for transition to the EP-3 as part of the sundown plan for the S-3B community, he reported in May 2004 to the World Watchers of VQ-1 as executive officer.
Morgan has logged over 650 carrier arrested landings and over 2,900 hours in various U.S. Navy aircraft. His awards include the Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal (Strike/Flight), Navy Commendation Medal (six awards).
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...VQ-1 carries on mission - By Lt.j.g. Charles Shehadi - World Watchers' reporter - Friday, March 4, 2005..." WebSite: Northwest Naviagor http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/vq_1_carries_on_mission/ [06MAR2005]
The impressive pace of VQ-1 operations continues in Operation Iraqi Freedom as EP-3E combat reconnaissance crews meet the intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance needs of the U.S. Central Command component commanders.
The Navy EP-3E ARIES (Airborne Reconnaissance Integrated Electronics System) aircraft and aircrews detached to the CENTCOM AOR as Task Group 57.1 continue to deliver critical intelligence to the war fighter. As a manned intelligence platform, the EP-3E has distinguished itself as the Ã¬asset of choiceÃ® for Army, Marine Corps and Multi-National Forces on the ground in Iraq.
The flexibility of EP-3E crews and their ability to remain on-station for extended periods is an invaluable resource for units on the ground.
As new targets or potential targets emerge, the EP-3E has the capability and staying power to be in the right place, at the right time to deliver critical information. On station, the EP-3E provides an impressive technological mix of intelligence collection capability in order to provide the Ã¬big pictureÃ® to those on the ground.
Nearly as prevalent as the missions in support of OIF, the EP-3E is a mainstay of the Combined Forces Maritime Component Commanders collection strategy throughout the rest of the AOR. Building on a tradition of providing fleet support, the ARIES crews are in regular contact with the ships of Expeditionary Striking Force Five, including the carrier and the Ã¬big-deckÃ® amphibious assault ship in the area. The EP-3E provides fleet warfare commanders with critical indications and warning, as well as important inputs to overall intelligence requirements.
In both mission areas, the EP-3E is also developing significant synergistic effects working with their sister P-3C squadrons in the Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Aviation community. The benefits of the MPRA community start with the exceptional relationships between the combined VP/VQ maintenance teams that keep the aircraft flying, their systems finely tuned and result in amazing mission completion rates of over 90 percent.
The close-working relationship continues in pre-flight preparation with the sharing of information and coordination between Intelligence and
Mission Commanders. Behind the scenes, the staff of Commander Task
Force 57 (Forward) provides daily support for the deployment, scheduling, tasking and maintenance requirements of the VQ-1 detachment. This hard work pays off in the air when EP-3E aircrews are able to coordinate their ISR efforts with the imagery capabilities of the P-3C to provide timely and accurate information to the war fighter.
The continued aerial accomplishments of EP-3E ARIES aircrews in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom build on a long tradition of excellence that can be traced back to two PBY-5A Catalina Black Cats modified for electronic reconnaissance during World War II. It is a tradition marked by remarkable flexibility and adaptability in meeting the mission to operate, maintain and support the Navy's finest Combat Reconnaissance Crews and aircraft, fully responsive to the needs of the war fighter.
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...VQ-1 Dixon is regular volunteer at VITA office - By Lt.j.g. Warren J. Shadko - World Watchers' reporter - Friday, February 18, 2005..." WebSite: Northwest Naviagor http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/dixon_is_regular_volunteer_at_vita_office/ [06MAR2005]
As the tax season nears, one person you can count on is AMC(AW) Carol Dixon of VQ-1. She is a familiar face at the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) office. Dixon began 10 years ago volunteering and managing VITA for Wing 10, and now is the site administrator for NAS Whidbey VITA.
You have probably heard of VITA through your command or previous news articles. This volunteer organization provides the invaluable service of assisting military members in tax preparation, advice and electronic filing—all for free.
As you come into VITA and meet Dixon, you are immediately captivated by her passion for her work. From Jan. 1 through April 15, she volunteers 60 hours a week, but treats each project with enthusiasm and a fresh outlook.
It is no wonder AMC Dixon is in such a trusted position. Repeat customers contact her year after year, and other volunteers rely on her expertise and direction.
Lt. Samantha Poteete, one of 65 volunteers, said, "We cannot have VITA running without her help. She got us this space and three extra computers we desperately needed."
Dixon said, "My biggest motivation is the gratification of helping the junior Sailors. I feel great when I have someone get more money in their return than they previously thought, or get a return when they thought they would pay."
But it does not stop there. "We further help the Sailors adjust their W-4s to tailor individual circumstances," she added.
Her military volunteer work doesn't end on April 15. Dixon established and maintains VQ-1's Operation Uplift, a volunteer organization that provides food and entertainment for crews constantly departing and arriving from detachments.
Dixon is also president of VQ-1's MWR.
Active in the community as a volunteer for Partnership with Education, Dixon helps the local school system, making herself available for sporting events and extracurricular activities.
Her unselfish dedication to helping others reflects her true character and makes her a role model for others to follow.
A BIT OF HISTORY: VQ-1 History "...VQ-1 Intense operation tempo keeps World Watchers on the go - By Jeff Green - World Watchers' reporter - Friday, January 28, 2005..." WebSite: Northwest Naviagor http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/intense_operation_tempo_keeps_world_watchers_on_the_go/ [06MAR2005]
NAS Whidbey Island, Washington is home to one of the most important providers of indications and warnings for the United States military.
This capability is proudly maintained by the "World Watchers" of Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron 1 (VQ-1). However, as a result of their year-round deployment cycle and demanding operational tempo, one rarely sees a "welcome home" sign displayed throughout the base or Oak Harbor community, but the sign does exist and is permanently displayed in front of their hangar.
This ever-present banner is a testament to the fact there are always at least two VQ-1 combat reconnaissance crews on deployment. They fly real-world operations around the globe 365 days a year.
There is a quiet and unseen flow of "World Watcher" crews leaving from and returning to base. The squadron's contribution to the global war on terror is constant and unrelenting.
To understand the squadron's commitment to this ongoing fight, you simply need to take a snapshot of one of its typical Combat Reconnaissance Crews (CRC). Most recently, CRC-1 returned home on Jan. 3 from a nine-week detachment to the United States Central Command theatre of operations. Led by Mission Commander Lt. Conor Garry and Aircraft Commander Lt. Michael Baxter, CRC-1 flew an impressive 242.4 hours in support of theater commanders. This included 180.3 hours of combat flight in support of coalition forces in Iraq.
Due to outstanding maintenance support, CRC-1 attained a 100 percent mission completion rate for all 25 scheduled flights in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Additionally, they flew 12 missions in direct support of the Combined Maritime Forces Component Commander (CMFCC), providing indications and warnings to United States and coalition maritime forces in the Arabian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Gulf of Aden, the Red Sea and the Horn of Africa.
Upgraded avionics, communication and mission equipment greatly increased the EP-3's capabilities during several high profile operations over Iraq, including Phantom Fury. CRC-1 provided direct threat indications and warnings to ground and airborne forces engaged in conflict against insurgent forces.
Additionally, CRC-1 provided valuable fleet support and information on virtually every mission to the USS John F. Kennedy and USS Harry S.
Truman Carrier Strike Groups, as well as the USS Essex Expeditionary Strike Group.
This intense operations tempo could not have been sustained without a dedicated team of maintenance professionals. Lt. Garry summed up the all hands effort by saying, "The maintenance detachment led by ADCS Kenneth Stegall and AMC Rudy Monge did an amazing job getting our aircraft ready for critical tasking. The operational tempo was insane, but due to their personnel's around-the-clock efforts, my crew did not miss a single flight in support of coalition forces. The pace those Sailors kept up was simply astonishing."
Specifically, AD1 Francisco Alarcon was awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal for his efforts, which included replacing five propellers, three propeller controls, one fuel pump and two auxiliary power units.
The Maintenance Department's 24-hour-a-day routine was aided by the concerted efforts of several aircrew, such as AT2 Christina Illingworth, AMC Carlos Nunez, ATC Donald Cox and AE1 Gerry Earll.
Their dedication to mission readiness allowed them to work seamlessly with maintenance personnel to ensure the aircraft's systems were fully capable to support the troops on the ground.
A dedicated ground support team, lead by Ensign Jill Surette, provided outstanding briefs and debriefs to the crew before and after every flight. Their efforts directly contributed to the crew's situational awareness and helped to ensure safe flight operations.
IT3 Aljandro Rada was awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal for his efforts in this task.
The busy deployment of CRC-1 and their support detachment personnel is the norm, rather than the exception for the Sailors and Officers of VQ-1. Only the most dedicated personnel can continue to perform at this high operational tempo throughout the year. Unlike other squadrons, VQ-1 personnel deploy 365 days a year. There are currently four crews deployed throughout the world fighting the global war on terror. In the course of a three-year tour at VQ-1, Sailors can easily expect to be deployed for over half that time. This schedule can be extremely demanding, but the challenge continues to be met by the outstanding professionals of VQ-1.
Concerning the amount of hours put in by VQ-1 Sailors, CTT2 Nakai, a new LABOP in Training, has this to say, "VQ-1 is a great place. Skipper Sullivan looks out for our welfare, and always expresses the rights words to keep us motivated. Ever since the day I became Observer Qualified, I have been working on other Personnel Qualification Standards to advance in my job. Although the command demands a lot of work hours from us (the VQ community), I feel more satisfied, knowing that I have put an honest effort for the command."
The hardship of being gone during the holidays is reflected very well in AT2 Illingworth's observations. "I have been in VQ-1 for almost four years and have never been home for a VQ-1 Christmas party," he said. "I have only been home for Halloween a couple times and Fourth-of-July last year. Maintaining a personal life is really hard because it always seems like you're trying to make up for lost time … especially when you're leaving again in a month-and-a-half."
VQ-1 Sailors fight on the front lines in the global war on terror.
Their vigilance and individual sacrifices save lives on the ground, while ensuring our national security. In today's global environment, those front lines are in places on and off the mainstream headlines, but VQ-1 is there bringing support to the warfighter and nation with every mission flown.
A BIT OF HISTORY: VQ-1 History "...Armer meets SecNav, re-enlists - By Lt. Jeff Green - World Watchers' reporter - Thursday, October 21, 2004..." WebSite: Northwest Naviagor http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/news/armer_meets_secnav_re_enlists/ [08DEC2005]Circa 2003
Photograph Description: A once-in-a-lifetime meeting between SecNav Gordon England and Senior Chief David Armer will long be remembered.
Secretary of the Navy, the Honorable Gordon England, gave a great tribute to ATCS David Armer of Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron One (VQ-1) on Oct. 12. After 20 years serving in the Navy, Armer pledged to re-enlist in the Navy with Odyssey Maritime Discovery Center in Seattle as a backdrop.
With a deep sense of pride, Armer took the oath of reenlistment from the SECNAV on the birthday of the Navy and at his 20-year mark.
The oath carries with it a commitment to serve and Armer is certainly no stranger to commitment. He has honorably served with VQ-1 for his entire career.
After Advanced First Term Avionics (AFTA) training for his AT rating in Millington, Armer received orders to VQ-1. He finished Air Crew School in Pensacola and Aviation Electronic Warfare Operator training at Corey Station before heading out to Guam. From 1986-1991, Armer flew EA-3Bs and EP-3Es and learned various positions of the aircraft. Armer also met his wife Angela, a VQ-1 airframer, in Guam. At this time he built the ARIES II on a nine-month detachment and delivered the first aircraft to hit the fleet. He then moved back to Florida for an instructor billet at Corey Station from 1991-1994.Armer returned to VQ-1 in Guam for two weeks only to turn back stateside for the homeport change to NAS Whidbey Island ('94-'97).
From December 1997 to January 2001, he taught at the Naval Aviation Maintenance Training Unit (NAMTRAU) in Whidbey Island as the EP-3E lead instructor. Since then, Armer has been reassigned to VQ-1 setting an outstanding example of success.
"Wherever we are, we do it and we do it great," he said.
Armer debated retirement at 20 years, but his goals in the Navy and VQ-1 had not been met.
"VQ-1 was my first and only squadron command. I feel ownership to it," he said. "Now as a Maintenance Control Supervisor, I have more well-rounded knowledge of the inner workings of the squadron."Armer has re-enlisted for three more years and will attend the Senior Enlisted Academy in Newport, Rhode Island for six weeks in January after which he will then return to work at VQ-1.
Armer, who is a great candidate for Master Chief in the spring, has the potential to achieve his ultimate goal.
"We'll see where the Navy takes me," he said. "If I come back to VQ-1 as Command Master Chief (CMDCM), it will be a complete stint in the Navy."
Senior Chief Armer did have a difficult time deciding on who should re-enlist him.
Lt. Brian Atwood, a senior pilot with VQ-1, is a leader and coworker of Armer.
"It was really tough for me," Armer said. "I have great respect for his leadership style and demeanor." But Armer could not pass up a chance to meet England.
"Twenty years, the Navy Birthday, meeting the Secretary of the Navy, it couldn't be better!"
© 2004 Sound Publishing, Inc.
A BIT OF HISTORY: Photo by PH2 Michael Sandberg "...EP-3E Passes latest Operational Testing - By Maritime Surveillance Aircraft Program Public Affairs - Thursday, October 14, 2004..." WebSite: Northwest Naviagor http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/news/ep_3e_passes_latest_operational_testing/ [08DEC2005]
Photograph Description: Plane captain AE3 Timothy Adams stands by in front of an EP-3E "Aries II" assigned to the "World Watchers" of Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron One (VQ-1) while conducting shutdown procedures. VQ-1 is based in NAS Whidbey Island, Washington.
The EP-3E Aries II Sensor System Improvement Program (SSIP) upgrade passed a review by the Commander, Operational Test and Evaluation Force in September.
A final report on the operational assessment of the fleet issue 4.0 upgrade was issued Sept. 7, and found the system operationally effective and operationally suitable, reporting that this system upgrade is a "significant improvement in capability over previous versions" and "is recommended for fleet introduction."
"This was a significant accomplishment," said Maritime Surveillance Aircraft Program Manager Capt. Steven R. Eastburg. "The program is now poised to deliver a tremendous warfighting upgrade to the fleet. In fact, we've already received input from the fleet that this upgrade is delivering outstanding results."
Operational testing consisted of 16 missions flown in the Western Pacific area over a 32-day period. This resulted in the accumulation of 129 flight hours. During the combined Developmental/Operational Testing phase, ground and flight-testing hours were also factored into the overall assessment.
Critical operational issues (COIs) examined during the assessment ranged from basic surveillance functions through safety/airworthiness. All COIs were resolved with a grade of satisfactory, with one exception - the Joint Interoperability COI will remain partially resolved until Link-16 is fully implemented on the EP-3E, and completes Joint Interoperability Test Center certification.
Developmental testing on the SSIP occurred in fiscal year 2003, and the work was split between the software integration lab at the Raytheon Technical Service Company facility in Indianapolis, Ind., and here in NAS Patuxent River, Maryland, at the Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division. More than 1,200 hours of ground testing helped assess the functionality of the upgrades that focus on enhanced signals intelligence collection, and an improved communication suite.
The SSIP is the current version of operationally deployed EP-3Es. Two squadrons, Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron VQ-1, based at NAS Whidbey Island, Washington, and VQ-2, based at Naval Air Facility Rota, Spain, employ a total of 12 EP-3E aircraft.
Currently, five P-3C airframes are undergoing conversion to become EP-3Es. When completed, these additional aircraft will provide a sufficient inventory of primary allotment aircraft and backup allotment aircraft to sustain an inventory of 12 EP-3Es throughout the platform's remaining life.
The Joint Airborne Signals Intelligence Architecture Modification Common Configured EP-3E is the next generation of the Navy's premier airborne manned intelligence platform, due to reach the fleet in 2005. JCC upgrades will initially be installed on the five converted P-3C airframes. All other EP-3Es will receive modification in conjunction with phase depot maintenance or special structural inspections.
© 2004 Sound Publishing, Inc.
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...Approach, May - June 2004 - Don't Worry, That Never Will Happen - by LCdr. Sean Maybee - LCdr. Maybee flew with VQ-1 at the time of this incident..." Naval Safety Center WebSite: http://www.safetycenter.navy.mil/media/approach/issues/mayjun04/dontworry.htm [08JUN2005]
This story, like many aviation stories, could start, "It was just another normal day.," but many days that start normally don't end up that way.
We were scheduled for a zero-dark-30 (middle-of-the-night) preflight and launch on a 10-hour grinder of a mission. Our mid-December flight over Afghanistan was in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. I was the officer in charge of the EP-3E detachment and the mission commander on this flight. I also would be certifying a newly arrived crew on the special instructions and procedures related to our mission. The arriving crew was very seasoned and had plenty of theater experience.
We were airborne at 0330, started our transit toward on-station, and completed routine checks and system run-ups. After 45 minutes, and while cruising at our max-range altitude of FL190, I got up to use the head and to grab a cup of coffee. I barely had made it to the back of the plane when I heard the sound no pilot likes to hear come over the PA, "EWAC [electronic warfare aircraft commander] to the flight station!"
Having not achieved either of my goals, I hustled to the flight station to see the flight engineer (FE) pointing to a steadily dropping oil-quantity indicator for the No. 3 engine.
"Not a big deal," I thought, "we'll shut it down, go home, and I'll be in bed by 0600." I should have gone to the bathroom.
While strapping in, I called for the No. 3 emergency-shutdown handle, which the FE acknowledged, checked and pulled. The copilot, in the left seat, flew the plane while I strapped in, slid my seat forward, grabbed the checklist, and started to go over it.
EMERGENCY SHUTDOWN HANDLE.........PULL (FE)
HRD (FIRE ONLY)..........DISCHARGED (P, FE)
CROSSFEED AND BOOST PUMPS....CHECK (FE)
PROPELLER........FEATHERED (P, CP, FE)
OIL TANK SHUTOFF VALVE CIRCUIT
BREAKERS.........AS REQUIRED (P, FE)
The FE pulled the emergency-shutdown handle (the fire bottle was not required), the propeller feathered, and we reset the oil-tank shutoff-valve circuit breakers to prevent further oil leakage. Almost immediately, the No. 3 fire-warning light illuminated, and the loud, distinctive fire-warning horn sounded. We were surprised, since the engine already was shut down, and the propeller was feathered. We silenced the fire-warning horn and quickly revisited the checklist, hurrying to item No. 2:
HRD (FIRE ONLY)...DISCHARGED.
About this time, the events got interesting. To our even greater surprise and growing alarm, dispensing the fire bottle into the engine only extinguished the fire-warning light for about a second, which restarted the fire-warning horn. We continued the checklist.
ALTERNATE HRD (CONFIRMED FIRE ONLY)......AS REQUIRED (P, FE)
I called aft for somebody to look at the No. 3 engine.
Soon, the very calm and reassuring voice of our off-duty FE, who had more than 10,000 flight hours, said over the headset, "Yep, commander, we definitely have flames out here. Some are coming out the tailpipe, and a little is coming out the cowling."
"Well," I thought, "he doesn't seem too excited, so it must not be that bad."
We continued with the checklist. The FE selected the alternate fire bottle and discharged it into the engine, but nothing happened. The fire bottle had no effect on the fire. I recalled glancing at the FE and the copilot, and, for about half a heartbeat, we looked at each other with huge eyes and "What do we do now?" expressions.
Anticipating a bad button or circuitry, the FE immediately checked the circuit breakers. He then reached up and punched the fire-bottle-discharge button about 10 more times, while the words "You've got to be kidding!" escaped my mouth.
Until this point, the events were straightforward and our flight-station crew quickly went through the procedures and checklists and coordinated with the back-end crew. But, we now were faced with a serious emergency not covered by NATOPS. Although I never have flown a tactical jet, it's my understanding that, at the end of their engine-fire checklist, pilots have the option to eject.
So, there we were: 0415 in the morning, 19,000 feet, flying south over the southern Arabian Gulf, three engines, getting slow because we were 137,000 pounds (our max gross weight is 142,000 pounds), and no remaining fire bottles on the right side, but a pesky fire still burning on the No. 3 engine.
The off-duty FE then piped in with his very calm and reassuring voice, "Yes, sir. It looks like about 18 feet of flame out the tail and 9 feet of flame from the cowling, just aft of the turbine."
Those of us in the flight station could not see the fire. Clearly, the FE's words were not what we wanted to hear. To me, time stood still while I pondered a long-forgotten flight-school lesson about how a fire could burn through a wing in about 90 seconds. Then, the copilot, who calmly had been flying the plane and working with me and the FE on the checklists, pointed out we were slow.
Almost simultaneously, I remembered another lesson from T-34 trainers about how to put out a wing fire by accelerating and slipping the aircraft to starve oxygen from the fire. The copilot started to descend (to increase speed) and put in a slip, while the crew in the back secured their equipment.
Anyone who has flown in the middle of the night, in relatively remote areas, knows there is little air traffic, and the controllers tend to be tired, slow to respond, and about as happy to be up at that hour as you are. When overseas, this situation often can be compounded by language barriers. Fortunately, a British expatriate was controller working that night, and, though justifiably slow, tired and bored when we did our initial check in, he became the world's most-awake controller after I called him the second time.
"Control, this is BR-549. I am declaring an emergency. My No. 3 engine is on fire, and the fire will not go out-repeat-the fire will not go out. I have 24 souls on board and fuel for about 12 hours."
After a long pause, where he probably was making sure he heard what he thought he had heard, a very alert British accent replied, "Copy all bravo romeo. Say intentions."
We just had started our descent, and I was looking out the window at all the oil platforms, pipelines, and tankers in the southern Arabian Gulf, and I didn't yet know my intentions. I was wondering where to ditch when I heard good news.
"The flames seem to be dissipating. Definitely getting smaller," came the ever-calm voice in my headset.
I figured two things had happened. The slipping and speeding up were blowing out the flames, or all the oil that had leaked was burning away. Regardless, ditching was not my first choice anyway, so I decided to land immediately. I requested vectors to the closest field from the controller.
"You are cleared to Dubai, Abu Dabi, or the military field," the British voice said.
With visions of another EP-3E international incident (like China) flashing before my eyes, I wracked my brain, thinking, "Military field, military field-what is he talking about?" After a few seconds, I realized I knew what field it was, and it definitely was the best choice for us.
Our situation was better with the fire dissipating and a place to go, but we still needed to land our plane, which currently was 20,000 pounds over the maximum recommended landing weight. I started to worry about being so full of gas, so I called to dump fuel. The crew's permanent EWAC cautioned me about the flames still coming out the engine-even though the fuel dumps from the other side of the aircraft.
We compromised and waited to see if the fire died out as we descended. We eventually dumped about 5,000 pounds of gas while still over water. Our goal was to land as soon as possible because we had no idea of the actual state of the fire, other than the flames had receded into the tailpipe, which had a red-orange glow.
It took about two minutes from when we secured the engine to the time we initiated the descent and only about 15 minutes from the time of the emergency until we landed. During this time, everyone on the crew was busy securing equipment, reviewing procedures, and discussing possible scenarios once on deck. With all the classified material on board, we had discussed executing our emergency-destruction plan. Because of our choice of airfield and landing country, we decided not to destroy anything, but to take special care to account for all material.
At 3,000 feet and 15 miles from the field, we had reached a stable situation, so I swapped seats to the pilot side for the landing. The flight-station crew reviewed our normal and emergency checklists, while the crew in back reviewed their procedures. The United Arab Emirates approach and tower controllers were excellent, and the crash crew was rolling when we made an uneventful, 132,000-pound, three-engine landing.
The subsequent engineering investigation of the No. 3 engine revealed the oil leak was caused by an aft scavenge-pump-bearing failure, which punctured the pump casing. The fire erupted because of the increased temperature resulting from the decreased airflow through the engine after it was shut down.
How often do you hear people say, "Oh, that never will happen." But, unlikely things happen all the time. As aviators, we need to think, train and practice for events we think (or hope) never will happen: Don't get complacent. Crew coordination was a major factor in handling this emergency. Everyone involved knew their job, how their role fit, and everyone contributed.
This experience taught the men and women of Combat Reconnaissance Crew 6 that teamwork in the execution of NATOPS procedures, along with sound judgment, are critical to handling any emergency situation. Crew-resource management is the key to success.
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...VQ-1 Sailors enjoy mass quantities of turkey - By Lt.j.g. Charles Shehadi - World Watchers' reporter - Friday, December 17, 2004..." WebSite: Northwest Naviagor http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/sailors_enjoy_mass_quantities_of_turkey/ [07MAR2005]
The VQ-1 Officers' wardroom and Chief Petty Officers' mess held its annual Thanksgiving Day feast on Wednesday, Nov. 24. The feast was full of camaraderie and good fun for all.
Chief Aviation Structural Mechanic (AW) Guyla Vega and Senior Chief Aviation Structural Mechanic (AW) Clara Gusenius organized the event and brought hundreds of World Watchers to the table. Ham, stuffing, cranberry sauce and turkey were among the tempting dishes. In all, over 32 turkeys and 28 hams were devoured by the thankful participants.
"I think the chance to eat together as the VQ-1 family is a great way for us to come together as a unit," said Gusenius. "But the best part about it is seeing people donate their time and efforts to serve our junior Sailors."
Entertainment was provided at the end of the feast as World Watchers purchased raffle tickets to throw a whipped cream pie in the face of selected members of the squadron. People with the most tickets purchased in their names were the unlucky individuals to get "pied."
Toward then end of the feast, VQ-1 continued in the holiday spirit by serving Sailors from VP-1, VP-40, and the Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10 ISIS team.
A BIT OF HISTORY: CTA2 Sydney Swindell Slides Into Third Base "...VQ-1 Sailors play in All Navy softball tourneys - Thursday, October 7, 2004..." WebSite: Northwest Naviagor http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/vq_1_sailors_play_in_all_navy_softball_tourneys/ [07MAR2005]
VQ-1 was proud to send two players and a coach to join the All Navy softball team.
CTA2 Sydney Swindell, joined the All Navy women's squad, and CTTC John Johnson and CTTC Rod Pryor joined the men's team, representing the Navy in several tournaments.
Swindell attended a training camp held at Point Magu Naval Base in Ventura County, Calif., Aug. 29 through Sept. 11. As part of the training camp, the woman's All Navy softball team participated in two ASA sanctioned tournaments taking third place in one and winning the other. After training camp, she and her team traveled to Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs where they participated in a tournament against the Air Force, Army and Marine teams. The All Navy team finished third in that tournament.
The woman's All Navy softball team consisted of 15 females; two other females accompanied Swindell from NAS Whidbey Island, Washington, AT2 Janice Jewell from AIMD and Lt. Charlotte Welsch from NAVPACMETOCDET.
VQ-1 chief petty officers Johnson and Pryor next joined the men's All Navy softball team. Pryor acted as coach and trainer for the team for his second year in a row while Johnson played for the first time in his 21-year career.
Both player and coach participated in the training camp at NAS Pensacola, Florida Aug. 25 through Sept. 6. The team played in two tournaments during the training camp before playing in a tournament against the other services at Eglin AFB from Sept. 9-11.
The Navy's men's team also took third place in their tournament and was only inches away from taking second place. In the bottom of the seventh inning against the Army team, the Navy's last batter launched deep fly ball headed for the fence only to watch the be snatched up by the Army outfielder, robbing Navy of the home run and a second place finish.
All Navy tryouts were held in the region in July.
"There are 110,000 softball players in the Navy alone and they have to pick only 15 of the best players to represent the Navy," Pryor said. "This is one of the greatest opportunities we have to represent our services."
Pryor added that he hopes more commands start affording more people the opportunity to tryout.
All three VQ-1 Sailors said it was an honor to participate and all plan to make the teams again next year.
A BIT OF HISTORY: 021024-N-4374S-031 Central Command Area of Responsibility (AOR) Oct. 24, 2002 "...A Sailor assigned to the "World Watchers" of Fleet Air Recon Squadron One (VQ-1) sprays-down the propeller on a P-3 Orion with a water hose during an aircraft wash on the flight line. VQ-1 is home ported at NAS Whidbey Island, Washington, and is currently on deployment to the Middle East in support of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF). U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 2nd Class Michael Sandberg. (RELEASED)..." Navy News Stand http://newshome.news.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=12346 [04MAR2005]
A BIT OF HISTORY: 021024-N-4374S-034 Central Command Area of Responsibility (AOR) Oct. 24, 2002 "...An EP-3E Orion assigned to the "World Watchers" of Fleet Air Recon Squadron One (VQ-1) returns from a routine mission in support of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF). U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 2nd Class Michael Sandberg. (RELEASED)..." Navy News Stand http://newshome.news.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=12347 [04MAR2005]
A BIT OF HISTORY: 040519-N-0130O-003 NAS Whidbey Island, Washington (May 19, 2004) "...A EP-3E Orion assigned to the "World Watchers" of Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron One (VQ-1) is slowly driven into a freshwater wash station as part of a routine aircraft corrosion prevention program. The squadron conducts tactical electronic reconnaissance throughout the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans, Caribbean Sea and Persian Gulf. The squadron is homeported at NAS Whidbey Island, Washington. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 1st Class Robert O'Dell (RELEASED)..." Navy News Stand http://newshome.news.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=14305 [03MAR2005]
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...VQ-1 traces its history from two PBY-5A Catalina "Black Cats" used for electronic reconnaissance during World War II. In the past 50 years, the World Watchers have used aircraft such as the P4M-IQ Mercator, A-3 Skywarrior, WPBYV-2Q Super Constellation and the EP-3..." WebSite: http://www.militarynewcomers.com/WHID/Resources/Tenantcommands.html [16OCT2004]
A BIT OF HISTORY: VQ-1 Patch "...The PMA-290 is outta NAS Patuxent River, Maryland, commemorating the T&E of PR32, that VQ-1 EP-3E that made forced landing on Hainan Is after collision with Chinese jet. As you can see, the flames it is rising out of also contains puzzle pieces..." Contributed by Tom Grannis firstname.lastname@example.org [05FEB2005]
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...EP-3E Crew Receives Medals At Armed Forces Day Ceremonies - Washington, D.C., May 18..." http://www.chinfo.navy.mil/navpalib/news/news_stories/ep3-china.html [22JUN2003]
Washington, D.C., May 18 — The 24 members of the EP-3E hit by a Chinese F-8 fighter off the coast of Hainan Island Mar. 31, were officially recognized as heroes today at ceremonies at the annual Armed Forces Day Open House at Andrews Air Force Base, Md. The ceremony followed a welcome for the crew at the White House by President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney.
The crew were awarded medals by Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld and by Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Henry H. Shelton, U.S. Army. Lt. Shane Osborn, pilot of the EP-3E, was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Meritorious Service Medal; Aviation Machinist's Mate Senior Chief Nicholas Mellos, a flight engineer aboard the EP-3E and the senior enlisted crewman, received the Meritorious Service Medal and the Air Medal; and the remainder of the crew each received the Air Medal.
At a news conference April 14 at Hickam Air Force Base in Honolulu prior to departure for Whidbey Island, Lt. Osborn described the events of and following the mid-air collision in international waters over the South China Sea on March 31, when the Chinese F-8 fighter hit the Navy EP-3E.
Lt. Osborn stated that, "contrary to some releases," his aircraft was flying straight and level, on autopilot and heading away from Hainan Island in international airspace when it was subjected to harassment from the Chinese fighter. He said that the Chinese jet came within three to five feet of his own aircraft twice, and on the third time, the Chinese pilot apparently misjudged and the F-8's vertical stabilizer, where it meets the fuselage, contacted the EP-3E's number one propeller.
The initial result of the collision was the Chinese fighter began breaking apart and the propeller of the EP-3E started throwing off pieces. The EP-3E is a four-engine, turboprop aircraft.
Lt. Osborn continued that the F-8's nose struck the nose of the EP-3E as the jet fell apparently out of control to the sea. Responding to a question, he said his initial thought was "This guy just killed us." He said the EP-3E rolled uncontrollably over as it started a nose dive, losing 7,500 to 8,000 feet in altitude before he wrestled it under control. Lt. Osborn said the EP-3E was almost upside down and he could look up through the windshield and see the ocean. He stated the EP-3E's left turn as described by the People's Republic of China as causing the accident actually was caused by the Chinese F-8 running into the Navy plane, putting the EP-3E in the out-of-control dive.
Senior Chief Mellos described the moments following the collision as "mayhem." He described the crew yelling over the noise of the wind and vibration caused by the loss of pieces of the propellers and the nose cone. He said it was the training that allowed them to gain control over the situation. "Thank God for the training that we practice every day," he said.
Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld had provided most of the details on the collision to a Pentagon briefing April 13. "It is clear," the Secretary said, "the (Chinese) pilot intended to harass the (U.S.) crew." He further stated that this was not the first time that a U.S. reconnaissance flight was subjected to "that type of aggressive contact from interceptors." According to the Secretary, there have been 44 intercepts of U.S. reconnaissance flights by the Chinese air force in recent months, six were within 30 feet and two were 10 feet.
The crew members of the EP-3E were detained on China's Hainan Island following the mid-air collision that forced the EP-3E to land at the nearest airfield. The Chinese have claimed the the U.S. plane violated Chinese air space in doing so. The Secretary stated that it was custom for aircraft in distress to signal via an international call channel, and that is what the heavily damaged EP-3E had done prior to landing at Lingsui, the Chinese military airfield, on Hainan Island. He also said the Navy plane circled the field prior to landing to demonstrate its damage.
The Secretary also discussed previous incidents in which Chinese F-8s had flown within feet of U.S. EP-3E aircraft, and he played a videotape that showed an aircraft with the same side number as that which the missing Chinese pilot had been flying. The tape, from January 24, showed the Chinese aircraft within feet of the EP-3E, experiencing difficultly in holding position and remaining airworthy, and which caused enough turbulence to "thump" the U.S. plane.
The EP-3E remains at the Chinese military airfield on Hainan Island, and discussions over the return of the plane continue between the two governments.
A BIT OF HISTORY: 021024-N-4374S-026 Central Command Area of Operation (Oct. 24, 2002) "...Photographer's Mate 2nd Class Richard Virginia assigned to Fleet Combat Camera, Atlantic, stands ready to capture video imagery of an EP-3E "Aries II" assigned to the "World Watchers" of Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron One (VQ-1). Sailors assigned to Fleet Combat Camera, Atlantic, are on a six-month deployment documenting missions in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 2nd Class Michael Sandberg. (RELEASED)..." Navy News Stand http://newshome.news.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=3083 [08MAR2005]
A BIT OF HISTORY: 021024-N-4374S-036 Central Command Area of Operation (Oct. 24, 2002) "...Plane Captain, Aviation Electronics Technician 3rd Class Timothy Adams, gives a "reverse" command to a pilot as he guides his EP-3E "Aries II" assigned to the "World Watchers" assigned to the "World Watchers" of Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron One (VQ-1). VQ-1 is based in Whidbey Island, Wash., and is on a regularly scheduled six-month deployment to the Middle East conducting missions in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 2nd Class Michael Sandberg. (RELEASED)..." Navy News Stand http://newshome.news.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=3093 [08MAR2005]
A BIT OF HISTORY: 021024-N-4374S-038 Central Command Area of Operation (Oct. 24, 2002) "...Plane captain Aviation Electronics Technician 3rd Class Timothy Adams stands by in front of an EP-3E "Aries II" assigned to the "World Watchers" of Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron One (VQ-1) while conducting shutdown procedures. VQ-1 is based in Whidbey Island, Wash., and is on a regularly scheduled six-month deployment to the Middle East conducting missions in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 2nd Class Michael Sandberg. (RELEASED)..." Navy News Stand http://newshome.news.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=3085 [08MAR2005]
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...Lockheed Puts Navy Spy Plane Back In Air..." Contributed by Marco P.J. Borst P-3 Orion Research Group, Marco P.J. Borst - Leiderdorp, The Netherlands, E-mail: email@example.com [17NOV2002]
Lockheed puts Navy spy plane back in air
By DAVE HIRSCHMAN
Atlanta Journal-Constitution Staff Writer (www.ajc.com)
Xinhua / AP
The damaged U.S. Navy Lockheed EP-3 surveillance plane was repaired in Marietta, and with a few more test flights it will go back into active duty.
It came home in pieces on a Russian cargo plane.
Now, after 16 months of work by Lockheed Martin employees in Marietta, the Navy surveillance plane severely damaged in a mid-air collision with a Chinese fighter jet last year is flying once more.
The four-engine Lockheed EP-3 on Friday made its first flight since the April 1, 2001, collision, which erupted into an international flashpoint when the plane landed in China and its crew was detained.
The rebuilt spy plane took off from Dobbins Air Reserve Base in Marietta at 11:08 a.m. Friday and flew for about two hours.
"Everything went smoothly on the first test flight," said Jim Saye, a spokesman at Lockheed Martin's plant next to the base.
The EP-3 was flying off the China coast when it was met by two Chinese fighters. One slammed into the EP-3's left wing, and the Chinese pilot was killed. The damaged American plane fell more than two miles before the pilots regained control and landed at a Chinese airfield.
China held the 24-member crew for 11 days and inspected every inch of the plane and its electronic eavesdropping equipment. U.S. officials had to dismantle the plane and hire a Russian cargo plane to carry the fuselage back to Marietta, where new wing, tail and nose components were installed.
Lockheed says the plane will make at least one more test flight before going to a Raytheon facility for updated electronics. Then it will return to regular duty.
"We're looking forward to getting it back in the fleet," said Bob Coble, a Navy spokesman.
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...Year of the Bat: 2001..." Contributed by STEPHENS, Ben firstname.lastname@example.org [02APR2008]
A BIT OF HISTORY: "...Pacific Air Forces - EP-3 Recovery - Mr. Ross Higa - HQ PACAF/CECI - U. S. Air Force..." Contributed by NEALON, Dennis J. email@example.com [28MAR2007]
A BIT OF HISTORY: 010414-N-6939M-005 Aboard Naval Air Station, Whidbey Island, Wash. (Apr. 14, 2001) "...Lt. Shane Osborn from Norfolk, Neb., addresses a large crowd of well wishers following his return to the United States. Lt Osborn and his crew aboard a U.S. Navy EP-3 aircraft were detained by Chinese authorities following a mid-air collision with a Chinese fighter aircraft off the coast of Hainan Island, Peoples Republic of China. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 2nd Class Christopher Mobley (RELEASED)..." Navy News Stand http://newshome.news.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=632 [10MAR2005]
A BIT OF HISTORY: 010518-F-0352L-012 Andrews Air Force Base, MD (May 18, 2001) "...General Henry H. Shelton, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff presents awards to 24 crew members of the captured U.S. Navy EP-3E Aries II electronic surveillance aircraft, who were detained by Chinese military authorities on Hainan Island, Peoples Republic of China, March 31, 2001, following a mid-air collision with a Chinese F-8 fighter over international waters. The presentations were made during opening ceremonies of the 2001 Department of Defense Open House at Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland. U.S. Air Force Photo by Senior Airman Joseph Lozada. (RELEASED)..." Navy News Stand http://newshome.news.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=689 [10MAR2005]
"VQ-1 History Summary Page"