Page 1

Summer 2019 NUMBER 145

Rotary Force Innovation and Integration Also in this issue:

EQ and CRM New Simulators for TH-57 CNO’s Design for Maritime Security Operating in the FDNF Environment CSAR in Vietnam

In this Issue: Symposium 2019: Rotary Force Innovation and Integration New MAD Technology CRM US Coast Guard in Vietnam

U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Patrick W. Menah Jr., USN

Sundown for the HH-60H An HH-60H Seahawk helicopter from the “Merlins” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 3 performs a flyover to honor the aircraft’s last flight on May 13 over Naval Air Station North Island. After more than 30 years of service as the Navy’s primary Combat Search and Rescue and Naval Special Warfare Helicopter, the HH-60H was officially retired in May, 2019.

FOCUS: Innovation and Integration

Summer 2019 ISSUE 145 Coastal Riverine Squadron (CRS) 2 and the Island Knights of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 25 conduct a casualty evacuation training evolution using a Mark VI Patrol Boat and an MH-60S Seahawk Helicopter. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class John Philip Wagner, Jr. Rotor Review (ISSN: 1085-9683) is published quarterly by the Naval Helicopter Association, Inc. (NHA), a California nonprofit 501(c)(6) corporation. NHA is located in Building 654, Rogers Road, NASNI, San Diego, CA 92135. Views expressed in Rotor Review are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the policies of NHA or United States Navy, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard. Rotor Review is printed in the USA. Periodical rate postage is paid at San Diego, CA. Subscription to Rotor Review is included in the NHA or corporate membership fee. A current corporation annual report, prepared in accordance with Section 8321 of the California Corporation Code, is available on the NHA website at www.navalhelicopterassn.org. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Naval Helicopter Association, P.O. Box 180578, Coronado, CA 92178-0578.

Symposium 2019 Rotary Force Innovation and Integration............................................22 Rotor Review Staff Partners in an Evolving Area of Operations: the Andøya Search and Rescue Detachment.......................................................................36 LCDR Dave Eckardt, USN Integrated OPS - HSM 46.3 Prepares to Save Lives...........................................................40 LTJG Joseph Kaminsky, USN


EQ and CRM: How Emotional Intelligence Relates to the Crew Concept.................42 LTJG Elisha Clark, USN Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 11 Implements the CNO’s Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority...........................................................................................45 LT Elise Luers, USN HSM-46 Detachment 3: Sea Stories......................................................................................48 LT Bo Merritt, USN, LTJG Ben Gallegos, USN and LTJG Joseph Kaminski, USN 32nd Annual Stand-Up / Stand-Down in San Diego...........................................................50 LCDR Chip Lancaster, USN (Ret.)

Navy Helicopter Association Founders

Rotor Review supports the goals of the association, provides a forum for discussion and exchange of information on topics of interest to the Rotary Wing Community and keeps membership informed of NHA activities. As necessary, the President of NHA will provide guidance to the Rotor Review Editorial Board to ensure the Rotor Review content continues to support this statement of policy as the Naval Helicopter Association adjusts to the expanding and evolving Rotary Wing Community.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

CAPT A.E. Monahan, USN (Ret.) CAPT Mark R. Starr, USN (Ret.) CAPT A.F. Emig, USN (Ret.) Mr. H. Nachlin CDR H.F. McLinden, USN (Ret.) CDR W. Straight, USN (Ret.) CDR P.W. Nicholas, USN (Ret.) CDR D.J. Hayes, USN (Ret.) CAPT C.B. Smiley, USN (Ret.) CAPT J.M. Purtell, USN (Ret.) CDR H.V. Pepper, USN (Ret.) 2

©2019 Naval Helicopter Association, Inc., all rights reserved

HISTORY Editorial Staff Editor-in-Chief LT Shelby Gillis, USN shelby.gillis@navy.mil Managing Editor Allyson Darroch loged@navalhelicopterassn.org

Combat SAR Coast Guard Helicopter Pilots in Vietnam Part 5.....................................52 Nimble but not Nimble Enough....................................................................55 LCDR Tom Phillips, USN (Ret.) Helicopter Firsts.................................................................................................................74 SAR Swimmers Bill "Red Dogg" Moss AFCM (AW/NAC), USN (Ret.) USS Corporal: First Submarine to Reel in a Helicopter Dr. Charles Hook, MD

DEPARTMENTS Chairman’s Brief ...................................................................................................................5 In Review ...............................................................................................................................6 Letters to the Editors .........................................................................................................7 From the Organization .......................................................................................................8 In the Community .............................................................................................................10 Industry and Technology ..................................................................................................14 New TH-57 Simulators: A Giant Leap for Advanced Helicopter Training ......................................16 Capt. Jeff Snell, USMC NAVAIR: New Presidential Helicopter Production to Start Soon........18 Ben Werner Sikorsky Flies Black Hawk with Optionally Piloted Vehicle Technology .............................................................................19 Lockheed Martin Press Release Useful Information Making Our Mark: Naval Aviation Trademark Program.............................20 Anne Owens and LT Michelle Tucker, USN Radio Check .........................................................................................................................58 Change of Command .........................................................................................................66 There I Was We Can't Get Anyone Else to Fly It .............................................................68 CAPT Al Billings, USN (Ret.) Unique Experiences of Operating in the FDNF Environment ................72 LTJG Elizabeth Jagoe, USN Off Duty ...............................................................................................................................78 For Duty and Honor by CAPT George Galdorisi, USN (Ret.) 19 Minutes to Live by Lew Jennings Movie Review: Flight of the Phoenix True Story ..............................................................................................................................47 Hazardous Cargo in a Huey NHHS News .........................................................................................................................57 Around the Regions .............................................................................................................80 Command Updates ..............................................................................................................72 Engaging Rotors ....................................................................................................................90 Signal Charlie .........................................................................................................................92


Copy Editors CDR John Ball, USN (Ret.) helopapa71@gmail.com LT Adam Schmidt, USN adam.c.schmidt@navy.mil CAPT Jill Votaw, USNR (Ret.) jvotaw@san.rr.com Aircrew Editor AWS1 Adrian Jarrin, USN mrjarrin.a@gmail.com HSC Editors LT Christa Turner, USN (HSC West) christa.turner@navy.mil LT Sam Calaway, USN (HSC East) samuel.j.calaway@navy.mil HSM Editors LT Chris Campbell, USN christopher.m.campbe@navy.mil LT Nick Oberkrom, USN nicholas.r.oberkrom@navy.mil USMC Editor Capt Jeff Snell, USMC jeffrey.p.snell@usmc.mil USCG Editors LT Marco Tinari, USCG Marco.M.Tinari@uscg.mil LT Doug Eberly, USCG douglas.a.eberly@uscg.mil NHA Photographer Raymond Rivard Technical Advisor LCDR Chip Lancaster, USN (Ret.) chipplug@hotmail.com Historian CDR Joe Skrzypek, USN (Ret.) skrzypek@yahoo.com Editors Emeriti Wayne Jensen - John Ball - John Driver Sean Laughlin - Andy Quiett - Mike Curtis Susan Fink - Bill Chase - Tracey Keefe Maureen Palmerino - Bryan Buljat - Gabe Soltero Todd Vorenkamp - Steve Bury - Clay Shane Kristin Ohleger - Scott Lippincott - Allison Fletcher Ash Preston - Emily Lapp - Mallory Decker Caleb Levee - Shane Brenner Historians Emeriti CAPT Vincent Secades,USN (Ret.) CDR Lloyd Parthemer,USN (Ret.)


Corporate Members

Our thanks to our corporate members for their strong support of Rotary Wing Aviation through their membership. Airbus Group Air Evac LifeTeam BAE Systems, Inc. Bell CAE Erickson Incorporated Fatigue Technology FLIR Systems, Inc. GE Aviation Howell Instruments International Meeting Solutions Kongsberg Defense Systems L-3 Technologies (Communications Systems East) Leonardo Helicopter Division - USA Northrop Grumman Integrated Systems Robertson Fuel Systems LLC Collins Aerospace SES Science Engineering Services Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company Telephonics Corporation USAA (Military Affairs) Vertex Aerospace

NHA Scholarship Fund

President..................................................CDR Derek Fry, USN (Ret.) Executive Vice President.........CAPT Kevin “Bud” Couch, USN (Ret.) VP Operations..................................................................VACANT VP Fundraising .................................CDR Juan Mullin,USN (Ret.) VP Scholarships.................................................................VACANT VP CFC Merit Scholarship....................LT Caleb Derrington, USN Treasurer................................................................Jim Rosenberg Corresponding Secretary......................................LT Kory Perez, USN Finance/Investment..........................CDR Kron Littleton, USN (Ret.)

NHA Historical Society

President............................................CAPT Bill Personius, USN (Ret.) Secretary .......................................CDR Joe Skrzypek, USN (Ret.) Treasurer.........................................................Mr. Joe Peluso San Diego Air & Space Museum............CAPT Jim Gillcrist, USN (Ret.) USS Midway Museum........................CWO4 Mike  Manley, USN (Ret.) Webmaster.......................................CDR Mike Brattland, USN (Ret.) NHAHS Board of Directors..........CAPT Dennis DuBard, USN (Ret.) CAPT Mike Reber, USN (Ret.) CDR John Ball, USN (Ret.) CDR Mike Brattland, USN (Ret.)

Junior Officers Council President ........................................................LT Dave Kehoe, USN Vice President ...........................................LT Arlen Connolly, USN Region 1 ..................................................LT Morgan Quarles, USN Region 2 ......................................................LT Ryan Wielgus, USN Region 3 ....................................................LT Michelle Sousa, USN Region 4 ...................................................LT Tony Chitwood, USN Region 5 .................................................LT Christina Carpio, USN Region 6 ........................................................................... VACANT

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


Naval Helicopter Association, Inc. Correspondence and Membership P.O. Box 180578, Coronado, CA 92178-0578 (619) 435-7139

National Officers President .............................................CAPT Brannon Bickel, USN Vice President …...………...................CAPT Sean Rocheleau, USN Executive Director ..........................CAPT Jim Gillcrist, USN (Ret.) Member Service .......................................................Ms. Leia Brune Marketing ............................................................Mrs. Linda Vydra Managing Editor, Rotor Review .......................Ms. Allyson Darroch Retired and Reunion Manager ....CDR Mike Brattland, USN (Ret.) Legal Advisor ..........................CDR George Hurley, Jr., USN (Ret.) VP Corporate Membership .........CAPT Joe Bauknecht, USN (Ret.) VP Awards ...................................................CDR Rick Haley USN VP Membership ...................................LCDR Michael Short, USN VP Symposium 2019 ..........................CAPT Brannon Bickel, USN Secretary .......................................................LT Ryan Stewart, USN Treasurer .....................................................LT Kevin Holland,USN NHA Stuff ................................................LT Ben Von Forell, USN Senior NAC Advisor .......................AWRCM Nathan Hickey, USN Directors at Large Chairman ...............................RADM Patrick McGrath, USN (Ret.) CAPT Gene Ager, USN (Ret.) CAPT Chuck Deitchman, USN (Ret.) CAPT Dennis DuBard, USN (Ret.) CAPT Tony Dzielski, USN (Ret.) CAPT Greg Hoffman, USN (Ret.) CAPT Bill Personius, USN (Ret.) CAPT Mario Misfud, USN (Ret.) CDR Derek Fry, USN (Ret.) LT Dave Kehoe, USN AWRCM Nathan Hickey, USN Regional Officers Region 1 - San Diego Directors ..…................................CAPT Matt Schnappauf, USN CAPT Ryan Carron, USN CAPT Billy Maske, USN President ..….............................................CDR Dave Ayotte, USN Region 2 - Washington D.C. Directors ....……...…….................................CAPT Kevin Kropp, USN Col. Paul Croisetiere, USMC (Ret.) Presidents ...........................................CDR Justin McCaffree, USN CDR Pat Jeck, USN (Ret.) Region 3 - Jacksonville Director ..................................................CAPT Michael Weaver, USN President .................................................CAPT Teague Laguens, USN Region 4 - Norfolk Director ......................................................CAPT Shawn Bailey, USN President ..................................................CAPT Kevin Zayac, USN Region 5 - Pensacola Director ......................................................CAPT Doug Rosa, USN President .....................................................CDR Lena Kaman, USN 2019 Fleet Fly-In Coordinator ....................LT Christina Carpio, USN Region 6 - OCONUS Director ..................................................CDR Dennis Malzacher, USN President ...........................................................CDR Justin Banz, USN

Chairman’s Brief A Running Start

By RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.)


lthough I have been onboard for less than one month, it sure feels like a lot has been happening in the world of NHA. NHA said goodbye to two of the titans for the past five years – Board Chairman, Bill Shannon, and Executive Director, Bill Personius. We held a Sundown Ceremony for the HH-60H and then saw 2019 Symposium come and go at the Viejas Casino here in San Diego. I cannot overstate the debt of gratitude that NHA owes to both Bill Shannon and Bill Personius. I also realize that Jim Gillcrist (the new Executive Director) and I have a very large legacy left to us and we will do our best to help NHA move forward. We are very fortunate to have a very dedicated NHA Staff to keep us on our toes and the organization running. The HH-60H Sundown Ceremony turned out to be a great event – a reunion of former HH-60H pilots and aircrew and a fitting tribute to a great aircraft. Our 2019 Symposium started off with a spectacular Members’ Reunion and just accelerated from there. I started the Symposium making a list of the highlights. After the first day, I stopped adding to the list because I realized I added every event I attended. It also completely validated my decision to accept the position as Chairman of the Board when I was approached by NHA. The panels and discussions proved interesting and thought provoking. The interaction between our Junior Officers and Flag Officers on the Flag Panel was priceless. But, what inspired me most was the sheer intelligence of the Junior Officers, the passion of the Enlisted Sailors, and the incredible energy that I felt during the entire Symposium. I started flying in 1980 and it is very apparent to me that the helicopter community has never been more vibrant. We have never had greater opportunities for growth and have never had a brighter future. I look forward to working with all of you in the next few years and have never been more proud of our Community!



In Review Salutations Rotor Review Enthusiasts! By LT Shelby “Conch” Gillis, USN


ithin these colorful pages you will find many “Thanks” and “Kudos” for everyone who participated in the NHA Symposium this year. It was through everyone’s hard work and directed efforts to try something new that this year turned out to be such a great success. Thank you to not only the people behind the scenes who set everything up, but also to all attendees who came with thought-provoking questions and new outlooks from where the Fleet stands. I always appreciate people’s candid questions and answers. Throughout this edition you will find many articles capturing events that occurred at the Symposium, so hopefully if you weren’t able to attend you will still get a taste of the event. Not only does this periodical cover Symposium events, it also addresses CRM issues, and finally multiple integrated operations that squadrons are conducting throughout the Fleet. Thank you to all contributors, and I look forward to all of the upcoming events this quarter throughout all of the Regions! Sit back, relax, and be prepared to learn something new!

NEXT RADIO CHECK QUESTION What was your worst aircraft emergency and looking back would you have handled it differently? Send your answer to shelby.gillis@navy.mil or loged@navalhelicopterassn.org. If requested, your replies can be anonymous.


pp ! A d e HA rm N o f e in th y d a St nloa w Do

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


Letters to the Editors It is always great to hear from the members of NHA. We need your input to ensure that Rotor Review keeps you informed, connected and entertained. We strive to provide a product that meets the demand. We maintain many open channels to contact the magazine staff for feedback, suggestions, praise, complaints or publishing corrections. Your anonymity is respected and please advise us if you do not wish to have your input published in the magazine. Post comments on the NHA Facebook Page or send an email to the Editor in Chief: shelby.gillis@navy.mil or the Managing Editor: loged@navalhelicopterassn.org. You can use snail mail too. Rotor Review’s mailing address is: Letters to the Editor c/o Naval Helicopter Association, Inc., P.O. Box 180578, Coronado, CA 92178-0578. From: Bill Moss Sent: Tuesday, May 28, 2019 12:22 PM To: Allyson Darroch <loged@navalhelicopterassn.org> Subject: Make Aircrew Great Again..... While attending the latest NHA Symposium I was a little disturbed to see some red ball caps with "Make Aircrew Great Again". Then on Facebook there was an article about the Aircrewmen on the Iwo Jima I believe with "Make Aircrew Great Again" patches. I was pretty much insulted that the Aircrew Community has stooped to what I consider Millennial BS. My Question is when were we ever not great? As a non-tac 8285 and later 8215 we were always held to a higher standard then due to our Aircrew status. We had to perform on two platforms, one in our designated rating and the other in our billet as a Naval Aircrewman. There were many days when you would get back from performing your Aircrew duties and have to go to work repairing discrepancies and performing your Daily and Turnaround Inspections in order to meet the flight schedule for tomorrow. And, if you were lucky, you would not be on the schedule the next day. We all took pride in our ability to perform equally as well in our ratings and as an Aircrewman. We never had to be "Made Great Again"! We were and proud of it. Whether you were flying Starboard Delta, Vertical Replenishment, SAR or the virtual myriad of things you can do with a Naval Helicopter, you knew you were flying with the best there was and proud of the fact that you were a Naval Aircrewman. It did not get any better and never needed to be made great again we were already the best trained and highest quality Aircrewman in the Armed Forces. So shame on the Senior AW's for allowing this to happen and to the CO's/XO's and NATOPS Officers who let this happen. Naval Aircrewman are the best there are and we should be proud of that fact, not demeaning it because if it needs to be Made Great Again, you are the reason and the ones responsible for its demise. Bill "Red Dogg" Moss AFCM (AW/NAC), USN (Ret.)

2019-2020 Theme, Submission Deadlines and Publishing Dates Issue Submissions Deadline / Publication SAR -Fall 2019 (#146) ............................................ August 18 / October 10, 2019 ASuW - Winter 2020 (#147) ...................................November 18 / January 10, 2020 VRM Arriving - Spring 2020 (#148) ....................... March 19 / April 30, 2020 Should I Go or Should I Stay? ................................. June 14 / August 14, 2020

All submissions can be sent to your community editor via email or to Rotor Review by email: loged@navalhelicopterassn.org or mail Naval Helicopter Association, Attn: Rotor Review P.O. Box 180578, Coronado, CA 92178-0578

Articles and news items are welcomed from NHA’s general membership and corporate associates. Articles should be of general interest to the readership and geared toward current Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard affairs, technical advances in the helicopter industry or of historical interest. Humorous articles are encouraged.

Rotor Review Submission Guidelines

1. Articles: MS Word documents for text. Do not embed your images within the document. Send as a separate attachment. 2. Photos and Vector Images: Should be as high a resolution as possible and sent as a separate file from the article. Please include a suggested caption that has the following information: date, names, ranks or titles, location and credit the photographer or source of your image. 3. Videos: Must be in a mp4, mov, wmv or avi format. • With your submission, please include the title and caption of all media, photographer’s name, command and the length of the video. • Verify the media does not display any classified information. • Ensure all maneuvers comply with NATOPS procedures. • All submissions shall be tasteful and in keeping with good order and discipline. • All submissions should portray the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard and individual units in a positive light.



From the Organization President’s Message

By CAPT Brannon “Bick” Bickel, USN

As I Break-Dip and Open Datum...


eam NHA, It is a bittersweet day as I write my final column for Rotor Review. I am truly thankful for all the support that the NHA membership has provided to me and the National NHA Staff that allowed us to accomplish our mission of promoting the development and use of Naval vertical lift aircraft in the United States Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard. The team of Region Presidents have been champions for our organization to gather folks at events to interact in both professional and recreational events… JAXMAN in Jacksonville, Cornhole Tournaments in Pensacola, Padres and Gulls games in San Diego and Helo Days in Norfolk. I am so appreciative of your support and creativity in assembling the masses. I look back on successful engagements between the Fleet and Student Naval Aviators in the cradle of Rotary Wing Aviation, Milton, FL. I also know that we can look back in fondness for the success of our last two Symposiums. With too many volunteers to thank, I’d like to single out CDR “Granny” Smith and CDR (Sel) “Bus” Short. Gents, thanks for being the glue that held everything together. Fantastic work! Thanks also to our Region Directors. I have had tremendous support from the Rotary Wing Commodores and Deputies. At risk of alienating some folks, I do need to express a special thanks to Commodore Matt “Schnap” Schnappauf. Your leadership is an example for all others to follow. I appreciated your support as both Deputy and Commodore during my entire tenure. That being said, I could not have had better support across all the WINGS. Gentlemen, thank you! I would also like to thank the dedicated team of professions at NHA National. Jim, Allyson, Leia, Linda, and Mike. Thank you for your tireless efforts. You’ve kept our members at the front of each and every decision. Before I bid adieu, I have to say what a tremendous honor it was to work with CAPT Bill Personius, USN (Ret.) our outgoing Executive Director. Bill, your tireless efforts are truly appreciated. I have learned so much from our time together. Thank you for all the support that you have given to our staff, to our membership, and to me personally. NHA is in a much better position going forward because of your endless drive and commitment to the organization and its people. To our members, thank you for leaning in and supporting your professional organization. NHA is only successful if you all are interested in what we’re doing and ready to commit your time and treasure to the endeavor. We ask you to write articles for our magazine, donate money to our scholarship fund, and volunteer for Region events, Gulf Coast Fleet Fly-In, and the annual Symposium. I feel a stronger connection to the Fleet because of the interactions that I had with you. Lastly, a special thanks to all of our corporate sponsors is in order. NHA is flourishing because of your contributions and involvement. From my perspective, each Symposium has gotten better, and it is because Industry is showing up. As I turnover the National President position, know that we are in great hands with CAPT Ed “E-Dub” Weiler taking the reins. He is a former Region 1 President, and a great advocate for Rotary Wing Aviation. Thanks in advance for your leadership. Sir, I stand relieved; you have the watch. As I break-dip and open datum, I will look forward to seeing you in the squadrons and at future NHA events. All the best and very respectfully, Bick

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


Executive Director’s View from Pri-Fly By CAPT Jim Gillcrist, USN (Ret.)

New Guy in the Tower


t D minus 80 for the 2019 Symposium (25 February), I walked aboard NHA as the new Executive Director (ED) thinking this is going to be a piece o’cake – boy oh boy was I surprised. Immediately, I got a chance to work again with my former Peleliu shipmate and incumbent NHA Executive Director, CAPT Bill Personius. From day one, I was humbled by the many complexities involved in running a non-profit organization with a staff of five supported by an all-volunteer force (principally, squadron JOs and Aircrew). Symposium loomed as our JTFEX, so I got immersed in the work at hand. We worked long hours and am indebted to Bill Personius for showing me the ropes. The NHA Team of Linda, Leia, Allyson, and Mike worked long hours helping Bill and I pull on the lines – day in and day out – “thank you team.” National President, CAPT Brannon Bickel, provided full support and timely guidance – he was all in. Lastly, JOs and Aircrew from the flight line pitched in and formed the all-volunteer force for Symposium. Led by CDR “Granny” Smith and LCDR “Bus” Short, this volunteer team excelled and made this year’s venue at the Viejas Casino & Resort happen – well done and thank you. This experience working again with JOs and Aircrew was a highlight for me. From my ringside seat, the Rotary Force and NHA have a bright and relevant future together. The business that we are in on both sides is a contact sport. We achieve by working together. We collaborate and help one another. We offer up our time, talent, and treasure to make things better. It is about selfless service where we contribute to a higher goal larger than ourselves. This goal is a richer connection with one another as the Rotary Force of the U.S. Navy. In working up for Symposium, I experienced all these things in spades. At Symposium, I watched the execution result in a well-attended, fun, and positive gathering of uniformed personnel, civilian, and industry partners. I took pride in seeing folks hang around well after the last event each day to socialize, laugh, reconnect, grab a liquid refreshment, roll some dice, play a few cards, talk smack, tell stories, and just be together. This is why we exist. Not a bad view from where I now sit – turning into the wind for new ways to raise the value proposition for becoming and staying a member of NHA! Warm regards with high hopes, Jim Gillcrist. P.S. Welcome aboard to our new Chairman, RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.). It is going to be great having him local as a champion for NHA!



In the Community A View from the Labs: Supporting the Fleet By CAPT George Galdorisi, USN (Ret.)

Innovation Will Define our Future as a Rotary Wing Community


n the last issue of Rotor Review, in anticipation of this year’s NHA Symposium, I teed up the subject of innovation.

One of the things I mentioned in that column was an article about innovation that began with the statement: “The guy (or gal) who invented the wheel was an inventor, the person who took four wheels and put them on a wagon was an innovator.” Without putting too fine a point on it, our community has a tremendous number of outstanding wheels. Those begin with people: pilots, aircrew and maintainers, modern manned and unmanned aircraft, and all that goes with them, including simulators and other training devices. Now it’s our challenge to do something with those wheels. Innovation is key, but how to do that remains the challenge. I found some wisdom in a pair of recent Harvard Business Review (HBR) articles. Here is how one, “The Hard Truth About Innovative Cultures", in the Jan-Feb 2019 HBR put it: Creativity can be messy. It needs discipline and management. The article offered some strong suggestions regarding what we need to be innovative: - Tolerance for failure but no tolerance for incompetence - Willingness to experiment, but highly disciplined - Psychologically safe but brutally candid - Collaboration but with individual accountability - Flat but strong leadership There is much more to this excellent article, but for all of you at any leadership level, if you want innovation, it might be worth asking yourself if these five bullet points reflect you. Another HBR piece, “The Innovation Equation,” (Mar-Apr 2019) stresses that the most important variables in setting up an innovative group (an airwing, squadron, department, division, branch etc.) are structural, not cultural. Put the right structures in place, and incentivize people to move projects forward not just incrementally – but in risker ways that can lead to groundbreaking innovations. This can yield potentially game changing results. If this sounds a little academic, it’s not intended to be. I suspect we all can find areas where we’ve made good, incremental, measurable changes that have made our organizations better – but not made the kind of breakthroughs that achieve what our organizations can really be so that not only contribute all they can to our national security and prosperity, but help all our people reach their full potential. As I suggested at the outset – we have the wheels we need to fashion together and leverage to be as innovative as our imaginations can take us. Now it’s time to pull the trigger. And at the risk of making it all sound too simple, we would be well served to remind ourselves that we don’t want to be these guys!

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


Naval Helicopter Association Historical Society By CAPT Bill Personius, USN (Ret.)

Your History is Our History


ell…another NHA Symposium has come and gone. What a great time it was at the Viejas Casino and Resort this year! First let me say I was both surprised and honored by being selected for the 2019 Lifelong Service to NHA Award and the standing ovation at the Awards Ceremony was humbling. It truly was an honor to be part of the leadership of the organization for the past 5 years however I am not going away… I will be just down the hall in the NHA Historical Society Office (NHAHS) continuing to capture our rotary wing history. This was a very fun and productive symposium for NHAHS as we had a booth which was located up front and close to all the action right outside the Oak Ball Room main briefing space. For those of you who are not aware…the Historical Society maintains a listing of Pilot Designation Numbers of all Navy, USMC and Coast Guard Pilots trained starting back on 15 April 1944 with LT W.G. Knapp, USNR who was designated Navy Helicopter Pilot Number 1. In May of 2019, the total number of pilots trained by the Navy and designation numbers exceeded 34,773. VADM Bill Lescher, USN as OPNAV N-8 (designation number #15986) stopped by with his daughter LTJG Dale Lescher, USN (designation number #34448) from HSM-41 and they looked up the pilot designation number of her grandfather, ENS Charles Silva, USN (designation number #4445). Three generations of Navy helo pilots…pretty cool. We also had another young aviator stop by and check her designation number and that of her father. LTJG Sara Disciorio, USN (designation #34351) is also in HSM-41 and it turns out I know her father Joe (designation number #16445) as he and I were 1980 classmates at the Naval Academy…small world. The Historical Society has also been busy procuring a H-60 Main Rotor Blade to display in the USS Midway Helicopter Exhibit. We literally “picked-up” the blade last week and delivered it to the Midway Restoration Hangar on North Island to have it cut so we can get it into the exhibit space and attach it to the overhead for easy viewing. Watch for that coming soon as a nice addition to an already great display. We also are working on getting an HH-60H out of the bone yard in Davis-Monthan for the National Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola and working to find an H-2 as a restoration project for the USS Iowa, BB-61 in San Pedro, CA. We would like to acknowledge all the effort and work that went into what was a great kick-off event for the Symposium this year and that was the HH-60H Sundown Ceremony that was sponsored by HSC-3. That was an outstanding event hosted by Captain Ed Weiler, USN and the Merlins of HSC-3 and everyone enjoyed RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.) and his remarks addressing the outstanding service of the HH-60 helicopter and its place in our rotary wing history. That’s it for now. Keep your turns up and keep sending us information about our rotary wing history. Regards, Bill Personius CAPT USN, (Ret.) President NHAHS



Door Gunner Diaries By AWS1 Adrian Jarrin, USN

Could One Flight Helmet Rule Them All? Part Two


ast issue we discussed the HGU-84 aviator helmet and explored the inner-workings from concept design to product construction. In this issue, we will explore the inner-workings of one of the most widely used rotary wing flight helmets in the world, the HGU-56, (editor’s note: the HGU-56 is helmet worn by the author in the picture above). As mentioned previously in the first column, both helmets were initially developed for different operational needs. Therefore, for the sake of this discussion, we will focus solely on the four performance requirements that were discussed in last quarter's column. Those performance requirements are chinstrap retention, visor protection, sound attenuation, and impact deceleration/protection. As early as the 1970’s the U.S. Navy’ s rotary wing flight helmet was the Sound Protection Helmet (SPH) 3, and in contrast, U.S. Army’s rotary wing flight helmet was the SPH4. During the 1990's, Gentex developed the Head Gear Unit No. 84 (HGU-84) to replace the SPH-3 and the Aircrew Integrated Helmet System (AIHS), designated the Head Gear Unit No. 56 (HGU-56/P) to replace the SPH-4. In some rotary wing communities, the HGU-56 is being considered as a possible replacement for the HGU-84. My question is twofold: why is HGU-56 a replacement when both (84 and 56) were designed and released during the same time period and if one helmet is superior than the other, what makes it superior? Lastly, and most importantly, why is military rotary wing flight helmet technology seemingly held hostage by one company for the past 50 years? The HGU-56 Aviator Flight Helmet was manufactured by Gentex Corporation and is used on all U.S. Army, Air Force, and Coast Guard rotary wing platforms. The helmet is produced in six different sizes: XXS, XS, S, M, L, and XL. The helmet consists of: shell, boom and microphone, earcups, retention assembly, pre-formed thermoplastic liner, energyabsorbing liner, dual visor assembly, headband pad kit, and night vision goggles (NVG) interface mount.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


Unlike the HGU-84, the HGU-56 shell uses a graphite and fiber mixture embedded in epoxy resin. The overall weight of the helmets ranges from 2.8lbs to 3.2lbs depending on what components are attached. This requirement was intended to ensure the final product would withstand multiple impacts. Unlike the HGU-84, there are two chinstrap retention assembly options for HGU-56: double D-Ring buckle, and quick-release snap fastener buckle. Both systems must pass an elongation test which is performed on a quasi-static compression/tension machine. A preload of 25 lbs. was applied to the chinstrap. Then, the load was increased to 440 lbs. and upon reaching that level was maintained for two minutes. The fabrication specification specifies that the chinstrap should not fail or elongate more than 3.8cm (1.5 in) when tension is applied. The tests on both helmets were similar and both passed. Unlike the HGU-84, the HGU-56 visor system incorporates a guided track system. This track system guides both visors up and down versus the HGU-84 visor system which incorporates fabric webbing to hold the visors in place. Both helmets include an outer dark and clear inner impact-resistant, UV-absorbing lenses constructed of impact resistant polycarbonate. Visor performance only had to meet the requirements of MIL-V-43511 for optical performance and impact resistance and abrasion resistant requirements of MIL-C-83409. This military specification dates back to 1973, 1976 and 1990 and no new DoD MIL documentation is available. With respect to sound attenuation of the HGU-56, not much difference was found when compared to the HGU-84. Both helmets were tested by using the American National Standard Institute (ANSI) S12.61984 “Method for the measurement of real-ear attenuation of hearing protectors.” and MIL-STD-912 “Physical Ear Noise Attenuation Test” (PEAT). The PEAT provides data for all frequencies from 125 Hertz to 8000 Hertz. The attenuation results indicate both helmets failed to meet the requirements at all frequencies below 1000 Hertz. Nevertheless, there was attenuation of 24 dB at 1,000 Hz up to 43 dB at 4,000 Hz. To supplement the basic helmet performance, earplugs are required to be worn under both models. Lastly, Impact testing. When the Army decided to replace its SPH-4, they understood impact protection was a major concern for helicopter aviators and thus the HGU-56 would have to outperform any past impact testing thresholds the Army ever used in the past. The helmets were tested on a

guided freefall drop tower assembly. The helmet impact area (headband) standards were set by U.S. Army Aeromedical Research and Laboratory (USAARL). USAARL identified the headband as: front, rear, left side, right side region with acceleration (G) threshold of 175 G at an impact velocity of 6 meters per second (m/s). This threshold was established to prevent the potential of concussion to aircrew in a survivable aircraft accident. 150 G threshold for crown and earcup region at a velocity of 4.9 m/s requirement was established to reduce the potential of basilar skull fractures to aircrew. The impact velocity for the crown impact region is diminished because the blunt crown impact at the higher speed rarely happens in survivable mishaps according to an Army report that studied head injury mitigation technology.

After exploring and examining four specific performance areas for both helmet systems, I conclude that the only technological difference found is within the shell construction. Now the question is which helmet is best? Certainly the HGU-56 goes through a more rigorous testing process compared to the HGU-84. It’s built to provide adequate protection in the context of an otherwise survivable crash scenario. Nevertheless, the HGU-56 and HGU-84 are both Gentex products and one question still stands, why would one helmet provide more protection for end users who fly the same platforms under the same operating condition? In closing, I hope this information has given you, the end user, a more insightful perspective on the equipment we use to do our job.

Currently, the HGU-56 has improved its shell construction, thus increasing the threshold of the ear cup region of 175 G’s at 8 meters per second. The HGU 84 was never designed to withstand a crash.

Fly Smart.

A View from the JO Council By LT Dave "Figjam" Kehoe, USN

Greetings from the JO Council


ummer has arrived in full force here in San Diego, very different from the rain and cloudy skies that many of you experienced back in May during the 2019 NHA Symposium. It was the fourth symposium I have had the opportunity to attend and, in my opinion, set the standard for what we should expect in the future. The facilities, briefs, social events and attendance were excellent across the board. Amongst many highlights, the event that stood out to me was the JO Call on Friday afternoon with Commander Naval Air Forces, Vice Admiral DeWolfe Miller. The NHA Staff put this event on the schedule after it was proposed by MH-60R pilots LT Nick “Wonka” Oberkrom and LT Jess “Intake” Phenning. LT Oberkrom and LT Phenning had observed VADM Miller have a JO Call at Tailhook last year and thought it was a great opportunity for the rotary wing community to engage directly with AIRBOSS. It was incredible to see JOs have a frank and pointed discussion with the person that is ultimately in charge of the policies and direction that the community will go in. I encourage all JOs to utilize NHA and future NHA events to continue to engage our leaders and build on the discussions we had at this year’s NHA Symposium. Please keep the suggestions coming in for future events and training opportunities that the organization can help support. Fly safe and see you on the flight line! -Dave "FIGJAM" Kehoe NHA JO President



Naval Helicopter Association Scholarship Fund (NHASF) Update By Kelly Dalton, Vice President of Operations NHASF


he results are in and we are proud to announce the NHA Scholarship awardees. There were many worthy candidates but our winners this year were truly outstanding.

As always, we welcome donations to the fund—whether at an individual or corporate level of giving—which can be made through our website at: http://www.nhascholarshipfund.org/donations/how-to-donate/. We are grateful to the entire NHA community for your continued support, and wish all applicants the best of luck in their future endeavors.

Paige Langum The USS Midway Foundation Scholarship

Joshua Thompson The USS Midway Foundation Scholarship

William Butler The FLIR Scholarship

Grace Reilein The CAE Scholarship

Juliana Bates The Don Patterson Associates Scholarship Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

Henry Daniel The Ream Scholarship

Jacob Hinderleider The Northrop Grumman Scholarship 14

Alexandra McKinney The Sergei Sikorsky Honorary Scholarship

Joshua Hoskins The Sergei Sikorsky Honorary Scholarship

Michenna Allen The Charles Kaman Memorial Scholarship

Angela Johnson The NHA Graduate Scholarship

Robert Swain The FLIR Active Duty Scholarship

Eleanor Vandergrift, The Raytheon Scholarship

Adrian Jarrin The NHA Active Duty Scholarship










John Keane The Mark Starr Memorial Scholarship 15


Industry and Technology New TH-57 Simulators: A Giant Leap for Advanced Helicopter Training By Capt. Jeffrey Snell, USMC, TRAWING 5


ew helicopter simulators at Naval Air Station Whiting Field in Florida are bringing the most significant change to Advanced Helicopter Flight Training since the introduction of night vision goggles in the early 2000s. Over the next year, Training Air Wing (TRAWING) 5 is slated to receive 10 new helicopter flight training simulators that will replace the current aging simulators. The new simulators will provide many enhanced features including a high fidelity visual system with a high-quality visual database, swappable TH-57B and TH-57C cockpit configurations, linked simulation capability via a central control station (CCS), a custom hover training course, realistic control inputs, and a short-throw motion cueing system. The new simulators bring with them the first opportunity for Naval

Aviation to provide simulator flights for rotary wing students prior to the first flight in a helicopter. In addition to the new simulators, approved changes to the syllabi will be implemented to take advantage of the new capabilities and improve the quality of training. Chief of Naval Air Training (CNATRA) Rotary Wing Pipeline Training Officer Maj. Ronald Chino, USMC, and the CNATRA rotary wing stage managers from TRAWING 5, worked closely with Flight Safety Services Corporation and its subcontractors, Frasca International and Aechelon Technology, Inc., to ensure the simulator meets all requirements for rotary wing training. The priorities for the development included ensuring the simulator replicates all of the flight characteristics of the TH-57B and the TH-57C Sea

Ranger helicopters while providing the capability to train all skills necessary for the contact, instrument, navigation, formation, search and rescue, shipboard operations, and night vision device (NVD) stages. The final decision for the acceptability of the devices for rotary wing training rested with Maj. Chino, who acted as the “golden arm” for the development. “The quality of the new simulators is the direct result of the hard work and attention to detail of the CNATRA Stage Managers,” said Maj. Chino. “Their dedication to getting the highest quality result, combined with the passion of the Flight Safety, Frasca, and Aechelon team was a recipe that has resulted in an amazing success inside a tight timeline.” According to Maj. Chino, the effort was heavily supported by CNATRA, TRAWING 5, and helicopter training squadron leadership. “That’s why we were able to invest the time and effort required for the work that has been put into the new simulators,” Maj. Chino said. “This is a win for the entire rotary wing community, and it will benefit the fleet in ways we can’t fully quantify yet.”

CNATRA TH-57 Simulator Team at Frasca Factory Acceptance Back Row (L to R): Joe Courey (CNATRA N7 contractor), LT Jon Karunakaran (former Formation Stage Manager), LT Nic Parsons (contact stage manager), CAPT Jason Cullen (NVD stage manager) Front Row (L to R): CDR Aaron Beattie (TW-5 Simulator Lead), Maj. Ron Chino (CNATRA RW Pipeline Training Officer), LT Jim Bell (Former Shipboard Ops/SAR Stage Manager), LT Christina Carpio (Instrument Stage Manager). Notes PTOs are experienced flight instructors who are subject-matter experts for an entire training track or pipeline. A Stage Manager is a flight instructor that is a subject-matter expert for their stage or section of the training track or pipeline.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


Advanced helicopter training has only been able to provide TH-57B Cockpit Procedure Trainers (CPTs) for students to learn basic checklists and emergency procedures prior to their first flight. CPTs have no visual system, and no control loading or feedback. The introduction of a TH-57B flight simulator brings the first opportunity in the history of initial rotary wing training to allow simulator flights prior to a student going to the aircraft. CNATRA Rotary Wing Contact Stage Manager, LT Nic Parsons said the new capability has a significant effect on student learning.

“The advantages of teaching a student to hover in a simulator prior to flying the actual aircraft will be revolutionary for helicopter flight training,” Parsons said. “We will be able to teach more advanced concepts with our flight time when we don’t need to spend the first handful of flights simply learning to hover. These advances will have an exponential impact throughout the flight syllabus.” “The enhanced visuals will also allow students to experience home-field operations, course rules, and outlying field operations prior to the first flight in the helicopter, further enhancing student situational awareness, which will ultimately improve their development,” Parsons said. In addition to flying “single ship” (one aircraft), all of the new simulators will have the capability to link into “fleets” of up to 10 devices through the CCS. CNATRA Rotary Wing Formation Stage Manager, LT Jon Karunakaran, highlighted the advantages the new simulator will bring to formation flight training. “The ability to link simulators enabling the students to fly formations before getting in the aircraft will enable rapid growth in formation flying, which will provide the Fleet Replacement Squadrons (FRS) even better products to build upon,” Karunakaran said. Students will be able to fly formation referencing a recorded lead aircraft to learn how to fly as a wingman, and then will be able to fly formation with another student, real time, in a linked simulated environment. This will allow emergency procedures training and facilitate teaching basic flight leadership and decision making skills. The visual database and high-fidelity visual system will offer a dramatic improvement in the quality and standard of NVD training. According to CNATRA Rotary Wing NVD Stage Manager Capt. Jason Cullen, USMC, new simulators have the potential to

Level 6 Unit 1 onsite Whiting doing a Shipboard Landing.

provide an entire mindset shift regarding simulator training in flight school and the fleet. “With this vastly more immersive simulator experience, we’ll ideally be creating a better product for the fleet with newly winged aviators who are dramatically stronger in foundational pilotage skills like helicopter handling, communication, decision making and crew resource management principles,” Cullen said. “These skills should ultimately enrich the FRS learning experience by allowing the follow-on units to reduce focus on the foundational skill sets and teach more advanced concepts sooner.” Another benefit that comes with the introduction of new simulators is the ability to improve instructor training. The current simulators do not support effective contact training, and do not provide visuals for the left seat. As a result, Instructors Under Training (IUTs) can only be trained sitting in the right seat of a TH-57C, and cannot be trained in a simulator for the TH-57B. The new simulators provide visuals for both seats simultaneously and will allow IUTs to train the way they will instruct. The use of a TH-57B simulator will also allow instructors to conduct defensive posturing training, and full autorotation training with an instructor demonstrating common student errors for IUTs in a safe envi17

ronment prior to them taking students. The improvement of IUT training in simulation will raise the quality of instruction for students and enhance the safety of flight training. The introduction of the new simulators will take place over the next year. As the number of devices increase, the revised syllabi will be implemented. CNATRA leadership expects all syllabus changes to be fully incorporated by the fall of 2019. The changes will be incremental, and will require a lot of learning and work to gain the greatest benefit, but once integrated, CNATRA leadership anticipates the students’ abilities will be greatly improved. The ability to rehearse a flight or confirm an aerodynamic concept prior to experiencing the scenario in-flight has been proven to significantly improve performance, which translates to a large-scale positive impact on fleet readiness. TRAWING 5, located 5 miles north of Milton, Florida, onboard NAS Whiting Field, is comprised of three primary fixed-wing and three advanced helicopter squadrons. Its cadre of highly skilled instructors train aviators from the Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, Air Force, and allied nations. The wing is responsible for an estimated 43% of CNATRA’s total flight time and over 11% of Navy and Marine Corps' flight time worldwide.


Industry and Technology NAVAIR: New Presidential Helicopter Production to Start Soon By Ben Werner - Article originally appeared in Proceeedings May 6, 2019


he VH-92A will become the new presidential transport helicopter, replacing an aging fleet of VH-3D and VH-60N helicopters. Naval Air Systems Command has a handshake deal in place to start production of the Sikorsky VH-92A, the next generation presidential helicopter, officials said on Monday.

D.C., swooping low over the National Mall on an otherwise quiet Saturday morning, and practicing landing on the White House Lawn. That VH-92A was the first helicopter delivered to NAVAIR. The initial operational capability is expected to occur in late 2020, and the full production line is on track to complete in 2023.

NAVAIR has already taken possession of three VH92A aircraft and the program is scheduled to have a milestone decision meeting at the end of the month with Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition, James Geurts.

Assuming the end of May meeting with Geurts is positive, Masiello said the plan is to award Sikorsky a production contract and executive options to build the VH-92 throughout the life of the program as needed, Masiello said. As part of the Presidential Helicopter Replacement Program, Sikorsky was in 2014 awarded a $1.2 billion contract to build a fleet of six helicopters to start, but with options for the Navy to purchase up to 17 more helicopters.

Based on the feedback from test pilots, VH-92A production is expected to start soon after the milestone meeting, Marine Maj. Gen. Gregory L. Masiello, Program Executive Officer for Air Anti-Submarine Warfare, Assault and Special Mission Programs (PEO (A)) said during a presentation at Navy League’s 2019 Sea Air Space Exposition.

This is the second attempt to replace the current decades-old VH-3Ds currently in use. In 2005, Lockheed Martin’s proposed VH-71 helicopter beat the Sikorsky helicopter in the competition to build the Presidential helicopters. Years of delays and cost overruns caused the Pentagon to scrap the project in 2008 and start the process over with a new round of bidding, according to a Congressional Research Service report.

“I believe that things went reasonably well,” Masiello said of the recent VH-92A testing. “The reason I say that is because I know where the aircraft took off from every day and I know where they landed every day, and it was where it was supposed be. The feedback was relatively positive.” In one instance, a VH-92A flew into Washington

A decade later, Sikorsky won a new competition with its VH-92A design, a variant of the Sikorsky S-92 helicopter which is used by 11 other nations to transport their heads of state. Lockheed Martin purchased Sikorsky for $9 billion in 2015.

Marine Helicopter Squadron One (HMX-1) runs test flights of the new VH-92A over the south lawn of the White House on Sept. 22, 2018, Washington D.C. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Hunter Helis,USMC.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


Sikorsky Flies Black Hawk with Optionally Piloted Vehicle Technology News provided by Lockheed Martin

A Black Hawk equipped with optionally-piloted vehicle (OPV) technology made its first flight at Sikorsky’s West Palm Beach, Fla., facility on May 29. Sikorsky is developing autonomous and OPV technology that builds on its fly-by-wire technology to ultimately reduce the number one cause of helicopter crashes: Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT). Photo courtesy Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin company.


Through DARPA's Aircrew Labor In-Cockpit Automation System (ALIAS) program, Sikorsky is developing an OPV approach it describes as pilot directed autonomy to give operators the confidence to fly aircraft safely, reliably and affordably in optimally piloted modes enabling flight with two, one or zero crew. The program aims to improve operator decision aiding for manned operations while also enabling both unmanned and reduced crew operations.

technology kit developed by Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin company (NYSE: LMT), was used for the first time to operate a Black Hawk helicopter with fullauthority, fly-by-wire flight controls. The May 29 flight marked the official start to the flight test program for the soon-to-be optionally piloted aircraft. Follow-on flight testing aims to include envelope expansion throughout the summer leading to fully autonomous flight (zero pilots) in 2020. "This technology brings a whole new dimension of safety, reliability and capability to existing and future helicopters and to those who depend on them to complete their missions," said Chris Van Buiten, Vice President, Sikorsky Innovations. "We're excited to be transforming a once mechanically controlled aircraft into one with fly-by-wire controls. This flight demonstrates the next step in making optionally piloted – and optimally piloted – aircraft, a reality." This is the first full authority fly-by-wire retrofit kit developed by Sikorsky that has completely removed mechanical flight controls from the aircraft.

Sikorsky has been demonstrating its MATRIX™ Technology on a modified S-76B™ called the Sikorsky Autonomy Research Aircraft (SARA). The aircraft, which has been in test since 2013, has more than 300 hours of autonomous flight. Sikorsky announced in March that its S-92® helicopter fleet update will include the introduction of phase one MATRIX Technology that will bring advanced computing power to the platform. This foundation enables adoption of autonomous landing technology. For more information about Sikorsky MATRIX Technology, which won an Edison award in 2018, visit https://lockheedmartin.com/en-us/ products/sikorsky-matrix-technology.html.



Useful Information Making Our Mark: Naval Aviation Trademark Program

By Anne Owens and LT Michelle Tucker, USN, Chief of Naval Air Training Public Affairs


he day a Navy or Marine Corps aviator receives their Wings of Gold is a day they will never forget. It’s the culmination of months of rigorous training. From their very first solo flight, to water survival training, and all the way through advanced training – those wings are truly earned. A single fouled anchor, surmounted by a shield with 13 stripes, centered on a pair of wings. Those distinctive Wings of Gold represent proficiency and professionalism. They per- Navy wide receiver Terrance Laster, right, congratulates Navy running back Malcolm Perry on his touchdown in the second quarter of the 118th Army-Navy Game in Philadelphia Dec. 9, 2017. sonify Naval Aviation, Photo by EJ Hersom. and that’s why they, along with various other The NATP allows commercial Product lines that feature Navy symbols, are protected by the Naval vendors to apply for an official license trademarks run the gamut from Aviation Trademark Program (NATP). to sell merchandise or products that apparel and books to chocolate and feature Navy trademarks. Through the coffee. In 2016, a video game called The NATP was established in 2011. licensing process, the NATP ensures “Ready, Break!” was released under the It seeks to protect and control the that the proposed use is consistent with program. The game gives players firstuse of Naval Aviation’s unique marks Navy values, upholds quality workman- hand experience flying a virtual Blue including naval aviator insignia, naval flight officer insignia, naval aircrewman ship, and ensures compliance with U.S. Angels jet. Last year, the NATP issued Department of Labor requirements. its first food licenses to DeLuna Coffee insignia, squadron logos, the Navy Funds generated from royalty collection International and The San Francisco Flight Demonstration Squadron “Blue help pay for the operation of the Navy’s Chocolate Factory. In fact, these Angels” crest and script, and even the program, as well as supplementing were the first licenses of their kind iconic blue-and-gold paint scheme of the Morale, Welfare and Recreation to be issued for the Navy Trademark the Blue Angels jets. (MWR) program to support Sailors and and Licensing Program. In addition, Revell, a model airplane company, also “It’s important to note the trademark Marines, and their families. released products featuring Navy tradeand licensing program covers all squad“The majority of our licensees have marks in conjunction with the premier rons across the fleet,” said Joel Bouvé, stated having official licensing has inof the movie “Welcome to Marwen” associate counsel for Chief of Naval creased the legitimacy of their products, starring Steve Carell. Other licenses inAir Training and program coordinator which has led to increased sales” Bouvé clude toys, jewelry, watches, glassware, for the NATP. “This includes the Navy said. “The licenses help safeguard that luggage, and even Blue Angels cologne. Fighter Weapons School in Fallon, officially licensed products with our Nevada, commonly known as “TOPmarks represent the Navy in an approIn all, program managers have issued GUN,” and even the star and stripes priate way.” more than 300 licenses, of which that appear on every aircraft in the more than 100 are specific to Naval Navy’s inventory, known as the U.S. Aviation. The program’s reach extends military aircraft national insignia.” beyond merchandising – it serves as Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


a recruiting tool for those considering a career in the Naval Aviation community, both active duty and Navy Reserve. In 2011, the Indianapolis 500 Motor Speedway race celebrated the Centennial of Naval Aviation (CoNA), prominently placing the CoNA logo on its race cars, reaching a massive audience and bringing Naval Aviation to the heart of America. During the 2017 Army-Navy football game, players from the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, donned helmets that featured the Blue Angels’ signature delta formation, in addition to uniforms and footwear with the Blue Angels crest. That same year, St. Louis Blues’ goalie Jake Allen paid homage to the Blue Angels with a custom-painted mask featuring their iconic blue and yellow Hornets. He wore it during a game against the Arizona Coyotes, which received NHL Network and ESPN coverage. This year the State of Florida is set to offer a license plate that honors the Blue Angels in their home state. CNATRA, headquartered in Corpus Christi, trains the world's finest combat quality aviation professionals, delivering them at the right time, in the right numbers, and at the right cost to a naval force where it matters, when it matters. A full list of Naval Aviation trademarked merchandise is available at https://www.blueangels.navy.mil/ assets/docs/resources/trademark-merchandise.pdf. For more information about becoming an official licensed Naval Aviation vendor, or to apply for a license, contact Joel Bouvé, associate counsel, Chief of Naval Air Training at (361) 961-3510/1839 or joel.bouve@ navy.mil. For general information about the Navy Trademark Program, visit https:// www.navy.mil/trademarks/intro.html

Do We Have Your Current Address?

Rotor Review is mailed at the periodical rate. The post office will not forward magazines. Now is the time to go digital! Did you know that the Rotor Review Magazine is available in a full digital format? Visit the "Members Only" portal on the NHA Website to update your preferences to start receiving your magazine digitally!



Symposium 2019 Rotary Force Innovation and Integration Symposium Overview By LT Shelby Gillis, USN


hank you to everyone that made the NHA Symposium a smash this year out at Viejas! With a new venue this year, I think everyone was curious how the week would unfold and it didn’t disappoint! Starting the days with interesting briefs and ending them socializing at the tables, NHA was a professional smash. It was wonderful to get insight from the Captain’s of Industry panel, the Flag panel, and also the JO brief with CNAF. The Waterfront Perspective panel spoke to the dramatic differences between when they were JOs and now. Sprinkled in between those heavy hitters were many niche briefs that expanded our understanding of where Naval Aviation can take you. The Safety Center held a workshop to address the challenges facing naval aviation in a constant up-tempo environment. New to Symposium, The Female Aviator Mentor Social was an opportunity not to be missed. Many thanks to everyone who planned, set up, and worked the event. Your hard work was noticed, allowed the Symposium to roll without issues, and has us all excited for what next year has in store! If you couldn't make it this year you can still see some of the events on NHA's Facebook page. Our special thanks to the primary photographer and social media corespondent for Symposium, LT Joesph "Nightcrawler" Cusick, USN. See you next year in Norfolk.

The panels at Symposium give the attendees a chance to speak truth to power.

JO Call with the Airboss A new event for Symposium and promises to be a staple.

VADM Dean Peters was the keynote speaker .The video "I am NAVAIR" gave the audience a sense of how diverse and complex the Naval Aviation Enterprise really is.

N98 / PMA-299 Briefers From left to right: CDR Dennis “Fester” Monagle, USN, LCDR Dean “Powder” Farmer, CDR Chris "Jean Luc" Richard, USN CAPT Todd Evans, USN.

Flag Panel participants from left to right: RDML Wayne Baze, USN, VADM Dean Peters, USN, VADM Bill Lescher, USN, VADM DeWolfe Miller, USN, RDML Shoshana Chatfield, USN, RDML Alvin Holsey, USN, RADM Dan Fillion, USN, (Moderator).

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


Rotary Force Innovation and Integration and the Future of Vertical Lift Panel From left to right: LT Rebekah “Grumpy Cat” Alford,USN, LCDR Brian "Lost" Crosby, USN, LCDR James “POTUS” Gelsinon,USN, LT Bray “Furry” Dunaway,USN, CDR Christopher “Jean Luc” Richard, USN, CAPT Matt Schnappauf, USN (Moderator).

The Aircrew Panelists, from right to left: AWRCM Nate Hickey, USN, AWSCS Davin Duenas, USN, AWRCM Justin Tate, USN, AWSCM Todd Deal, AWSCM Mike Belt, USN, AWSCM Rob Hoffmann, USN, AWSCM Steve Martin, USN, . AWSC Chris Adams, USN addressed transition and retention issues.

The Female Aviator Mentorship Social offered an opportunity for cross-community networking. Discussions at the Trustee Breakfast Meeting

The Commodore and CAG Panel participants, from left to right: CAPT Gregory Newkirk, CAPT Robert Loughran, USN,, CAPT Billy Maske, USNR, CAPT Doug Rosa, USN, CAPT Al Worthy, USN, CAPT Mike Weaver, USN, CAPT Ryan Carron, USN, CAPT Matt Schnappauf, USN, CAPT Brannon Bickel, USN, (Moderator).



Symposium 2019 Rotary Force Innovation and Integration Launching Our Next Generation of "Helo Bubba" Writers By LT Sam Calaway, USN and CAPT George Galdorisi, USN (Ret.)


his year’s NHA Symposium featured a unique, first-ofits-kind event, a writer’s panel. We brought together four writers who found time to meet with aspiring writers who attended the symposium. Our goal was to help launch the next generation of rotary wing writers. Here’s how the symposium organizers teed up this panel: Ever wanted to write a book? Do you think you can be the next Tom Clancy or Stephen Coonts? Or, do you have a story to tell about your flying experience as a Naval Aviator? Here's your chance to pick the brains of four successful authors: George Galdorisi, Marc Liebman, Barbara Marriott and Matt Vernon, all fellow Naval Aviators and helo bubbas (or in Barbara’s case, a helo bubba spouse). As a group, they’ve written three dozen books, including fiction and non-fiction and countless articles for a wide-range of publications. They’ve worked with large and small publishers, agents and even helped launch a publishing firm. Remember, if you don’t tell your stories, who will? If there was a consistent theme and one main thing the panelists conveyed it was this: There are a number of wellknown writers who have been producing military fiction and non-fiction for decades – and that’s the problem. Most of them are former military folks who used to be well-versed in all aspects of the military, but their information has become so dated their stories are no longer as interesting or believable as their earlier works. But that problem creates an opportunity for all of you in flight suits or coveralls. You are living this now and can tell riveting and believable stories that will find their way into print. As one example, consider former HC pilot Anne Wilson who wrote from personal experience flying on sea and land to write two terrific novels, Hover and Clear to Lift. Her books are authentic – just as yours will be – because her flying experience was relatively recent, not decades old.

While we didn’t have a standing-room-only crowd, we did interact with quite a few aspiring writers during and immediately after the panel, as well as later through the remainder of the symposium. Based on the feedback we’ve received, we thought it would be a good idea to populate our print and online versions of Rotor Review with information that may be useful to aspiring writers. Call them “tricks of the trade,” or just useful gouge, but the idea is to package information that is news you can use. Some examples of gouge from the panel include: • Carry a pen and paper everywhere: Some writers require a daily, disciplined routine, while for others ideas may come at any moment. Whatever your style, be ready for when inspiration strikes. • Tap into a network: Writing seminars can be effective, but they can cost north of $1500. Better to join a local reading club or writers support group when getting started. • Do your research: Do your research to prevent nasty phone calls post-publication not only for non-fiction, but for fiction as well (~30-40% of fiction is research). Pay for academic archives if necessary and list related works when submitting manuscripts. • Get permission and protect yourself: If specifically referencing someone or his or her actions, get permission in writing to protect from libel. The U.S. Navy Office of Information (CHINFO) and the Defense Office of Prepublication and Security Review (DOPSR) also provide guidance on how to protect yourself when using your military experiences. • Have persistence: You will have bad manuscripts and publishers/editors will reject you. Thick skin and patience are essential to succeed. To jump start this process, here is a link to George Galdorisi’s website: http://www.georgegaldorisi.com/. If you go to “Blog” at the top and use the pull-down for “Writing Tips” you’ll find dozens of short missives designed both to get your creative juices flowing and also provide some “tactics, techniques and procedures” to make your writing journey smoother. Check it out.

Writers' Panel participants

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19



he Winging Ceremony at Symposium is a way to recognize and welcome the upcoming generation of rotary wing pilots and aircrew. This year's ceremony was sponsored by Leonardo.

CAPT Edward M.Weiler, USN, the Commanding Officer of HSC-3, presented Aircrew wings to AWS3 Charleton S. Preston, USN and AWS3 Cameron A. Brown, USN. CDR Jessica Parker, USN, the Commanding Officer of HT-8, presented Pilot wings to ENS M. Glennon Waters, USN and LtCol John Beal, USMC, the Executive Officer of HT-18, presented Pilot wings to: LTJG John W. Kazanjian, USN.


he San Diego based squadrons welcomed their newest members in an HSM-HSC soft patch ceremony during Symposium.



Symposium 2019 Rotary Force Innovation and Integration The Thatch, Isbell, and Walker Awards The winner of the Admiral Jimmy S. Thach Award, sponsored by Lockheed Martin is HSM 78 “Blue Hawks”. Left to right: Commodore HSMWINGPAC CAPT Matt Schnappauf, USN, Commanding Officer of HSM-78, CDR Eric Hutter, USN, Mr. Tom Kane of Lockheed Martin,NHA's Chairman,RADM Pat McGrath, USN, (Ret.).

Mr. Tom Kane of Lockheed Martin presents the Captain Arnold Jay Isbell Trophy to the Commanding Officers of HSM-72 and HSC6. From Left to right: NHA Chairman, RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.); Commodore HSMWINGLANT CAPT Mike Weaver, CO of HSM-72, CDR James Pokorsky, USN; Commodore HSCWINGLANT, CAPT Alan Worthy, USN, Mr. Tom Kane. The Captain Arnold Jay Isbell Trophy winners are HSM-37 and HSC-6. From Left to right: Commodore HSCWINGPAC, CAPT Ryan Carron, USN, NHA Chairman, RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.); Commanding Officers CDR Todd Pike, USN (HSC-6), CDR Gabe Kelly, USN (HSM-37), HSMWINGPAC Commodore CAPT Matt Schnappauf, and Mr. Tom Kane of Lockheed Martin.

CDR James R. Walker Award is sponsored by Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company and named in honor of a highly decorated HA(L) - 3 SEAWOLF aviator and warrior. The award-winning squadron this year is HSC-25. From Left to right: RADM Pat McGrath, Commodore of HSCWINGPAC, CAPT Ryan Carron,USN and Mr Tom Kane of Lockheed Martin.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


Aviation Battle E Awards

The Aviation Battle "E" is the Navy's top performance award presented to the aircraft carrier and aviation squadron in each competitive category that achieves the highest standards of performance readiness and efficiency. The award recognizes a unit's training and operational achievements while including a balance that incentivizes efficiency. The Atlantic Battle E's for 2018 were presented in a separate ceremony.

CDR Frank Lofordi, USN, Commanding Officer of HSC-25 "Island Knights" is presented the Battle E by HSCWINGPAC Commodore, CAPT Ryan Carron, USN.

The Battle “E” awarded to HM-15 “Blackhawks” is presented by HSCWINGPAC Commodore, CAPT Ryan Carron, USN to LTJG Eric Mott, for HM-15.

Aviation Squadron Battle “E” Award is presented to HSM-78. Standing on the stage from left to right: RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.) CDR Eric Hutter, USN, Commanding Officer of HSM-78, HSMWINGPAC Commodore, CAPT Matt Schnappauf, USN and Mr. Tom Kane of Lockheed Martin.

Aviation Squadron Battle “E” Award is presented to HSM-37. Standing on the stage from left to right: RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.), CDR Gabe Kelly, USN, Commanding Officer of HSM-37, HSMWINGPAC Commodore,CAPT Matt Schnappauf, USN and Mr. Tom Kane of Lockheed Martin. 27


Symposium 2019 Rotary Force Innovation and Integration NHA National Awards

Aircrew of the Year (Deployed) is the crew of Big Chief 704 from HSM-72. Left to right: NHA Chairman RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.) HAC: LT Riley Emerson, USN; Copilot: LTJG Patrick Swain, USN; Crewchief: AWR1 Todd Shulman, USN and Mr. Tom Kane for Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company who sponsored the award.

Aircrew of the Year (Non-Deployed) is sponsored by Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company. and is awarded to the Crew of Coast Guard 6038 USCG Air Station Elizabeth City. From left to right: RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.), HAC: LT Matthew Delahunty, USCG, Copilot: LTJG Lindsey Cockburn, USCG, Flight Mechanic: AET2 David Franklin, USCG, Rescue Swimmer: AST1 Mario Estevane, USCG, and Rescue Swimmer: AST2 Mark Fulgham, USCG, Mr. Tom Kane of Lockheed Martin. Rescue Swimmer of the Year is sponsored by Vertex Aerospace and awarded this year to AST2 Michael Kelly, USCG who is stationed at USCG Air Station Cape Cod. Left to right: RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.), AST2 Michael Kelly, USCG, CDR Brian Conley, USCG, CDR Dean Fournier, USN (Ret.) representing Vertex.

Rotor Review #145 Summer â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;19


NHA Pilot of the Year is awarded to LT Luke Gunderson, USN, HSC-14 “Chargers”. From Left to right: CAPT Ryan Carron,USN, who accepted the award on behalf of LT Gunderson standing between RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.) and Mr. Thomas Hills from Rolls Royce, who sponsors the award.

RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.), NHA 's Chairman presents the Shipboard Pilot of the Year award to LT Robert Antonucci, USN. LT Antonucci was assigned to USS Boxer (LHD-4). The award is sponsored by General Dynamics NASSCO.

Fleet Instructor Pilot of the Year, sponsored by Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company, is awarded to LT Samuel Richardson, USN, HSC Weapons School Pacific. RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.) and Mr. Tom Kane of Lockheed Martin stand on either side of him.

Training Command Instructor Pilot of the Year sponsored by CAE, and is awarded to LT Chelsea Zakriski, USN , HT-8 “Eightballers. Left to right: RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.), LT Zakriski, USN, Mr. Ray Duquette of CAE.

Max Beep

"MAX Beep” describes a squadron that continually demonstrates the highest levels of support for our professional organization. To be considered “MAX Beep” a squadron must have at least 85% of the aviators on their personnel list as registered, dues paying members of the Naval Helicopter Association. This year's winnners are HSM-46 "Grandmasters, HSC-21 "Blackjacks and HSM-35 Magicians. The Max Beep is sponsored by Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company.

From left to right: are RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.), CDR Manny Pardo, USN, Commanding Officer of HSM-46, CDR Dave Kiser,USN of HSM-37, LTJG Jon Adams-Ward, USN of HSC-21 and Mr. Tom Kane of Lockheed Martin. 29


Symposium 2019 Rotary Force Innovation and Integration

Aircrew Instructor of the Year, sponsored by CAE is awarded to AWS1 Corey Danzey, USN, HSC-2 “Fleet Angels”. From left to right: NHA Chairman, RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.), Commanding Officer of HSC-2, CDR Kevin Zayac, USN accepting the award on behalf of AWS1 Danzey, Mr. Ray Duquette of CAE and HSCWINGLANT Commodore, CAPT Alan Worthy, USN.

Aircrewman of the Year is awarded to AWS2 Adriana Ramirez, USN, HSC-14 “Chargers". Accepting the award on her behalf is HSCWINGPAC Commodore CAPT Ryan Carron, USN. On stage with him is NHA Chairman, RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.) and Mr. Jeff Bracken from Robertson Fuel Systems, who sponsored the award.

Mr, Robert Novak presents the Senior Enlisted Maintainer of the Year, sponsored by BAE Systems to AOCS Richard Carey, USN HSC-8 “Eightballers”.

Maintenance Officer of the Year is CWO2 Cesar Pinarivera, USN, HSC-25 “Island Knights”. Presenting the award is Mr. Robert Novak of BAE Systems, who sponsors the award. Standing next to him is CDR Frank Loforti, USN , HSC-25's Commanding Officer. Junior Enlisted Maintainer of the Year (E1 - E5), sponsored by Breeze-Eastern is awarded to AO2 William Augustine Jr., USN, HSM-48 “Vipers”. HSMWINGLANT Commodore CAPT Mike Weaver, USN accepted the award on his behalf. CAPT Weaver is standing between RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.) and Mr. Phillip Stauffacher of Breeze Eastern.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


The Best Scribe Award winner is LT Jonathan Kokot, USN, The NHA Volunteer of the Year is LT HSM -73, for his article “Deployment: A Junior Officer’s Kristina Mullins, USN, PCU USS Tripoli Perspective” in the Fall 2018 issue. Presenting his award is (LHA-7). Presenting her award is NHA's NHA's Chairman, RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.). Chairman, RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.).

The CAPT Mark Starr, USN Award. This year's winners are CAPT Michael Marriott, USN (Ret.) and Dr. Barbara Marriott. From left to right: RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.), CAPT Michael Marriott, USN, Dr. Barbara Marriott, CAPT Bill Personius, USN (Ret.).

RADM Steven Tomaszeski, USN (Ret.) Squadron Commanding Officer Leadership Award is sponsored by G.E. Aviation. For the year 2018, the winner is CDR Eddie Park, USN, Commanding Officer of HSM-78 "Bluehawks" . Presenting the award to CDR Park is Mr. Paul Croistiere of GE Aviation.

The Service to NHA Award is presented to CAPT Brannon S. Bickel, USN, Commanding Officer, HSM-41 by Mr. Tom Kane of Lockheed Martin. The sponsor of the award is Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company.

The Lifelong Service to NHA Award fis presented to CAPT William Personius, USN (Ret.). From left to right: RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.), CAPT William Personius, USN (Ret.) and Mr. Tom Kane representing the award's sponsor, Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company.



Symposium 2019 Rotary Force Innovation and Integration Association of Naval Aviation Awards

ANA CNATRA Instructor Pilot of the Year Award is presented to LT Andrew J. Galvin, USN by CAPT Dave Kennedy, USN (Ret.) ANA's Wings of Gold Editor. CAPT Dean Fournier, USN (Ret.) holds the citation.

ANA Fleet Support/Special Mission Award presented to CDR Richard Shiels, USN of HSC-28 “Dragon Whales” by CAPT Dean Fournier, USN (Ret.) for ANA.

ANA's CAPT Dave Kennedy, USN (Ret.) presents the CNAP Dorothy Flatley Award to Mrs. Maddie Mae Dolan. She stands next to the Commanding Officer of HSC-25 “Island Knights”, CDR Frank Loforti, USN. Next to him is CAPT Dean Fournier, USN (Ret.).

ANA Chief Petty Officer of the Year Award is presented to ADCS Lucas Brown, USN of HSM-51 “Warlords” by CAPT Dave Kennedy, USN (Ret.). With them on stage are CDR Dean Fournier, USN (Ret.) and RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.)

From left to right: Wings of Gold Editor, CAPT Dave Kennedy, USN (Ret,), ANA Helicopter Aviation Award winner LT Michael Hatch, USN, CAPT Dean Fournier, USN (Ret.), RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.), CAPT Matt Schnappauf, USN. Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


Order of Daedalians Awards Winners are selected by their respective Chiefs of Staff based on exceptional deeds performed to assure mission success, acts of valor as an aviator, or an extraordinary display of courage or leadership in the air in support of air operations.

From left to right: RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.), LtGen Daniel Kehoe, USAF (Ret.) and the crew of HSC-6's Indian 620, HAC: LT Eric L. Rintz, USN, Co-Pilot: LTJG Anna H. Halverson, USN, Crew Chief: AWS2 Richardo NMN Rosado, USN, Swimmer: AWS2 Christopher J. Stefanides, USN, SMT: HM3 Ned NMN Cherry IV, USN, Commodore of HSCWINGPAC, CAPT Ryan Carron, USN. LTJG Colby W. Shinholser, USN is presented with the Orville Wright Achievement Award by Daedalian CEO, LtGen Daniel Kehoe, USAF (Ret.) RADM Pat McGrath,USN (Ret.) NHA's Chairman, and CAPT Ryan Carron, USN are standing on either side.

From USCG Air Station Kodiak, Alaska, LCDR Daniel A. Schrader, USCG is presented with the Coast Guard Exceptional Pilot Award by LtGen Daniel Kehoe, USAF (Ret.). Standing next to LtGen Kehoe is RADM Pat McGrath, USN (Ret.).



Symposium 2019 Rotary Force Innovation and Integration


Aircrew Challenge

hile many pilots and aircrew were up at Viejas the majority of all of the Symposium days, a few gritty and brave aircrew ventured back to North Island for the Symposium’s Aircrew Challenge. These no-nonsense AW’s in peak physical fitness tackled open ocean swims, gun breakdowns and rebuilds, golfing, moulage, and to make things just a little more difficult, an eighteen wheeler truck pull. These stellar athletes toiled away on sandy Breaker’s Beach in a friendly spat of squadron competition, with the ultimate champions coming from HSC-85. Thank you all participants for showcasing your amazing talents and putting us pilots to shame. You guys are truly the best! We appreciate everything that you do! HSC-85 walked off with a great gift from Massif and the joy of being able to hold it over everyone’s heads for the year ahead! If you weren't able to be on hand at the event. LT Joseph Cusick's videos and pictures can be viewed on NHA's Facebook page.

“The Parrotheads” from HSC-85 took first place in the Aircrew Challenge which was sponsored by Massif. Standing with them are the Massif representative and the Aircrew Challenge Coordinator, AWSC Rudy Perez, USN. The winning team was AWS1 Flynn, AWS1 Ryan, AWS2 Jackson and AWS2 Russ.

Second Place Winners were the HSC-21 "Blackjacks".

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

The "Black Knights" of HSC-4 took Third Place.


2019 NHA Captains of Industry Panel – The Forefront of Innovation By LT Daniel J. Daugherty, USN


his year’s Captains of Industry Panel included participants from all areas of the defense industry sector to include some with perspective outside of naval helicopter aviation. Mr. Bauknecht (returning for his second year as moderator), began the panel by asking each speaker to introduce themselves and discuss what helicopter technology their company was most excited about. Many of the panelists discussed their company’s focus on the innovation of unmanned systems as well as how to integrate manned and unmanned systems together across multiple platforms. Other panelists focused on their respective company’s development of new engine and airframe technology including hybrid turbine power, ceramic matrix composites, and optimized digital engine controls with the intent of increasing usable power and reducing maintenance requirements (focusing on the development of conditional based maintenance). Following a few questions from the crowd, the event concluded with multiple panelists discussing the difficult nature of developing short-term technologies to meet the demands of the fleet. In the spirit of this year’s theme, innovation and integration, many panelists discussed how the defense industry has become less adversarial in the recent past allowing for the sharing of research and development in order to meet the immediate needs for the Department of Defense. This year’s Captains of Industry Panel included the following Panelists: Joseph A. Bauknecht (Panel Moderator) – Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company John Roth – Airbus Helicopters Colin Smith – Bell Flight Don Cline – Elbit Systems of America David Ray – FLIR Systems Ray Duquette – CAE USA Andrew Gappy – Leonardo Helicopters Dan Spoor – Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company Harry Nahatis – GE Aviation

The Members' Reunion



Focus - Innovation and Integration Partners in an Evolving Area of Operations: The Andøya Search and Rescue Detachment

By LCDR Dave Eckardt, USN, HSC-11 Detachment 2, Officer in Charge


arrier Strike Group Eight's (CSG-8) historic deployment to the “High North” forced carrier-based aviators to adapt to an environment beyond what most had grown accustomed to after 18 years of CENTCOM deployments. The Strike Group’s participation in NATO Exercise Trident Juncture 2018 brought USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) and Carrier Air Wing One (CVW-1) to an operating area with temperatures consistently below freezing, ceilings and visibility below VMC, and seas over 20 feet. As the primary search and rescue (SAR) platform for CSG-8, the HSC-11 Dragonslayers were responsible for ensuring the effective and efficient execution of life-saving efforts in this unforgiving environment.

Rotor Review #145 Summer‘19

Due to the large operating area of the exercise and importance of timely rescues in the frigid waters, HSC11 determined it was important to disaggregate SAR coverage in order to reduce response time. A variety of options were proposed and discussed to execute this requirement with the best solution being a shore-based two aircraft detachment in Norway. With nothing more than the idea and a desired end-state, planning began. The process commenced by consulting the embarked Royal Norwegian Air Force Liaison Officers (LNOs). These LNOs provided CVW-1 aircrew with briefs on local area airspace, the unpredictable weather patterns common to the High North, and helicopter-specific hazard briefs. They also discussed the unique terrain in northwestern Norway, which


is as beautiful as it is hazardous. The coastline is comprised of a series of fjords that are long, narrow inlets cut out by glaciers with steep sides up to 5,000 feet above sea level. These fjords each capture their own weather and some contain low hanging power lines, locally known as “helo catchers”, which present a great hazard to those operating in limited visibility. The Norwegian LNOs also introduced HSC-11 to Norway’s primary airborne search and rescue unit, the 330 Squadron. This Norwegian Air Force squadron is comprised of twelve H-3 Sea King helicopters dispersed among six air bases along the country’s western coast. The intensity of SAR and air ambulance tasking in Norway

requires each of the six detachments to maintain a helicopter in Alert 15 status at all times. Since its inception, the 330 Squadron has launched on over 41,000 missions and is tasked with over 800 air ambulance missions every year in conjunction with its SAR responsibilities. Further discussions with the LNOs led HSC-11 to explore the possibility of establishing its own forward deployed SAR Detachment at Andøya Air Base located in Andenes, Norway – a remote area at 69 degrees latitude with gapped SAR coverage between 330 Squadron’s Bodø and Banak detachments. In order to determine the feasibility of establishing an over-the-horizon detachment at such a northern line of latitude, HSC-11 sent a site-survey team to visit the base and examine the local area. The team first visited the 330 Squadron’s Bodø detachment, which is the closest SAR asset to Andøya. The Bodø pilots and rescue swimmers briefed the Slayers on the conditions they should expect to encounter in Andøya, and provided

the pilots with custom, pre-chummed local area charts with vetted low-level routes through the fjords. They also created individualized profiles on Norwegian flight applications for the detachment to use while operating in northern Norway. The tablet-based flight applications provided aircrew with GPS-enabled moving map, realtime hazard avoidance, and known helicopter landing zones and hospitals throughout the Norwegian coast. Following the successful visit to Bodø, the site-survey team proceeded north to Andenes, a small fishing town with a population of 2,700 people surrounded by 2,500’ vertical cliffs to the south and 45°F water to the north. Here, the Slayers met with representatives from Andøya Air Base’s resident 333 Air Wing, as well as facilities managers to discuss the viability of operating out of the remote location. They also set expectations and identified limitations regarding helicopter operations at the maritime patrol base. The base facilities managers agreed to provide the detachment with


24-hour fuel support, barracks rooms, two hangars, and an operations space. The successful trip validated that the infrastructure, maintenance support, and operational capacity were sufficient in Andøya to support a land-based SAR detachment, HSC-11 Detachment Two. Once proper diplomatic clearance was approved, the next item to address was the command and control (C2) of the detachment. HSC-11 liaised with CVW-1, CSG-8, and the Norwegian LNOs to establish proper approval authorities to launch for coalition and civilian SAR tasking. The C2 structure utilized the Joint Rescue Coordination Center (JRCC) of Northern Norway, Norwegian National Air Operations Center (NAOC), CSG-8 Battle Watch Captain, and HSC-11’s carrier-based SDO, who would then notify the detachment duty officer of a pending SAR and provide mission execution approval. Unclassified communication would be used for civilian SAR. Military rescue would utilize a deployed Secure Terminal Equipment (STE)


Focus - Innovation and Integration posture during the day in the operations space and downgraded to an Alert 60 SAR posture at night at the barracks. However, the designated alert aircraft always remained in an Alert 15 status, effectively upgrading the Alert 30 and Alert 60 to “enhanced alerts” allowing for an expedited launch if called upon for support. The three aircraft commanders and their “combat HSC-11.2 Search and Rescue Notification and Approval Process crews” (utility crewman, rescue swimmer, and SMT) were consistently rotated between the daily Alert 30, encrypted telephone, with card of the week code words and Alert 60, and unit level training (ULT) missions. Four RAMROD as a back-up means of secure communication. copilots rotated within the combat crews in order to man a The detachment also employed satellite communication 24-hour duty officer watch station. (SATCOM) in order for the SAR aircraft to communicate with aircraft carrier watchstanders from any position over The MH-60S brought some new capabilities to the the horizon. operating area, but also lacked some upgrades resident in the Norwegian Sea Kings. The MH-60S blade de-ice and The squadron had to ensure it could meet all Strike engine anti-ice systems were vital to the detachment’s ability Group tasking from CVN 75 while also providing Det to operate in the harsh and wet environment. These systems TWO with fully mission capable aircraft and experienced are surprisingly absent in the Norwegian helicopters, forcing aircrews. It was determined the best footprint to ensure them to fly low to the water to maximize the benefits of the all requirements were met was to leave five helicopters slightly warmer air at that level. However, the Norwegian on the aircraft carrier and pull one aircraft and associated H-3s did have a major advantage in a built-in radar system crew from HSC-11 Detachment ONE Combat Logistics that enables terrain mapping and allows their SAR helicopter Force (CLF) in order to source two aircraft to the Andøya to fly low level through the fjords during inclement weather detachment. Seven pilots, six aircrewmen, a SAR medical and low visibility. Lack of this technology in the MH-60S technician, twenty two maintenance professionals, and two combined with drastically changing weather patterns in culinary specialists manned the detachment. The culinary unforgiving terrain limited the detachment to supporting specialists (CS) were vital to the detachment’s success due to only overwater SAR after sunset. absence of a base galley or any other eating establishments at the airfield. The two Sailors worked closely with the For two weeks, HSC-11.2 provided 24/7 over-the-horizon detachment Senior Enlisted Advisor to provide a diverse coalition and back-up civilian SAR and air ambulance menu of family-style and grab-and-go meals offered four support. The aircrew and aircraft not standing alert flew times a day out of the barracks’ small kitchen and four on a daily basis through the Norwegian fjords to best procured grills. The CSs’ ingenuity, hard work, and dedication were paramount to the overall success of the detachment. HSC-11.2 was established on 18 October 2018 with the fly-off of two MH-60S aircraft equipped with dual auxiliary fuel tanks to extend their range and provide a greater on-station rescue time. The majority of the detachment flew to Andøya on two supporting C-2 airplanes that also brought required maintenance tools, servicing equipment, and a self-built Pack-up Kit (PUK) containing common parts. Once onstation, the detachment aircrew remained in an Alert 30 SAR HSC-11 flies over the coast of Norway.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


prepare the aircrews for conditions they expected to encounter in Northern Norway while also maintaining their tactical proficiency. Training events included terrain and mountain flying, degraded visual environment (DVE) landing proficiency in the snow, international hospital familiarization flights, night unprepared landing training, and Seahawk Weapons and Tactics Program syllabus events. The detachment also planned, briefed and gained approval for a combined long-range SAR exercise with the Bodø SAR helicopters and a Norwegian Coast Guard vessel, but this event was unfortunately canceled due to operational commitments. In total, HSC-11.2 was called to elevate its SAR alert posture for potential launch on two occasions and flew 43.3 hours of unit level training, completing 13 air combat training continuum (ACTC) events. This noteworthy detachment went from concept to full execution in less than a month and showcased the adaptability and flexibility of the Helicopter Sea Combat community. Although the mission was for permissive environment search and rescue, the planning process and over-the-horizon command, control, and communication procedures established are directly applicable to the stand-up of a combat search and rescue detachment. HSC-11.2 was a major achievement in Theater Security Cooperation (TSC) by developing relationships with partner nations and relearning how to operate in the High North. The squadron gained valuable experience in the establishment and execution of a long range, land-based detachment while also fulfilling the fleet support requirements of the Carrier Strike Group.

Map of Norway

The success of HSC-11 Detachment 2 would not have been possible without the hard work of our maintenance team who kept both aircraft in a fully mission capable status throughout our time in Norway, in addition to the outpouring of support provided by our hosts, the Royal Norwegian Air Force. The Slayers were proud to support our NATO ally during this ground breaking detachment, and we thank everyone involved for their dedication to our mission. DOUBLE ONEâ&#x20AC;ŚSECOND TO NONE!


ed NHA m or he f In d t y a a St wnlo Do


p Ap


Focus - Innovation and Integration Integrated OPS HSM 46.3 Prepares to Save Lives By LTJG Joseph Kaminsky, USN


uring a six week workup while embarked on USS Mason (DDG 87) both HSM 46.3 detachment and ship’s company took the opportunity to go beyond their minimum requirements. They executed a training exercise that provided valuable experience for both the aircrew and ship while increasing integration and familiarity for future operations between the two. The USS Mason and HSM 46.3 stepped out of the typical workup comfort zone by coordinating and executing a hoisting exercise and an open ocean SAR jump evolution. HSM 46.3 delved into the appropriate publications, procedures, and best practices to develop and lead training for the safe and successful completion of these two events. On the morning of August 19th, Cutlass 771 launched from the deck of the USS Mason with the first of three crews, and made ready for hoisting operations. The boat team from USS Mason launched their RHIB and got into position for the first simulated rescue. The casualty in question, a mannequin named MA2 Francis, needed to be transferred via a rescue basket from the RHIB to the flight deck of USS Mason after a simulated HVBSS mission gone wrong. The potential complications with an evolution of this nature were thoroughly briefed. The RHIB team maneuvered into and held position for the hoist, undeterred by 771’s downwash and sea spray. While expertly holding this position, they retrieved the lowered rescue basket, safely placed their injured mannequin inside, then they ensured the basket remained steady on its way back up to the helicopter using a trail line. Cutlass 771 departed and made its way, with the survivor, back to USS Mason in order to transfer them safely to the deck. First, one of the rescue swimmers was deployed to the flight deck while the helicopter hovered. Once on deck, the rescue swimmer gained control of the trail line and used it to steady the rescue basket while the crew chief lowered it to the deck. With the basket safely on deck, the swimmer detached it from the rescue hook and signaled the helicopter to depart. He then turned his attention to the medical needs of the simulated casualty. The deck was cleared for 771 to land, crew swap, and execute the event two more times resulting in three successful “rescues”, one for each crew embarked aboard USS Mason. Continuing to lead the way, HSM 46.3 and USS Mason coordinated a time in their schedule to conduct open ocean SAR jumps a few days later. After again consulting the applicable SAR and Training publications, the members of the detachment came up with a concept of operations and communications procedures that were concise but still aligned with directives. Open ocean jumps are rarely executed in Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


the HSM community because of the challenges to meet the stringent SOP requirements. Typically, tasking and ship participation are the biggest hurdles to overcome; fortunately, this was not the case, as the Mason was supportive of the evolution. Undeterred, HSM 46.3 and the USS Mason team prepared to set the standard. The event started out with the 3 volunteer pilot “survivors” entering the RHIB and heading out approximately 500 yards off the ship’s port beam. Cutlass 771 launched again, this time with all three rescue swimmers on board. First, the rescue swimmers performed their requisite jumps and direct deployments for day currency, cycling through the crew chief, rescue swimmer, and “survivor” stations. Then, the three pilot survivors jumped from the RHIB into the water with one rescue swimmer from the helicopter staying with

Cutlass 771 with the "survivor," MA2 Francis, prepared to land on USS Mason.

them for overall event safety. Cutlass 771 reset and conducted a day time SAR approach to affect the rescue. The plan was to rescue each “survivor” via two rescue methods, the rescue strop and the rescue basket. Using multiple rescue methods adds significant value and insight for both the swimmers and “survivors”. The rescue basket is effective and feels more comfortable and less disorienting in the rotor wash. The strop, while effective, is uncomfortable. The survivor has to be willing to fight the urge to protect themselves with their hands as well as the tendency to reposition themselves in the strop away from the spray and waves. The natural reactions a survivor wants to do to increase comfort and SA are almost 100% counter to what the swimmer needs them to do in order to get them in the strop and conduct the rescue safely.

Just two days after the SAR jumps, USS Mason received a distress call from a downed aircraft. Had it not been for the distance from the downed aircraft, HSM 46.3 would have been the most current and qualified crew in the Strike Group to handle the rescue. This instance is a testament to the importance of being prepared and willing to execute training in a non-standard environment. Creating time in the schedule to go above the minimum training requirements can be extremely beneficial. With the lessons learned, USS Mason and HSM 46.3 will be able to submit updates to the procedures and publications dealing with hoist and SAR operations based on actual experience. Improving those procedures will make future training and rescues throughout the community, safer and more efficient.



Features EQ and CRM: How Emotional Intelligence Relates to the Crew Concept By LTJG Elisha Clark, USN


he meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed.” -Carl Jung “Human error is a normal byproduct of human behavior.” Perhaps no truer statement exists in NATOPS. In daily aviation, there are mistakes, some more consequential than others. We’ve all heard the tired contentions and conclusions of every safety report: “the pilots did x,” or “maintenance did y,” and so on. There are other contributing factors of course, but the bottom line for any aviation accident comes down to the most difficult aspect to pin down: human error. Naval Aviation has attempted to conquer the difficulty of human error through both the process of Operational Risk Management (ORM) and

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

the use of Crew Resource Management (CRM). These programs, implemented over a quarter of a century ago, are now core principles Naval Aviators live by on a daily basis. So why do we still have mishaps? Why are we still slaves to human error? There are many possible reasons. One could argue that human error is unavoidable in some shape or form, no matter how hard we try to squeeze out the uncertainty. So then the real question arises: is there still room for improvement? Is this the best we can do?

command climate, and so on. It is difficult to control any of these variables as a whole, or even at all. So then the question becomes this: what can we control? What is the easiest variable to grab hold of? The answer is behavior. If you have a crew that doesn’t have good chemistry, there may be degraded CRM in that aircraft. It’s easy to just chock this up to personalities that don’t mesh, or to say you either “have it or you don’t.” The situation can seem helpless if this is where you give up. With a little patience, time, and reflection, perhaps this potential CRM breakdown can be built back up with something called “Emotional Intelligence.”

There are still ideas Naval Aviation has yet to pursue when it comes to the way we operate. There are hundreds, "If you have a crew that possibly thousands of variables in every doesn’t have good chemistry, mission flown, at sea or ashore. The variables range from deployment cycles, there may be degraded CRM experienced and unexperienced crews, in that aircraft."


Uncovering EQ Taking a step back from aviation, exploring the concept of Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is vital to understanding its connection with CRM. The idea of EQ premiered in a paper by Michael Beldoch in 1964, but was not elevated to the status of psychological theory until Daniel Goleman’s 1995 book Emotional Intelligence: Why it Can Matter More than IQ. Several models have been developed since then, however most focus on the similar concepts and methods of increasing EQ. Emotional intelligence is the capability of individuals to recognize their own emotions and those of others, discern between different feelings and label them appropriately, use emotional information to guide thinking and behavior, and manage and/or adjust emotions to adapt to environments or achieve one's goal(s) . When your emotions get the best of you, your response to stimuli is difficult to control. Examples of this phenomenon arefound in aviation every day. A current, experienced pilot has the apparent ability to slow the world down during times of duress in the cockpit. On the other end of the spectrum, pilots with little experience and knowledge may struggle when faced with the same set of circumstances. Before we go further, let’s dig into the science behind the human response. All outside stimuli travels from your nerve endings through the spinal cord and into the limbic system, or the emotional center of your brain. This is the part of your brain that controls the “fight or flight” response, which can be difficult to conquer. It is what causes outbursts during arguments, flinching during scary movies, and the spine-stiffening effect of the teacher calling your name as you were dozing off. These emotional responses are triggered before your brain can fully process the event. Bradberry and Greaves, authors of the popular 2009 book Emotional Intelligence 2.0, describe it as an “emotional hijacking.” With the way our brains are wired, this response “ensures you experience things

"Emotional intelligence is the capability of individuals to recognize their own emotions and those of others." emotionally before your reason can kick into gear.” The rational center of your brain is the frontal lobe, where the brain fully processes the entire situation. It is the part of your brain that outlines exactly what you should have said during that argument you lost, reassures you that the shadowy figure you saw was just playing a trick on your eyes, and reminds you that you are not the first (and will not be the last) person to fall asleep in class. We are only human, and we are only as perfect as our perceptions. Emotional intelligence bridges this gap between the rational and emotional centers of the brain. It is what helps us understand our responses, and eventually control them. Bradberry and Greaves break it down into four EQ skills paired into two categories: personal competence (self-awareness and self-management) and social competence (social awareness and relationship management). Personal competence deals with your ability to “stay aware of your emotions and manage your behavior and tendencies,” while social competence is your ability to “understand other people’s moods, behavior, and motives in order to improve the quality of relationships.” Those with high EQ scores are said to have a highly developed skill set within these categories. Unlike IQ, which is fixed, EQ is said to be a teachable 43

skill. People may be intelligent in their ability to learn while still lacking the tools they need for effective application of EQ skills. The development of these skills is a focus that can enhance relationships in and out of the cockpit by improving the way we approach CRM. EQ as a CRM tool CRM focuses more on the social competence side of EQ skills, especially having to do with relationship management. That’s not to say personal competence can’t also enhance the social competence aspect of EQ. Only that CRM was specifically developed to enhance teamwork and crew effectiveness, therefore managing relationships becomes key. The CRM mechanism that was developed by Commercial Aviation in 1981 and later adapted by Naval Aviation, was built for a variety of situations. In both the monotony of a routine flight and the pressures of a compound emergency, these skills are vital to minimizing crew-preventable errors . There is a notable difference in a cockpit with experienced crew vice a crew that has mixed levels of experience. There are several skills having to do with relationship management that can augment CRM in the face of challenging circumstances. Receiving feedback well, building trust, and acknowledging other crewmembers’ feelings are just a few examples of relationship management tools that can be used to enhance crew coordination. www.navalhelicopterassn.org

Features Think back to the 1977 Tenerife incident of KLM Flight 4805. It is an incident most in aviation have at least heard of, and, one students of CRM are intimately familiar with. Considered one of the worst incidents in aviation history, this breakdown of CRM in Captain Jacob Veldhuyzen van Zanten’s aircraft claimed more lives than any incident in aviation. This crew was comprised of a very experienced captain and a moderately experienced first officer and flight engineer. There were The Tenerife collision is considered one of the worst incidents in aviation history. many factors that led to this particenough that they become habits, such Veldhuyzen van Zanten and Captain ular disaster, the lack of free-flowing as listening before speaking, holding Sullenberger and immediately spot the communication being one of them. back snap judgements, and discovdifferences. Perhaps it is as simple as The captain had created an atmosphere ering your own reactions to certain setting aside an extra thirty seconds to which bred hesitation in his crew and situations. Learning about yourself and take our mental temperature before we an unwillingness to challenge authority what “pushes your buttons” can help step into a brief. How can I stay more in order to prioritize safety. It cost them you realize what types of situations you aware of my other crewmembers today? their lives. If the captain had instead need to be watching yourself in, and If one of the crewmembers is clearly set a different tone, one that facilitated can even cause you to become more distressed about something, will I react feedback from the crew, the 538 lives open to feedback from others. This type in a way that makes them feel at ease? aboard the KLM and Pan Am flights of introspection can be accomplished Will I be able to control my own emomay have been spared. in thirty seconds after a debrief, just by tions so as to not project them onto reflecting on a few things you thought that person? Will I be able to combat Case studies in managing emoyou did well or could have done better. thoughts such as that’s nothing, or I’ve tions can be seen in disasters as well dealt with worse? Everyone has a right as success stories. In 2009, the world The focus of the majority of our to experience feelings, and everyone watched in awe as Captain Chesley time as pilots is spent memorizing has his or her own process in doing so. Sullenberger performed a controlled tactics, techniques, and procedures for This is just one of the key aspects of ditch after a flock of geese had caused everything we do. For the most part, emotional intelligence that CRM fails a dual engine failure. According to the it is time well spent. The vital skills to encompass. You can’t change people, NTSB after action report, the contribrequired to be a good pilot have largely you can only try to understand them. uting factors to the survivability of the remained the same since Naval Aviation incident were “the decision-making of got its start. These emotional intelliSolving the problem of a lack of the flight crewmembers and their crew gence “tactics” are just a few skills we awareness when it comes to the skill of resource management during the accican focus on to further hone our CRM EQ cannot be cured simply with more dent sequence,” as well as other factors in and out of the cockpit. Learning to briefs, instructions, or rote memorizaindependent of the crew itself. The listen to yourself and others, undertion. Improving the EQ skill requires captain and first officer practiced the stand your emotions, and successfully a good deal of introspection, and a emotional intelligence skill of building control them can be powerful tools in willingness to look at a perspective trust by relying on their training that the CRM toolbox. We just need to be different from that of your own. It day. They had open lines of commuwilling to sharpen them. involves practicing certain skills often nication, a willingness to share their thoughts without fear of reprimand, and consistency in words, actions, and behaviors. The practices and procedures that have been developed and improved upon since the deadly Tenerife incident led to the survivability of the “Miracle on the Hudson” thirty-two years later. Like CRM, emotional intelligence is difficult to measure. Despite this, we can look at the marked differences between the cockpits of Captain Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

Miracle on the Hudson 44

Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron11 Implements the CNO’s Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority By LT Elise Luers, USN, HSC-11 PAO A Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority In December 2018, The Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) published an update to his A Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority with version 2.0. Design 2.0 provides updated operational guidance to align National Security Strategy (NSS) and National Defense Strategy (NDS) with execution. The document also guides the Navy’s future priorities and investments. To structure the execution of the CNO’s priorities, four Lines of Effort (LOE) were developed to achieve success by focusing on warfighting, learning faster, strengthening our Navy team, and building partnerships. “These Lines of Effort are inextricably linked and must be considered together to get a sense of the total effort.”


uring Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 11’s (HSC-11) latest deployment, the goal was to structure efforts in support of the CNO’s original Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority LOEs and their subsequent refinement in Design 2.0. HSC-11 deployed in April 2018 onboard USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) with Carrier Air Wing ONE (CVW-1) in support of Carrier Strike Group 8 (CSG-8). This deployment was the first iteration of Dynamic Force Employment (DFE) and also met the NSS and NDS visions to “advance an international order that is most conducive to our security and prosperity”, while poised to address the “re-emergence of long-term, strategic competition between nations.” Below are the details of how the Dragonslayers strived to meet the intent of the CNO’s LOEs in order to support national strategy at the tactical level.

Strengthen Naval Power at and From the Sea In A Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority, the CNO described the First LOE as the requirement to “maintain a fleet that is trained and ready to operate and fight decisively.” To support this LOE, HSC-11 sought to maximize its contributions to CSG-8 and CVW-1 in order to build a more potent warfighting force. Despite deploying with full combat readiness, HSC-11 continued to push toward maximizing qualifications to increase the depth and breadth of experience in the command. While underway, the squadron completed 252 Air Combat Training Continuum events resulting in 32 tactical level upgrades to strengthen unit combat power. The Dragonslayers

also produced five helicopter aircraft commanders, five aerial gunner instructors, two aerial gunners, and one SAR Medical Technician. With these added qualifications, HSC-11 also sought to build more integration within the Strike Group via routine Maritime Strike, Surface Coordination and Reconnaissance (SCAR), and Maritime Interdiction Operations by training with other CVW-1 and Commander, Destroyer Squadron 28 assets. HSC-11 also pushed to strengthen their relationship with joint forces by dedicating focused training with the 19th Special Forces Group (SFG). A week of Special Operations Forces support included high-end train-

HSC-11 MH-60S flies over USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) and the German navy frigate FGS Hessen (F 221) U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Thomas Gooley, USN.



ing in Direct Action, Personnel Recovery (PR), Non-Combatant Evacuation Operations, and Close Air Support (CAS). The 19th SFG continuously has Special Forces Operational Detachment Alpha (SFOD A)’s deployed around the world, making a connection with this unit key to building a relationship that could prove useful in future conflicts. HSC-11 also had the opportunity to conduct integrated training with Portuguese Joint Terminal Area Controllers and a squadron of AW-101 Merlin helicopters. This detachment focused on Urban CAS and Combat Search and Rescue with our integrated sections performing recovery vehicle and rotary wing escort missions with the rest of CVW-1 team. This training reinforced the bond with a North American Treaty Organization (NATO) ally and reaffirmed our ability to operate together. Coordinating and executing such training met the CNO’s vision of sharpening our spears and strengthening Naval power. Achieve High Velocity Learning at Every Level In order to achieve high velocity learning at every level the CNO offers that the U.S. Navy must “apply the best concepts, techniques, and technologies to accelerate learning as individuals, teams and organizations” and “adapt processes to be inherently receptive to innovation and creativity.” This concept was especially important as HSC11 became the first MH-60S squadron to participate in a Dynamic Force Employment (DFE) combat patrol. DFE presented several challenges new to the community and the Navy. HSC11 overcame many obstacles despite an unpredictable deployment schedule and renewed emphasis on operational security. The squadron also achieved high velocity learning as a result of CSG-8’s unexpected return above the Arctic Circle to deter our adversaries and demonstrate renewed resolve to our NATO allies. The Dragonslayers showed resolve and adapted to the extreme cold air and sea temperatures, poor visibility, low ceilings, icing conditions, as well as Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

exceptionally high sea states in order to complete the mission. In this environment, foreign to many HSC squadrons that have typically spent recent deployments in hot and humid conditions, HSC-11 placed a strong priority on ensuring they were fully prepared for SAR missions. To prepare, the squadron identified a capability gap for potential man-overboard scenarios during extreme-cold environments with increased chance of fatality under a normal Alert 30 posture. As a result, HSC-11 developed and implemented an “Enhanced Alert 30” SAR posture to ensure a quick launch and recovery capability to improve chance of survivability. HSC-11 applied high velocity learning to create, develop, implement, and execute the “Enhanced Alert 30” posture and then ensured the knowledge was passed to every “individual, team, and organization” within the entire Air Wing. This example perfectly describes the CNO’s vision for the second Line of Effort and ensured our Navy team is ready to prevail in all future challenges. Strengthen our Navy Team for the Future The third Line of Effort emphasizes “we are one Navy Team … with a history of service, sacrifice and success… we will build on this history to create a climate of operational excellence that will keep us ready to prevail in all future challenges.” HSC-11 embraced this direction via one of the Commanding Officer’s guiding principles, “train hard”. Every flight was flown with the goal of capitalizing on training opportunities to maximize experience for junior aircrew. Even routine fleet support sorties incorporated SCAR or CAS with mission tankers acting as Forward Air Controllers (Airborne). The Dragonslayers also took advantage of a unique opportunity to conduct Terrain Flight (TERF) training while operating in Vestfjorden, Norway. This narrow body of water is surrounded by 4,000 foot mountain peaks and enabled Plane Guard crews to conduct day and night unprepared landings 46

(UPLs) in the mountainous landscape while also remaining “on station” for SAR duties. Maintainers and support personnel also “trained hard” to further develop their technical expertise and contribution to operational excellence. During deployment 742 maintenance qualifications were attained, advancement rates were 10 percent higher than Navy average, and retention was 10 percent higher than Navy average despite a compressed work-up cycle and an unpredictable deployment schedule. To ensure the deployment experience of these Sailors was retained to benefit future commands it was important to focus on our people and appreciate their contributions. This resulted in 50 reenlistments during deployment, helping HSC-11 earn the 2018 “Golden Anchor” Retention Excellence Award. By creating “a climate of operational excellence,” HSC-11 was “ready to prevail in all future challenges” and provided an exemplary model for the CNO’s third Line of Effort. Expand and Strengthen our Network of Partners The CNO’s final Line of Effort beseeches the Navy to “deepen operational relationships with other services, agencies, industry, allies and partners – who operate with the Navy to support our shared interests.” HSC-11’s 2018 deployment provided an incredible opportunity to train and operate in countries and on ranges that haven’t been utilized by the Navy in some time. HSC-11 was able to train on ranges in Pafos, Cyprus; Capteux, France; Vestmannaeyar, Iceland; Rabat, Morocco, and Tain, Scotland. The Dragonslayers also established overland detachments for PR and CAS in Andoya, Norway and Monte Real, Portugal. These detachments enabled the Navy to once again work with, enhance cooperation between, and better partnerships with our NATO allies. In all locations, these opportunities led to interactions and coordination with host nations which left a positive image of today’s Navy and reinforced our nations’ bonds – a perfect example of the CNO’s vision.

HSC-11 also contributed to partner building by working directly with naval ships from partner nations to include the German frigate Hessen, Norwegian frigate Thor Heyerdahl, and Canadian frigate Halifax. Conducting training and Deck Landing Qualifications (DLQs) with these ships greatly benefitted the pilots and aircrewmen of HSC-11 and simultaneously enhanced our interoperability with allied navies. Further, the squadron flew missions into Rabat, Morocco; Naples, Bari, Brendizi, and Sigonella, Italy; Podgorica, Montenegro; Incirlik, Turkey; Souda Bay, Greece; Lisbon, Portugal; Palma, Spain; Aberdeen, Scotland; Bodo, Norway; Marseille, France;

Portsmouth, England; and the Azores. Each of these sorties made a positive impact on the civilian and military personnel encountered. Further, many of these flights into NATO countries were in support of VIP operations showcasing the United States’ resolve in supporting our allies. The Dragonslayers hope to continue building upon these partnerships and relationships during future deployments to further strengthen these bonds. Bringing the Vision to Fruition During CSG-8’s Dynamic Force Employment operations, Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron ELEVEN not only

executed the Chief of Naval Operations’ Lines of Effort, but also showcased the ingenuity and adaptability of Naval rotary wing aviation. HSC-11 embodied the Four Lines of Effort through high level training, tactical and operational excellence, a dedication to strengthening partnerships, and a determination to create a lasting, positive legacy. The Dragonslayers successfully interpreted, implemented, and executed the CNO’s Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority ensuring a very successful deployment encompassing 3,105 mishap-free flight hours while maintaining a 99.9% operational mission completion rate.

True Story Hazardous Cargo in a “Huey” By CAPT Charles E. (Ed) Ellis, JAGC, USN (Ret.)


hile stationed in the Panama Canal Zone in the 1970 time frame as an Air Force JAG, I did a lot of flying with the Air Force helicopter unit. The Air Force had the responsibility for Medevacs throughout Panama and as far south as the border with Columbia. The Hueys didn’t have the range to fly to some of the Indian villages and back so the Air Force H3s took fuel drums and positioned them at some of these remote villages so the Hueys had a fuel supply available. They would periodically check these drums to ensure they were still full. On these trips into the jungle, aircrews would barter with the Indians to get parrots, macaws and Japanese fishing floats. On one of the trips I made, we were getting ready to leave to return to the Canal Zone when one of the aircrew appeared with a big wicker basket that was bouncing around and smelled terrible. When asked what it contained he told us he had acquired a young jaguar and was going to tame it. When he started to put it in the passenger compartment he was told “no way”.

There was a small hatch in the tail boom of the helo so he opened the hatch and squeezed the basket into the tail boom. When we landed at Albrook AFB two hours later, the aircrewman opened the hatch to discover there was one very agitated jaguar loose in the tail boom. He told the pilot he would get a shotgun and shoot the cat. This drew a very negative response: “Hell no, you’re not firing a shotgun in the tail boom of my aircraft”. It was then decided to get a can of ether from the dispensary, throw it in the tail boom and when the cat was rendered unconscious, remove it. We got the ether, pulled the cork, threw it through the hatch and waited ten minutes. When we opened the hatch, the jaguar was even more agitated. The tail boom had so many holes in it that the ether dissipated quickly and had no effect on the jaguar. We adjourned to the NCO Club bar, which was up the hill from the air


field, to consider our options over a cold beer. There was a slightly drunk fire fighter at the bar who overheard our conversations and volunteered to “get that damn cat out of the helo”. He proceeded to the fire station and donned a padded silver fire fighting suit with hood and gloves and met us at the helo. In the interim, we acquired a wire cage to put the jaguar in. We opened the hatch and the fire fighter grabbed the cat. After a significant struggle, he turned around and dropped the jaguar in the cage. Mission accomplished. However, his fire fighting suit looked like it had been through a shredder. As I was the officer that signed of on lost, damaged or destroyed Air Force property, the pilot turned to me and said: "Ed, that fire fighting suit was destroyed in training. Right?” To which I replied; “Definitely, you never know when you are going to have to get a jaguar out of the tail boom of a helicopter”.


HSM-46 Detachment Three: Sea Stories

By T Bo Merritt, USN, LTJG Ben Gallegos, USN and LTJG Joseph Kaminski, USN


e all have different stories, different backgrounds, and different goals. As a leader, it is important to understand these differing perspectives, to be able to harness those perspectives, and create bonds within your team in order to accomplish the mission. Recently, while out to sea in support of USS Abraham Lincoln Strike Group workups, HSM-46 Detachment Three interviewed a select few of its Sailors. The answers given show a diverse cross-section of the opinions of the men and women currently serving our country at sea. We enjoyed listening to their responses, and hope you will too.

Interviewee: AM1 Romgloyd Rivera, Lead Petty Officer. 2 years of sea time, 11 years of active service, married with two daughters. Q: How has this underway differed from your last? A: My position is different, which changes everything. On previous deployments I have not had the responsibility that I have now. With that, I have noticed a culture change. The helicopter we maintain is the same. The procedures are the same. But the culture is different. Instead of turning wrenches as a worker, I now get the opportunity to instill good leadership habits in the people I am leading.

Q: What is your next step in the Navy (paygrade or qualification)? A: The next promotion I am working toward is making Chief. I have also considered going for Limited Duty Officer or back to Great lakes as a Recruit Division Commander. Wherever the next step takes me, I want it to be something new. Q: What is one thing you’re looking forward to on long cruise? A: We have a great group here in Det 3. I am looking forward to building on that outstanding teamwork so that we can work hard and play harder!

Interviewee: AE1 Takia Gilmore 3 Deployments, 8 years of active service Has been a maintainer for both FA-18 and MH-60R platforms.

Q: What do you want to do differently on this deployment?

Q: How has this underway differed from your last?

A: My past two deployments have been a part of super detachments, meaning the detachment was the best of the best. We kept the aircraft looking like show birds, kept them running for over 1500 flight hours in one deployment, and kept up the morale of the men and women we served with. I would love to repeat that experience.

A: It’s always a new experience. I’m getting to work with a new set of people [ship’s company], and have a whole new set of experiences with them. We have some new people within the Air Department with us this time around and we’re working on coming together as a team.

Q: What are you doing to improve yourself (professionally, educationally, etc.)? A: I am currently working on my Safe For Flight qualification. Q: What has been your proudest moment on this underway? A: Watching my junior Sailors progress so quickly and take on the amount of work that they have done in so short a time. They are outstanding! It makes me very proud to work with them. Q: If there was one thing you would want to pass on to the people reading this article, what would it be? A: “Proudly We Serve” This is the motto aboard USS Mason.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


Q: What is your next step in the navy (paygrade or qualification)? A: My next big step in the Navy is to actually work towards my Master’s Degree in social work. Once I have my Master’s I’ll be eligible to apply for Medical Service Corps In-service Procurement Program, an officer program which is my ultimate goal. Q: What is one thing you’re looking forward to on long cruise? A: On long cruise, definitely port visits. I’d like to see some new countries and places on this long cruise. I’m looking forward to saving some money as well. Q: What do you want to do differently on this deployment?

A: For this deployment, I’d like to take on more responsibility within the Air Department. I’d like to branch out, outside of the detachment, and take the opportunity to make more connections and friendships. Q: What are you doing to improve yourself (professionally, educationally, etc.)? A: I’m currently enrolled at Saint Leo’s University to start my Master’s Program. Q: What has been your proudest moment on this underway? A: Being recognized as a supervisor honestly. I’m proud of the responsibility and opportunity. My proudest moment in the Navy though, had to be when I was with the FA-18s on the carrier. Getting an inspection done to get the bird up in time to get it on the “cat” for its take off, and then watching it launch.

Interviewee: AEAN Anatolii Drozdov, .08 years of sea time, 1 year of active service. Single and ready to mingle. Q: How has this underway differed from your last? A: This is my first workup cycle and will be my first deployment. I’m excited and looking forward to getting this experience under my belt.

Q: What is your next step in the navy (paygrade or qualification)?

Q: What has been your proudest moment on this underway?

A: In the short term, I’m working on my EAWS Qualification. I’ve been studying regularly to make sure I do as well as I can, while also focusing on learning all of the ins and outs of AE. Once I get my wings, I want to try and qualify for Plane Captain as quickly as I can so that I can really help out the maintenance shop on deployment. In the long term, I’m interested in officer packages. Being a pilot or a chaplain both seem like awesome opportunities and I’d love to get the chance to do one.

A: Because I don’t have my wings yet, I don’t have a ton of responsibility yet, but I have been trying to be proactive in preparation for our shift maintenance. We’ve settled into a little bit of a routine in the Maintenance Department, and it’s not difficult to know what is next on the agenda. I’ve been trying to make sure that all of the pieces of the puzzle are in place and ready to go so we can be as efficient as possible. By staying a step ahead, I’m also able to learn more while the actual maintenance is being done instead of scrambling around to find things at the last minute.

Q: What is one thing you’re looking forward to on long cruise? A: I’m really looking forward to seeing different ports and people. I enjoy meeting new people and port visits seem like a good chance to do that. I’m also looking forward to learning more and becoming a better AE. I love my rate and I want to be the best electrician I can. As we continue through workups and long cruise, I’d like to get enough experience and confidence that I can make Collateral Duty Inspector after deployment.

Q: If there was one thing you would want to pass on to the people reading this article, what would it be? A: The best things and the most drastic things that I’ve done in life to this point have been things that I thought at the time were big risks. If you’re willing to push past those walls you have built up in your mind, there’s usually reward on the other side.

The insight gained from these select interviews within the Detachment Q: What do you want to do differreveals an extremely valuable point. ently on this deployment? We flourish as a Navy because of our diversity, and these individuals are A: Since I haven’t been on a deployjust a small window into what makes ment yet, I can’t say there’s anything our Navy great. Every interviewee different that I’d do, but something I’m is striving for personal betterment in thinking about doing to make myself some way, shape, or form. It is our better outside of progressing in my rate, responsibility as service members to is take college courses, specifically in reach out to one another, try to aid engineering. I think that learning and in the accomplishment of our mutual pursuing knowledge are important and goals as well as our shipmates’ personal I’m always striving to be better than I goals. When one of us succeeds, we all was yesterday. succeed; we are a team of teams. Q: What do you like most and least about this specific ship? A: I wish this ship had Wi-Fi. What I do appreciate is that people seem friendly and willing to help.



Features Veterans Village Stand Down San Diego 2019 By LCDR Chip Lancaster, USN (Ret.)


rom June 28 to 30, 2019, San Diego held a Veterans Stand Down. The Stand Down is organized by the Veterans Village of San Diego and held on the San Diego High School grounds. The Stand Down is held every year in the summer with this year marking the 32nd consecutive event. The three day two night event is designed to offer services and opportunities to San Diego’s homeless veteran community.

two nights, unless they elect to leave at the end of the day and return the next morning. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served every day with all meals prepared in an onsite kitchen and served in a separate cafeteria tent. The Stand Down culminates in a graduation ceremony on Sunday. Tents are called up individually while a bagpiper plays Army, Navy, USMC and Air Force tunes. The vets are given a VVSD completion certificate and a backpack courtesy of the Army. All of the vets, family members and volunteers then line up in a huge circle around the playing field holding hands while the piper plays Amazing Grace and VVSD Chaplain, Darcy Pavich, leads a non-denominational prayer. It’s a moving and emotional experience with everyone saying final goodbyes and returning to the streets or, hopefully, to a housing or job opportunity. Next time, hopefully, there will be fewer.

It’s estimated that there are over a thousand homeless vets on the streets of San Diego and neighboring communities. The Stand Down hopes to reach out to over 800. The Veterans Village staff is augmented by 3000 volunteers coming from all walk us of life young and old and organizations military and civilian from all over the San Diego area. Volunteers offer anywhere from a couple of hours to all day and all night help and come from such places as medical offices, banks, legal offices, the VFW and other vets organizations and military commands at all of the military bases throughout the area including helicopter squadrons at North Island.

The Stand Down started in San Diego 32 years ago. Originally established as the Vietnam Veterans Stand Down by Dr. Jon Nachison. Dr. Nachison was in attendance and spoke at this event as was Mr. Robert Van Keuren, who was director of the VVSD in 1988. It has been reorganized as the Veterans Village Stand Down under the auspices of the Veterans Village of San Diego (VVSD). Many other cities across the nation are also doing it now, but it started here.

Services offered come from over 150 service providers and cover a wide range. Vets can get everything from medical and dental checkups and glasses to legal, DMV and VA services to housing and jobs assistance. There’s even pet care with a Humane Society kennel and veterinarians on site so disabled vets with service animals can remain accompanied. It’s also child and family friendly with child care, a play area, a bounce house for kids and counseling services for families. In addition to onsite medical offices, the facility is literally a tent city with over 50 USMC tents from Camp Pendleton as well as dozens of smaller tents housing the service providers, provding rest and relaxation, dining and entertainment and showers and overnight sleeping accommodations. There is a Chaplains tent offering Christian, Jewish and Islamic religious services and counseling. The main tent complex surrounds an athletic field and band stage where vets and families can exercise in the daytime and attend a music and dance concerts in the evening.

Also of note are the many sponsors who have contributed. Although VVSD receives millions in grants, it still takes a huge amount of money to put on an event of this magnitude. That extra funding comes from over 150 sponsors ranging from big ones like Boeing, the Padres and Craig’s List to local organizations like Lions, Kiwanis, Rotary and Optimist Clubs, the VFW, American Legion and Marine Corps League to everyday folk like Just Call Us Volunteers and you and me. Across the nation, Stand Downs fall under the cognizance of the VA and a listing of times/places/POCs can be found at their website: https://www.va.gov/homeless/events.asp. The San Diego Veterans Village was started in 1981. The main office and facility is on Pacific Coast Highway but there are four other locations throughout the San Diego area offering everyday services and housing. The VVSD is the only one of its kind in the nation offering services from legal and medical to drug and alcohol rehab to housing and jobs programs to more the 3000 vets and their families each year. The VVSD President and CEO is Ms. Kim Mitchell. Kim is a 1996 USNA grad with 17 years of active duty as a Surface Warfare Officer. Kim has had a remarkable career both in and out of the Navy. For more info on the amazing Veterans Village of San Diego visit their website: https://vvsd.net. . Their motto is “leave no one behind” and they live up to it every day. For images of this year's Stand Down, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UC0_duFmffY

You may have seen the Stand Down on the local news over the weekend as all of the local stations were there at one time or another. The Stand Down process is extensive and well organized. Separate entrances are set up for the veterans and for the vendors and volunteers. When the vets check in, all bags and carts are inspected. Heavier and larger items are checked into storage while smaller more personal bags are allowed inside. The attendees are assigned to one of 26 tents from A to Z which have volunteer Team Leaders. The Team Leaders help coordinate the services the vets may need from haircuts, showers and clothes to housing and job opportunities to medical, legal, DMV and VA services. The tents are also where the vets and families may spend up to Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19




Combat SAR Coast Guard Helicopter Pilots in Vietnam, Part V By LCDR Tom Phillips, USN (Ret.) This is the last installment of the story of US Coast Guard helicopter pilots (and HC-130P pilots) serving with the 37th ARRSq in Da Nang, Republic of Vietnam (and the 31st ARRSq in Clark AB, Republic of the Philippines). Between this installment and the previous one, chronologically, lies the actual first Rotor Review installment in this series, mostly about Jay Crowe. I didn’t know if this series would be well-received, so kicked them off with a grabber, although the service of these naval aviators needs no embellishment and there has been none.


he last pair of Coast Guard aviators to augment the Air Force were Lieutenants Robert Long and Jack Stice, checking in to the 37th ARRSq in Da Nang in August 1972. The Air Force greeted the Coasties with a welcoming article in the 37th’s newsletter, under the heading “Coastguard Air Station Da Nang” and which noted that “They say they are not 2nd Lts or 1st Lts, but FULL Lieutenants (whatever THAT means) and that not being DOD or AF, “we can only assume they are qualified.” It took Stice no time at all to become involved in the rescue business and prove to the newsletter readers that he was qualified. On his “in-country” checkout, August 9, 1972, Stice was in sight of a 7th TFS F-4D which had been set afire by small arms fire near Hue. The pilot, Captain Jim Beavers, headed for the ocean and turned to proceed down the coast to Da Nang. Beavers’ backseater, First Lieutenant, W.A. “Andy” Haskell, reported a fire, and an explosion ensued, followed by the two ejecting. Stice and his crew had them aboard in 15 minutes, the first Air Force rescue since two other Phantom airmen were rescued at sea on 24 July. The next Air Force rescue, a little more than two weeks later, was also an F-4, whose crew ejected into the sea, and who were rescued by Jack Stice’s crew. By then, Stice was already an RCC (rescue crew commander). He was qualified as a HAC in Coast Guard helicopters before his exchange duty with the Air Force and his command qualification also included transition to the HH-53C, Super Jolly Green Giant, which had replaced all the HH-3Es. Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

When his PJ, Sergeant Hammond, hoisted the WSO and Stice’s crew returned him to safety, they allowed a remarkable run to continue for the WSO, Captain Jeffrey Feinstein, who already had four MiG kills and would down his fifth on October 13th, becoming the third Air Force ace of the war. Not to be outdone, on September 17, 1972, “Coastie” Lieutenant Bobby Long, RCC of HH-53C Jolly 65, launched in response to a Mayday from an OV-10, Nail 60, down on the Laos/South Vietnam border, 40 miles southwest of Hue. The loss of Nail 60 highlighted a weakness of the OV-10: loaded with baggage, mail, and supplies for the 40th’s FOL Det in Da Nang, the bird was unable to maintain altitude when one of the engines failed. A dangerous combination of high mountainous terrain and low marginal ceilings in bad weather challenged Jolly 65, but the pickup of the Nail pilot, First Lieutenant Ron Kuhl, was uneventful, and they moved over to atop Kuhl’s WSO, Major Al Bowers, who was reported injured and unable to move away from his parachute. PJ Sergeant Caldwell rode the hoist down, determined the man had a broken back and called for the litter. As the litter went down, Long’s FE spotted armed men approaching the aircraft. Long relayed this news to the Sandys who managed to put ordnance on them while dodging around mountain peaks and staying in visual contact below the overcast. Caldwell took 20 minutes to get the injured man into the liter. During that time, the helicopter began to take fire, which was returned by mini-guns


from the hovering Jolly and more strafing from the Sandys, who were seriously challenged to stay out of the rocky overcast, avoid the karsts they could see under it, and somehow make an attack run. All that time, Long maintained his hover. Despite that the HH-53C had three 7.62mm six-barrel Gatling guns, a comforting amount of firepower compared to previous rescue helicopters, Stice was convinced the rescue would have been impossible without the A-1s being able to fly slow enough to stay under the ceiling in the rugged mountains; something no jet would have been able to do. The two 23rd TASS Bronco airmen were rescued and their plane, a Pave Nail, was destroyed by the Sandys to prevent any of its highly classified electro-optics and laser designator components (hence the name Pave Nail) from being captured by the enemy. Coast Guard helicopter pilots Bobby Long and Jack Stice would earn their keep at Da Nang. Of seven rescues the 37th ARRSq would be involved in from August when the “Coasties” arrived until the end of the year, one of these two men would be flying for five of them. Their tours of duty coincided with an uptick of the danger level, since the war had heated up for the United States as a result of the Spring 1972 “Easter” Offensive (March 30th) by regular North Vietnamese Army units into the Republic of Vietnam. Encouraged by the gradual but steady withdrawal of US forces from South Vietnam, the North Vietnamese jumped the gun and conducted a conventional invasion across the DMZ and at other places before the last American combat units were withdrawn.

President Nixon, who had been orchestrating our withdrawal and turnover of ground combat to the South Vietnamese, while willing to support our ally, was unwilling to reintroduce American ground forces into the country. Instead, he responded with air power, and the bombing of North Vietnam, halted in 1968 when Rolling Thunder was ended, resumed, albeit only up to the 20th parallel. Air power flooded back into the country. The USAF doubled LT Jack Stice displays the Coast Guard Ensign after pickup of Wolf 04. Left to Right: its aircraft in the region (South Sgt Hammond PJ, 1/LT McDaniel; 1/LT Land; CAPT Boroczk; LT Stice (USCG); 1/LT Vietnam and Thailand), the Stout; Sgt Richardson PJ (LT Stice is in the "Snoopy" Cap). Marines returned five squadrons to bases in country, and four aircraft The SAR TF was launched, with two Jollys of the 40th carriers reinforcing the two that had been on Yankee ARRSq now covering Da Nang (replacing the disestablished Station. The bombing below the 20th parallel was 37th) refueling from the 56th ARRSq HC-130H King AMC, named Freedom Train, and when it proved ineffective, then rendezvousing with 13 A-7 Sandy RESCORT and 32 it was replaced by Operation Linebacker. That operation F-4E MiGCAP just inside the North Vietnam border. From included the mining of the harbors of Haiphong and there they proceeded to the scene, 17 miles from Hanoi itself. four other ports, and hit previously off limit targets. Finally! They arrived too late for the F-111 pilot, who had been captured the day before, but the navigator, William Wilson, When Operation Linebacker did not bring North was still at large and had moved up the side of a karst when Vietnam to the negotiation table, President Nixon instructed to seek higher ground because of the low cloud layer. finally unleashed an all-out bombing campaign on 18 The karst rose about 2,000 feet from the surrounding terrain, December. It lasted 11 days and by then, the Air Force and Wilson was two thirds of the way up the side hiding on an B-52s had run out of lucrative targets, North Vietnam elephant grass-covered ledge. Air Force Captain Dick Shapiro was out of SAM. The North Vietnamese Air Force in Jolly 73 was in the lead and would be the pickup bird, while was out of fighters, and the North Vietnamese were Coast Guard Lieutenant Bobby Long in Jolly 66 would be the now willing to resume peace talks. It was not only the backup. As Jolly 73 approached the karst, it began to take fire B-52s who struck, but other Air Force and Navy aircraft from a .51-cal machine gun on their right. Airman First Class supported each raid with as many as 120 tactical sorties, Jones smothered the gun position with a stream of mini-gun jamming and suppressing air defenses, smothering the tracers, silencing it, but not before hits were observed to cause MiGs. fuel to stream out the right fuselage sponson of the HH-53C. While almost all the aircraft lost in support of the Just then, Shapiro spotted Wilson’s red signal smoke and B-52s went down in heavily populated areas around quickly came to a hover over it. As the jungle penetrator was Hanoi and Haiphong and in the Red River Valley where being lowered, more fire erupted from all around them. They they had little chance of rescue, one made it feet wet took AK-47 rounds in the cockpit, one wounding the copilot, and was rescued by HC-7 and one made it out west of Captain Pereira. They were taking rounds from underneath the Hanoi about 55 miles before going down. That one was helicopter up through the cabin deck, and the penetrator was an F-111 of the 429th TFS which went down December not yet down. Transfixed by fire from below, in front and on 23, 1972. The next day the beepers of both Captain the side, and with Pereira’s blood all over the cockpit, the crew Robert Sponeybarger and First Lieutenant William aft saw the giant helicopter’s hurricane of rotor downwash blow Wallace Wilson were heard, but solid overcast through Wilson off his feet, not five feet from the penetrator. It was too which mountain tops were sticking prevented RESCAP much for Shapiro, who broke right and dived down the hill to from delivering any ordnance or the helicopters from gain immediate speed and get out of the crossfire. going in for a pickup. It continued to be horrible on Christmas Day and the day after, but finally cleared on December 27.



Combat SAR and water, which the alert North Vietnamese had booby trapped with a trip wire when they saw a Sandy drop it into the area. The cease fire went into effect January 29, 1973. The result of the application of U.S. air power finally employed without political restriction. Thus ended the exchange service of Coast Guard aviators with their fellow light blue suiter U.S. Air Force rescue airmen.

LT. Stice and crew counting bullet holes in their Jolly Green after a mission. There were 39.

The Jolly went into almost uncontrollable oscillations as Shapiro accelerated away but dampened out as the airspeed built up through 80 knots. He took stock; a wounded pilot, fuel pouring out, engines surging, probably from air in the fuel lines from the holed fuel tanks. The hydraulic system was showing “minimum quantity”, probably an unreliable reading, and fluctuating hydraulic fluid pressure, and he was feeling yaw kicks in the rudders. The radar altimeter was out, the UHF radio was receiving broken and intermittent. Bobby Long approached from his holding position and volunteered to make another try for Wilson, but Sandy lead and Dick Shapiro proclaimed the area was too hot and could not be suppressed with the enemy so close. The Two Jollys communicated on their FM radio, and Long relayed to King on his UHF radio the need for Shapiro to fuel, and soon. King risked himself and flew toward them to bring the necessary fuel to the bleeding Jolly 73. Shapiro then discovered he could not extend his fueling probe, so he snugged in closer than normal and tried to take on fuel without the probe extended. As soon as they made contact with the drogue, the probe started streaming fuel from bullet holes, and had to be disconnected.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

Now Shapiro was going to have to land. His rapidly dwindling fuel level was not going to take him very far. He needed a place he could defend. Like Terry Campbell and Mustang Mel Howell of HS-2 in 1965, seven years earlier, they needed a mountain peak. Bobby Long was way ahead of them. While the attempted refueling hopes were draining away, he had found a mountain top clearing along the track and was hovering over the spot, marking it, when Shapiro looked for him. Settled to the ground safely, as Shapiro pulled back the throttles of Jolly 73, all power suddenly dropped off and the rotors began to oscillate badly. The crew jumped out as Long landed beside them, and he whisked them up, up, and away quickly. A short time later, another Jolly, a backup which had come forward in the emergency, tried to land to salvage equipment from the carcass of Jolly 73, but came under fire from a group of 50 or 60 men on the ground and quickly exited the area. Sandy rolled in and blew up the big HH-53C. Meanwhile, as Jolly 66 headed south, MiGs engaged the MiGCAP and shot one of the 13th TFS Phantoms down over the karst on which William Wilson crouched. The crew, Major Carl Jeffcoat and First Lieutenant Jack Trimble, were quickly captured. Wilson escaped the enemy surrounding him and evaded for two more days, finally being captured when he tried to retrieve a Madden Kit with food 54

The Air Force Remembers To quote the motto of U.S .Air Force Aerospace Rescue and Recovery. These Things They Did That Others May Live, “During the Vietnam conflict, these United States Coast Guard Aviators voluntarily served with high honor and distinction with the U.S. Air Force Aerospace Rescue and Recovery forces in Southeast Asia in the dual role of aircraft commanders and instructor pilots. They regularly risked their lives flying into harms way to save airmen in peril of death or capture. Their significant contributions and exceptional performance were highly commended by the Air Force with the award of four Sliver Stars, sixteen Distinguished Flying Crosses, and eighty-six Air Medals in addition to many other accolades. They carried out their noble mission with heroism focused on duty, honor, country and the Coast Guard. Their actions brought honor on themselves, the United States of America, the U.S. Air Force and the U.S. Coast Guard.” LCDR Lonnie L. Mixon LT Lance A. Eagan LT Jack C. Rittichier LCDR James C. Quinn LT Thomas F. Frischman LT Richard V. Butchka LT James M. Loomis LTJG Robert T. Ritchie LCDR Joseph L. Crowe LT Roderick Martin III LT Robert E. Long LT Jack K. Stice

Nimble But Not Nimble Enough By LCDR Tom Phillips, USN (Ret.)


n November 5, 1965, a memorable rescue mission began with the loss of an F-105, call sign Oak 1, 25 miles southwest of Nam Dinh. The downed pilot, Lieutenant Colonel George McCleary, was the commanding officer of the 357th Tactical Fighter Squadron (TFS) based at Korat RTAFB. Poor weather delayed a CSAR effort until the next day. Two Sandys of the 602nd Air Commando Squadron (ACS) began the search for McCleary at first light. Still 20 miles from McCleary’s position, Sandy 12 ran into a barrage of AAA and the pilot, Captain Richard Bolstead, was forced to eject. Two other Sandys, escorting Jolly 85, a CH-3C, one of the two H-3s in-country, diverted from their transit to the scene of Sandy 12’s SAR, and proceeded to the scene of Bolstead’s ejection. Transiting 3,000 feet above ground level to stay out of the envelope of .51-cal heavy machine guns, Jolly 85 was in the envelope for 23 mm AA guns, and was suddenly under fire. Immediately hit by multiple rounds, one engine was shot out and on fire,

fuel and oil were streaming into the cabin, and pilot, Captain Warren Lilly, shouted; “We’re losing our rotors! Bail out! Bail out.”

into a populated area and were quickly captured. Naugle parachuted down several miles away, getting a good look at the fiery crash of the CH-3C as he descended.

CH-3C aircrew wore parachutes, survival vests, and flak vests for their missions. Each pilot jettisoned his window and dove out the opening. Back aft, PJ SSgt Arthur Cormier and flight engineer (FE) SSgt Berkley Naugle, dove out the cabin door. Naugle was fetched up short in his escape bid by the gunner’s belt, a walk-around safety harness with a 20-foot cord attached to the helicopter. Designed to keep him from falling out the door when performing his duties, it now was threatening his life, as it held him tied to the crewless helicopter. The rotors held and the helicopter continued ahead for the few interminable seconds it took Naugle to find the harness release and get free of the dying bird. This frightening delay actually worked in Naugle’s favor for the other three crewmen parachuted

The RCC scrambled two HH-43s, as the other CH-3C was down for maintenance temporarily. Over the Gulf, the airborne alert HU-16 was monitoring this chain of events, as was a Navy SH-3A from HS-2, call sign Nimble 57. Nimble 57 and another H-3 had been left behind on USS Independence as a rescue detachment when their own ship, USS Hornet went into port in the Philippines, significantly, to install self-sealing fuel tanks in the rescue helicopters that remained aboard. The crew of Nimble 57 volunteered their services. JRCC at Tan Son Nhut, also monitoring the situation, gave permission for them to make the attempt, if they so desired. They were not ordered to do so. Sandys 13 and 14, former escorts of Jolly 85, came feet wet to escort Nimble 57 to the

A U.S. Air Force Sikorsky HH-3E Jolly Green Giant helicopter (s/n 66-13290) of the 37th Aerospace Rescue and Recovery Squadron taking off from Da Nang Air Base, South Vietnam, in 1968.The HH-3E 66-13290 was retired to the AMARC as HH0026 on 18 March 1991.



Combat SAR scene of Jolly 85’s crash. With daylight waning, Nimble 57 proceeded immediately, with less than a full load of fuel, having been in an airborne orbit and approaching its refuel time. This hasty decision was soon to prove costly. Sandy 14, piloted by Captain George McKnight, reported he was receiving ground fire, and then disappeared into a cloud. Sandy 13 and Nimble 57 began a search for McKnight, who did not come up on his survival radio. It was now pitch dark. Nimble 57 was out of time; he needed to refuel, so pilot Lieutenant Commander Vernon Frank turned back and raced to Independence for a “hot pump.” With a full bag of fuel, Frank, copilot Lieutenant Junior Grade Stephen J. Koontz, and their crewmen, ADJ2 William G. Bush and Petty Officer Benton L. Walker, this time escorted by two Navy Skyraiders, returned to the location where McKnight had gone down. After a fruitless search, they continued northwest 40 miles to where Jolly 85’s fighter escort was down. On the ground in the dark, SSgt Naugle, who had climbed up to a mountain top, and was hiding at the edge of a cliff, heard rotors and came up on his radio: “Rescue, rescue, this is Jolly 85 Charlie” (the Air Force aircrew took letter suffixes to identify specific crew members when downed), “Can you read me, over?” “Five Charlie, this is Nimble 57, four A-1s and an SH-3 are inbound. We have a general idea where you are, but need you to signal us with a light, over.” The Sea King helicopters were heading directly for Naugle but could not see him because of the darkness and the brush. Naugle remembered his Zippo lighter. “Nimble 57, all I have is a Zippo lighter!” “Ah, roger Charlie, it will have to do.” They told him they would pop up from behind the cliff just long enough for them to spot the light and hoist him up. They said to hurry because if the enemy spotted them and started Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

firing, they would have to leave because they did not have enough fuel left to remain in the area for a second try. The A-1s arrived in the area and immediately got into a pitched battle with enemy gunners near Naugle’s position. While dueling the four A-1s, the North Vietnamese failed to see the SH-3 as it flew in. Miraculously, with all the tracers flying about, Nimble spotted the flame from the Zippo lighter. Frank brought his Sea King to a hover, under the verbal instructions of his crewman in the cargo door, and Naugle was quickly hoisted aboard. Nimble departed the hover and the area without a single shot directed its way. Finally, something had gone right with this rescue. But the flight was not over. Frank did not have enough fuel to get back to Independence, or to South Vietnam. Returning toward the carrier, Frank spotted a destroyer, and arranged a night refueling by hoisting a fuel hose up to the helicopter hovering over the stern of the ship, the new HIFR procedure, developed by HS-2’s commanding officer. The rescue mission had not been completed, despite the rescue of Berkley Naugle. There were still five people down somewhere, unaccounted for and possibly at large, awaiting rescue. Next morning, a large SAR force went looking for them. Nimble 62, piloted by LTJG Terry Campbell and LTJG “Mustang” Mel Howell navigated back to the area where Naugle had been found. They were escorted by four A-1s of VA-152, call sign Locket, and two F-8s, that weaved back and forth to stay with the slow helicopter. Nearing the scene, one of the escorting Navy Spads began to receive a strong URT-21 Beeper signal. They guided the Sea King to the area, with Nimble staying low because of reports of MiGs in the area, and because of pockets of fog filling the terrain valleys. As Nimble 62 crested the last ridge before the valley containing the beeper, dodging the limestone formations sticking starkly 56

up from the jungle, Howell heard loud machine gun fire. “What are you shooting at?” Howell asked his crewmen. “We’re not shooting!” came the reply from Petty Officer Merle Huseth. “We’re taking hits!” cried Petty Officer John Cully. The crew could feel the shuddering impact of rounds hitting the helicopter. Howell, at the controls, swerved sharply right and entered a nearby fog bank, climbing to avoid whatever hills might be hidden there. Breaking clear above the fog, Howell still could not see, realizing that his visor was covered with a misting of jet fuel. Fuel was

"Campbell radioed they were not going to make it feet wet, Locket replied to conserve what they could while they looked for a “good” place to land." everywhere and it caught fire! Huseth and Cully were right there with fire extinguishers and put it out. As they climbed away, the two A-1s joined on them and reported the helicopter was streaming fuel like crazy beneath the hull. A quick glance at the fuel gauge confirmed they only had just under 1,000 pounds when they should have had 3,000 and it was dropping rapidly. Campbell radioed to Locket they were not going to make it feet wet, and Locket replied to conserve what they could while they looked for a “good” place to land. Campbell quickly came back with a report of a small mountain ahead, elevation 4,000 feet, with a clear top, a cliff on one side and dense jungle on the other. It would have to do. Campbell came to a hover over the clear area and saw it was full of stumps from recent logging, but he had no choice; the fuel gauges were already showing empty. He set the helicopter down on the stumps and cringed as the stumps tore through the metal hull, thoroughly impaling the helicopter. The engines sputtered and wound down, out of juice.

The Lockets circled the mountain and began to take fire from the nearby valleys, both of them taking hits that forced them to divert to Da Nang. Their damage was so severe they were forced to make belly landings there. Rescue, however, was on the way. First to arrive was a UH-2A Seasprite from HC-2 Det 62 of USS Independence (CVA-62). This helicopter was a plane guard “Angel” which had staged to USS Richmond K. Turner (CG-20) as bottom-ofthe-barrel backup when the rescue task force went in. The single-engine helicopter was obviously struggling at the altitude as pilot LCDR Chuck Sapp came into a hover over the downed Sea King. When crewman Cully was hoisted aboard, the helicopter was staggering and fell off the mountain to get speed as it left the hover. Coming back around for a second pickup, Sapp had to wave off the approach when it became painfully clear he did not


have enough power to hover with the additional weight of passenger Cully. Sapp came back around again, with copilot Tim Thomassy calling out altitude and engine power readings, while their crewman, ADJ1 P.C. Jones, coiled the hoist cable in his hand with the horse collar. As they passed over Huseth, barely in translational lift, Jones cast the horse collar and Huseth grabbed it and locked his hands together as the helicopter passed over. He was snatched off his feet and hung on as the helicopter flew out over the valley and settled to build up speed. Shades of Korea! The mountainous Vietnam was a challenge for the Navy UH-2A/B. The crewman hoisted Huseth aboard, and the helicopter made one more pass over Campbell and Howell, and waved good-bye. After what seemed an eternity (Howell could not recall how long it was), an Air Force CH-3C, Jolly 76,

freshly repaired and entering the fray late but just in time for Howell and Campbell appeared. It jettisoned all but the minimum fuel needed to get back to the nearest Lima site, and pulled the two men off the mountain with ease. Next day, two more Sandys were hit and damaged and had to abort their searches. That did it. The JRCC called off the rescue. Either it was a trap and no men were still at large, or the men were in a too-strongly defended area and could not be rescued. Two helicopters down, two Skyraiders down, and four Skyraiders seriously damaged was enough when there were no visual sightings or voice radio contact. This CSAR incident demonstrated the lengths to which US forces would go to attempt a rescue. The loss of two A-1s, two helicopters, the serious damage to four other A-1s, and the loss of five airmen eloquently testified to the grim determination to leave no man behind

NHAHS Saves a Blade By CDR Mike Brattland, USN (Ret.) NHA Retired and Reunion Manager n the morning of Friday May 31, 2019, CAPT Bill Personius, USN (Ret.) and I picked up this surplus H-60 Main Rotor Blade out on the flight line at the Double Dome hangars at North Island. I felt a bit self conscious driving my white Ford pickup with a car trailer following the taxi lines on our old flight line to the blade can. We then hauled it to the USS Midway Hangar Bldg 805 next to the fuel farm at North Island. It was just a bit heavier than I expected considering Bill felt two of us could lift and carry the blade. I have to say the root end of it is pretty heavy. Luckily, we only had to move it about 12 ft from the blade can onto my car trailer. We managed it okay with CDR Joe Skrzypek, USN (Ret.) helping along with one of the two fellas from HSCWINGPAC who led us to the location where the blade was stored in a blade can. The blade stuck out 5 ft behind the car trailer which was not too bad since we only had to move it about a half mile. Joe Skrzypek followed Bill and I in the truck and trailer with his car so no one would run into the blade... the blade is 23ft plus in length.


The USS Midway Restoration/Machine Shop is going to chop the blade…cut it in half so that it can be moved over to the ship, walked into RR#2 and then eventually installed in the overhead of the helicopter display space next to RR#2. Originally, it was planned for the bulkhead in Ready 2 but it has now changed in favor of the overhead in the adjacent space. Bill got the call yesterday that after more than a year of NHA/NHAHS sitting on this “Struck” blade next to the old HS-10 Hangar, the Midway was ready for it in their machine shop. It is always fun in the NHA office. 57


Radio Check This issue’s Radio Check question is:

What has been your most memorable cross-country in an aircraft and what made it so memorable? Fall Rotor Review's Radio Check question is: What was your worst aircraft emergency and looking back would you have handled it differently? From: Steve Smith


elivery of some of the first MH-60S’s to the Fleet Training Command – from Owego, NY to San Diego, CA. Fleet Fly-In 2004: the first showing of the MH-60R to the US Fleet. We flew from Owego, NY to Pensacola, Fl and back. It was the best of times!

From: LCDR Adam Shreders,USN


log run into Lossiemouth. U.K. We launched from 200 miles west of the Barrier Islands on Scotland's NW coast, then proceeded through the Scottish highlands to RAF LossieMouth to meet up with VP-10. On RTB, we flew over Loch Ness enroute to a U.S. Navy ship which had closed the coast line for a 130nm offshore recovery.

From: LCDR Thomas Phillips, USN (Ret.)


s a jaygee in HS-6, I was a HAC and took a cross-country to Davis-Monthan for lunch and back same day. Nothing memorable about that particular flight itself – severely clear all the way and back, cool enough to be comfortable, and some fun low-leveling in the desert and through the mountains and canyons along the Cali border to the back door of IB. Routine for the time - but when we got there, I went into base ops and saw the local base fish wrapper which had headlines about some USAF Captain who had been designated as a helicopter aircraft commander, and it extolled this worthy as a man among men for making it as a mere Captain. I took all the copies they had in the various dispensers scattered around the area and brought them back to spread among the squadron ready rooms at IB. All the squadrons pilots had a good laugh, especially the many LTJG and LT HACs.

From: Erica Gibson


efore HS-10 sundowned, we took two aircraft and flew from San Diego to Memphis, Tennessee for the "Memphis in May International Festival and BBQ Competition". We had a great time at the festival and managed to tour Graceland, not to mention fly through beautiful parts of the U.S. It’s great to have breaks like that at a Fleet Replacement Squadron, otherwise it’s Groundhog Day.

From: Gene Pellerin


oots - My last cross country in an H-3 was in November 1985. The CO of HS-4 ( CDR Steve Arends) asked me if I wanted to go with one of his pilots to retrieve an H-3 from the repair facility in Pensacola. At the time I was on the ASWWINGPAC Staff looking for a break and wanting some flight time. I willingly said yes. The squadron pilot had one important reason to make the trip. LT Bob Tedesco wanted to stop in El Paso. So we manned up the helicopter at NAS Pensacola but were not able to get it started. After a mechanic put a folded piece of cardboard behind a switch so it would actuate the starter we were underway but a bit late. I do not recall where we spent the first night but I do remember the stop in El Paso. LT Tedesco wanted to purchase a pair of cowboy boots. He got his boots and seemed to be overjoyed, so mission accomplished.

From: CAPT (Sel) Michael Hoskins, USN


ost memorable cross-country: 2004, taking the Navy's last VH-3A from NS Norfolk to the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, CA.

My crew and I met Mrs. Reagan, Vice President Cheney, Mrs. Cheney, and Merv Griffin. We were also treated to a tour of the Reagan Library's Presidential Archives. Pretty awesome experience!

From: CDR Chris Morgan, USN


lew an HSL-45, Block 0, no GPS bird from San Diego to Maine for USS Momsen (DDG 92)'s pre-com cruise with Skipper Shaub. Hilarity may have ensued.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


From: Erl Purnell CVT SAR Det — 1970-1973


ost memorable cross country, you ask. Well here it is. The circumstances: The CVT SAR Det (later HC-16) was formed in 1970 to fly off the USS Lexington during Car Quals and to provide search and rescue services along the Gulf Coast. Captain Jack Davis was the skipper of the Lex and he wanted to learn to fly helicopters. I had the privilege of schooling him in the fine art of rotary wing aviation and struck up as much of a “friendship” with this senior officer as a junior aviator could. He only tried to kill me once. When word came down that the Lex would steam to Boston for an overhaul in January of 1973, I petitioned the Captain to take along a couple UH-2C’s “just in case.” He agreed. The cross country: After arriving in Boston on a frigid winter day (15° +/-) with the wind blowing like stink (wind chill -20° +/-), we lay over for a few days at NAS South Weymouth before heading back to Pensacola. Once we departed, on another frigid but crystal clear day, the cross country began. First to the Hudson River, in a comfortable two ship formation, at about 500’ feet (or below) where we hooked a left just below the Tappan Zee Bridge. Southward we went in a very tight Navy formation, climbed to cross the George Washington Bridge, then back on the deck (yes, now well below 500 feet to, let’s say 100 feet where we were very comfortable), past Battery Park, around the Statue of Liberty eyeball to eyeball with her and on to NAS Lakehurst for some badly needed fuel. We RON’ed at NAS Oceana. It snowed that night all across the South. The next leg took us across the most beautiful snow covered Virginia and North Carolina, we were still at 500 feet (or below), to MCAS Cherry Point for another bag of gas. The second flight of the day was to Dobbins Air Force Base in Georgia where we saw our first ever C-5A Galaxy. Damn big FEMF. After a night on the town (Marietta? I don’t remember a thing about it), we launched across the still snow covered plains of northern Georgia and headed home, still at 500 feet (or below). We finally broke out of the snow belt in Alabama and rotored into NAS Pensacola and some warmer weather the evening of the third day. Home sweet home. What a flight—approximately 2,000 miles, mostly below 500 feet, across stunningly beautiful snow covered ground without a care in the world and zero maintenance issues. Most memorable cross country you ask. Well there it is.



Radio Check From: LCDR Mike Louy, USN (Ret.)


kay Guys, you asked for it. When in my first squadron, HS-11 at NAS Quonset Point, in 1965 we had lots of O4s who didn’t want to fly much. I was a bachelor along with LTJGs Larry Hennessy and Jack Clifton. I was the only Ensign in the squadron for over six months. We wanted to fly all the time. Larry was in Ops., Jack was in Training, and I was in Maintenance. Larry suggested we take a RO3N to NAS Sanford for Easter. RO3N required AIRLANT approval. We ran our cross country request through the Quonset chain and flew to NAS Norfolk to get AIRLANT approval. The chief of staff laughed at us, but approved the request. We took off from Quonset on Thursday, refueled at Norfolk and landed at NAS Sanford. We got a ride in town to a rental car place (Kings Car and Truck Rental) and found out that since none of us were 25 years old, we couldn’t rent a car. Okay, so we rented an old bright pink Ford Econoline panel van with the company logo on both sides. The van had been used to carry batteries, so they washed it out with plenty of smell-good cleaner and sent us on our way. No seats in the back, side and back swing open doors. Great! We headed back to Sanford BOQ and checked in to one room. We borrowed two mattresses, pillows, and blankets. Then we headed to the package store to buy a cooler and many cases of beer. Next we headed to Daytona Beach for fun. Driving onto the beach, we got stuck in the sand and we were pushed out by a bunch of college guys. Off we went cruising down the beach, all doors open, giving young ladies rides up and down the beach. We were the ONLY van on the beach since hot rods were the craze. Wow, did we meet the dollies as the word spread about the three Navy pilots in the bright pink van. For the next two days we had a great time. We slept in the van, showered in available motel rooms, shaved in cooler ice water, and drank all the beer. On Sunday, we returned the BOQ supplies then took off for the flight back to Quonset with a fuel stop at NAS Oceana. Oh, we didn’t have any crewmen with us since three pilots were aboard. Some of the college ladies we met just didn’t believe we were Navy helo pilots. We proved them wrong. As we flew close to Daytona Beach heading north we dropped 16 long burning smokes about 15 seconds apart. That was some cross country. Top that one. Oh, one last thing. Going through HS-1 in Key West late in 1964, I came under the “leadership” of a senior student. LCDR Lloyd Parthemer gave me my “liberty training."

From: Kevin Fulp


eturning from AUTEC to NAS Norfolk as the crewman, I smelled something electrical burning. We closed the doors to try and locate the source of the fire / smell. The smell went away. When we opened the doors again the smell returned just as strong. Again, we closed the doors and the smell went away. I assured the pilots that after 14 years of flying, I knew what an electrical fire smelled like and that we had one somewhere. Just as I was informing the pilots that the smell had again returned, we lost all power and both engines started to wind down. We flared to a landing next to a single story brick building with a tall smoke stack surrounded by a high fence with barbed wire on top. Before the rotors had stopped spinning, we were surrounded by men with high-powered rifles and dogs. We had landed just outside the largest working prison farm in North Carolina, and they thought we were there to break people out! After assuring them that we were U.S. Navy and had an emergency that forced us to land there, they were very helpful for the three days we were stuck there while crews from the squadron (HSL-34) drove down daily with parts to try and fix the bird. The cause of the emergency was a thermal runaway of the battery in the nose of the aircraft which is vented to the base of the windshield, thus the reason the smell would go away when the doors were closed.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


From: Steve Malloy


pring 1989... Flying the Lynx during a PEP tour... flight of four, flying from Dorset, England to Moss, Norway for Exercise BOLD GAME 89. (No TACAN in the HAS Mk 3... single-piloted with an Observer in the left seat. PreGPS... forward-looking radar.) IMC across the North Sea... First refueling stop (hot refuel) was on an oil rig. They fed us chicken fried steak... which is very nice of them... but darn hard to eat with one hand, rotors running... in a dry suit. It did not go well! Second stop was in Stavanger, Norway. Cold pump, and a chance to get out of the dry suit. But before I did...seven years in the cockpit at that point... I have no idea why, but after observing the cold pump, I decided to press on the disc in the fueling fixture... I found out, the hard way, what 55 PSI looks like! I spent the rest of the three-week exercise smelling like greasy food and F-44!

From: Richard Vtipil ound trip flight from inside the Mediterranean Sea, through the Straits of Gibraltar, to Rota Spain. The ship, USNS Supply, was broke (as it was for most of the cruise) but yet another repair part and tech rep, were waiting in Rota and we needed it before transiting home from deployment. The last Det to send a Phrog into Rota almost left it behind when they had to shut down and could not get the rotor brake to release afterwards. We couldn't remember why they had troubles departing so we scoured the pubs for any issues or requirements, I called the Embassy to confirm our Dip Clearance, everything seemed in order. Our job was to get in, get the part and person, get out of Spain, down the coast, back into the Med and to the ship, without shutting down. So we loaded an Aux tank (3+00 fuel) and even brought a third pilot (Steve Thomas) to help with whatever the ground issues could have been.


The trip northward was amazing! The mountains of Africa, peaking over clouds to the south, wind turbines along the hills of Spain to the north, various other aircraft above us following the same or opposite route, the waters changing from green to dark blue as we reached the ocean. And of course the Rock! Not as big as I would have expected, but still unique. Once in range with Rota we got permission to land and verified that we were going to be able to leave afterwards (or so we thought). We landed and I immediately rolled an engine to idle, put the other at Min Beep, and held the collective at flat pitch. We got the tech rep and his part quickly and started asking for our departure clearance and so we started waiting....and waiting. We sent Steve inside to base ops and waited some more. More radio calls, more waiting. Finally Steve rolls out and we are finally good to go. The reason for this was simple but unexplained in any of the pubs. They required us to depart IFR (?!). So Steve said he made up something, but we got a release, took off and canceled IFR to proceed VFR before we reached mid-field. Uneventful but beautiful return to our ship 4 hours after we took off. The ship was still broke all the way to Norfolk.

From: LTJG Dani Adams, USN


hapel Hill, NC. Not necessarily because of the location, but because it was a great distance for a cross country. It took us the whole day in a TH-57, and my instructor, LT Karunakaran, was incredibly helpful and kind throughout the entire trip. He is the most understanding and humble instructor I have met to date. I learned so much on that trip, and I have him to thank for it!



Radio Check From: CDR Robert Close, USN (Ret.)


had two memorable such flights – One in the Douglas AD-1 aircraft and the other in the Sikorsky HO3S-1.

April 1948: Attack Squadron VA-64: After replacing our WWII castoff Curtiss SB2C-5 Hell Diver dive bombers with the new Douglas AD-1 Skyraider, we found that there were fuselage skin-wrinkling problems at the wing root from carrier landings exceeding the design max descending rate of 15’/second. Solution: fly planes from Norfolk to the Quonset Point O&R for beef-up. On 16 April I was taking AD-1 BuNo 09290 up the coast when a heavy fog rolled in over Long Island and the mainland coast. Two choices; overnite at NAS Floyd Bennett NY or press ahead. I disliked Floyd Bennett so I took the dummy LTJG course. Knowing there was water all the way to Quonset, I went down to just off the water and hugged the north shore heading East. I figured I could spot the Point Judith Lighthouse at the entrance to the James River and turn north to the base. That worked. I was flying up the river at about 50 feet when suddenly the Jamestown-Verrazzano bridge/ causeway flashed by under me about 10 feet below my prop scaring the living bejeezus out of me. I had forgotten about the bridge and could well have made a mess. Further up river, Quonset runway 34 juts to the river edge so that as I flashed by I was able to do a 270 right hand turn and plop down on the runway. There were some nasty remarks about my landing on a weather-closed field but nothing came of it. I lived to screw up again. 7 January 1951: O-in-C HU-2 Detachment aboard USS Oriskany (CV-34) flying the Sikorsky HO3S-1: The carrier had come out of overhaul. She was the first Essex-class to receive the 27-Charlie upgrade; Hurricane bow and new high pressure H-8 catapults – but not the canted deck. The cruise was to steam off the coast of Jacksonville to provide pre-shakedown refresher landings for the assigned air group. Because of continuing seal blowout failures of the H-8 cats, the aircraft could not trap but would fly out from Jax for touch-and-goes. Early Sunday morning on 7 January, the ship was anchored off the mouth of the St. John river in bright sunshine. The Admiral ordered me to fly into NAS Jax and pick up a big stack of Sunday newspapers that had been ordered. With a crewman aboard, I headed west on the river and followed its turn south towards Jax. Suddenly we entered solid fog. Instead of canceling and returning to the ship, I got down on the water and crept along the shore at about 15 knots. Knowing there were two bridges across the river I was able to climb over them easily. Unfortunately, there was a third one. Suddenly, there was a light pole sticking up in front of me. A panic 180 got me clear and another 180 got me headed back to the bridge. Barely moving, I was able to sneak between two light poles. Cars came to a screeching halt as I barely passed over them. I continued south and found a runway at the water’s edge. I landed and finally called the tower for taxi instructions to Ops. I pile the load of newspapers into the machine. Since the field was closed, Ops refused to clear me for takeoff. I finally bluffed the duty officer by declaring “Operational Clearance” and signing the clearance myself. I didn't know if there was such a thing but neither did the duty officer. I managed to taxi back to the water’s edge and creep back north, finally breaking clear where the river turned east. I convinced the ship to give me and my crewman each a copy of the darn newspaper. Two foggy episodes were enough – I had finally learned my lesson.

From: Jim O'Brien


1977 low level navigation of the Scottish Highlands in a RN Sea King Mk 3. We flew at 100 ft AGL for most of the four hour flight. Some of the peaks were cloud covered so we used the valleys to progress the flight. Otherwise, it was CAVU to the moon. The remoteness and spectacular scenery made the flight unforgettable. We returned to HMS Ark Royal (R7) at the end of the flight. Ark did it’s final deployment later in that commission and when the ship was sold off, the era of catapults and arresting gear on RN ships ended.

From: Robert W Knoerzer


y most memorable cross country came in 2011 when my squadron, HS-7, flew its last 3 SH-60F's to the Boneyard in Tuscon, AZ shortly before our squadron's disestablishment. Three crews and maintainers enjoyed a 3-day trip from Jacksonville, FL to AZ, crossing the green fields of the south and vast expanses and mountains of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona. The most memorable part was saying goodbye to the legacy airframes as we dropped them off at the preservation facility at Davis-Monthan AFB. It was the official end of HS-7 before we headed back to the east coast to stand up HSC-7.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


From: SCRATCH'' Hryskanich, Helicopter pilot No.2771.


n the winter of 1959, I was a flight instructor at NAS Ellyson, instructing in the Bell H-13, H04S H-19, and HUP (H25), all piston engined non-stabilized aircraft. At that time helos couldn't fly at night over water, discouraged over land and actual instrument flight was forbidden. Except as a co-pilot, l hadn't flown a fixed wing in four years. A fellow instructor, Con Jaburg was in a similar situation, so to renew pilot qualifications we planned a combination night/instrument/fixed wing cross-country from Ellyson to NAS JAX. We flew a Beechcraft SNB, (C-45) a twin engine six passenger cargo/transport/ training plane. No passengers volunteered to fly with us. We left just after dusk, entered the overcast at 6000 feet and leveled at assigned 9000 feet. Everything was going smooth, but we had to keep pushing the throttles forward to maintain manifold pressure. All other engine instruments were normal. We finally had the throttles full forward,but still losing altitude and airspeed. A look at outside air temperature (OAT) showed plus 4 degrees centigrade. For some reason every plane l flew showed the OAT in centigrade. High humidity and that temperature are ideal for carburetor icing. This occurs when the restricted airflow inside a carburetor causes the temperature to drop and the high humidity freezes inside the carburetor. We instantly recognized the problem and frantically searched for the carburetor heat levers in the black cockpit. Finally found them and put them on full. This directs the hot exhaust directly at the carburetor, the ice melted and everything was normal, for a while. We DID notice that we had to keep increasing power to maintain altitude and airspeed. All gauges were normal but the OAT now read MINUS 4 degrees. Shining a flashlight on the wing, there was a heavy build-up of ice on the leading edge and halfway back. We immediately turned on the de­icers. In a C-45 the leading edge of the wing and elevator contain 3 long rubber bladders that pulsate alternately to break off ice as it forms. Unfortunately, the ice was too thick and the air pressure in the bladders couldn't break the ice. In a calm voice, we asked Tallahasee Control for a lower altitude due to icing conditions. After an interminable delay {about five seconds), we were cleared to 5000 feet. Experiencing momentary weightlessness as we pushed over into a 30 degree dive, we broke out of the overcast at 6000 feet , the temperature rose, the ice melted and we were astride Route 10, with auto headlights leading straight to JAX . After a barely survivable landing (neither of us had landed a Beechcraft in about 4 years and never at night} we tried to taxi straight to the ''O'' Club, but had to change to a car at the flight line. JAX ''O'' Club didn't allow flight suits, but after seeing two sweaty, white-faced, disheveled, semi-human beings, they let us in. It's my most memorable flight. The only ice I'm comfortable with now is at the bottom of a glass of gin. Incidentally, I have 1700 pilot hours with exactly 2.3 hours of actual instrument time.

From: CAPT Peter Rothwell, USNR (Ret.)



est cross country I ever had was in the SH-3D Sea King. Departed from HS-75, NAS Willow Grove on a September Friday in the late 1980’s. Flew up to NAS Brunswick to visit with my twin brother (also a Navy pilot but he flew fixed

Saturday I flew my brother around Casco Bay and passed over all his friends' sailboats. Flew up to Bar Harbor low level and returned to NAS Brunswick in the afternoon. Sunday flew over the white mountains of New Hampshire and the green mountains of Vermont during the best foliage season ever. Performed a touch and go in Lyndonville, VT near my sister’s home in St Johnsbury, VT with all her friends watching. Flew up to AFB Plattsburgh in NY for some fuel and headed down the Hudson River in more CAVU weather. They were the finest 15 cross country flight hours I ever had at the end of a fiscal year!

From: Eric Oxendorf


hile in HS-6 just before my first WestPac, it was looking like another boring weekend, I called NASNI to see if any transient aircraft were heading to NAS Glenview, IL. After all, I lived only 80 miles away in Wisconsin. It’d be nice to get home one more time and for free! The duty driver took me to the NASNI Terminal and I boarded a C-54 that just arrived from Hawaii. Much to my inexperience, it took us 9.5 hours at a maximum altitude of 10,000 ft! I was home for about 8 hours and had to head back via the airlines, getting back late on Sunday night. A great lesson learned! Visit the San Diego Zoo!



Radio Check From CDR M.G. Brattland, USN (Ret.) Sikorsky, CT or Bust to Fence Lake, New Mexico


ometime in August 1983 while I was in HS-10 as a LCDR and RAG Instructor, the Operations Officer, CAPT Michael “Midds” Middleton, USN (Ret.), then LCDR Middleton, scheduled me to ferry an SH-3D belonging to squadron to the Sikorsky Factory in CT for SLEP. LCDR Joe Lopresti from COMASWWINGPAC staff was my co-pilot along with a volunteer AW Aircrewman. The Skipper of HS-10 at the time was CAPT Rick Grant. We filed IFR in line with AIRPAC directives to Kirkland AFB in Albuquerque, NM on August, 15, 1983 in two legs with a stop for gas at Williams AFB in Phoenix. The flight from Navy North Island Halsey Field to Williams was straight forward. We landed, fueled and launched for the second leg headed to Kirkland IFR. With the ground level at 7000ft and above, we crawled up to 9000ft on the filed airway heading for Kirkland. In the area just inside southwestern New Mexico, we got the caution/warning light for transmission over temperature and temperature gauge going out of limits leaving us no choice but to “Land as Soon as Possible,” but where. After telling FAA we had to land, we descended and began looking for some civilization in NM. After looking around a bit, we found a lonely 2 lane highway and a “L” intersection with a ranch building and a highway maintenance yard across from it. I ended up picking what was a “fallow” oat field on a ranch property within a half mile of this intersection which was all there was of Fence Lake, NM. Fence Lake was 7000ft MSL plus, cattle country, 16 miles from the closest motel on an unknown Indian reservation and the interstate highway was due North 60 miles where there was more normal civilization. Isolated is the key word for Fence Lake. By the time we could shut down, we had the majority of the local populace of Fence Lake, NM, plus a couple beat up pickups covered in mud parked outside our rotor arc waiting to greet us. They kindly drove us to the ranch building at the “L” intersection a half mile away where I was able to call the FAA and close our flight plan. My second call was to “Midds” back at North Island in the HS-10 building. After landing and before heading for the phone, we crawled over the helo expecting to see it missing its fan belts and finding it still looked as good as it did when we launched from Williams AFB. We could not find any issues or material issues on why it overheated. “Midds” took it all in stride, listening to my report over the phone calmly, all the while probably wondering how we

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


CDR Brattland in Fence Lake, New Mexico

managed to put an HS-10 ‘bird in an oat field on the high desert plain of Fence Lake, NM in the middle of nowhere. Midds suggested I turn the ‘bird up and heavy hover it for a while in the morning and if everything looked okay, fly it out and continue our trek, since it was pretty late in the day. So where to stay. In the crowd of locals awaiting our shutdown in the rancher’s field, unknown to us, was a recently retired Navy CPO of more than 20 years from HC-1(Just a month earlier) who shared the Double Dome Hangar with HS-10. LCDR Joe Lopresti knew the CPO well so Joe and our aircrewman went with him and spent the night at the neighboring ranch next to the one where our HS-10 bird sat. As the yellow sheet signatory, I stayed with the property owner where our helo sat, who was on his own, married, but his wife got tired of the isolation of Fence Lake and had left him some 8 years previously. During the night, I learned another reason why she probably became fed up. As it turned out, I got very little sleep that night in spite of the cool temperatures and absolute quiet surroundings of this beautiful, isolated ranch, but inside, it was another story. During the night, I laid awake listening to the hundreds of mice in the overhead of the ranch building making all kinds of racket doing whatever mice do at night. I found myself in a constant state of wondering when the mice might appear on the bed with me, so sleep was near impossible. There was no describing it. For this reason, I could not blame the owner’s wife for leaving the delights and isolation of the high desert country side of Fence Lake, NM. In the morning, we met at the ranch house at the ‘L” Intersection of the two-lane road, downtown Fence Lake, NM, for a very nice breakfast, before returning to the ‘bird.

We turned it up (thank heavens we could get it to start on the battery), heavy hovered it for a time and hover taxied up to the top of the upslope of the field. With the owner’s horses cleared out of the bottom of our field and also from the next field, we then launched, making a running down slope in-ground-effect takeoff heading on to Kirkland AFB.

According to our new friends and citizens of Fence Lake, NM, our Navy H-3 was the most exciting thing to happen in Fence Lake in two years since a previous federal marijuana bust on one of the area ranches. Thanks “Midds” for your faith in me and the delightful night in scenic New Mexico, all expenses paid.

The finale of the story was on short final to Kirkland AFB, the ‘bird blew the air mace filter and dumped oil all over the starboard side of the helicopter and the Air Force tarmac. Kirkland AFB being the current home of Air Force Helicopter Training and their H-53 training, we were able to get the boys in blue to fix the air mace filter for us. The final legs were uneventful, arriving at the Sikorsky Factory on August 19, 1983.

As for the overheating, chock it up to 9000ft MSL, filing IFR, Pre-SLEP ‘bird and thin air. We were not exactly speeding either. The transmission cooler just did not like it and told us so! Go figure!

From: Howell Purvis


was assigned to HU-2, NAS Lakehurst, NJ from June 1957 to December 1960. Once while not on a cruise, I was sent to NAS Jacksonville's Overhaul and Repair facility to pick up a Bell HUL helicopter. The HUL had under gone a full O & R repair. from June 1957 to December 1960. Once while not on a cruise, I was sent to NAS Jacksonville, Overhaul and Repair facility to pick up a Bell HUL helicopter. The HUL had under gone a full O & R repair. When the HUL was released to me, it was suggested I take a short test flight. If all was satisfactory, I could Navy HU-2 HTL-3, US Naval Air Station, Lakehurst, N.J. Photo from San Diego Air and Space Museum Archives. be on my way. So I took off and climbed to 1,500 feet. Everything looked normal. Then I cut the power to do an autorotation. Suddenly all hell broke loose. The nose shot up and I pushed the cyclic stick forward, but nothing happened. I immediately hit the left rudder and did a quick rotor over. I gained control and landed immediately. I reported this experience to the person in charge of Overhaul and Repair. I was shaken and furious. During an inspection, it was discovered the control cables had not been properly calibrated/adjusted. I came close to being killed. When all the adjustments had been made and everything checked out, I signed off on the HUL and headed for Lakehurst, NJ. My first fuel stop was Wilmington, NC. I was approaching the airport just above the trees at about 150’. I had just reached the airport boundary when the engine quit. I dropped the collective, flared and made a dead stick landing. I sat there for a few minutes and waited for my crewman to check the engine. It started and I air taxied to the hanger and refueled. I took it up for a short test flight and it ran fine. We headed to our next stop, NAS Norfolk. When making my approach to NAS Norfolk, over the railroad yard, the engine began running rough. I landed quickly and the engine ran smoothly. I air-taxied to the HU-2 Detachment hangar, where the mechanics inspected the engine. They found a loose (extra) “valve keeper” that had been bouncing around in one of the cylinders. Apparently the keeper would get stuck under the intake valve and stop the engine. On arrival at HU-2, I was debriefed by the Maintenance Officer and others They were shocked at what had happened. The next day the HU-2 Maintenance Officer and several officers left for Jacksonville with all that had happened to me. They met with O & R officials presenting all the problems encountered with the HUL. I know heads rolled after that meeting. That one cross country trip was one I won’t forget. 65


HSM-41 Seahawks

CDR Brian L. Holmes, USN relieved CAPT Brannon Bickel, USN July 18, 2019

HSM-78 Blue hawks

HSM-73 BattleCats

CDR Norman Cruz, USN relieved CDR John “Swede” Anderson USN July 3, 2019

CDR Eric D. Hutter, USN relieved CDR Ediie J. Park USN May 15, 2019

HSCWINGPAC Weapons School The Phoenix

CDR Michael Keaveny, USN relieved CDR Josh Fagan, USN March 14, 2019

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19



CAPT Shawn Bailey, USN relieved CAPT Alan Worthy, USN June 7, 2019

HSC-14 Chargers

CDR Santico Valenzulea, USN relieved CDR Ryan Gaul USN June 14, 2019

HT-8 Eightballers

CDR Lena Kaman USN relieved CDR Jessica Parker, USN June 7, 2019

HSC-3 Merlins

CAPT (Sel) Edward Weiler, USN relieved CAPT Dewon Chaney, USN May 5, 2019

Navy Air Logistics Office

CAPT Edward Hoak, USN relieved CAPT Christopher Brown, USN August 2, 2019 67


There I Was We Can't Get Anyone Else to Fy It By CAPT Al Billings, USN (Ret.)


was amazed at how easy it was to get flight time. With all the officers in the squadron, I thought I would have to fight to be put on the flight schedule. I was one of the more junior officers in the squadron and I already had orders out. Within a month, I had qualified as Helicopter Aircraft Commander (HAC) in the UH-2A/B and the new twin engine UH-2C. To my surprise I was asked to take one of the older UH-2B’s to the Kaman Factory in Connecticut and pick up a new twin engine Sea Sprite. I was eager; I had just made LTJG and now I was going to take a helicopter from San Diego to Connecticut and return in a new twin engine version. I would be aircraft commander and in charge of my own fate. I’d already had enough close calls flying with other pilots and didn’t need anymore. I was amazed to find out that with all those pilots in the squadron, there were only two pilots on the beach that were qualified in the new twin engine version, and I was one of them. Anyway that's what I was told. My co-pilot would be LTJG Thomas (Sandy) Sands. He was more than a year senior to me but wasn’t qualified in the UH-2. Sandy was a great guy -- low key, easy-going. He was good-looking and could really draw the women. That I liked. It came in handy on the road. Sandy had a reputation of partying hard. The crew chief would be Petty Officer Spears. I laughed. The first thing that came to mind was I thought Spears was a little young. He was only twenty-one. Then I remembered I had just turned twenty-three a week earlier. Sandy was the oldest at twenty-six and would prove to be the most trouble. The first day of the trip went without incident, but on the second day, things started to change. As each day passed we were adding gripes to the yellow sheets on each turnaround. We had many more than I was used to, but the helicopter was just going to the factory to be converted to Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

the new twin engine version. I briefed the XO each night on our progress and expressed my concerns about two of the major gripes. The tail rotor started to pick up vibrations, and that meant the bearings were starting to fail. We also had a hydraulic leak and a list as long as my arm of minor gripes. If the hydraulics failed I could still get the helicopter on the ground, but it wasn’t the easiest thing to do. You had to find a place where you could make a run-on landing; it was difficult to make a hover landing in the Sea Sprite helicopter with the hydraulics off, but it could be done. I had tried it with LT. McCormick and the run-on landing was the only way to go. The XO told me to monitor the tail rotor vibrations and if they got too severe, land the helicopter and they would send out new bearings and parts. The XO emphasized that they needed that helicopter at the factory as soon as possible. I paused and thought to myself, what is too severe?

The thing that was bothering me most was our low altitude. I knew there were tall radio towers around, and I couldn’t see them very well because the windshield wipers also worked off the hydraulics. There was nothing Sandy could do to help. I was glad I was in good shape because I was really getting a workout. I slowed the helicopter a little to give myself some reaction time if we saw something up ahead. I couldn’t slow the helicopter too much; the slower you got the harder it was to control the helicopter. We were about fifty miles out now and had just picked up another problem. The vibration in the tail rotor had almost doubled. The vibration was so bad we had a hard time reading the instruments. I was ready to set it down anywhere I could find a field. I knew I was going to bust the aircraft up. It was tough enough to get it on the runway let alone make a rough terrain landing in a farmer’s field with no hydraulics.

I ran the emergency procedures The next day we made it most of the through my head. I knew how the helicopter would react if I lost the way through Texas and were headed tail rotor. I’d practiced run-on landinto Longview at the eastern edge of ings plenty of times simulating a tail Texas. The weather was lousy, ceiling rotor failure. I would take it down 200 feet, in and out of rain showers. controlling the nose with the power We were about 75 miles out trying to and airspeed. I decided it wouldn’t stay under Visual Flight Rules (VFR) make much difference if I tried it now when we lost our hydraulics. The rain or when the tail rotor stopped. The kept increasing in intensity, and we were in and out of heavy thunderstorms. I had to fight the aircraft the whole time. When the hydraulics fails, the Automatic Stabilization Equipment (ASE) fails along with it. This meant you had to fight the feedback from the controls to A U.S. Navy Kaman UH-2B Seasprite (BuNo 150162) keep the helicopter of Helicopter Combat Support Squadron HC-1. Photo stable without any from the USS Firedrake (AE-14) 1965-66 cruise book assistance from available at Navysite.de mechanical devices. 68

results would most likely be the same. A good landing would be if we all walked away from the helicopter. I didn’t know what would happen if we completely lost the tail gear box. That would change the center of gravity and no one had ever landed one in that condition that I knew of. The gear box had a chip detector, and it would give us a warning before it started coming apart. By this time we were about 25 miles out with no change in the vibrations. I looked over at Sandy; he seemed to be handling it well. I was glad I was the aircraft commander. I was tired of my fate always being in someone else’s hands. All Sandy could do was sit on his hands and switch the radios when needed. We were flying at 150 feet staying below the overcast. I had the radios on the Longview Tower frequency but was unable to get them. At about 20 miles we finally made contact. I told the tower our situation and asked for a bearing and distance from their navigational aid. The tower replied by saying the field was closed but to bring it on in and they would have the crash crew standing by, then gave me distance and bearing from the radio beacon. At 15 miles I had Sandy go through the landing check list. When he got to the gear down item, Sandy reached for the handle and dropped the gear. They didn’t come down. “Sh **!” I said. The landing gear works off the hydraulics. I thought they would free fall with no pressure on them. “Spears!” “Yes, sir!” “Can you see why they’re not coming down?” “Sir, I pushed on them and nothing moved. Let me see if I can find something to pry them down.” “Make it fast, Spears. I don’t want to keep this thing in the air any longer than I have to.”

Spears took apart the troop seat and pulled the metal bar out. He was able to get the landing gear to drop in place by forcing the metal bar behind the wheel and airframe, using the leverage to get it down. I told him that he had to somehow get the pins in the landing gear. I had to make a run-on landing, and with no pressure to hold the gear in place, it could collapse. He replied, “Yes, sir. I think I can reach out and set at least one of the pins in place.” I was getting to like this kid more each second. “Make sure your harness is secure. Be safe, but let’s get it done. I have the field in sight.” A few moments later he said, “I think the gear is secured, sir.” I called the tower and told them Navy 128 was on final for emergency landing. “Tell your crash crew we’ll be making a run-on landing.” The tower acknowledged and said, “They’re ready.” I lined the helicopter up with the runway and maintained 60 knots right down to a few feet from the runway. I slowly lowered the collective, gradually coming back on the airspeed until I came in contact with the runway. Perfect, just like I had practiced. The last few months I had almost spent more time practicing emergencies than flying in normal flight. Flying the simulated emergencies gave me more of a challenge and it paid off. I was glad I never listened to LCDR Stuart’s advice about waiting to handle the emergency when you got one. I brought the helicopter to a stop, Spears checked the gear on the runway and then we had the crash crew tow us into the line. I reported to the squadron later that day and told them what was wrong with the helicopter. The XO said he would have the parts flown out the next day and again re-emphasized that they needed that helicopter at the factory. Now it was Sandy’s time 69

to go to work. We were going to be in Longview for at least two nights. It was his job to find some entertainment that would keep us busy evenings while we repaired the helicopter. Let’s put it this way, Sandy drew women like bees to honey. The next day only some of the parts arrived that we needed to fix the aircraft. I couldn’t believe we didn’t get what we needed. I sent a message with a detailed list of parts that were needed to get the helicopter back in the air. Using his own initiative, Petty Officer Spears found a machine shop at the airport and was able to make a new hydraulic line. He was one of the sharpest mechanics I had seen. There wasn’t much he couldn’t do to get a helicopter up and flying. I bet he could figure out how to change an engine on his own if he had to. After taking apart the tail rotor Spears handed me the bearings; they were nothing but broken bits of metal. “How is the gearbox?” I asked. “Fine, sir. I checked it out thoroughly. The chip detector in the gearbox had no metal on it. If it starts coming apart, it’ll let us know.” We turned up the aircraft and ran it for about 30 minutes and then drained the gear box again. We didn’t find any metal particles in the oil and decided it was good to go. By the morning of the third day we were on our way to the East Coast and then up the Atlantic seaboard. We were inbound to Hunter Army Air Base in Savannah, Georgia when the engine oil pressure suddenly started to drop. I had Spears check for any oil leaks. He reported back, “We have a large oil leak down the starboard side of the aircraft all the way back to the tail pylon.” We were only a few minutes out of Hunter, so I made a decision to continue into the air field. I had done plenty of auto rotations in the Sea Sprite and felt it would be no problem to set it down. Sandy kept his eye on the oil www.navalhelicopterassn.org

There I Was I also found out from some of the maintenance department personnel that they had taken everything out of the helicopter that was any good and replaced it with what they had left. This didn’t give me a tremendous sense of confidence that the helicopter would make it the rest of the way, but I was too young, or too stupid to say anything. I asked, “When do I leave and who will be my crew?” “LTJG DeFry and Petty Officer Spears will be your crew.”

H-2 on its way back to Ream Field.

pressure gauge and monitored the rest of the instruments. It gave him something to do. I kept an eye out for a field to land in if we lost power. If it dropped to zero, we were setting down immediately. It was a race to the field to see if the oil pressure would hold. Although I felt I could handle anything the Sea Sprite threw at me, even I was beginning to lose confidence in this particular helicopter. I know we had to be breaking some kind of record for the most downing gripes on a Sea Sprite at one time. We were able to make it to Hunter and I made another run-on landing, not knowing what the engine would do if I pulled in full power to make a hover landing. The landing went well and as we turned off the runway ground control cleared us to taxi into the line. I was almost embarrassed to park the Navy helicopter on the Army’s nice clean line. The sun bleached cement was pure white, and the helicopter was leaking engine oil and hydraulic fluid all over their nice white apron. After we shut down a couple of Army NCO’s came over to look at the Navy helicopter. They didn’t say a word. They just looked at the silhouette of oil and hydraulic fluid on the ground. I looked at them and said, “We always fly them this way. The oil helps to cut down on the wind resistance. Where can I send a message out?” Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

“Base Ops,” replied one of the men. Later that day I sent a two page message out to the XO. The entire message was a list of gripes and mechanical problems that were wrong with the helicopter, including a hole worn in the bottom of the engine oil sump tank from all the vibrations. I later followed up with a phone call to the XO. The XO wanted me to stay there until the helicopter was repaired. If they could get the major downing gripes fixed, he wanted me to take it the rest of the way to the factory. He actually said he didn’t think he could get anyone else to fly it. It was either a compliment, or I was the only one stupid enough to fly the damn thing. We tried for two days to weld the hole in the sump tank with no luck. It was a special lightweight alloy, and we didn’t have the proper equipment to do the welding. It was going to be awhile before they could get a sump tank out to the aircraft. It wasn’t something that usually failed and they didn’t have any spares. The XO finally gave in and told us to come on home. I was back in San Diego less than a week when the XO called me in and told me they needed me to go back and pick up the helicopter. The XO said, “We tried to get VRF-31 to ferry it the rest of the way, but they didn’t want anything to do with the helicopter. Evidently one of their pilots went down and took a look at it.” 70

“Good, Spears is a genius at keeping that thing in the air.” “You leave tomorrow out of Lindberg at 0615.” I said, “Yes, sir,” and turned to walk out the door. I needed to talk with Spears to make sure we’d have enough parts and everything we needed to get us to Connecticut. I liked LTJG DeFry; he was also a NAVCAD. He wouldn’t be as good as Sandy on liberty, but he was a good stick. When we got back to Hunter Army Air Base, one of the Army NCO’s said he was glad to see someone come and take ownership of the helicopter. They were thinking about towing it to the local junkyard. The Navy ground crew had replaced the sump tank and checked out the engine and that was about all they did. The remainder of the two pages of gripes was still there. Spears had anticipated some of it, and he told me that he needed a day to clean up some of the major gripes with the parts he brought with him. I was always amazed at how self-sufficient these guys were. How does the Navy find them? They don’t pay them shit, their living conditions at times are less than desirable, and yet they stay in for the love of the job and the Navy. To be continued with two more engine failures on the return flight. There a half dozen just like this one.



There I Was Unique Experiences of Operating in the FDNF Environment By LTJG Elizabeth Jagoe, USN

Flying a VNAV route to Mt. Fuji. Photo Credit: LT Charles “Beans” Hiett.


alking into my squadron spaces for the first time ever, it looked like any other government building with people rushing about moving boxes and crates in a hangar full of mighty MH-60Rs. But something felt off. People were eating with chopsticks instead of forks, the Admin Officer had a bowl of microwavable ramen he was snacking on with a large piece of saturated bread on top, and everyone was driving on the left side of the road. All of this was strange, but what was even more perplexing was that the day the Saberhawks returned from their deployment was the same day they seamlessly checked me in and had things running like a well-oiled machine - and I’m not talking about the just the helicopters. In Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 77 (HSM77), we are an American squadron, wearing U.S. Navy uniforms, and operating in the very unique and high operating tempo of Forward Deployed Naval Forces Japan.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

Starting our day here, you’ll often find us grabbing a hot coffee from the vending machine, and yes I said hot coffee. For lunch, we’ll pop over to 7-11 on base and grab some $5 sushi or do a mass order of 500¥ chicken katsu. Our relationship with the Japanese is excellent and shines when we host our event on April 27th, the Annual Friendship Festival. This is a time each year where locals can come on base and tour the facilities. Some Atsugi residents will even go through the trouble to snap photos of the pilots while flying, make two framed copies, and have their copy signed while gifting the other to the pilot. It gets even more impressive when you look extremely closely at that photo and realize that they’ve gone through the trouble of finding the specific pilot to sign it. In addition to interacting with local civilians, we also share a base with the Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force and their flight operations. This means there is a Japanese controller in the tower, Japanese pilots


who share the pattern, and the Japanese runners who will run the six mile loop around the runway and occasionally throw up a high five as you pass. Our joint operations are as smooth as a chocolate vanilla twist soft serve, except there’s probably a Matcha or Uni flavor thrown in there as well. We don’t spend all our time in Japan eating delicious food with generous locals. We also enjoy incredible flight experiences at our home base. We train in the urban environment by flying above the tall Tokyo skylines and famous landmarks such as Tokyo Tower and Sky Tree. We’re challenged by mountain flying to the west with practice landing below snowy Mt. Fuji. Furthermore, we fly south for SAR and ASW training in the Sagami Wan. HSM-77 is on the tip of the spear regarding tactics development with CVN-5 sister squadrons aboard the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) completing large force exercises, defending both America and our allies in the Pacific. We conducted the Helicopter

Airborne Readiness Program (HARP 1903) the month after we returned from deployment with the HSM Weapons School Pacific traveling to Japan to instruct academic lectures and simulators. HSM-77 aircrews and maintainers then joined HSM-49 to complete flight events on San Clemente Island, together, flying 40.4 simulator hours for 23 events and 138 flight hours during 59 flight sorties. 4 x AGM-114s and 5 x Mk-54 EXTORPs were expended along with 149 x DIFAR and 21 x DICASS buoys. Additionally, we expended 264 flares, 96 chaff, 3600 rounds x 7.62 and 4800 rounds x .50 cal. Preparing for deployments is no easy task when we deploy six months every

year. This means that as soon as we get back to our loved ones, there is already work to be done preparing for maintenance inspections and executing high flight hour requirements to maintain deployment readiness. Pilots will leave their first tour with an average of 1000 hours in the MH-60R. To accomplish this, the Maintenance Department has the difficult task of fixing aircraft in the midst of a full flight schedule through what would normally be a Maintenance Phase of the Optimized Fleet Response Plan. Our maintenance team passed their Maintenance Program Assist in February in preparation for the Aviation Maintenance Inspection in May. The Saberhawks are constantly working around the clock to meet our mission.

The sentiment of “work hard, play hard” resonates with the mighty Saberhawks in the arduous work environment ashore and underway. Our squadron motto repeats in our minds as the high operational tempo continues: “PROTECT THE PATCH, RESPECT THE HAWK, FEAR THE SABER.” You may catch us putting in hours to meet readiness requirements and operational experience on deployments, then sipping a Chuhai instead of a beer after a long day’s work. Nevertheless, at the end of the day we’re just like everyone else: proud to keep our great nation safe with the world’s best fleet of naval helicopters.

HSM-77 completing CAL/LZ’s near Mt. Fuji. Photo credit: LT Matt “Dv” Baglini. 73


Helicopter Firsts SAR Swimmers

By Bill “Red Dogg” Moss AFCM (AW/NAC), USN (Ret.)


his is written with mostly Master Chief recall. Myself and several other Master Chief SAR Swimmers have contributed their inputs to me for use in this article. I have tried to be as specific as I can on dates and names but some of it has escaped me. I would like to think there are others out there who can correct the dates and names as required and in the end this would be a mostly correct timeline for the 50th Anniversary of the Navy SAR Swimmer. The Navy was utilizing swimmers as early as WW2. The PBY Catalina was a primary SAR vehicle during the war and on occasion a swimmer had to be deployed to recover a downed pilot who was incapable of saving himself. Fast forward to the Korean War and the utilization of Navy helicopters as a primary SAR asset. The first documented SAR Swimmer deployment was an HU-1 detachment off the coast of Korea in 1948. Unfortunately, the pilot did not survive but the fact still remains that a swimmer was deployed from a helicopter via hoist and made a water entry. During the post Korean War years, there were several methods of pilot recovery from over water ejection or bailout. The Navy was using the HU16C/D for most SAR work during that time frame. Actually, during the early years in Vietnam the HU-16 performed as a SAR platform and logistics aircraft under the command of COMNAVFORPHIL. With the advent of the P3 in the early 60’s there was a need for a more technical Aircrewman, a systems type, and in December of 1962 BUPERS established the AX rate to be a systems operator on VP type aircraft. With the development of the HSS-1/ SH-34 and its ASW capability AX’s became part of the Navy helicopter Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

A U.S. Navy Kaman UH-2B Seasprite (BuNo 151326) of Helicopter Utility Squadron 1 (HU-1) "Pacific Fleet Angels" pictured during a search and rescue exercise in the waters off Naval Auxiliary Air Station Ream Field in Imperial Beach, California (USA), circa 1965.

community. You could tell the Sonar H-34’s because they had the comfortable seats vs troops seats in the back!! As more and more “Dippers” came into the Navy, the 34’s were phased out and the SH-3A’s became the norm. There were plenty of AX’s to go around so in September of 1968 BUPERS created the AW rate and the AX rating was absorbed into that rating structure. Originally known as Anti Submarine Warfare Operator in 1993 that designator was changed to Aviation Warfare Systems Operator which it is known as today. As a matter of note, in 2004 all Naval Aircrewman who were in non tactical rates were converted to AW’s by direction of BUPERS. Essentially this made all Naval Aircrewman a flying force and they performed all tactical duties with minimal maintenance responsibilities. The Navy’s first combat rescue squadron HC-7 stood up in 1967 and was deployed to the Vietnam Area of Operations on North and South SAR until 1973. Their crews and SAR Swimmers are credited with over 120 saves of Naval Aviators. 74

In 1971, PRC Ray Smith was assigned to HU-1 and took over its active SAR program. During this time frame, Chief Smith worked hard at getting the HU-1 syllabus recognized as a viable program for SAR Swimmer instruction and in 1972 BUPERS approved the very first SAR Swimmer School at HU-1 Ream Field. Up until this time, any unit with a SAR capability could “home grow” SAR crewman. The practice of “home growing” SAR crewman would remain in effect until the 1984 SAR Conference where it was finally mandated that all SAR crewman shall receive their training at Aircrew Candidate School and SAR Swimmer School. As a Senior Chief SAR Instructor, I had the privilege to home grow the last SAR Swimmer in the Navy at HC-5, NAS Agana, Guam in 1984. In 1975, the Navy close looped detailed the 8285 (SAR Swimmer) NEC. At the time there were a lot of Aircrew with wings on their uniforms who were not currently or had not flown in several tours. If you carried the 8285 NEC and were not flying, the Navy queried you as to your intentions.

If you declined to take a flying billet, your NEC was removed and you took the wings off. During that timeframe, it was rumored you would never make Chief if you continued to fly so a lot of Sailors dropped the 8285 NEC. The rumor was totally untrue. Upon the conclusion of this purge, the total numbers of SAR Swimmers came to roughly 750 and the Bureau changed the NEC to 8215. NAVY SEARCH AND RESCUE SWIMMER. From 1975 to early 1976, the Navy SAR Swimmer community went through a rash of incidents and accidents. Putting it bluntly, we were hurting our Sailors and in 1976 the Bureau decided that the issue was standardization and training. In order to address this issue fleet-wide, we needed a SAR Model Manager. We needed someone to oversee our Aircrew Standardization, Aircrew Training, Equipment utilization and standardization and the overall standardization for all things SAR Navy-wide. HC-16 was given the task to form a Navy SAR Model Manager office and bring things together. Get both coasts in alignment and stop the bickering once and for all. This would prove to be a heavy task. LCDR Charlie Fowinkle, ADC Bill Nalley, and AE1 Lloyd Byrd became the first SARMM’s and were given a cloak room in the Squadron spaces as an office. All three became drenched in all things SAR. Fowinkle was the SAR CZAR and Nalley was the Enlisted SARMM with Byrd as the Swim Evaluator. They stood up Aircrew Candidate School with ADC Bob Davidson as the Leading Chief. As a certified civilian diver, AE1 Byrd took over responsibility for all wet suit design and type and ADC Nalley went to work on standardizing all masks, snorkels, fins and vests to include issue of UDT shorts to all Aircrew candidates. LCDR Fowinkle had responsibility to write the SAR manuals and NATOPS changes

for knee boards and manuals and all things administrative. These tasks that they undertook were demanding and required. During that first couple months, LCDR Fowinkle had an idea for a patch and believed that if we Swimmers had a patch we could identify with each other and bring us together as a team. He had a Sailor on restriction and awaiting Mast that had been assigned to his office as an admin assistant. While talking about the patch and its design, this Sailor tells everyone she could paint it if they wanted. That original patch painting was donated to the Midway by LCDR Fowinkle and is in the ready room. The SAR Swimmer motto, “So Others May Live” went through a great deal of discussion with the Navy’s Air Force counterparts in the PJ community who said it was a direct copy of their motto. Not so Boys in Blue. Yours sez ...“That Others May Live”. At the end of 1978 the SARMM put on the very first SAR Conference with both coasts in attendance. There was haggling about masks and equipment and the amount of PT required. The West Coast wanted 3 miles the East wanted 1.5. West Coast won!! At the beginning of the conference the first agenda item was the SAR Swimmer chest device. No action was taken on that device until 1987. Agenda Item 01/78 was dead in the water but would not go away. I stood up at the conference with all my medals and wings and asked the 300 or so attendees where they were going to put it. Then speaking for the entire enlisted cadre I asked the Admirals who sat on that board that if they wanted that issue to go away they should approve our request for SDAP pay and the entire auditorium stood and clapped. 3 months later we got our SDAP pay and 01/78 was removed from the agenda. In 1982, the Navy’s Inland SAR Community was getting much publicity. With the OPNAV 3710 SAR Manual in the pre-print review, it 75

was discovered that no one except the crews at NAS Lemoore and NAS Fallon was really standardized equipment-wise or operation-wise. The SARMM had no idea as to what equipment was used for operating procedures at altitude etc. NAS Fallon and NAS Lemoore were tasked to provide Chapter 5 of the 3710. These units were able to get the syllabus from all inland SAR units and develop a working syllabus that was approved by OPNAV and was published in the 3710 as the Inland SAR Procedures. This standardized all inland SAR units with the same Sky Genie Equipment and SAR Bags. Also during this time it was decided that NAS Pensacola would be the Training Schools Command for all things Aircrew and that HS-1, HC-1 and Norfolk would be the refresher schools for all Aircrew. In 1985, there was an issue of the Iranian ship, the Iran Ajar, peppering mines in the Strait of Hormuz. No one knew the where abouts of the ship but there was a certain amount of HUMINT around that was substantial enough to prompt Navy Leadership to organize some sort of plan to take the ship and stop the mining. HC-5 NAS Agana was tasked to provide SEAL team delivery should the opportunity arise. HC-5 began workups immediately. This mission provided the first opportunity for the Navy H-46 community to utilize Night Vision Goggles in a covert mission and it was the first usage of the Fast Rope delivery method on a moving ship. Something that SAR Swimmers never had done previously. In 2005 the Navy SAR Swimmer School got a beautiful new home thanks to the hurricane that demolished the old one. Master Chief Moss lives in Melbourne, FL with his wife Kathy and Dog Roxy. He has been a member of NHA since roughly 1978. He is a plank owner at NHAHS and is the recipient of the 2004 Mark R. Starr Pioneer Award.


Helicopter Firsts USS Corporal (SS-346): First Submarine To Reel in a Helicopter! Submitted by Col Lee Welsh, USAF, (Ret) By Dr. Charles Hook


n Thursday, 26 April 1956, off the southern coast of Florida about 20 miles from Key West, CDR William F. Culley of Augusta, Georgia noticed a problem mid-flight. Culley, the pilot of Navy helicopter #51 on an antisubmarine warfare (ASW) training run as part of Squadron VX-1, realized that he was losing oil quickly from the main rotor assembly. He was too far from the coast to return for an emergency landing. Culley’s mind raced as he considered his options. Ditching was certainly possible, giving Culley Seabat Arriving . Photo courtesy of the author, Dr. Charles Hook and his three fellow Blow all main ballast.” The words reverberated over the sub’s crewmembers the best opportunity to survive the incident, although at the cost of a very expensive Navy helicopter—the 1-MC as Corporal executed an emergency blow and came to the surface with a gargantuan splash. In contact with the Sikorsky HSS-1, known as the Seabat because of its ASW package. Finding a small cay in the vicinity to land on would helicopter, Proctor ascertained that the helicopter could remain airborne for only a short time longer. Culley requested be ideal, but a sweep of the ocean landscape failed to show the Corporal to make heavy knots in his direction to pick up any small land masses that might have provided such an survivors should the need to ditch the helicopter arise. opportunity. Crashing into the ocean was not a desirable option. Culley, his co-pilot LT J. K. Johnson, and two other Corporal radioed that they were on their way to the scene crewmembers, SO3 G.A. DeChamp and AT2 M.R. Dronz, directly and then proceeded at flank speed to the provided realized that they had precious minutes to make a decision coordinates of the helicopter. In just a few minutes, Corpobefore mechanical failure required a costly abandonment. A ral made first visual contact of the stationary aircraft hovering “May-Day” call was sent from the helicopter in hopes that only a short distance above the ocean surface. Moving in to another Navy or even merchant vessel could lend a hand. the helicopter’s immediate vicinity, Proctor had an idea that Meanwhile, not far from the distressed helo, USS Corpohe shared with Culley. “How about attempting an on-deck ral (SS-346), assigned to the submarine base at Key West, landing?” The reply from the helicopter was emphatic: “Hell was submerged, also participating in the ASW exercises as a yes, let’s give it a go.” Absolutely no one wanted to see a valudesignated opposing boat. Corporal was a Balao-class submaable asset plunge needlessly to the ocean depths; the replacerine. She was built at the Electric Boat shipyard in Groton, ment price for the Sikorsky helicopter was about $250,000. Connecticut and commissioned shortly after the conclusion of World War II in November 1945. She carried a compleCorporal carefully positioned herself directly under the ment of 10 officers and about 70 enlisted men. Corporal still-hovering helicopter. Communications between helo and was 312 feet in length with a beam of 27 feet, 3 inches. As it submarine continued at a fast and furious pace. The mechanturned out, she would need every inch of that beam for her ical issue with the helicopter prevented it from turning in any next unscheduled assignment. direction; hovering was still functional, but no adjustment in heading could be made from the cockpit. Once Corporal The radio shack of the boat intercepted the May-Day call understood this problem, the submarine maneuvered herself from the disabled helicopter. This news was communicated in the open seas such that her after deck was lined up with immediately to the sub’s skipper, LCDR Erman O. Proctor the landing wheels of the helicopter. But did the Seabat have in the Conn. He wasted little time. “Emergency surface. enough room to land on the deck? The answer wasn’t entirely Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


clear from visual inspection by the submarine party standing topside and looking up at the spinning blades of helicopter #51. There were two critical issues to ponder. First, was the beam of the submarine wide enough to accommodate the landing wheels of the helicopter? The answer to that question wasn’t immediately clear to those crewmembers of Corporal who had gone topside to inspect the underside of the hovering helicopter. (The “recovery party” in this case consisted of volunteers headed up by the COB.) Second, assuming that there was enough room from side to side, could the pilot of the helicopter bring her down in the very tight window from fore to aft on the submarine deck without striking the sail with its main rotor or the fantail with its rear rotor? Since no one had ever seriously contemplated the answers to these questions, all the men could do was to look closely and guess. To all who were there, it seemed like a very tight proposition, but there seemed to be just enough room from fore to aft and from port to starboard along the after deck to give it a shot. Still, given the vagaries of the sea and wind conditions that could shift the relative positions of the submarine and helicopter, the whole idea was incredibly risky. However, short of dumping the chopper there seemed to be no other viable alternatives, so the submarine crew prepared for the surprise drop-in. The COB and his topside men had no protocol manual to draw from. They simply relied on their instincts to mitigate the risks of the impending landing—such as taking down the long wire antenna to avoid an inadvertent snag. The men then grabbed mooring lines in preparation for the next step. The helicopter began its final descent as pilot Culley attempted to keep his bird directly over the centerline of the submarine hull. Except for one intrepid sailor, the members of the recovery party stayed crouched at a safe distance just forward of the sail during this time. The person who volunteered to remain in harm’s way was engineering officer LTJG George Ellis, who braced himself along the after edge of the sail and provided hand signals for the pilot to finetune his landing. Ellis’ role was critical as the margin for error was razor-thin. He risked serious injury or even death from any errant move during his makeshift role as a signal officer, as the main rotor blades of the descending helicopter spun very close to his head. The radio shack of the sub sent the message, “Do you think you will make it?” Any response from the helicopter was delayed, since the message was received just as the three wheels of the bird (2 front, 1 rear) made contact with the weatherdeck. The landing had to be absolutely perfect, and fortunately the seas had become mercifully calm during the attempt. With the precise teamwork between the hand signals of LTJG Ellis and the considerable skill of the helicopter pilot, the aircraft miraculously touched down. Incredibly, a small part of each front wheel ended 77

up overhanging the deck edge on each side, but there was just enough room for most of the rubber for the helicopter to remain stable topside. The men on board estimated that an inch or two longer span on the landing gear would have made the attempt a no-go. “We’re on your deck and damn happy to be here!”, came the relieved reply from the helicopter. The pilot had stuck the landing on the very first try. The recovery party rushed over with their mooring lines to tie up the helo to the submarine. It was the first time that a submarine had ever rescued a helicopter, and it was entirely coincidental (and fortuitous) that the width of the submarine deck was just enough to accommodate the aircraft’s landing gear. Once the blades of the helicopter had spun to a complete stop and the assembly was properly secured, the crew emerged onto the deck, where they were met by LCDR Proctor. “Welcome aboard!”, offered the skipper, in perhaps one of the most unusual unplanned visits in submarine history. The guests were escorted down the hatch and offered food and drink, while Corporal steamed back to the Naval Annex at Key West, arriving just before sunset around 1830 hours local time. Word had spread about the plight of the helicopter and the unconventional heroism aboard Corporal that had saved her; as a result, a large crowd had gathered spontaneously at the pier to greet both submarine and helicopter. It must have been quite a curious sight to witness the sleek submarine heading into her berth with the most unlikely bounty lashed to her dorsal hull. Navy mechanics made the necessary repairs to the helicopter rotor casing after a large crane lifted the bird from its precipitous perch on Corporal. The broken oil casing was replaced, and the chopper again was ready for flight. Subsequently, the four-man crew climbed back into the cabin to depart, after grateful handshakes had been exchanged all around. Giving the thumbs up, CDR Culley started the main engine, and those assembled at the pier to see the Seabat off held onto their hats as the big bird took to the sky. In minutes, the helicopter was out of sight, and the men of Corporal had themselves the yarn of a lifetime—about the big one that didn’t get away.

About the Author Dr. Charles Hood is a physician in hospital practice as a diagnostic radiologist. He and his brother Frank, who served as a nukes junior officer on the USS Seahorse between 1969 and 1972. cowrote the book Poopie Suits and Cowboy Boots which along with the Facebook page, Poopie Suits and Cowboy Boots is a treasure trove of all things submariner . All proceeds from this book are donated to The United States Submarine Veterans, Incorporated (USSVI) Scholarship Fund. A second book is in the works. www.navalhelicopterassn.org

Off Duty For Duty And Honor by George Galdorisi Reviewed by LCDR Chip Lancaster, USN (Ret.)


nce again George Galdorisi has ripped a front page from current events and thrown us into it with relish. A little context first. The novel is subtitled “A Rick Holden Novel." If you never had the pleasure of reading a Galdorisi novel, Holden is a CIA operative undercover as a Navy SEAL. I don’t think I’m giving anything away there, it actually says that on the back cover of the book, but I wanted to make sure that you knew. The action starts in the first couple of pages with a horrendous terrorist attack on a U.S. unit in the Gulf. Tensions with Iran start escalating in the region resulting in deploying a carrier battle group to the area. The situation builds slowly as training for actual conflict takes place on both sides as well as a third party terrorist group making plans for destruction in the U. S. All along flag ranks, mullahs, generals, politicians and everyone in between from DC to the Fleet to the Gulf to Iran are butting heads as to how to handle an increasingly tense geo-political-military environment. Events finally come to a head with another terrorist attack, this time to Carrier Strive Group personnel in Oman. The attack precipitates a deadly chain of events aggravated by hell-bent for war hawks on both sides of the line eager to take each other out permanently. George lends his extensive fleet operations experience to give the reader a detailed view into life aboard Navy ships. You’re put into the operations centers from subs under the battle to surface combatants to the cockpits of F/A-18s and MH-60Rs in the air. All giving you a sailor’s, pilot’s and aircrew view of life at sea from scrambling for General Quarters to darkened Combat Centers and Bridges to sweating in the seat of an H-60. George puts you there. The action moves from the halls of Congress and the White House to the streets of NYC, DC and San Diego to the waters of the Gulf. Intrigue, military action, spy-craft, nukes, murder and outright terrorism abound throughout including surface-to-surface and inside-the-ship running gun battles to plenty of fixed and rotary wing air action. The last hundred and fifty pages are a page-turner with the action flipping between all fronts. Your brain will be working overtime trying to think of how you would have resolved the situation but anxious to see how Galdorisi, Holden and the rest are going to do it. All the while you’re telling yourself this is an all-too-real sounding scenario, with a cat-and-mouse game that leaves you rooting for both sides at times. In the end, everything comes together (surface, air, subs, us and them) with the reader thinking can anyone or anything stop what is sure to erupt into a nuclear conflagration in the Middle East. I’ll leave it for you to find out. For Duty And Honor is a great read and adventure, check it out, you won’t be disappointed.

19 Minutes to Live by Lew Jennings Reviewed by LCDR Chip Lancaster, USN (Ret.)


ew Jennings book is subtitled “Helicopter Combat in Vietnam” and gives first person insight into the training, deployment and operations of an Army helicopter pilot in Vietnam in 1969 and 1970. His book follows his career from civilian life to enlistment, basic training, commissioning and flight training before being thrown into the steep combat learning curve of Vietnam flying the AH-1 with A Troop 2/17th (2nd squadron of the seventeenth) Air Cavalry of the 101st Airborne Division, the Aircav. Lew takes you into the cockpit of the Cobra flying as a front seat “bullet catcher” before making Aircraft Commander and moving to the rear seat pilot at the controls position. His over 700 missions as both weapons operator and pilot were flown in the hot-fire combat zone of the A Shau Valley in I Corps, South Vietnam. 19 Minutes pulls no punches from mortar and rocket attacks to shoot-downs, crashes and rescues to daily hut, tent and Quonset life in the heat, mud and monsoons, Jennings gives a detailed first person account. Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


19 Minutes to Live (continued)

and 36 Air Medals flying the AH-1 Cobra gunship. After his retirement from the Army, he flew commuters for American Eagle and jumbo jets for World Airways. He came out of full retirement in 2008 to fly fixed-wing Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) and logistic support missions in the Gulf during the Iraq War for two years. If you want to know what it’s like to ride a Cobra into triple canopy jungle with a tail rotor drive failure or have inflight tree strikes down a jungle river or getting shot down in an OH-6 Loach and survive then 19 Minutes is the book for you. So light off the T-53, roll your turns up and lift the Snake into some real life rotary-wing drama. It’s not only an adventure but you’ll learn what a “bullet catcher” and “heavy hog” are. Check it out, you won’t be disappointed.

The combat accounts are some of the best since Low Level Hell. The missions are often combined ops with UH-1 Huey “Slicks”, AH-1 Cobra “Snakes” and OH-6 Scouts “Loaches” supporting ground troops, launching rockets, grenades and mini-gun rounds throughout the A Shau Valley and vicinity. Among the many things that make Lew’s book special and unique are the many personal accounts of pilots, aircrew, maintainers and ground troops that are worked into the narrative. Personal accounts which round out operations from combat attacks and ground support to jungle and mountain SAR often in low-ceilinged monsoon weather and even at night with no NVGs, GPS and little instrument training. Lew Jennings knows of what he writes about. He is a highly decorated combat helicopter pilot with three DFCs

Reviewed by LCDR Chip Lancaster, USN (Ret.)


he Sahara Desert is the largest desert landmass on earth. At over 3.6 million square miles it is larger than the United States including Alaska and Hawaii. Geographically, its terrain varies from over 420 feet below to over 11,200 feet above sea level with sand dunes to over 600 feet in height covering over a half a million square miles. It’s the early 1960’s, less than 15 years after the end of WW II, and the Arabco Oil Exploration Company is flying passengers and equipment from its rig deep in the Sahara to Mombasa by some 1500 miles southeast. Their aircraft is an aged Fairchild C-82 Packet (predecessor to the C-119 Flying Boxcar), a twin tail boom, twin radial engined prop cargo airplane that’s seen better days. It is piloted by seasoned aviator Frank Towns who’s also seen better days, played by veteran actor Jimmy Stewart (Rear Window, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, It’s a Wonderful Life), along with first officer and navigator, Lew Moran, played by veteran English actor/director Richard Attenborough, (Jurassic Park, The Great Escape, The Sand Pebbles). Their aircraft is overloaded with 16 passengers and crew and several thousand pounds of cargo and overworked with too many years in the air and not enough parts, maintenance and care. The action starts when enroute they encounter a sand storm. The aircraft doesn’t have the power to climb over the storm and one engine is choked out by the sand and catches fire. It is soon followed by the second engine, and with their radio out and no way to relay their situation they’re out of options and forced to land in the dunes. 79

The crew and most of the passengers survive the crash but the airplane is in nonflyable shape. To complicate matters, the storm has blown them way off course and they’re not sure of their position. They wait around for days hoping to be found but it is evident that that is not going to happen. With limited and rationed water they’re soon getting on each other’s nerves with arguments and general craziness. One of the passengers, however, has remained calm working on a possible solution. Heinrich Dorfmann, played by German actor Hardy Kruger, (Barry Lyndon, A Bridge Too Far), is an aeronautical engineer and has a plan to rebuild the crashed craft into a “new” flyable airplane. Heinrich also has a “secret” which almost scuttles the whole plan. After considerable argument and difference of opinion, they all elect to go along with Heinrich’s plan. How they do this and whether or not they are successful takes up the second half of the film and gives keen insight into what people can do if pressed hard enough in a survival situation. This Academy Award nominated film by award winning director Robert Aldrich (The Dirty Dozen, The Longest Yard) along with an award winning cast in Stewart and Attenborough joined by Kruger, Peter Finch, Ernest Borgnine, Dan Duryea and George Kennedy to name a few, got poor reviews when it came out but has turned into a cult classic. The production and release were marred by the loss of famed aviator and movie stunt pilot Paul Mantz who died in a crash of the original Phoenix and the film is dedicated to him at the end. It was filmed almost entirely at locations in southern California and Arizona. It should also be noted that there is no CGI; everything is done with actual aircraft or models. There is also a 2004 remake, but grab your popcorn and beverage of choice and check out the original. It is worth more than the price of admission.


Around the Regions NHA Regional Awards Each year NHA sponsors several national performance awards with the winners being chosen from a field of regional award winners. The NHA National and Regional Awards are an important means to recognize outstanding performance within rotary wing aviation.

Region One

Region Two Aircrew of the Year (non-deployed) Coast Guard 6032 - USCG Air Station Cape Cod

Aircrew of the Year (non-deployed) Rescue 75 Naval Air Station Whidbey Island

Aircrew Instructor of the Year AMT1 Zachary Bowers - USCG Air Station Detroit

Aircrewman of the Year AWS2 Adriana Ramirez HSC-14

Maintenance CPO/PO (E-6 - E-9) of the Year AMTC Brenton Weller - USCG Air Station Detroit

Aircrew Instructor of the Year AWR1 Andrew Pagliei HSMWSP

Maintenance Enlisted Person (E-5 or below) of the Year AMT2 Jason Brenenstall - USCG Air Station Cape Cod

Fleet Instructor Pilot of the Year LT Samuel Richardson HSCWSP

Maintenance Officer of the Year AVI3 Joseph Rohrer - USCG Air Station Cape Cod

Maintenance CPO/PO (E-6 - E-9) of the Year AOCS Richard Carey HSC-8

Rescue Swimmer of the Year AST2 Michael Kelly - USCG Air Station Cape Cod

Maintenance Enlisted Person (E-5 or below) of the Year AD2 Tommie Medina HSC-21

Aircrew of the Year (non-deployed) Coast Guard 6038 - USCG Air Station Elizabeth City

Region Three

Aircrew of the Year (deployed) Big Chief 704 - HSM-72

Maintenance Officer of the Year CWO2 Christopher Hatch HSM-35

Aircrew Instructor of the Year AWR1 Wade Johnson - HSM-40

Pilot of the Year LT Luke Gunderson HSC-14

Fleet Instructor Pilot of the Year LT Matthew Philbin - HSM-40 Maintenance CPO/PO (E-6 - E-9) of the Year AECS Matthew Phaneuf - HSM-40

Rescue Swimmer of the Year HM2 Austin Shutt Naval Air Station Whidbey Island

Maintenance Enlisted Person (E-5 or below) of the Year AO2 William Augustine Jr. - HSM-48

Shipboard Pilot of the Year LT Robert Antonucci USS Boxer

Maintenance Officer of the Year CWO3 Jason Harding - HSM-46 Pilot of the Year LT Phillip Justice - HSM-72 Shipboard Pilot of the Year LT Benjamin Harris - USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7)

Rotor Review #145 Summer â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;19


Region Five

Region Four Aircrew of the Year (deployed) Arrow 13 HSC-26

Aircrew of the Year (non-deployed) Coast Guard 6518 USCG Air Station Houston

Aircrewman of the Year AWS2 George Wilkes HSC-11

Aircrewman of the Year AMT2 Christopher Kiser USCG Air Station Houston

Fleet Instructor Pilot of the Year LT Michael Ellwood HSCWSL

Aircrew Instructor of the Year AMT1 Matthew Steeber USCG Training Center Mobile

Maintenance CPO/PO (E-6 - E-9) of the Year AE1 Sean Mullen HSC-22

Rescue Swimmer of the Year AST2 Cory Ciekot USCG Air Station New Orleans

Maintenance Enlisted Person (E-5 or below) of the Year AD2 Harkins Miner HSC-9

Training Command Pilot of the Year LT Chelsea Zakriski HT-8

Maintenance Officer of the Year LTJG John Knott HSC-2

Region Six

Aircrew of the Year (non-deployed) Easyrider 40 - HSM-37

Pilot of the Year LT Walther Sergojan HSC-26

Aircrew of the Year (deployed) Indian 620 - HSC-6 Aircrewman of the Year AWS1 Sean Sondergaard - HSC-12

Rescue Swimmer of the Year AWS2 George Wilkes HSC-11

Maintenance CPO/PO (E-6 - E-9) of the Year ADCS Lucas Brown - HSM-51

Shipboard Pilot of the Year LCDR Kevin Koenig USS Bataan (LHD-5)

Maintenance Enlisted Person (E-5 or below) of the Year Sgt Theodore Mikesell - VMM-262 Maintenance Officer of the Year CWO2 Cesar Pinarivera - HSC-25

Pilot of the Year LT Patrick Regan - HSC-12 Rescue Swimmer of the Year AST3 Austin Hornbruch USCG Air Station Borinquen Shipboard Pilot of the Year LT Conrad Schmidt - HSM-51 81


Around the Regions : Rotorhead Rumble Reunion in Jacksonville Attention on Deck! All HS pilots who served at NAS JAX in the 70's, 80's and 90's The Rotorhead Rumble Reunion will be at NAS JAX, April 18-19, 2020 For more information visit the website: www. rotorheadrumble.myevent.com

Golden Gater Reunion in Alameda HS-85 Reunion is scheduled for August, 2020 aboard the USS Hornet Museum in Alameda, California. Make your plans now. Join the HS-85 Facebook group for more information.

Golden Gater Sea King flies over an Arco tanker off the coast of San Francisco Bay, CA in the 1980s.

Rotor Review #145 Summer â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;19


Region 6 Golf Tournament Raises Money for Scholarship Fund The Island Knights participated in the Naval Helicopter Association's Annual Memorial Day Weekend Golf Scramble. Thanks for the support and congrats to the winners!

Region1 We Were There NHA Historical Society at Symposium 2019 - Booth #27 By CDR, Joe Skrzypek, USNR (Ret), NHAHS Secretary (NBTProductions, LLC)


HA Historical Society maintains a database of Navy Helicopter Pilot designation numbers which started on 15 April 1944 with LT. W.G. Knapp, USNR designated Navy Helicopter Pilot # 1. In May 2019 the designation numbers exceeded 34,773. During NHA Symposiums many young and old helicopter pilots looking up their names in three binders, are delighted to see their classmates. They can fill out a NHAHS card to have a record of their the designation number Comments regarding designation numbers on coffee cups, are made all day becasue , each new winger is given a coffee cup with his/his winger number on it.. VADM William K. Lescher, USN visited booth #27 with his daughter LTJG Dale Lescher, of HSM-41. She looked up her number, #34448, fatherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s number, #15986 and her grandfather ENS Charles Silvia's number,#4445.

Is this a Navy Helicopter family or what? LTJG Sara Disciorio of HSM41 stopped by the NHAHS booth to check her designation number, #34,351, which was issued on June 8, 2018. She also looked up her father, CDR Joseph A. Disciorioâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s, #16445 and found his last name spelled wrong. She told CDR Mike Brattland of the error and he immediately made a correction to the database. She is pictured in the booth with Mike making sure the correction was accurate. Sara was serving as a symposium security monitor and graciously volunteered to man Booth #27 to give staff a break. Note: her father, CDR Joseph Disciorio was a Naval Academy shipmate of NHAHS President Bill Personius. Sara is soon transferring to NAF Atsugi Japan and we wish her well. We also ask for quarterly reports to be submitted to Allyson Darroch to publish in Rotor Review, to share her


experience with all; finding an apartment, first helo flight in Japan, driving on wrong side of the road, learning Japanese language, deployment, sake, Sushi, Kamakura Dai Butsu, etc.

CDR Mike Brattland, USN (Ret.) and LTJG Sara Discorio, USN at the NHAHS Booth.


Command Updates Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 6 Conducts Change of Command


he “Screamin’ Indians” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 6 (HSC-6), held a change of command ceremony at Naval Air Station North Island in Coronado, California on April 11th. During the ceremony, CDR Todd “Hotpike” Pike relieved CDR James “Brew” Jerome as HSC6’s Commanding Officer.

low-on orders to Helicopter Sea Combat Weapons School Pacific. He went on to support Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation New Dawn with HSC-84. He then attended Naval War College earning a degree in National Security and Strategic Studies before continuing on to U. S. Africa Command.

CDR Jerome began his career with the “Providers” of HC-5 supporting the Global War on Terrorism onboard USNS SAN JOSE and USNS FLINT. His career then brought him to the Naval Strike and Air Warfare Seahawk Weapons and Tactics Instructor (WTI) Course with fol-

While at HSC-6, CDR Jerome has led more than 250 aviators and maintenance personnel through deployment in support of Operation Inherent Resolve and Operation Freedom’s Sentinel as well as five detachments afloat and ashore in support of Exercises Phoenix Fire, Northern Strike, Pacific Blitz, and Virtual Flag.

HSC-6 Indians Participate in Red Flag Rescue


where it becomes possible for forces to conduct CSAR operations with a focus on all five personnel recovery tasks.

SC-6 operated in Tucson for the Red Flag Rescue Exercise in mid-May of 2019. The squadron performed simulated personnel recovery missions with joint personnel from 11 nations.

"Red Flag-Nellis was originally created to give fighter pilots their first 10 combat missions in a large force exercise before deployment to contingency operations,” Lt Col Christopher Cunningham, USAF said. He added, “Vietnam War analysis had proven that pilot survivability increased dramatically after surviving 10 combat missions. Red Flag-Rescue adopts this heritage as a subset of Red Flag-Nellis by providing joint forces their first 10 CSAR missions in a large force exercise. Contested CSAR operations can only be conducted by a full complement of integrated forces capable of fighting into and out of the survivor’s location.”

Red Flag-Rescue, replacing Angel Thunder, is a new jointforce exercise that provides realistic combat rescue training in a contested, degraded and operationally limited environment. Red Flag-Rescue is the only dedicated Defense Department personnel recovery exercise accredited by the Joint National Training Capability, a DoD initiative to ensure combat forces have gained experience operating jointly before deploying to theater. Red Flag-Rescue is focused on Combat Search and Rescue planning, the Air Force’s preferred planning methodology for providing personnel recovery coverage. This exercise is the logical progression from a Red Flag-Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., exercise starting after the initial days of a conflict Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19

More than 700 personnel from 20 units of the U.S. Air Force, Army, Marine Corps and Navy collaborated for the two week exercise. Great work Indians!! 84

Navy Reservist Takes Helm of HT-8

By Julie Ziegenhorn, NAS Whiting Field PAO and LT Alek Hoffman,USN


DR Jessica Parker turned over command of Helicopter Training Squadron (HT) 8 to CDR Lena Kaman during a change of command ceremony at Naval Air Station (NAS) Whiting Field in Milton on June 7, 2019. “It is a unique opportunity to be the first FTS officer to command a helicopter training squadron,” she said. “I have the opportunity to be a mentor and to pass along my knowledge and experience to all those affiliated with the Reserve in the entire air wing.” CDR Kaman graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a Bachelor of Arts in French in May 2000. She earned her Wings of Gold onboard NAS Whiting Field in March 2002 and reported to Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (Light ) (HSL) 40, in Mayport, Florida, for advanced training in the SH-60B Seahawk helicopter.

Incoming commanding officer, CDR Lena Kaman, received the HT-8 command flag from Chief Petty Officer (AWSC) Robert Hand during a change of command ceremony at Naval Air Station Whiting Field June 7. Photo by Jamie Link, NAS Whiting Field Public Affairs Office.

Kaman’s first operational assignment was with HSL-48 in Mayport, where she deployed aboard USS Leyte Gulf (CG 55) from February 2004 to August 2004 on a MED/MEF cruise. She was awarded the Air Medal for flying more than 100 combat hours in support of Operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom. Following her first fleet tour, Kaman reported to HT-18, NAS Whiting Field, in January 2006 as an instructor pilot in the TH-57 Sea Ranger helicopter. She transitioned to the Navy Reserve FTS community in February 2009. Kaman became a member of America’s Squadron, HT-8, in August 2009. She served as the Reserve department head, safety department head, and operations officer. She was also named the Association of the United States Navy Full-Time Support Officer of the Year for all Chief of Naval Air Training squadrons for 2010. In 2011, she earned her Masters of Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Kaman reported for duty as executive officer of HT-8 in April 2018, under Parker’s leadership, ultimately preparing her to take the helm. Kaman said she is honored by the responsibilities of command, but feels the weight as well. “To me personally, to be selected for command is a huge responsibility to the student naval aviators, their families, and our nation, to ensure we provide them with the best and safest training possible,” Kaman said. “I have a high level of respect for that responsibility. We’re about training warfighting aviators, but we’re also about developing leaders. The fleet relies on us to produce quality aviators and leaders.” Guest speaker for the event, retired CAPT Mark Murray and former Commodore of Training Air Wing Five, lauded Parker’s influence and time as the commanding officer of HT-8. "When I think of someone like CDR Parker, I know she’s been focused on the opportunity to have a positive influence during her entire career.” He went on to say that her influence had an immeasurable effect on the success of the squadron and training of helicopter pilots. That influence will last long after she walks off this dais,” he commented. Before reading her departing orders, CDR Parker gave her final words to the squadron as the commander. “This has been the best tour of my career. Thank you to my squadron for being absolutely amazing. You keep me in awe each day, and I’m extremely proud of all the progress you’ve made.” CDR Parker will continue her naval service as air boss aboard amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD 5) based in Norfolk, Va. 85


Command Updates Saberhawk Change of Command by LTJG Mike "SKE" Twardy, USN


n February 22, 2019, CDR Steve "Cheese" Steacy relieved CDR Newt "Bomb" McKissick to become the 27th Commanding Officer of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 77 (HSM-77) at Naval Air Facility Atsugi. CDR Tom "Tool" Uhl assumed the role of Executive Officer. CAPT Matt “Schnap” Schnappauf, Commander of the Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing, U.S. Pacific Fleet, attended the ceremony as the guest speaker and reflected on CDR McKissick's leadership of the squadron through multiple deployments. He stated, "It’s obvious this squadron is running like a welloiled machine under the leadership of CDR Newt “McKissick. .Part of being a member of a winning organization is being faced with a series of opportunities, many times brilliantly disguised as seemingly impossible obstacles, or otherwise presented as challenges. Fortunately, I have always believed that challenges are opportunities.” Without a doubt, HSM-77 will continue to overcome obstacles and maintain combat readiness as the squadron prepares for their next deployment in the spring of 2019 under the leadership of CDR Steacy.

Sailors attached to the Saberhawks of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 77 stand in formation during a change of command ceremony. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jacob Smith.

CDR McKissick receiving the Meritorious Service Medal from CAPT Forrest Young, Commander, Carrier Air Wing 5. Photo courtesy of NAF Atsugi PAO.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


Search and Rescue Crew Trains with Olympic Mountain Rescue By Thomas Mills, Public Affairs Deputy, NAS Whidbey Island


crew from Naval Air Station (NAS) Whidbey Island Search and Rescue (SAR) flew to Bremerton National Airport to meet and train with approximately 30 members of Olympic Mountain Rescue (OMR) on Saturday, May 18. The two teams began the day with a discussion about their respective capabilities and discussed past joint missions, prior to engaging in field training and live training exercises with an operating rescue helicopter. “For each of the last three years, the NAS Whidbey SAR team has come to our backyard (Bremerton Airport) and provided exactly the type of training we need,” said Dan Prince, Training Coordinator for Olympic Mountain Rescue. Naval Air Station Whidbey Island search and rescue team members

demonstrate for Olympic Mountain Rescue members how to prepare Olympic Mountain Rescue, a group of volunteer climbers dedicated to wilderness rescue and mountain a patient in a litter before hoisting to a SAR helicopter. The SAR team trained with OMR members May 18 in Bremerton, Wash. safety education, is one of nine Mountain Rescue Photo courtesy of Dan Prince, OMR. Association units that operate in Washington State.

Prince said that because OMR frequently works with helicopters in the field during rescue missions, they are required to conduct periodic familiarization training with a live helicopter.

of training because it offers a controlled environment to ask questions or explain procedures in better detail. “This enables the OMR and NASWI SAR teams to function with much greater efficiency once rescue teams are on scene for an actual rescue and a survivor's medical condition requires immediate action,” said Udall.

“In addition to satisfying Washington State training requirements for rescue workers, I believe the mutual training goes a long way towards building confidence to operate together in the field,” said Prince. “We have been involved in many SAR missions as ground support for NAS Whidbey helicopter rescues over the last few years and I’ve seen firsthand the benefit of this type of mutual training."

Prince praised the NAS Whidbey Island SAR crew, LT Alex Castillo, CDR James Udall, HM1 Ryan Mooney, AWS1 Erik Potter and AWS2 Jordan Grysiak who, he said, went out of their way to provide great training and a demonstration of SAR capabilities. Prince said 12 new members received their initial qualifications as a direct result of this training.

The NAS Whidbey Island SAR team highlighted the night vision, high altitude, hoist, rappel, and medical and allweather capabilities of the Navy team.

“I’m a retired naval officer myself,” said Prince, “I can’t help but admire the skill, professionalism, and esprit de corps demonstrated by the highly talented NAS Whidbey SAR team."

During the field-training evolution, the NAS Whidbey Island SAR team displayed the array of medical and rescue equipment available during a rescue, while members of OMR had the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the Sikorsky MH-60S helicopter.

NASWI SAR, which flies the Sikorsky MH-60S, conducts many table top and field training exercises with regional search and rescue partners annually to introduce new team members, accomplish joint training and reinforce partnerships with search and rescue organizations from across the region.

The final evolution was live training where the OMR team was able to deliver a rescue litter to and from an operating helicopter. CDR James Udall, Officer-in-Charge, NAS Whidbey Island SAR, said the teams both value this style



Command Updates HSC-25 Detachment 3 “Lift Kings” Support US 7th Fleet and CSG FIVE

By: LCDR Sean “Ogre” Rice, LT Ashley “Hulk” Ambuehl,” and LT Gabriel “Slick Willy” Pogliano


ay 2018 began an exciting and often unpredictable journey for the “Lift Kings” of HSC-25 Detachment 3. Departing Guam on 5 May aboard USNS Cesar Chavez (T-AKE 14), the mighty Lift Kings kicked off their deployment by completing a 1.5 million pound ordnance upload to USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76). After the initial upload, Det 3 adjusted to a dynamic deployed schedule, conducting weekly VERTREP evolutions in support of Carrier Strike Group Five (CSG-5). The Lift Kings quickly learned that a careful balance would need to be struck between MSC funding and Det readiness requirements. Flight time outside of operational tasking was extremely difficult to coordinate due to ship’s tasking and Lift Kings Vertrep to USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 776). movement requirements. The ship’s Master remained keenly aware of overtime expenses for his crew, and as a result, utiThe Lift Kings returned to Cesar Chavez in late August lizing the flight deck required careful planning around crew to continue their support of CSG-5. In two separate meal times and close monitoring of overtime requirements. instances in September, crews were called upon to recover mail pallets lost overboard by customer vessels. Utilizing Despite these challenges, Det 3 was able to use creative extensive time critical ORM, crews were able to jump scheduling to maximize flight training potential for swimmers and connect extended Mk-92 pennants, allowing currency and SWTP progression. In the Military Sealift the pallets to be lifted from open ocean and returned to Command (MSC) world where HSC detachments are customer ships. During another flight, KING 11 was often seen as more of a burden than an asset, it is important called to rescue three civilian mariners from the Philippine that all detachments lean forward with their utilization Sea who were lost overboard during launching of a RHIB of available hours established in the Memorandum of from Cesar Chavez. The crew was able to mark overhead Understanding between MSC and COMNAVAIRFOR. immediately and rescue all three for quick return to the ship. Unfortunately our detachments are often compared to Puma detachments, which have far fewer currency In mid-October, the Lift Kings’ time with the USNS Cesar requirements and fly only for operational events. Chavez came to an end. After significant planning and some heartfelt goodbyes, the detachment executed an extensive As MSC ships regularly make port to refuel and restock cross deck involving its two MH-60Ss and two Pumas stores, time in port can also reduce available fly days. transferring over 100 pallets of their own equipment and all Fortunately, the Lift Kings were able to target specific in port Det personnel. The Lift Kings would finish the rest of their days and flew regularly from anchor in Sasebo to conduct cruise, along with an efficient ammo offload from the USS training flights to MCAS Iwakuni, local SWTP ASUW Ronald Reagan, aboard USNS Matthew Perry (T-AKE 9). events, and functional check flights. In port flying, particularly for FCF, maintained the detachment’s operational The Lift Kings returned to their loving friends and family capability and maximized underway flying opportunities. on Guam on December 11th after an eventful 7 months at sea. Throughout deployment, Det 3 moved over 8.5 After several months underway with Cesar Chavez, the million pounds of ordnance and cargo, supporting 11 Lift Kings took advantage of a mid-voyage repair period for different ships, while flying nearly 700 flight hours, and the ship in Chinhae, Republic of Korea to shore base in Popromoting two officers, advancing one Chief and 11 Sailors. hang, ROK and work with the ROK Navy 631st Squadron. The Lift Kings will be forever proud of their contribuFlying alongside their UH-60Ps and UH-1Hs, Det 3 was tions to U.S. 7th Fleet and grateful for the relationships able to conduct joint TERF, SOF, SAR, and DLQ training. established with their MSC and international partners. Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


BattleCats Have a New Skipper By: LTJG Grady Weber, USN


n July 3rd, Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 73 (HSM-73) conducted a change of command at NAS North Island, San Diego, CA. Concluding a successful tour as Commanding Officer, Commander John Anderson was relieved by the Executive Officer, Commander Norman Cruz. CDR Norman Cruz was born and raised in San Diego, California, before attending the University of California at Los Angeles where he graduated with a degree in Sociology in 2001. He received his commission via the Naval Reserve Officer’s Training Corps Unit at UCLA. CDR Cruz has earned a Master of Sciences in Homeland Security (San Diego State University, 2010), a Master of Arts in National Security Strategic Studies, and JPME Phase I (U.S. Naval War College, 2012). CDR Cruz received his aviator warfare pin in October 2003 through Advanced Helicopter training at NAS Whiting Field, Milton, Florida. CDR Cruz was assigned to his first operational tour with the “Battlecats” of HSL-43, San Diego, California in July 2004. He served as a Detachment Assistant Operations Officer and Maintenance Officer and as squadron Quality Assurance Officer, participated in numerous support operations on ships that deployed in the Western Pacific, and Arabian Gulf regions and earned his Aircraft Commander Designation in April 2006. His tour culminated with his selection as the 2007 HSL-43 Pilot of the Year. CDR Cruz then reported as a Helicopter Fleet Replacement Instructor Pilot in October to the “Seahawks” of HSM-41, where he completed his tour as the squadron Quality Assurance Officer.

CDR Cruz, the new CO of HSM-73

CDR Cruz returned to the fleet as a Department Head in HSM-35, the “Magicians.” There he served as both Operations Officer and Maintenance Officer where his efforts directly contributed to the Navy’s first aviation composite detachment onboard LCS. CDR Cruz was selected as the 2014 HSM-35 Officer of the Year. Following his department head tour CDR Cruz served as the Executive Officer for EUCOM, J3 Directorate, Integrated Air and Missile Defense Division. His efforts directly supported the achievement of the Technical Capability Declaration and Operational Validation of the European Phased Adaptive Approach Phase 2 which integrated the Aegis Ashore Missile Defense System into the overall NATO ballistic missile defense system architecture. He selected for squadron command in March 2016 and reported to HSM73 as Executive Officer in May 2018.

In November 2010, CDR Cruz’ next assignment was as a Global Support Augmentee to Afghanistan. There he served as the International Joint Center Rotary Wing Operations Officer at Kabul Afghanistan, an Air Planner for the 101st Airborne Division at Bagram Airfield and subsequently trained as a Brigade Electronic Warfare Officer and provided Counter Radio Controlled Improvised Explosive Device services to Polish Battlegroups ALPHA/BRAVO, 101st Airborne Division, 1st Calvary, EOD Flights 450/751, and an Operational Detachment Alpha Team at Forward Operating Base Ghazni, Afghanistan.

CDR Cruz has accumulated over 2000 flight hours with over 900 Aircraft Commander Hours in the SH60B, MH60R helicopters, and the MQ-8B UAV. CDR Cruz has been awarded the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation and Achievement Medals in addition to other unit awards.



Engaging Rotors

March 8, 2019 TOP ROW: Lt.Col. Gregory R. Curtis, USMC, Commanding Officer HT-28; ENS Jeremy L. Simpson, USN, HT-18; LTJG Nathan T. Jones, USCG, HT-8; LTJG Michael G. Schafer, USN, HT-28; 1st Lt. Brennen B Jaeb, USMC, HT-8; ENS Ruthvik A. Kumar, USN, HT-18; ENS Kevin G. Mckelvey, USN, HT-18; Col David C. Morris, USMC, Commodore TRAWING-5 . MIDDLE ROW: Kenneth M. Kerr, USN, Commanding Officer HT-18; ENS Chase W. Sax, USN, HT-28; ENS Harrison G. Westfall, USN, HT-28; 1st Lt. Conor J. Howe, USMC, HT-8; LTJG Mitchell P. Reynolds, USN, HT-18; ENS Matthew S. Smutny, USN, HT-8; CDR Matthew Persiani, USN, Commanding Officer HSC-22. BOTTOM ROW: CDR Jessica R. Parker, USN, Commanding Officer HT-8; LTJG Jacob T. Mullins, USCG, HT-8; LTJG Karisa L. Maurer, USCG, HT-8; 1st Lt. Daniel T. Lillie, USMC, HT-28; LTJG Theron C. Dingas, USN, HT-18; ENS Molly K. McGuckin, USN, HT-18; LTJG Jennifer L. Wukawitz, USN, HT-18.

March 22, 2019 TOP ROW: Lt.Col. Gregory R. Curtis, USMC, Commanding Officer HT-28; 1st Lt Wesley D. Pond, USMC, HT-18; 1st Lt Jackson P. Morgan, USMC, HT-18; ENS Sterling M. Lambert, USN, HT-18 LTJG. John F. Roccato, USN, HT-8; LTJG Matthew G. Zavalij, USCG, HT-28, ‘ ENS Joshua W. Antol, USN, HT-28; LTJG Ryan M. Towart, USN, HT-28; LTJG Abdulrahman Alorayfij, RSNF, HT-8. MIDDLE ROW: CDR Kenneth M. Kerr, USN, Commanding Officer HT-18; 1st Lt Jonathan L. Barrau, USMC, HT-18; 1st Lt Mitchell L. Wolfe, USMC, HT-8; Lt.j.g. Rudy J. Goff, USN, HT-8; ENS Charles E. Berger, USN, HT-18; LTJG Andrew M. Jost, USN, HT-28; Lt.j.g. Robert M. Huttula, USN, HT-18. LTJG Jessica R. Fromularo, USN, HT-28; CDR Vincent Jansen, USCG, Coast Guard Naval Safety Center Liaison; CAPT Douglas Rosa, USN, Commodore TRAWING-5. BOTTOM ROW: CDR Jessica R. Parker, USN, Commanding Officer HT-8; LTJG Sean M. Ryan, USN, HT-8; LTJG John M. Devereaux, USN, HT-8; 1st Lt Nicholas D. Mantz, USMC, HT-8; 1st Lt Scott C. Ziebelman, USMC, HT-18; ENS Daniel F. Gomez, USN, HT-28, ENS Alexander K. Dinelli, USN, HT-8 ENS James R. Camaliche, USN, HT-18 ; LTJG Joshua D. Smoak, USN, HT-28.

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


May 10, 2019 TOP ROW: LtCol Gregory R Curtis, USMC, Commanding Officer-HT-28; LTJG Patrick R Fonda, USN, HT-8; ENS Ryan A Adair, USN, HT-28; ENS Jordan E Davis, USN, HT-18; ENS Christian M. Lavachek, USN, HT-28; ENS Oliver X Ni, USN, HT-28; LTJG Cody R Hull, USN, HT-18; LTJG Daniel E Logan, USN, HT-18; 1stLt Philip B Bowers, USMC, HT-8; LT Andrew C. Dinmore, USN, HT-18; LtCol James T Hoffman, USMC, Deputy Inspector General 3d Marine Aircraft Wing MIDDLE ROW: LtCol John R Beal, USMC, Executive Officer HT-18; LTJG Alexis R W Kaula, USN, HT-8; ENS Jacob C Best, USN, HT-28; LTJG Spenserr B. Jones, USN, HT-18; ENS Hermes Ammirabile De Biasi, ITNAV, HT-18; LTJG Alyssia Lamonaca, USCG, HT-18; LTJG Peter S Chambers, USCG, HT-8; ENS Nathan B Marshall, USN, HT-28; ENS George N Smith, USN, HT-8; LTJG Sean J Murray, USN, HT-18; CAPT Douglas Rosa, USN, Commodore TRAWING-5. BOTTOM ROW: CDR Jessica Parker, USN, Commanding Officer HT-8; ENS Gabriel R Larios, USN, HT-18; LTJG Joshua M Greenstein, USN, HT-18; LTJG Rachel M Seaman, USCG, HT-28.

May 23, 2019 LTJG Meghan E Treece, USN, HT-8; LTJG Sean S Kshimetski, USCG, HT-28; LTJG Christopher V Scanga, USN, HT-18; LTJG Rushi S Desai, USN, HT-18; ENS Mary G Waters, USN, HT-8; ENS Christopher A Spadaro, USN, HT-28; ENS Olivia, C Czerewko, USN, HT-18. TOP ROW: CDR Nathan K Moore, USN, Executive Officer HT-28; Lt Jeffrey R Davis, USCG, HT-8; 1stLt Michael R Dartnell, USMC, HT-8; LTJG Raffaele Nigro, ITNAV, HT-28; ENS Peter C Shelton, USN, HT-28; ENS Bradley D. Scheiner, USN, HT-28; Lt Tevin L Porter-Perry, USCG, HT-8; LTJG Matthew J King, USN, HT-8; LTJG Tanner S Williams, USN, HT-28, Col Jeffrey M Pavelko, USMC, Deputy Commodore TRAWING-5. MIDDLE ROW: CDR Kenneth M. Kerr, USN, CO HT-18; 1stLt Michael A Fecteau, USMC, HT-28; ENS Kevin Dâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Osvualdo, ITNAV, HT-28; LTJG Tomas M. Hetzel, USN, HT-28; LTJG Carlton B Spalding, USN, HT-8; LTJG Benjamin S Thomas Junior, USN, HT-18; ENS Anthony N D Smith, USN, HT-18; ENS Maxwell C. Bevill, USN, HT-8; 1stLt Ethan C. Lare, USMC, HT-18; CAPT John C Compton, USN, Commander Navy Region South East Operations Officer. BOTTOM ROW: CDR Jessica R Parker, USN, Commanding Officer HT-8; ENS Christy E Green, USN, HT-18; ENS Alana A Brady, USN, HT-8; ENS Carlie R Spore, USN, HT-28; ENS Andrew J. Grant, USN, HT-28; LTJG Micahel W Vare, USN, HT-8; ENS Kyle G Pettys, USN, HT-28; LTJG Joshua G Hilario, USN, HT-18; LTJG John W Kazanjian, USN, HT-18, USN. 91


Signal Charlie CAPT Dick Catone, USN (Ret.) following a memorial service for a fellow helicopter pilot, is credited with the following statement: “I guess we are all in starboard delta waiting for Signal Charlie.” Starboard Delta is the holding pattern for the airborne Search and Rescue helicopters on the starboard (right) side of the aircraft carrier.They fly at a low altitude so as not to interfere with the fixed-wing aircraft recovery pattern, and only land when the last fixed-wing aircraft is safe on board. When tower calls the helicopter to pass “Charlie” to a landing spot, the crew knows the fixed-wing recovery is complete, all is well, and it is time to come back. Hence, the statement appears appropriate that someday we will receive our own “Signal Charlie” and will be called home for a final landing. Signal Charlie has been created to inform our membership and honor the passing of fellow unrestricted aviators. It is only as good as the information we receive.  If you have an obituary or other information that you would like to provide concerning the passing of a shipmate, co-worker, or friend of the community please contact the NHA national office at signalcharlie@navalhelicopterassn.org and we will get the word out.

CDR Donald Gordon Futral, USN (Ret.)


DR Donald Gordon Futral, USN (Ret.) was a graduate of Aviation Officer Candidate School, NAS Pensacola, FL and received his wings in HT-8, at NAS Ellyson Field, Pensacola, FL on May 21, 1971 and his helicopter designator number is 11621. CDR Futral reported to HS-1 and eventually to HS-3, HS-1 again and HS-9 flying the SH-3D/H SeaKing Helicopter. CDR Futral was born on January 8, 1947 and passed away on Wednesday, May 1, 2019. CDR Futral was a resident of Griffin, Georgia at the time of passing. CDR Futral retired from the United States Navy, having served during the Vietnam War as a helicopter pilot specializing in antisubmarine warfare and search and rescue. A visitation for CDR Donald Gordon Futral,USN(Ret,) was Saturday, May 11, 2019 at the First Baptist Church in Griffin Georgia. In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests contributions to the First Baptist Church Benevolence Fund. Memories of CDR Doanld Gordon Futral, USN (Ret.) by Squadron Mates; “Don was my Admin Officer in HS-9 in the 1984/1985 time frame. He was an excellent aviator, well-respected, had a great sense of humor—and, if I’m not mistaken, he was really into wind surfing.” CAPT Jim Toone, USN (Ret.) “To all, it has obviously been a long time and I don’t remember any details of my interaction with Don. I can tell you that Don was part of a very successful SH-3 Antisubmarine Squadron – Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Three (HS-3) – the Tridents. The Squadron was base at NAS Jacksonville, Fl and deployed aboard the USS Forrestal (CV 59) home ported at Mayport, Fl. The Squadron deployed onboard the USS Forrestal to the Mediterranean in 1978 during which time all operational objectives were met plus the rescue of two F-4 crewman and a medical evacuation from an Oceanographic ship. The Squadron’s Aircraft Maintenance Department was tops among East Coast H-3 Squadrons which lead to high aircraft availability and ultimately to winning the Battle “E” two years in a row – best East Coast H-3 Squadron. Don was part of a winning team in which every Officer and Enlisted person contributed to make HS-3 a great Squadron.” CDR O. C. Fowler, USN (Ret.) “Don and I were in HS-9 in the early eighties. He relieved Mike Ryan as Admino and was my roommate on board Carl Vinson during one of the SAR dets we provided during Vinson’s sea trials. A really good guy who loved cigars and a good whiskey. Dry sense of humor, good stick and great shipmate. He will be missed." CAPT Bill McCamy, USN (Ret.) "Don and I were stationed together in Puerto Rico, 1972-1974. We flew the H-3 in support of the Atlantic Fleet Weapons Training Center…carrying people, parts and whatever to the various outlying sites. We also did drone recovery and rounded up cattle. We called ourselves the Short Haul Island Transport guys. I remember one event we flew together…the ferry guys who delivered our reworked helos could not seem to get past Nassau. So we had to fly up there to pick it up. We flew up there in an HU-16…Albatross. Did you ever fly in one of those? Did you ever do a water landing? We got the helo to Grand Turk. Had to wait for a Duck Butt….you know what that is, right.? 350 miles over water, ADF navigation…no GPS in those days. We made it!! Don was not married then, but he hosted some very great parties…and us married guys were invited along with our wives. He made a killer Bloody Mary. I have the recipe to this day and will share.” CAPT Bill Roop, USN (Ret.)

Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


CDR Charles David Craft, USN (Ret.)


DR Charles David Craft, USN (Ret.) former Commanding Officer HSL-35, passed away on October 10, 2018. CDR Chuck Craft served in the USN as a Naval Aviator and helicopter pilot. Following flight training he was assigned to HU-1 and HU-4 NAS Lakehurst NJ. During this tour of duty, he deployed to the Antarctic and Artic aboard icebreakers. Following that tour he reported to HT-8, NAS Ream Field, as a flight instructor. His next assignment was HU-4. He served in Vietnam on the staff of CTF 116 Mobile Riverine Force (Brown Water Navy). After his tour in Vietnam he was assigned as the Officer-in-Charge Crows Landing. Following his assignment as Commanding Officer of HSL-35 he served on the ASWWINGPAC staff until his retirement March 31, 1976. He and Phyllis, daughter Laura and son Christopher settled in Modesto California.

CAPT Robert R. "Bob" Hanke, USN (Ret.)


APT Robert R. "Bob" Hanke, USN (Ret.) passed away on May 25, 2019 after a short but valiant fight with brain cancer. He was 75 years old.

Bob started his naval career on June 12, 1965. He graduated from Northwestern University, commissioned as an Ensign through NROTC and married Janice, all on the same day. He was winged as an unrestricted Naval Aviator on August 30, 1966. In that same year, Bob started his long association with the Sikorsky H-3 Sea King, when he began training with the Seahorses of HS-1 in Key West, FL. In 1969, he flew with the Tridents of HS-3 off USS Guadacanal (LPH 7) in the mission to recover Apollo 9. Bob went on to complete both his department head and command tours with the Red Lions of HS-15 in Lakehurst, NJ and Jacksonville, FL respectively. He also was a graduate of the Naval Post Graduate School in Monterey, CA. After squadron command, Bob was then selected to become the first helicopter pilot to serve as a carrier Air Boss, reporting to USS Forrestal (CV 59) in 1980. He returned to shore duty in 1982, to command the Seahorses of HS-1. After a tour in the Pentagon, Bob returned to command again, this time in Patuxent River, MD with the Pioneers of VX-1. After his operational flying career, Bob continued to command in the amphibious Navy with CO tours on USS Guam (LPH-9) and USS Wasp (LHD 1). He finished his 30 year active duty career on the joint staff at US Special Operations Command in MacDill AFB in 1995. From 1965 -1995 he flew over 4,000 hours in a over a dozen models of aircraft, including all variants of the Sikorsky H-3 Sea King. He also served as an NHA Trustee. Bob was an avid reader and runner, who also enjoyed taking care of his cars. Finally after over 60 years of cheering, he got to see his hometown Chicago Cubs finally win the World Series in 2016. He is survived by his wife of 53 years Janice and their two sons Skip and Jeff. Both sons followed their father in to Navy service. Skip served as a Supply Corps Officer and Helicopter Control Officer. Jeff was lucky enough to also become an unrestricted Naval Aviator, and received Bob's Wings of Gold, 30 years to the day after his father earned them. Jeff retired in 2014.



CAPT George Eugene Wilson Jr., USN (Ret.)


APT George Eugene Wilson Jr., USN (Ret.), age 76, of Montgomery, Alabama passed away on Tuesday March 5, 2019. George was born April 20, 1942 in Greenwood, Mississippi to Virgie Ellie Wilson and George Eugene Wilson. George is survived by his wife, Linda Wilson; son Wade Wilson; son Greg Wilson (Michelle); daughter Lara Wilson (Tracy); sister Isabel Fitzgerald (John); grandchildren, Van, Daniel, Lexy, Ashley, Isabella, Jule and Elle; and sister-in-law, Sandy Van-Harris. He was preceded in death by his father George Eugene Wilson and mother Virgie Ellie Wilson. CAPT Wilson was a Commanding Officer of HS-9 and Commander COMTRAWING 4. CAPT Wilson received his wings at HT-8 at NAS Ellyson field, Pensacola, FL on November 18, 1966. CAPT Wilson is Navy Helicopter Pilot

Designator Number 8696.

A decorated 35-year Navy veteran, Captain Wilson received many awards and medals to include Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit and Vietnam Service Medal with Bronze star. In his spare time and retirement years George ‘Bullet’ Wilson was an inexhaustible runner, winning his age group many times. He was active in Frazer UMC, Good Morning Montgomery Kiwanis Club, Military Officers Association of America and the U.S. Naval Academy Alumni Association. Since he was a young child in Mississippi through his final years, George absolutely loved the outdoors whether it be hunting, fishing, bird-watching, gardening or yard work he thrived on experiencing and being a good steward to God’s creation. A memorial service and celebration of the life of George was held March 23, 2019 at Frazier United Methodist Church, 6000 Atlanta Hwy, Montgomery, AL 36117. An interment ceremony will follow in the coming months at Arlington National Cemetery. Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.WhiteChapel-GreenwoodFH.com for the Wilson family. If desired, in lieu of flowers, a donation to the Fisher Center for Alzheimer’s may be made (www.alzinfo.org/donate). LCDR Steve Letchworth, USN (Ret.)


CDR Steven Letchworth passed away on March 30, 2019 after a long battle with cancer. Steve, affectionately known as Letch by his squadron mates, was born in Dallas, Texas on March 30, 1950. His father was an Air Force chaplain and they spent a lot of time in Spain during his childhood. His favorite childhood memories were of his home in Seville, Spain. Steve joined the Navy shortly after he graduated from Southern Methodist University in 1972 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. He was commissioned June 22, 1973 after which he went off to flight school. Letch received his “Wings of Gold” on May 10, 1974 at HT-18, NAS Ellison Field in Pensacola, Florida with Naval Helicopter Designator Number 12967. Letch was stationed at NAS North Island in San Diego, CA flying the CH-46 Sea Knight. He flew the Phrog with HC-3 as a detachment pilot and a Det OINC doing VERTREP from replenishment ships as well as Search and Rescue. He received citations for meritorious service for rescuing a Cuban refugee from a sinking boat in the Straits of Florida and for saving the lives of 25 sailors from a merchant vessel in the South China Sea. Capt Bill Personius, the previous NHA Executive Director, was a JO in his detachment. Steve and his family settled in Chula Vista permanently in 1991, retiring from active duty in 1994 after 21 years of naval service. After retirement, he became a flight simulator instructor for contractors training pilots in the CH-46 and MH-60S helicopters for the fleet replacement squadron HC-3 at North Island. He took great pride in singlehandedly creating a revision to the CH-46 operations manual and was well known for his expertise as an instructor for the Helicopter Instrument Training School known as HITS. A near-death experience at age six convinced him of the truth of salvation through Jesus Christ. His faith was a source of daily comfort to him, and he considered his Methodist brothers and sisters like his family. Steve is survived by his wife, Nancy Letchworth, his son Daniel Letchworth and his daughter-in-law Kohleun Adamson. Rotor Review #145 Summer ‘19


CAPT John Stephenson Daly, USN (Ret.)


APT John Stephenson Daly, USN (Ret.), received his eternal wings on Memorial Day, May 30, 2016. He was 80 years old. He was born in August 1935 and was raised in West Hollywood, Ca. He entered the Navy in 1955 as a Naval Aviation Cadet. CAPT Daly received his wings and Navy Helicopter Designation Number 3345 in HTU-1 at NAS Ellyson Field, Pensacola, FL on February 20, 1957. CAPT Daly completed four tours of duty with four separate naval anti-submarine warfare helicopter squadrons. He commanded Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (HS)-6 at Naval Air Station (NAS) Imperial Beach and subsequently HS-10 at NAS North Island, Coronado. During the Vietnam War, he served three tours of duty and received multiple military decorations. During his 32 plus years in the Navy, he attended the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, Ca, where he received a Bachelor’s Degree and George Washington University where he received a Master of Science in International Affairs. He also graduated from the Naval War College in Newport, RI, the Defense Department Intelligence School, and the National War College, both in Washington, DC. He completed his Naval career as the Commander and Professor of Naval Science, Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (NROTC) at the University of New Mexico (UNM), Albuquerque, NM. He is the honored recipient of the UNM Regents’ Meritorious Service Medal in recognition of extraordinary and distinguished service to the University for outstanding teaching, service to students, performance in faculty and University governance, and overall contributions which have enhanced the institution. Upon military service retirement, he was a Senior Engineer and aerospace consultant for the Los Alamos Technical Associates. John was a longtime resident of Coronado and was an active member of the Coronado Rotary Club, where he served three years on the Club’s Board of Directors and one year as the President. He is survived by his children, J. Michael, Timothy, Mary Cathleen, and Kevin, and seven grandchildren. A family memorial service was held at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery on July 8, 2016.

Here’s one from our summer of 1973 HS-6 cruise aboard USNS Corpus Christi Bay. CAPT Daly is the smiling guy in the middle of this group of HS-6 pilots on that cruise to the South Pacific, wearing the HS-6 ball cap. The pilot on the far left in this photo is then ENS Jack Thompson. The third pilot to the right of Skipper Daly is long ago retired CAPT Jeff Wiant, then a LT, also now deceased. Standing next to Jack is Mike Baxter, who worked for Sikorsky for many years. The pilot wearing the combination cover is John Smith. Looks like we were having an abandon ship drill on that old seaplane tender! May God rest his soul. CAPT Steve Arends, USN (Ret.)



It's that time of year again! NHA is now accepting entries for the 7th Annual NHA Rotor Review Photo Contest. You may submit your photos between August 5 - October 4, 2019 Submit your entries on the NHA Website: https://www.navalhelicopterassn.org/2019-photo-contest


7th Annual Rotor Review Photo Contest is open to all Naval Helicopter Association (NHA) members and family except NHA Staff and Rotor Review Editorial Staff, including their immediate families, (spouse, parents, siblings, and children).

Entry Period

The 7th Annual Rotor Review Photo Contest begins at 12:00a.m. PDT on August 5, 2019 and ends October 4, 2019, 11:59p.m. PDT (the “Entry Period”). Entries submitted before or after the Entry Period will not be eligible. Date on submission form will be the official date of entry for the contest.

What to Enter

There are two categories for images. Images with historical significance and images depicting current topics. Acceptable photo entries need to be high resolution with a 300 dpi or more and without extensive photo manipulation (no photoshopping with the exception of cropping or minor contrast adjustments). Include a caption and a brief description of your photographic process (camera used, lens, settings, lighting and any post production image manipulation). All entries must meet the following guidelines: Any entries that do not meet the guidelines above will be disqualified Media does not display any classified information or material. No depictions of sensitive actions or personnel. No “outside” NATOPS maneuvers or actions or said actions that could be perceived as violating procedures. All submissions should portray the Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard in a positive light.


All NHA members will judge the entries of the 7th Annual Rotor Review Photo and Video Contest. The voting process will begin 12:00a.m. PDT on November 1, 2019 and end at 11: 59p.m. PDT on November 30, 2019. Entries will be assigned a random number and scored on a point system. Multiple judging emails from a single address will only be counted once.


NHA will give out the following prizes for winning photos in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place in both Current and Historical categories. 1st Prize: $200.00 Visa Gift Card 2nd Prize: $100.00 Visa Gift Card 3rd Prize: $50.00 Visa Gift Card The 1st Prize Photo submissions will be on upcoming covers of Rotor Review.

Authorization of Release : Entry into this contest authorizes the Rotor Review Editorial Staff and NHA authorization to publish in Rotor Review and any other NHA media.






Join on line: JOIN US

http://www.navalhelicopterassn.org/join2 Now is an exciting time to become a NHA Member!

Now is an e x c iting time to be c o m e a NHA Me m b e r !

Naval Helicopter Association P.O BOX 180578 CORONADO, CA 92178-0578

Naval Helicopter Association Membership Application (circle selection)

Name ________________________________________ Rank / Grade _____________ Branch of Service:



Profession: Pilot




Active Duty Civilian

Retired Other

Aircraft Flown:___________________________________________________________ Mailing Address: ___________________________________________________________________ City: ________________________________________________ State_____ Zip Code____________ Unit / Squadron ____________________ Current Assignment____________ Ship / Station_________ Warfare Community (i.e. HSC / HSM / HM / VMM / CG) _____________________________________ Primary Phone Number: ______________________________________ Home



Secondary Phone Number (optional) : ____________________________Home



Email Address:______________________________________________________________________ Level of Membership: 1 year - $40.00

3 years - $110.00

2 year-Nugget (O-1 / O-2 on first tour) - $40.00

5 years - 175.00

2 year Retired - $65

1 year Enlisted Membership - $15.00

Profile for Naval Helicopter Association, Inc

Rotor Review Summer 2019 #145  

Rotor Review 145 Summer is on line! Rotary Force Innovation and Integration. Browse through this issue for Symposium highlights, a look at...

Rotor Review Summer 2019 #145  

Rotor Review 145 Summer is on line! Rotary Force Innovation and Integration. Browse through this issue for Symposium highlights, a look at...

Profile for rotorrev