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VSF-1 Warhawks

VSF-1 Warhawks

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1965 Jon Selah

Warhawks - 1965
"Boom" Powell

From John W. Hays

Patch
  • The Eagle's head adopted by the small number of plankowners came from the first commanding officer's family crest.
    There was some justification in a new insignia as the squadron had a new mission; flying fighters from aircraft carriers dedicated to ASW. New? Doesn't that describe VC squadrons from WWII and Korea? There were many Composite Squadrons. Each had an insignia. Each had at least some tradition to build on.

    When the detachment left at Naval Air Station Alameda grew larger than the deployed VSF-1, it became VSF-3... and an attack squadron in all but name. Here was another opportunity to continue tradition. A tiny cadre persistently submitted the insignia of previous squadrons. The cadre had what they felt was winner; TorpRon Three which was on Yorktown at Midway. The number was the same. The crest a red dragon wrapped around a bomb; VSF-3's color and new mission. Alas, the traditionalists were voted down.
    R. R. Boom Powell, Cdr, USN (Ret), VSF-1 1966 & VSF-3 1967

Handle
  • Warhawks

Heritage
Home Ports
  • 1968 -69: NAS Alameda

Air Wings
  • No info yet

Deployments
  • 1966 - 1967: CVS-38 - A-4B - - Mediterranean
  • 1968 - 1969: CVA-62 - A-4B - - Mediterranean
  • 1969: USS Yorkton NATO Cruise

Aircraft
Commanding Officers
Events
  • September 1965?
    VSF-1 is commisioned.

  • 01 JUL 1966:
    Anti-Submarine Fighter Squadron One -- VSF-1 was split in half:
    • One half remained as VSF-1 and deployed on the USS Shangri-La CVS-38 to the Mediterranean.
    • The other half was called VSF-1 Det Alameda
    • VSF-1 Det Alameda was then renamed VSF-3 Chessmen.
  • Unit history from Jon Selah:
    I joined the squadron in Sept. 65 at Alameda. At that time we had 0 aircraft. By October we had picked up around 15 A/C from reserve units around the US. Originally the planes were painted Red as we were the first VSF squadron. Orders came down from BUAIR to change to GREEN. All A/C were painted green with the exception of Cdr. Waring's, it remained Red.
    The squadron made several Carrier Quals on various ships, including Kearserge (sp), Bennington, Hornet, and Yorktown. We also made TAD trips to Yuma and Fallon.
    The first Detachment was to go WestPac on the Yorktown in Jan. 66. We had gone on an ORI with the Yorktown in late October or early November. While on Christmas leave I received a telegram stating that the cruise was cancelled and to report back on my scheduled day. When I returned to base, I was told the cruise was back on. We packed everything and loaded it into a big Pink 18-wheeler. While we were just below rotation speed in the R4 the pilot braked the plane and we taxi'd back to the OPS Building. The CO. was there in his flight gear and told us the cruise was "Off Again". He then flew back to DC. to find out what was going on. During this time we were restricted to base.
    The story about the Pink 18- wheeler is funny. The California Highway Patrol was called and asked to stop the truck. I don't think it even made it out of the Bay Area before the driver was stopped.
    Upon the CO.'s return, we were kept on a possible movement footing pending the Yorktown's departure from Hawaii just in case the Navy again changed it's mind about sending us.
    Sometime in Feb. 66 it was determined that we were not going to the Yorktown. We then shifted gears and made a TAD to Fallon for bombing practice. It was while we were at Fallon that we were given "Charlie the Chicken-Hawk". The story we were told was that a helo crew just happened to fly over Charlie and he was struggling on the ground, having been shot by some hunter with a shotgun. His wing was torn up pretty badly. The crew landed, picked up Charlie and he was given medical attention for his wound. Since our squadron had the 'Eagle' on our patch, Charlie was given to us as a mascot.
    There was a competition in the squadron to come up with a design for the patch. An AM2, I don't remember his name, came up with the final design. I have a hand painted "flag" hanging in my office that was used in the final competition.

  • Deployed 1966; returned 1967:
    VSF-1 deployed on the United States Ship Shangri-La CVS-38 to the Mediterranean.

  • Deployed 1968; returned 1969
    VSF-1 deployed on the United States Ship Independence CVA-62 to the Mediterranean.

  • 1969: NATO Cruise on the USS Yorktown. Carrier Quals were conducted aboard the USS INdependence prior to the cruise.

  • Aprox APR 1970: VSF-1 disestablished.

Awards
  • No info yet

Photographs


BuNo144893 on the ramp.
From "Boom" Powell

05 FEB 1966: War Hawks Skyhawk BuNo 145002, NA-82, with a F11F Tiger nose parked on the ramp.
Unknown Photographer via W. Mutza

VSF-1 Commanding Officer and Rudolph the Red Nosed Skyhawk (BuNo.145002).

1966 Warhawks Skyhawk BuNo 142872, NA-87, and squadron Blue Jackets.
Photo from Jon Selah.

Mar 1966 War Eagles Skyhawk BuNo 145002, NA-82, with Tiger nose and Fallon Det. Officers & Bluejackets.
Photo from Jon Selah.

Nov 1966 Warhawks Skyhawk BuNo 144967, NA-89, parked on the ramp.
Photo by Clay Jansson via Tailhook Association.

Nov 1966 Warhawks Skyhawk BuNo 144967, NA-89 tail.
Photo by Clay Jansson via Tailhook Association.

1966 War Eagles Skyhawks BuNo 144869, AJ-580, and BuNo 144999, AJ-578, in formation while operating from the USS Shangri La.
Photo from Charlie Waring via "Boom" Powell.

1966 War Eagles Skyhawk BuNo 144999, AJ-578, in flight while operating from the USS Shangri La.
Photo from Charlie Waring via "Boom" Powell.

1966 War Eagles Skyhawks BuNo 144954, AJ-571, BuNo 145022, AJ-570, BuNo 144955, AJ-578 and BuNo 144956, AJ-577, in formation while over the USS Shangri La.
Photo from Charlie Waring via "Boom" Powell.

1966: CDR Waring poses in front of one of the War Eagles Skyhawks.
Photo from "Boom" Powell.

1966: War Eagles pilots in front of one of the squadrons Skyhawks. L-R: (all are LTjg) Howie Fowler, Gerry Evans, Bob Powell, Phil Mall. Fowler deployed with VSF-1 in Shangri La, while the others wound up in VSF-3 in Intrepid.
Photo from "Boom" Powell.

1966: VSF-1 Skyhawks on the Alameda ramp, front to back: BuNo 145002, NA-83, (aka Rudi); BuNo 144999, NA-78; and BuNo 142809.
"Boom Powell"

1966: VSF-1 Skyhawk formation, from top BuNo 145022, NA-70; BuNo 144954, NA-71; BuNo 144983, NA-72; and BuNo 142877, NA-73.
"Boom Powell"

1966: War Eagles Skyhawk formation, cw from top BuNo 144869, AJ-580; BuNo 144994, AJ-574; BuNo 144983, AJ-572; and BuNo 142872, AJ-582.
"Boom Powell"

1966-67: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 144893, AJ-500, and Sunliners A-4E BuNo 151052, AJ-405, parked near the Shang's island.
"Boom Powell"

Late 1966, early 67: VSF-1 was still a fighter squadron with NA (not applicable, we joked) two digit nose numbers when this was taken. Navy publicity photo for article in Howie Fowler's (he’s in the foreground) northern CA hometown newspaper.
"Boom Powell"

28 OCT 1966: partial view of VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 144943 parked on the ramp next to VSF-1 BuNo 145002, NA-88, aka Rudi with the Tiger nose graft.
"Boom Powell"

Circa 1966: VSF-1 Skyhawk formation: BuNo 142877, NA-73; BuNo 144983, NA-72; BuNo 144954, NA-71 and BuNo 145022, NA-70.
"Boom Powell"

28 OCT 1966: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 144967, NA-89, parked on the ramp next to BuNo 145002, NA-88, (aka Rudi).
"Boom Powell"

Circa 1966: 12 o'clock view of VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 144967, NA-89, parked on the ramp.
"Boom Powell"

Circa 1966: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 144967, NA-89, as she passes over the Golden gate bridge.
"Boom Powell"

Late 1966, early 67: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 144989, NA-79, in flight after recent washing - no oil streaks from the J-65 engine. Markings on tail are dark green.
"Boom Powell"

1966: VSF-1 Skyhawks on the Alameda ramp, front to back: BuNo 145002, NA-83, (aka Rudi); BuNo 144999, NA-78; and BuNo 142809.
"Boom Powell"

28 OCT 1966: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 145002, NA-88, (aka Rudi) parked on the ramp next to BuNo 144967, NA-89.
"Boom Powell"

Circa 1966: War Eagles Skyhawk BuNo 145022, AJ-570, and squadron pilots from the Shangrii-La cruise.
"Boom Powell"

Circa 1966: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 145022, NA-70.
"Boom Powell"

Circa 1966: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 145022, NA-70, aboard the Bennington as CDR C.E. Waring commemorates his 500th carrier landing.
"Boom Powell"

Circa 1966: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 145022, AJ-570, Charlie Hawk and CDR C.E. Waring.
"Boom Powell"

1966-67: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 145022, AJ-570, traps aboard the Shang.
"Boom Powell"

1968: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 150598, AG-514, BuNo 147703, AG-503, and Spirits BuNo 147749, AG-310, as they prepare to launch from the Independence. Note the Plane Guard is about to launch.
"Boom Powell"

Circa 1966: CDR Waring poses in front of one of the War Eagles Skyhawks.
"Boom Powell"

1966: War Eagles pilots in front of one of the squadrons Skyhawks. L-R: (all are LTjg) Howie Fowler, Gerry Evans, Bob Powell, Phil Mall. Fowler deployed with VSF-1 in Shangri La, while the others wound up in VSF-3 in Intrepid.
"Boom Powell"

25 May 1967 Warhawks Skyhawk BuNo 142872, AJ-82, tail section.
Photo by Clay Jansson via Tailhook Association.

1967: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 142730, AJ-576, drags the drogue for VF-13 F-8D Crusader BuNo 148692, AJ-102.
"Boom Powell"

1966-67 Skyhawk, NA-70 & CDR Waring after commemorating the 500th landing aboard the USS Bennington.
Photo from Jon Selah.

1967 BuNo 145022, AJ-570, and squadron pilots from the Shangrii-La cruise.
Photo from Jon Selah.

10 Oct 1968 VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 147701, AG-531, parked on the ramp.
Photo from "Boom" Powell.

Circa 1969: Warhawks Skyhawk BuNo 149497, AG-502, being maneuvered into position by the deck crew and a tillie bar.
Photo by Naval Aviation News

10 OCT 1968: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 147701, AG-531, parked on the ramp.
"Boom" Powell

10 OCT 1968: VSF-1 Skyhawk BuNo 147728, AG-507, parked on the ramp. VSF-1 BuNo 147701, AG-531, in the foreground.
"Boom" Powell

10 AUG 1969: Warhawks Skyhawk BuNo 148553, AG-513, parked on the ramp.
R. Lock

1969: Warhawks Skyhawk formation, from top - bottom: BuNo 1477xx, BuNo 147728, AG-507, BuNo 149497, AG-502 and BuNo 149583, AG-504.
Naval Aviation News photo

VSF-1 BuNo144983 parked on the ramp.
From "Boom" Powell.


Sources
  • "Boom" Powell
  • M. D. Carey
  • Harry Gann"
  • John Hayes
  • John D. Lowry
  • Jon Selah
  • Gary Verver
  • Tailhook Association
  • Clay Jansson
  • Donald E. Wright


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