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Fleet Air Gunnery Unit (FAGU)

Fleet Air Gunnery Unit (FAGU)

Point of Contact - Squadron Duty Officer (SDO)

Refer to the CONTACT LIST under "THE ASSOCIATION" drop down menu.

MCAS Yuma patch.

Contributed by Jerry Geer
  • MCAS Yuma patch.

  • No info yet

  • 26 MAY 1952: FAGU established.
  • 29 FEB 1960: FAGU disestablished.

Home Ports
  • JUN 1956: NAS El Centro, California.
  • JUN 1959 to 29 FEB 1960: MCAS Yuma, Arizona.

Air Wings
  • No info yet.

  • No overseas deployments.

Commanding Officers
  • 26 MAY 1952: My name is Terry Lyle, and I'm the son of Captain Alvin R. (Ace) Lyle, USNR b1918-d1997. ... My dad served on the Yorktown (CV-10) during WWII, and on the Princeton and Valley Forge during the Korean War. Apparently, my dad was named acting CO of the Fleet Air Gunnery Unit in May of 1952 at its commissioning. A few months later, he was replaced by Cdr. Hoffman.

  • FAGU trained Weapons Training Officers for Navy and Marine Fleet Squadrons.

  • FAGU, NAAS El Centro, CA. June 1956 to June 1959.
    JUNE 27-28, 1956 The first annual Fleet Air Gunnery Meet was held at NAAS El Centro, Calif.
    Six teams, selected from Navy and Marine Corps shore-based fighter units and composed of the squadron commander and three pilots, competed with two firings each at 15,000 and 25,000 feet. Top team honors and the Earle Trophy went to VF-112 of AirPac, and individual honors to LTJG H.N. Wellman of VF-43 and AirLant.

  • AUG 1958: Received six A4D-2 Skyhawks.

  • FAGU also flew the F4D, F8U, and FJ4B aircraft:
    A4D Skyhawk Flight Commander was Edward Armstrong.
    F4D Ford/Skyray Flight Commander was Moon Mullin of Hanoi Hilton fame.
    F8U Crusader Flight Commander was Al Schaaf, USMC.
    FJ4B Fury Flight Commander was Larry Taft, USMC.

  • JUN 1959 to 29 FEB 1960: FAGU based at MCAS Yuma, Arizona.

  • 1928:
    The federal government leased 640 acres near Yuma, from Yuma County. The field was name "Fly Field" after Col. Benjamin F. Fly.
    "Fly Field served as training base during World War II, training pilots on AT-6 single engine trainers, T-17 multi-engine trainers and B-17 Flying Fortresses.
    At the end of the war, all flight activity here ceased.

  • 07 JUL 1951:
    The Air Force reactivates the base, and the 4750th Air Base Squadron resumed training. The airfield was known as the Yuma Air Base, but was renamed "Vincent Air Force Base" in 1956.

  • 01 JAN 1959:
    The facility is signed over to the Navy and Marine Corps Auxiliary Air Station Yuma is born.

  • 04 DEC 1959
    Crack teams from selected Fleet squadrons completed 4 days of competitive gunnery, bombing, and missile firing at MCAAS Yuma in the championship round of the annual weapons meet.
  • The last Commanding officer was Bud Brown of F7U Cutlass fame.

  • 29 FEB 1960: FAGU disestablished

  • No info yet.


Circa 1957: Captain Slim Russell USN at FAGU.

March 1959 FAGU formation consisting of (cw from top) F4D Skyray TR-23, FJ-4B Fury TR-44, A4D-2 Skyhawk and F8U-1 Crusader.

March 1959 FAGU BuNo 1428xx as LT D.N. Mealy discusses flight with students.

Date Unknown:
A-4C 150585,
made to look like an A-4E, on display at MCAS Yuma.
AIRFOTO ©Joe Cupido

FAGU(NAF El Centro CA. and MCAS Yuma, AZ.) Date unknown: Photo taken from a frame of a U.S. Navy video, TR-5 is an A-4B assigned to the FAGU (Fleet Air Gunner Unit), either NAF El Centero, or MCAS Yuma, AZ.
From Gary Verver.

  • Gary Verver

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