Marine Corps

March 29, 2012

VMA-214 Blacksheep honor historic Marine

Cpl. Jakob Schulz
Approximately 150 Marines and eight aircraft with Marine Attack Squadron 214 return to station after a two-week exercise near Eglin Air Force Base on the Gulf Coast of Florida for Exercise Emerald Warrior.

Marine Attack Squadron 214 honored the accomplishments of a former squadron pilot Feb. 9 at a memorial service in Carpinteria, Calif.

The service honored Capt. Kenneth Newton Linder, a pilot in the squadron when it was still Marine Fighting Squadron 214 during WWII.

Linder served aboard the USS Franklin from Feb. 4, 1945, until the ship was put out of commission during an attack on March 19, 1945. However, Linder and another squadron pilot shot down the attacker and regrouped at Naval Air Station Alameda and was then relocated to Marine Corp Air Station El Centro.

He was later granted a transfer to Santa Barbara where he remained in the Marine Corps Reserve. He later left the Corps in 1951.

“It’s important that we honor our past and the Marines who helped make it,” said Lt. Col. Troy Pehrson, squadron commanding officer. “It’s always good to reach out to Marines who have served with the squadron, whether it is through a service such as this one or simply inviting them to come visit the hanger and see the aircraft. It makes their day, sometimes their year to know that we still remember and care about them.”

Even with the looming arrival of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter the squadron remains proud of its heritage and future in the Corps.

“No matter what platform we fly the legacy will continue,” said Sgt. Maj. Leonard Maldonado, squadron sergeant major. “Everything that the squadron has done and will continue to do has grown upon what’s already there. The Marines are going to continue to put forward their best work because they know they’re part of something special.”

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