Defense

May 3, 2013

Magicians reborn as Navy’s first squadron to operate manned, unmanned aircraft

navy-uav
Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 35 became the first composite expeditionary helicopter squadron to include both the world’s most technologically advanced helicopter; the MH-60R Seahawk and the MQ-8B Fire Scout Vertical Take-off and Landing Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle; during an establishment ceremony today on Naval Air Station North Island.

As the Navy’s first operational squadron with both manned and unmanned aircraft, HSM- 35 heralds a new era for Naval Aviation. The squadron, designated the “Magicians,” adopted the call sign of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light 35, which was decommissioned on NAS North Island in 1992, after 19 years of service.

“The reestablishment of this squadron is exceptional as it points toward the future for our Naval Aviation forces,” said Commander, Naval Air Forces, Vice Adm. David H. Buss. “The actions today represent a clear line dividing what Naval Aviation once was and what it will be.”

As the next generation submarine hunter and anti-surface warfare helicopter, the MH-60R is the cornerstone of the Navy’s Helicopter Concept of Operations. The Fire Scout system provides unique situation awareness and precision target support for the Navy, said Buss.

Both new aircraft will embark with the Navy’s new high speed, agile, shallow-draft Littoral Combat Ship, which was also recently introduced to the fleet.

The establishment ceremony included the reading of orders by the squadron’s first commanding officer, Cmdr. Christopher S. Hewlett, a Los Angeles native.

More than 100 Sailors stood in formation as their unit became an official part of the Navy’s Pacific Fleet Air Forces.

“Today we give birth to our new squadron while celebrating the legacy of our past,” said Hewlett. “We honor all the former Magicians of HSL-35, and will continue in the same spirit of war-fighting excellence to provide extraordinary support to the fleet.”

Sixty former HSL-35 members were in attendance, including one commanding officer, retired Capt. George Powell and an original Magicians’ pilot, retired Capt. Rob Moore. Both shared their enthusiasm about the rebirth of their old squadron.

“I think the reestablishment is awesome, because almost every single unit I was a part of during my time in the Navy has been decommissioned,” said Powell. “But now this squadron is coming back, and I think it’s really neat.”

The Magicians’ first mission, beginning this summer, will be to undergo training and develop guidelines for what will be the Navy’s standards of operation for the expeditionary Fire Scout. According to Buss, the procedures set by the Magicians will chart the course for Naval Aviation’s operating future.

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez

Smart-mortar will help Soldiers more effectively hit targets

Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez Nick Baldwin and Evan Young, researchers with the Armament Research Development and Engineering Center at Picatinny Arsenal, Pennsylvania, discuss the 120mm Guided Enhanced Fragmentation Mortar ...
 
 

Air Force assigns new chief scientist

The Air Force announced the service’s new chief scientist to serve as a science and technology adviser to the secretary of the Air Force and the chief of staff of the Air Force, May 21. Dr. Greg Zacharias will be the 35th chief scientist and is ready to “dive in” to his new role. “I...
 
 

TSgt promotion release delayed to allow system validation

Technical sergeant promotion selection results, originally scheduled for release May 28, will be delayed to enable the Air Force to continue to validate extensive system changes to the Weighted Airman Promotion System, officials announced. The 15E6 technical sergeant promotion cycle is the first to incorporate recent changes in the enlisted evaluation and promotion system. Recent...
 

 

Freedom completes rough water trials

The littoral combat ship USS Freedom completed Seakeeping and Structural Loads Trials, commonly referred to as Rough Water Trials in late March the Navy reported May 21. The U.S. Navy must demonstrate the seaworthiness and structural integrity of each new ship class. One of the primary ways the Navy verifies these qualities is through a...
 
 

Air Force releases Strategic Master Plan

The Air Force officially released the Strategic Master Plan May 21, which is the latest in a series of strategic documents designed to guide the organizing, training and equipping of the force over the coming decades. The SMP builds on the strategic imperatives and vectors described in the capstone document, America’s Air Force: A Call...
 
 

HYT extension possible for SrA-MSgt in 35 career fields

Eligible senior airmen, staff sergeants, technical sergeants and master sergeants in 35 Air Force specialties will be able to apply for a high year of tenure extension and, if approved, will be able to extend between 12 and 24 months past their current HYT. The Air Force is introducing several personnel and manpower initiatives to...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>