VA-15

Attack Squadron Fifteen

Point of Contact = Squadron Duty Officer (SDO). Refer to the CONTACT LIST under "THE ASSOCIATION" drop down menu


VT-4 Sweeps the Seas - 1942
Courtesy of Tailhook Association
VA15_Valions.jpg
VA-15 VALions - 1968
Courtesy Warren A. Harms
VA15_Valions_1955_World_cruise.jpg
VA-15 Valions World Cruise - 1955
     

VFA-15 Valions 1942-2011
VT-4, VA-2A, VA-15, VFA-15 Valions
69 years 1942-2011
VFA-15 Valions FA/18 desert
VFA-15 Valions FA/18 desert
Mike Walker
VFA-15 Valions Strike Fighter 15 desert
Operation Iraqi Freedom
Mike Walker

Handle

1951 - present -- Valions

Page Sources:

Harry S. Gann

Warren A. Harms

Masaaki Hayakawa

Takafumi Hiroe

Stu Jones

Tailhook Association

Dave Thornhill

Will McManus

LT David Boisselle

Patch

The first VT-4 (and later VA-2A) - VALION patch was established on April 22, 1942. The patch theme was "VT-4 Sweeps the Seas." The lion represents the TBD-1 Devastator, the six teeth were for the number of Devastators assigned to it, and the tail indicated the VALION's squadron number four. There is no record of VA-2A selecting another patch.

Following VA-2A's re-designation as VA-15 on September 19, 1951, the VT-4 patch was modified to the "Attack Lion." The lion was retained to represent the strong attack capabilities of the squadron and the torpedo was replaced by a missile. The background color of the upper half of the insignia was red to represent the flames of past targets, and the lower half was blue to indicate water and the squadron's carrier-based capabilities. This patch was used until VA-15 was disestablished in 1969.

When VA-67 was redesignated VA-15 on June 2, 1969, the squadron resurrected the patch used by the first VA-15. The designation in the scroll was changed to VFA-15 in 1986.

The Two "desert colors" patches were made for Operation Iraqi Freedom. Supposedly the first time the VA / VFA 15 patch was done in subdued desert colors.

Heritage

January 10, 1942,Torpedo Squadron FOUR (VT-4) established.

November 15, 1946, VT-4 was redesignated Attack Squadron TWO A (VA-2A).

August 2, 1948, VA-2A was re-designated Attack Squadron FIFTEEN (VA-15).

June 1, 1969, VA-15 - Attack Squadron FIFTEEN was disestablished.

August 1, 1968, Attack Squadron SIXTY SEVEN (VA-67) established.

June 2, 1969, VA-67 was re-designated Attack Squadron FIFTEEN (VA-15).

October 1, 1986, VA-15 was re-designated Strike Fighter Squadron FIFTEEN (VFA-15).

The VFA-15 Valions were deactivated 31 May 2017 at the CNATTU ceremonial hangar on board NAS Oceana.

VFA-15 Valions History

 

Home Ports

Date - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Location:

March 1942 - - - - - - - Naval Air Station Norfolk

April 1942 - - - - - - - Naval Air Station Quonset Point

May 1944 - - - - - - - - Naval Auxiliary Air Field Ayer (Fort Devens)

July 1944- - - - - - - - Naval Air Station Pearl Harbor

August 1944- - - - - - - Naval Air Station Hilo Field

April 1945 - - - - - - - Naval Air Station Alameda

May 21, 1945 - - - - - - Naval Auxiliary Air Station Watsonville

July 11, 1945- - - - - - Naval Air Station Quonset Point

August 1945- - - - - - - Naval Auxiliary Air Field Groton

April 1946 - - - - - - - Naval Air Station Norfolk

July 15, 1946- - - - - - Naval Air Station San Diego

March 21, 1949 - - - - - Naval Auxiliary Air Station Cecil Field

January 9, 1950- - - - - Naval Air Station Jacksonville

February 29, 1952- - - - Naval Auxiliary Air Station Cecil Field (NAS)*

July 1957- - - - - - - - Naval Air Station Jacksonville

April 1965 - - - - - - - Naval Air Station Oceana

August 1965- - - - - - - Naval Air Station Cecil Field

August 1968- - - - - - - Naval Air Station Cecil Field

September 1999 - - - - - Naval Air Station Oceana

* June 30, 1952 - Naval Auxiliary Air Station (NAAS) Cecil Field was redesignated Naval Air Station (NAS) Cecil Field.

Air Wings

Date - - - - - - - - - - - - Tail code - - - - - - - Air Wing

January 10, 1942- - - - T† - - - - - Ranger Air Group/CVG-4/CVAG-1/CVG-1*

September 23, 1948- - - P- - - - - - CVG-13

February 23, 1949 - - - T/AB‡- - - - CVG-1/CVW-1§

August 1965- - - - - - - - - - - - - RCVW-4/VA-44**

January 1966- - - - - - AK - - - - - CVW-10

January 16, 1968- - - - AA - - - - - CVW-17

August 1, 1968 - - - - - - - - - - - COMFAIRJACKSONVILLE

March 11, 1969- - - - - AE - - - - - CVW-6

April 1985 - - - - - - - - - - - - - COMLATWING

December 1985 - - - - - AC*- - - - - MAG-12, 1st MAW***

June 1986- - - - - - - - - - - - - - COMLATWING

September 1, 1987 - - - AJ - - - - - CVW-8

* The Ranger Air Group formed July 1, 1938; when VT-4 established on January 10, 1942, it became part of the Ranger Air Group. The Ranger Air Group was redesignated Carrier Air Group FOUR (CVG-4) on August 3, 1943. CVG-4 was redesignated Attack Carrier Air Group ONE (CVAG-1) on November 15, 1946. The CVAG-1 designation was changed to CVG-1 on September 1, 1948.

† Beginning in 1946 the unit used this tail code.

‡ July 1, 1957 - Carrier Air Group 1's tail code was changed from T to AB.

§ December 20, 1963 Carrier Air Groups were redesignated Carrier Air Wings and CVG-1 became CVW-1.

** During VA-15's transition to the A-4 Skyhawk, the squadron was assigned to VA-44, a Fleet Readiness Training Squadron, for operational training. VA-44 was assigned to Readiness Attack Carrier Air Wing FOUR (RCVW-4).

*** VA-15 was assigned to MAG-12, 1st Marine Air Wing during its shore-based deployment to MCAS Iwakuni, Japan. While deployed with MAG-12 the squadron used the tail code AC on its aircraft.

Aircraft

Date Type First Received - - - - - - Type of Aircraft:

January 1942 - - - - - - - - - - Douglas TBD-1 Devastator
USN photo of the Douglas Devastator, January 6, 1941

August 1942- - - - - - - - - - - Grumman TBF-1 Avenger

January 1944 - - - - - - - - - - Grumman TBF-1C & TBM-1C Avenger

January 1945 - - - - - - - - - - Grumman TBM-3 Avenger

May 1945 - - - - - - - - - - - - Grumman TBM-3E Avenger

1946 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Grumman TBM-3Q Avenger

February 1946- - - - - - - - - - North American SNJ Trainer

August 19, 1949- - - - - - - - - Douglas AD-4 Skyraider

March 8, 1951- - - - - - - - - - Douglas AD-4L Skyraider

May 1954 - - - - - - - - - - - - Douglas AD-6/A-1H* Skyraider

December 1965- - - - - - - - - - Douglas A-4B Skyhawk

December 1966- - - - - - - - - - Douglas A-4C Skyhawk

March 10, 1969 - - - - - - - - - Vought A-7B Corsair II

August 1975- - - - - - - - - - - Vought A-7E Corsair II

January 6, 1987- - - - - - - - - Boeing F/A-18A Hornet

* November 30, 1962 the AD-6 designation was changed to A-1H.

Three view drawings from Harry Gann, redrawn by Bud Southworth.

Deployments

Departure & Return - - - - - - Air Wing - - - - Carrier - - - - Aircraft - - - - - Area of Operations

Departure & Return - - - - - - - - Air Wing - Carrier - Aircraft - - Area of Operations:

10Jan42 to 19Mar42 - Ranger AG - CV 4 - TBD-1 - Bermuda.

02Jun42 to 22Jun42 - Ranger AG - CV 4 - TBD-1 - Newfoundland.

08Jan43 to 30Jan43 - Ranger AG - CV 4 - TBF-1 - Morocco.

13Feb43 to 06Mar43 - Ranger AG - CV 4 - TBF-1 - Morocco.

23Mar43 to 27Jul43 - CVG-4 - CV 4†- TBF-1 - Newfoundland.

05Aug43 to 03Dec43 - CVG-4 - CV 4 - TBF-1 - NorLant/Norwegian Sea.

05Nov44 to 17Nov44 - CVG-4 - CV 17- TBM-1C - Philippines.

22Nov44 to 02Dec44 - CVG-4 - CV 9 - TBM-1C - Philippines.

11Dec44 to 24Dec44 - CVG-4 - CV 9 - TBM-1C - Philippines.

30Dec44 to 26Dec45 - CVG-4 - CV 9 - TBM-1C/3 - South China Sea/ Philippines/ Formosa/Okinawa.

10Feb45 to 04Mar45 - CVG-4 - CV 9 - TBM-3 - Japan/Iwo Jima/ Okinawa-Combat.

28Jun46 to 15Jul46 - CVG-4 - CV 40- TBM-3E/Q - Transit to West Coast via Panama Canal.

01Jul46 to 29Apr47 - CVG-4/CVAG-1 - CV 40 - TBM-3E/Q - Western Pacific.

01Oct48 to 23Dec48 - CVG-13- CV 37- - - TBM-3E - Western Pacific.

20Mar51 to 06Oct51 - CVG-1 - CVB 43 - - AD-4/L - Mediterranean.

24May52 to 11Oct52 - CVG-1 - CVA 18 - - AD-4/L - Mediterranean/NorLant

11Jun53 to 03Dec53 - CVG-1 - CVA 42 - - AD-4/B/L - Mediterranean.

27Dec54 to 14Jul55 - CVG-1 - CVA 41 - - AD-6 - World Cruise.

07Nov56 to 12Dec56 - CVG-1 - CVA 59 - - AD-6 - Azores.

15Jan57 to 22Jul57 - CVG-1 - CVA 59 - - AD-6 - Mediterranean.

16Aug57 to 21Oct57 - CVG-1 - CVA 59 - - AD-6 - NorLant

13Feb59 to 01Sep59 - CVG-1 - CVA 42 - - AD-6 - Mediterranean.

28Jan60 to 24Aug60 - CVG-1 - CVA 42 - - AD-6 - Mediterranean.

14Nov60 to 28Nov60 - CVG-10- CVA 38 - - AD-6 - Carib

15Feb61 to 28Aug61 - CVG-1 - CVA 42 - - AD-6 - Mediterranean.

19Nov61 to 30Nov61 - CVG-1 - CVA 42 - - AD-6 - Carib

14Sep62 to 22Apr63 - CVG-1 - CVA 42 - - AD-6 - Mediterranean.

28Apr64 to 22Dec64 - CVW-1 - CVA 42 - - A-1H - Mediterranean.

04Dec65 to 21Nov66 - CVW-10- CVS 11 - - A-4B - Med/IO/Vietnam

11May67 to 30Dec67 - CVW-10- CVS 11 - - A-4C - Med/IO/Vietnam

22Jul68 to 29Apr69 - CVW-17- CVA 59 - - A-4C - Mediterranean.

02Jan70 to 27Jul70 - CVW-6 - CVA 42 - - A-7B - Mediterranean.

29jan71 to 23Jul71 - CVW-6 - CVA 42 - - A-7B - Mediterranean.

15Feb72 to 08Dec72 - CVW-6 - CVA 42 - - A-7B - Mediterranean.

14Sep73 to 17Mar74 - CVW-6 - CVA 42 - - A-7B - Mediterranean.

03Jan75 to 16Jul75 - CVW-6 - CV 42- - - A-7B - Mediterranean.

15Apr76 to 25Oct76 - CVW-6 - CV 66- - - A-7E - Mediterranean.

10Jun77 to 19Jul77 - CVW-6 - CV 66- - - A-7E - SoLant

29Sep77 to 25Apr78 - CVW-6 - CV 66- - - A-7E - Mediterranean.

28Jun79 to 14Dec79 - CVW-6 - CV 62- - - A-7E - Mediterranean.

19Nov80 to 10Jun81 - CVW-6 - CV 62- - - A-7E - SoLant/IO/Med

07Jun82 to 22Dec82 - CVW-6 - CV 62- - - A-7E - Mediterranean.

18Oct83 to 11Apr84 - CVW-6 - CV 62- - - A-7E - Carib/Med/NorLant

16Oct84 to 19Nov85 - CVW-6 - CV 62- - - A-7E - Mediterranean/IO

01Dec85 to 13Jun86 - MAG-12** - - - - - A-7E - Western Pacific

25Aug88 to 11Nov88 - CVW-8 - CVN 71 - - F/A-18A - NorLant

30Dec88 to 30Jun89 - CVW-8 - CVN 71 - - F/A-18A - Mediterranean.

28Dec90 to 28Jun91 - CVW-8 - CVN 71 - - F/A-18A - Mediterranean/Red Sea/ Persian Gulf.

Mar 1999 to Sep 1999 - - - - CVW-8 - CVN 71 - - F/A-18 - Mediterranean/Red Sea/ Persian Gulf.

Apr 2001 to Nov 2001 - - CVW-8 - CVN-65 - - F/A-18C - Mediterranean/Red Sea/ Arbian Sea.

Feb 2003 to May 2003 - - CVW-8 - CVN-71 - - F/A-18C - Mediterranean

SEP 2005 to MAR 2006: CVW-8, CVN-71, F/A-18C/D, Mediterranean/Arabian Gulf

* Half of VT-4's aircraft were aboard for this cruise which ferried Army P-40 fighters to Morocco. There were no other squadrons from Ranger's Air Group aboard for this cruise.

† Ranger returned to Boston during late March for four days of repairs and then back to Newfoundland for operations.

** The squadron deployed to Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, to provide close air support for Marine forces in Western Pacific. While deployed to Western Pacific the squadron also operated at Naval Air Facility Kadena, Okinawa; Naval Air Station Cubi Point, Philippines and stations in Korea.

Commanding Officers

Assumed Command - - - - - - - Commanding Officer

Date Assumed Command - - - - - - - Commanding Officer

January 10, 1942 - - - - LT Wallace A. Sherrill

December 1942- - - - - - LCDR David W. Taylor, Jr.

December 1943- - - - - - LCDR Homer H. Hutcheson

September 1944 - - - - - LT P. J. Davis, Jr.

May 12, 1945 - - - - - - LT John Warren (acting)

May 23, 1945 - - - - - - LT Frederic Viewig, Jr. (acting)

September 26, 1945 - - - LCDR J. P. Barron

July 1946- - - - - - - - LCDR John A. Camera

July 7, 1947 - - - - - - CDR Charles E. Roemer

May 29, 1948 - - - - - - LCDR Robert A. Newcomb (acting)

August 30, 1948- - - - - CDR Paul C. Lovelace

June 3, 1950 - - - - - - LCDR Clay A. Mitchell (acting)

July 12, 1950- - - - - - LCDR John E. Lacouture

December 21, 1951- - - - LCDR Roy M. Isaman

January 5, 1953- - - - - LCDR W. R. Prescott

January 1954 - - - - - - CDR John B. Bain

August 24, 1955- - - - - CDR L. B. Jennings

December 10, 1957- - - - LCDR William J. Gray

September 18, 1959 - - - CDR J. Patterson, Jr.

November 30, 1960- - - - CDR Ted L. Farrell

November 6, 1961 - - - - CDR David L. Munns

November 26, 1962- - - - CDR Joseph L. Coleman

October 4, 1963- - - - - CDR R. G. Bowerman

April 1, 1964- - - - - - CDR Steven D. Marvin

August 12, 1965- - - - - CDR Jack L. Gracey

September 27, 1966 - - - CDR Isaac F. Jones, Jr.

January 29, 1967 - - - - CDR William K. Carr (acting)

February 10, 1967- - - - CDR William K. Carr

February 14, 1968- - - - CDR James M. Snyder

February 15, 1969- - - - CDR Richard G. Daly

November 6, 1968 - - - - CDR Lawrence C. Chambers

February 12, 1970- - - - CDR Robert B. Bristol

March 30, 1971 - - - - - CDR Donald D. Brown

March 30, 1972 - - - - - CDR Forrest A. Lees, Jr.

March 21, 1973 - - - - - CDR Richard C. McClary

May 24, 1974 - - - - - - CDR Harry Patrick Kober, Jr.

July 30, 1975- - - - - - CDR Gordon E. Evans

October 2, 1976- - - - - CDR Kelvin W. Huehn

December 17, 1977- - - - CDR Robert S. Smith

April 19, 1979 - - - - - CDR John J. Mazach

June 26, 1980- - - - - - CDR John J. Coonan

September 24, 1981 - - - CDR Michael B. Nordeen

November 1, 1982 - - - - CDR Byron L. Duff

June 1, 1984 - - - - - - CDR Leslie G. Kappel

October 8, 1985- - - - - CDR Philip Craig Landon

January 8, 1987- - - - - CDR John W. Curtin

May 13, 1988 - - - - - - CDR Milton W. Smith

November 29, 1989- - - - CDR Brian M. Calhoun

1991-1992 - - - - - - - - - - CDR S. A. Kunkle

1992-1993 - - - - - - - - - - CDR J. J. Capalbo

1993-1995 - - - - - - - - - - CDR W. E. Gortney

1995-1996 - - - - - - - - - - CDR T. N. Branch

1996-1997 - - - - - - - - - - CDR J. K. Stuart, Jr.

1997-1998 - - - - - - - - -- CDR M. D. Guadagnini

1998-2000 - - - - - - - - - - CDR K. H. Thompson

2000-2001 - - - - - - - - - - CDR S. E. Smith

2001-2002 - - - - - - - - - - CDR D. C. Stewart

2002-2003 - - - - - - - - - - CDR A. L. Lewis

2003-2004 - - - - - - - - CDR E. D. Langford

2004-2006 - - - - - - - - - CDR J. G. Jerauld

2006- - -------------------CDR P.W. Matisoo

Awards

Award - - - - - - - - - Inclusive Dates:

Military Unit Commendation

09 March 1972 to 01 December 1972

01 July 1976 to 31 December 1980

01 January 1987 to 31 December 1988

 

Navy Expeditionary Medal

1953

01 July 1960 to 30 June 1961

01 July 1961 to 30 June 1962

01 October 1977 to 30 September 1978

01 October 1979 30 September 1980

01 January 1983 31 December 1983

01 January 1988 31 December 1988

 

Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal

24 October 1983 to 02 November 1983

16 November 1983 to 22 December 1983

28 December 1983 to 03 January 1984

15 January 1984 to 03 February 1984

09 February 1984 to 02 March 1984

 

Navy Unit Commendation:

12 June 1967 to 08 December 1967

 

Republic of Vietnam Cross of Gallantry

01 May 1966 to 01 October 1966

21 June 1967 to 13 July 1967

29 July 1967 to 27 August 1967

14 September 1967 to 12 October 1967

31 October 1967 to 24 November 1967

 

Vietnam Service Medal

14 May 1966 to 15 June 1966

08 July 1966 to 10 August 1966

01 September 1966 to 23 September 1966

02 October 1966 to 18 October 1966

21 June 1967 to 13 July 1967

29 July 1967 to 27 August 1967

14 September 1967 to 12 October 1967

31 October 1967 to 24 November 1967

 

PUC:

11 November 1944 to 25 November 1944

14 December 1944 to 16 December 1944

03 January 1945 to 22 January 1945

16 February 1945 to 01 March 1945

 

Campaign Medal (European):

02 October 1943 to 06 October 1943

 

NEM:

20 November 1961 to 29 November 1961

07 December 1980 to 11 May 1981

20 August 1982 to 05 September 1982

HSM

20 June 1976 to 27 July 1976

 

Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal:

September to October 2001

March to May 2003

 

Global War on Terrorism Service Medal:

September 2001 to Present (May 2005)

 

Events

January 10, 1942 Shortly after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor Torpedo Squadron FOUR (VT-4) was established aboard United States Ship Ranger CV-4 while in port at Grassy Bay, Bermuda.

January 1942 VT-4 was assigned the Douglas TBD-1 Devastator. In August 1942, the squadron was assigned the Grumman TBF-1 Avenger.

August 8, 1943 United States Ship Ranger CV-4 with VT-4 aboard, met a convoy containing the liner Queen Mary, which was bringing Winston Churchill to North America for the Quebec Conference.

October 4, 1943 VT-4 aircraft struck shipping targets near Kunna Head, Norway, while other elements of CVG-4 struck targets at Bodo, Norway. VT-4 TBF-1 Avengers, along with its escort of F4F Wildcats, destroyed a German freighter and a small coaster and damaged a troop transport.

October 1943 VT-4, flying from Ranger, operated with the British Second Battle Squadron and patrolled the waters of the Norwegian Sea.

Late in 1943 VT-4 returned to its home port in Boston, Massachusetts.

November 4 - 17 1944 VT-4 temporarily embarked on United States Ship Bunker Hill CV-17 for operations in support of landings at Leyte and Luzon. VT-4 participated in combat strikes at Ormoc Bay, Cavite and Clark Field in the Philippines.

December 1944 VT-4 participated in combat operations in support of landings on Mindoro.

January 1945 While operating from United States Ship Essex CV-9, the VaLions struck targets on Formosa, Luzon, Hainan and the Ryukyu Island chain as well as in French Indochina (Vietnam). Squadron aircraft hit targets around Saigon and Camranh Bay in support of the assault against the Japanese in the Philippines.

February 16 - 25, 1945 The squadron conducted its first strikes against Japan, hitting Mawatari airfield on Honshu.

February 19 - 22, 1945 CVG-4 with VT-4 provided support for landings on Iwo Jima.

March 1, 1945 The airfield, facilities and shipping at Naha, Okinawa, were hit by squadron aircraft.

March 4, 1945 VT-4 disembarked from United States Ship Essex CV-9, at Ulithi completing the squadron's last combat cruise during World War II.

November 15, 1946 VT-4 was redesignated Attack Squadron TWO A (VA-2A) with a homeport of San Diego.

August 2, 1948 VA-2A was redesignated Attack Squadron FIFTEEN (VA-15) under a new Navy Department designation plan.

October 1948 VA-15 aboard United States Ship PRINCETON CV-31 was ported at Tsing Tao, China. PRINCETON was the last ship to visit China before the Bamboo Curtain fell.

August 19, 1949 The VA-15 VaLions were assigned the beloved Douglas AD-4 Skyraider, better known as the SPAD.

1953 VA-15 was awarded the COMNAVAIRLANT "E" for Battle Efficiency.

August 1961 VA-15 was awarded the COMNAVAIRLANT Battle Efficiency "E", for 1961.

February 1962 VA-15 was he first propeller driven squadron deployed aboard a nuclear carrier as they participated in United States Ship ENTERPRISE CVAN-65 maiden cruise.

September 1962 The VALIONS received the COMNAVAIRLANT Battle Efficiency "E" for the second consecutive year.

August 1965 VA-15 traded in their trusty Skyraiders and began training under VA-44 in transition to the A-4 Skyhawk. Officially the squadron was assigned the Douglas A-4B Skyhawk in December.
In addition to the sixteen A-4B Skyhawks listed in the 1966 cruise there were six additional A-4B's that Dave Thornhill flew at VA-15 prior to the cruise. These A-4B BuNos. did not go on cruise: 142798, 142895, 144882, 144883, 144930 and 144948.

April 4 to November 21, 1966 VA-15 deployed to Vietnam on United States Ship Intrepid CVS-11. While in the Gulf of Tonkin the VALions flew 4,777 hours and 2,627 sorties, most of them over North Vietnam.
The A-4B Skyhawks assigned for the cruise were: 142121 (312), 142717, 142741 (314), 142745, 142836, 142868 (306), 142945 (305), 144881, 144894, 144918 (310), 144988, 144997 (308), 145001 (315), 145013 (300), 145035, 145040 (301) crashed and 145057 (301) replaced 145040.

May 15, 1966 VA-15 flew its first combat mission since March 1945 when it was designated VT-4.

August 7, 1966: LCdr Richard A. "Moose" Moran flew overhead at pattern altitude and broke to turn downwind and descended into the water alongside Intrepid and exploded. No attempt to eject. LCdr. R.A. Moran in VA-15 A-4B BuNo 145040 crashed into the sea off the port quarter at latitude 17-51.8E, longitude 107-30N, and sank in 40 fathoms of water at 0942. USS Conway (DD-507) and helo detached to commence search for pilot. Detached USS Conway (DD-507) from search and directed USS Bradley (DE-1041) to assume search at 1028. Search concluded. Results negative. Pilot presumed dead at 1145. USS Intrepid deck log, 07 August 1966. LCdr. Moran gently flew into the water 180 abeam the ship. The canopy was blown and he was observed leaving the cockpit, but appeared to be stuck as the aircraft disappeared below the surface.

February 14, 1967: LCdr. Jerry Tuttle, 32, and Lt(jg) Samuel J. Gerard Jr., 25, (VA-15 Cecil Field) ejected safely when their A-4 Skyhawks (BuNo 149611 & BuNo 150600) collided over sparsely populated woodlands and crashed near MacClenny, FL.
US Armed Forces Stars & Stripes, Thursday, February 16, 1967.

May 11 to December 30, 1967 VaLions of VA-15 with the A-4C Skyhawk deployed to Vietnam on United States Ship Intrepid CVS-11 for their second combat cruise.

June 30, 1967: Lt. LeGrande Ogden Cole was killed when his Skyhawk (BuNo 148466, AK 205) was shot down by North Vietnamese Triple A during an attack on the Ben Thuy thermal plant on the Song Ca river.

July 4, 1967: Lt. Phillip Charles Craig was killed when his Skyhawk (BuNo 148544, AK 208) was shot down by North Vietnamese Triple A near the coast S of Haiphong after a raid on the railway at Hai Duong. 

August 1, 1967: Lt. D. W. Thornhill ejected and was rescued by a Navy SAR helicopter among the numerous islands off the coast of Hon Gay after his Skyhawk (BuNo 147670) was hit by AAA on a flak suppression mission for a raid on the ammo storage site near Hon Gay.
Lt. Dave Thornhill straps on his trusty A-4C Douglas Skyhawk BuNo. 147670 for a mission to Hon Gai, North Vietnam. During this mission North Vietnamese Triple A fire got lucky and managed to bag Dave. After an "interesting" ejection and subsequent "interesting" rescue - the Jolly Green dropped Dave on the PIREZ ship --- the frigate Fox.
The United States Ship Fox then began delicate negotiations with Intrepid for the amount of ice cream Thornhill was worth. Finally the Fox and Intrepid agreed on the trade and Intrepid sent a helicopter (with the ice cream) to retrieve Dave.
The welcome committee - left to right: Lieutenant Bob Cole, Lieutenant Dave Thornhill, Lieutenant "Bo" Smith, Lieutenant Commander Pete Schoeffel and Lieutenant Junior grade Keith Strickland. Dave had just hopped off the Intrepid Angel (in the background).
It is party time! During the dickering with the Fox the Intrepid Mess managed to bake a cake saying: "Welcome Home Thorny." AND the Flight Sturgeon managed to find a bottle of medical brandy for the happening. Lieutenant Commander Jerry Tuttle, (the rescue on-scene-commander) presented the cake to Dave. Unfortunately Fox got all the ice cream so there was just brandy to wash the cake down with. United States Navy photographs from Dave Thornhill.

August 25, 1967: Lt(jg). R.W. Gerard ejected and was rescued by helicopter near the Intrepid after his Skyhawk (BuNo 148440, AK 211) was hit in the nose and stbd wing by AAA as he was pulling off the target during an attack on barges eight miles N of Vinh.

October 4, 1967: LCdr. Peter VanRuyter Schoeffel ejected and was captured after his Skyhawk (BuNo 149619, AK 200) was hit by AAA during a flak suppression mission during a raid on a ferry one mile N of Haiphong.

March 20, 1968: A-4C BuNo 148594 was stricken. Charles remembers early 1968 that during a training flight a Skyhawk crashed in the swamp in Southern Florida. From Will McManus

August 1, 1968 VA-67 was established and began training under VA-174 to operate the Vought A-7B Corsair II.

August 18, 1968: Lt. Ronald William Gerard, Sr. was killed (BuNo 147789) during a mid-cruise off the USS Forrestal. Charles believes it was mechanical failure and that the pilot ejected upside down in Mediterranean Sea but was too close to water. Rumor had it that he did not get ejected from his seat. From Will McManus.

October 25, 1968: Lt(jg). W.A. Harms ejected safely when his engine (BuNo 148459) failed. 1454 received report of A-4 Skyhawk aircraft engine failure. Aircraft #412, of VA-15, pilot ejected, position of crash 260 degrees 100 miles from FORRESTAL Lat., 36 degrees 02’N,  Long. 13 degrees 28.6’ E. 1458 speed 15 knots. 1500 speed 12 knots. 1505 course change to 290 degrees, launched helo, dispatched to crash scene. 1507 course change to 010 degrees. 1514 speed 20 knots. 1515 speed 10 knots, changed course to 245. 1521 Speed 8 knots. Name of Pilot who ditched A-4 Skyhawk aircraft, LTJG Harms. A-4 aircraft #410 reports sighting pilot of aircraft #412 in water. 1524 changed course to 265. 1533 commenced operating aircraft. 1610 changed course to 350. 1620 changed course to 250. 1622 LT. R.M. Campbell assumed the OOD watch. Speed 30 knots. 1642 speed 15 knots. 1645 LT. Harms, pilot of aircraft #412 has been recovered by helo of HC-2 the Fleet Angles. 1645 recovered one helo with downed pilot aboard. USS Forrestal deck log, 25 October 1968.

June 1, 1969: VA-15 VaLions were dis-established.

June 2, 1969: Attack Squadron 67, was redesignated Attack Squadron 15.

24 May 1974: CDR Harry Patrick Kober, Jr.

Officer's Photo

On the Indy, Pat and the Blue Hawks lived across the partition in RR 4-Port while we Snakes were in RR 4 Starboard (had to split a ready room because everybody else in the air-wing were many motors with rio's or bn's). He was a good head, was a fixture around Cecil thereafter. He had a hell of a career.
Throw a nickel on the grass for an Attack Pilot.
"Puresome"

An A-4 stalwart.
"Boom"

 

 

May 1978 VA-15 was awarded the COMNAVAIRLANT Battle Efficiency "E" for 1978.

October 25, to November 1, 1983 In response to continued political strife and the need to protect and evacuate Americans from Grenada, VA-15 aircraft flew combat air support and reconnaissance sorties in support of the landing of U.S. Marines and Army Rangers on the island.

December 4, 1983 VA-15 VaLions participated in coordinated strikes against Syrian radar, communications and artillery positions overlooking the Multi-National Peacekeeping Forces. One of the squadron's A-7E Corsair IIs, flown by Air Wing Commander, Edward Andrews, was lost when hit by a Syrian surface-to-air missile. Commander Andrews ejected, was rescued and returned to USS Independence.

June 1986 June 1986, the VaLions began transition in the FA-18 Hornet.

October 1986 Attack Squadron 15 was redesignated Strike Fighter Squadron 15.

January 6, 1987 Strike Fighter Squadron 15 VaLions accepted their first Boeing F/A-18A Hornet, transition was complete by June 1987.

1988 Strike Fighter Squadron 15 was again awarded the COMNAVAIRLANT Battle Efficiency E.

December 28, 1990 Strike Fighter Squadron 15 deployed to the Persian Gulf in support of operation DESERT SHIELD. Operation DESERT SHIELD became DESERT STORM on the night of January 17, 1991. The VaLions flew combat sorties the morning of January 19, 1991 and flew strikes in Iraq and occupied Kuwait until the suspension of hostilities.

1991 The VFA-15 VaLions were awarded the COMNAVAIRLANT Battle Efficiency "E" for the seventh time.

1992 The VaLions transitioned to the FA-18C, the night attack Hornet.

1993 The VaLions deployed on United States Ship THEODORE ROOSEVELT CVN-71 and flew strikes against Bosnia-Herzegovina, Southern Iraq.

March 1995 The VaLions deployed in United States Ship THEODORE ROOSEVELT flying missions to enforce the No Fly Zone in Iraq and strike missions against Bosnian Serb ammunition storage areas in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

September 1995 The VaLions returned to NAS Cecil Field Florida to exchange personnel and began another training cycle.

April 1997 The VaLions deployed in United States Ship JOHN F. KENNEDY CV 67 for Mediterranean Sea deployment. The VALIONS flew missions in the Arabian Gulf, Red Sea and the Mediterranean sea; returning home in October 1997.

April 1999 The VaLions deployed to the Mediterranean in United States Ship Theodore Roosevelt CVN-71 with Carrier Air Wing Eight (CVW-8). VFA-15 flew missions in the Arabian Gulf, Red Sea and the Mediterranean sea.

September 1999 VFA-15 VaLions returned home from their Mediterranean Cruise.

Apr 2001 to Nov 2001 Mediterranean/Red Sea/ Arbian Sea for "Operation Enduring Freedom" where they initiated strikes against Taliban and al-Qaeda in Afghanistan in retailiation for the September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States.

Feb 2003 to May 2003 Mediterranean Sea for "Operation Iraqi Freedom" where they initiated strikes against Iraqi military facilities, air defense sites and terrorist camps, directly contributing to the fall of the Iraqi regime and the liberation of the Iraqi people.

SEP 2005 to MAR 2006 Mediterranean/Arabian Gulf for "Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Unit Photos

VA-15 onboard FDR for MED cruise 1958-1959.
From cruise book of Harry Clark.

From cruise book of Harry Clark.
Ashworth, Albert R. Lt, Jacksonville, Florida; Booth, James A., Lt(jg), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Bronson, Edward F., LT(jg, Wilmington, Delaware; Boyle, Ronald R., LT(jg), Jacksonville, Florida; Burkett, Alva D., LCDR; Coe, David F., LT(jg), Wellesley Hills, Massachusetts; Condren, Edward L, Lt(i8), Jacksonville, Florida; D'Arville, Edmond J., LT, Jacksonville, Florida; Dobbs, Thomas D., Lt(jg), Phoenix City, Alabama; Gaskill, Richard T., LT, Jacksonville, Florida; Gray, William J., CDR, Jacksonville, Florida; Mack, Robert J., LT(jg), Hampton Bays, New York; Massey, Roger A. Jr., LT, Norfolk, Virginia; Odama, Robert S., Lt(jg); Pollinger, Paul G., LT(jg), Edgeworth, Pennsylvania; Ripple, James E. Jr., LT(jg), Clinton, Maryland; Rose, Charles C. Jr., LT, Jacksonville, Florida; Rupp, Herbert H., LCDR, Jacksonville, Florida; Shelton, Lyle T., LT(jg), Brownfield, Texas; Strong, Charles E., LT(jg), Ogdensburg, New York; Udall, Gordon F., LT(jg), Jacksonville, Florida; Walker, William R., LT(jg), Fort Mill, South Carolina; Albertson, Clarence G. Jr., ATl, Davenport, Iowa; Armstrong, James R., AKl, Wheatland, Indiana; Barber, Joseph A., ADI, Baltimore, Maryland; Basden, Richard P., AEM3, Willimantic, Connecticut; Beard, Charles B. Jr., ADR3, New Orleans, Louisiana; Benedict, Gerald S., AEM3; Blackburn, William W., AEC, Cowley, Wyoming; Bolin, Samuel E., AQFAN, Kansas City, Missouri; Bondurant, James W., AN, Mayodan, North Carolina; Brasher. George J., PNSN, Dayton, Ohio; Breese, Jerry R., ATR3, Bancroft, Iowa; Bright, Kenneth W., AQF3, Newark, New Jersey; Buckman, Robert E., A03, Jacksonville, Florida; Busch, Joseph B. Jr., ATR3, Boulder, Colorado; Corey, James (n), ADl, Bostwick, Georgia; Carpenter, Joseph R., ATNAN, San Antonio, Texas; Carr, Bobbie J., AT2, Gentry, Arkansas; Cashman, Robert W., ADR3, New York, New York; Ciccatelli, Jack (n), AMl, New York, New York; Clark, Harry (n), Jr., AMS3. Wilmington, Delaware;; Close, James N., AME3, Peoria, Illinois; Cook, Robert H., ADS, Boons, North Carolina; Crawford, John L., AMH3, New Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; Danforth, William N., AN; Darrow, Bruce A., AEM3, Port Byron, New York; Demaree, Buddy L., AN; Dirsa, Steven n, ADC, Saugus, Massachusetts; Edwards, Walter H., A02, Brownsville, Pennsylvania; Fernandez, Rudolph J., AT3, Rivers, California; Fontenot, Rouven (n), AN, Maroon, Louisiana; Flaherty, Richard F., A03, Portland, Maine; Foland, Paul D., AMS2, New Castle, Delaware; Figel, Robert J., AT2; Francis, Richard (n), AN; Freisa, Joseph M., AN, Bronx, New York; Fuller, George H., ADI, Alexander City, Alabama; GiBnilliat, Norman P., CSC, Bellville, Georgia; Green Tommy R., AN, Nacogdoches, Texas; Grenz, Manfred H., AA, Chicago, III.; Hafford, Jerry C., AN, Carrier Mills, Ill; Hall, Lester M., AMH3, Lindale, Georgia; Harry, Charles K., A03, Shepherd, Michigan; Hebsacker, Karl L., AK3. St. Louis, Missouri; Helton, Denver R., AN, Detroit, Michigan; Holland, Frank (n), Rome, Georgia; Holloway, William C., AMl, Harrisonburg, Virginia; Hyatt, Robert E., A03, Bradenton, Florida; Jackson, Raymond E., AN, Albany, Georgia; James, Clifford E., AD2, Jackson, Mississippi; .Tames, Joseph T., AN, Augusta, Georgia; James, Vernon A., AD2, Stayton, Oregon; Jennings, Harry (n), AOC, Haines City, Florida; Johnson, Richard E., A02, Akron, Ohio; Jones, Garvin L., AEI, Westville, Oklahoma; Judge, John M. AO2, Orange, New Jersey;; Manjourea, George E., AQE3; Mauldin, Howard R., AN, Jacksonville, Florida; Mauldin, Jack L., AN, Jacksonville, Florida; Maybank, Albert (n), TN, New York, New York; Mason, Charles (n), ADC, Pensacola, Florida; McCloskey, Ronald T., AN, 3alineville, Ohio; Meredith, Troy n), AMS3, Bee Springs, Kentucky; Middleton, Henry H., SD3, Charleston, South Carolina; Miles, Carl B., ATNAN, Midland, Texas; Miller, Glenn L., ADC, Ness City, Kansas; Moltzen, Henry E., ATN3, Hicksville, New York; Montgomery, George S., AEM3, Agra, Oklahoma; Muzzy, Glenn E., AT3> Peoria, Illinois; Nelson, Ewell L. Jr., AEMAN, McRae, Georgia; Neubauer, Gerald E., PRAN, Oshkosh, Wisconsin; Obney, William C., AMSAA, Alliance. Ohio; O'Brien, Newell W., AN. Hollowell, Maine; Oyenik, Charles M. Jr., AN, Thorpe, West Virginia; Pickard, Dan G., ADR3, Columbia, Tennessee; Plourde, Roland B., AN, Fall River, Massachusetts; Porter, "J" "W", AD2, Osceola, Arkansas; Render, Willie (n) Jr., SDI, Decatur, Georgia; Robbing, Marcellino C., AA, Falmouth,( Massachusetts; Rosado, Angelo n), Jr., AA, Bronx, New York; Rows, Edward T., AE2, Jacksonville, Florida; Sakowicz, Richard P., AEIAN, Lawrence, Massachusetts; Shedaker, Stanley S., ADC, Woodbury, New Jersey; Singleton, Jackie L., ADR3; Smith, Charles L., ADR3, Robinson, Illinois; Smith, Mbrlin D., AA, Toledo, Ohio; Smith, Robert T., AN, Blountville, Tennessee; Smith, William E., AD2, Jacksonville, Florida; Spalding, Frederick G. Jr., AD2, Denver, Colorado; Stanek, Frank R., AE2, St. Louie, Missouri; Stevenson, Raymond D., AA, Syracuse, New York; Strineo Gerald R., AA, Jeromeaville. Ohio; Strollo, Pacifico M., AT2, Batavia, New York; Tarlton, Charlie J., ADl, Norwood, North Carolina; Taylor, Johnny E., A03, Crigleraville, Virginia; Teleaky, John P., AA, Troy, New York; Thomas, Wesley C., PN2. Springfield, Missouri; Thompson, Fred (n), Jr., AE2, Hawkinaville, Georgia; Thompson, Donald R., HM2, HiBhsplint, Kentucky; Thorsen, Terry T., PN3, Jacksonville, Florida; Tingle. Jefferson J., III, AEM3, Decatur, Georgia; Tinsley, Robert L., AOl, Louisville, Kentucky; Trinidad, Jose L., TN, Quezon City, Philippines; Turnbell, Forest H., SN, Corey, Ohio; Warren, James M., PRl, Passaic, New Jersey; Weaver, Lloyd E., AMl, Clinton, Tennessee; Willey, Donald W., AMH3, Hinton, West Virginia; Williams, Adolphus (n), SA, Beloit, Wisconsin; Winkler, Edward B., ATC; Wriska, Louie J., AMC, Pontiac, Michigan; Zimmer, Ronald C., AA, Barrington, Illinois; Zollicoffer, John A., AMH2, Lincoln, Nebraska.

"VA-15 was orginially commissioned as Torpedo Squadron Four on 10 January, 1942. The squadron saw action in many important operations during WWII, flying the famed TBD Devastator and TBM Aventer. They received their first AD a/c in August of 1949. While aboard the USS FDR the squadron was awarded the COMNAVAIRLANT "E" for battle effiecency in 1953. In 1957 they awarded the Chief of Naval Opearations Aviation Saftey award while aboard the USS Forrestal. CDR. William J. Gray is presently Commanding Officer."

VA-15 Officers holding the Squadron Patch
Harry Clark

VA-15 Ready Room aboard the FDR.
Pic1
Pic2
Pic3

VA-15 Berthing

Working on the Engine

VA-15 A1s in 1958

VA-15 A1s in 1959

VA-15 A1 providing fuel

VA-15 Maintenance Crews

VA-15 Maintenance Crews

VA-15 Maintenance Crews

VA-15 Maintenance Crews

VA-15 Maintenance Crews

VA-15 Maintenance Crews

VA-15 Maintenance Crews

VA-15 Trap


BuNo.149619

JUL60 NAN photo, illustrating that Naval Air does have a sense of humor.
JUL60 NAN

1960: Clansman Skyhawk BuNo 142715, AB-409, Blue Bolts Skyhawk BuNo 144900, AB-306, and Clansman Skyhawk BuNo 142718, AB-404, aboard the F.D.
"Boom" Powell


VALions - October 1966.
The VA-15 pilots from the 5/1/66 to 10/30/66 Vietnam combat cruise on United States Ship Intrepid CVS-11 pose before A-4B Skyhawk BuNo. 142945 AK 305.
Standing Left to Right 1) Lieutenant Junior Grade Bob Hamel; 2) Lieutenant Lee Cole; 3) Lieutenant Commander Billy Butler; 4) Lieutenant Commander Pete Schoeffel; 5) Lieutenant Junior Grade Miller Detrick; 6) Lieutenant Commander Dave North; 7) Lieutenant Junior Grade Dave Parsons; 8) Lieutenant Junior Grade Dave "Dixie" Culler; 9) Lieutenant Junior Grade Phil "PC" Craig; 10) Lieutenant Junior Grade "Bo" Smith.

Kneeling Left to Right 1) Lieutenant Junior Grade John Neuman; 2) Lieutenant Commander Jerry Tuttle; 3) Lieutenant Commander "Possum" Terrell; 4) Lieutenant Junior Grade Dick Nolte; 5) Lieutenant Junior Grade Bob Cole; 6) Lieutenant Commander "Moon" Moreau; 7) Commander Ike Jones, Commanding Officer; 8) Lieutenant Junior Grade Gene Atkinson; 9) Lieutenant Junior Grade Dave Thornhill.
United States Navy photograph from Dave Thornhill.

1966 Intrepid Cruise Book Dockside loading of a A-4B Skyhawk aboard the Intrepid.
Blue shirts busy pushing a skyhawk around on the Intrepid.
Various crew shots
VA-15 Skyhawk cat hookup.
Images from Boom Powell.

06 June 1966: VA-15 Valions A-4B Skyhawk BuNo 144894, AK-307, USS Intrepid, Dixie Station. Official U.S. Navy photo.

Another shot of the VALions - October 1966.
The VA-15 pilots from the 5/1/66 to 10/30/66 Vietnam combat cruise on United States Ship Intrepid CVS-11 pose before A-4B Skyhawk BuNo. 142945 AK 305.
United States Navy photograph from Dave Thornhill.

VALion pilot - 1966.
Lieutenant Junior Grade Dave Thornhill poses by Douglas A-4B Skyhawk BuNo. 142945 AK 305.
Photograph from Dave Thornhill.

1966-67: Valions Skyhawk BuNo 149619, AK-200, as she taxies across the Intrepids flight deck with a load of iron bombs.
Intrepid Cruise Book from "Boom" Powell

1966-67: tail section and J-65 engine of Valions Skyhawk BuNo 149621, AK-204, as she undergoes maintenance in the Intrepids hangar bay.
Intrepid Cruise Book from "Boom" Powell

1966-67: Valions Skyhawk BuNo 148470, AK-207, taxiing across the Intrepids flight deck with a Shrike missile on #3.
"Boom" Powell

1966-67: Valions Skyhawk BuNo 148470, AK-207, with a load of conventional ordnance aboard the Intrepid.
"Boom" Powell

1966-67: Valions Skyhawk BuNo 148484, AK-214, aboard the Intrepid as the plane captain cleans the canopy.
US Navy via "Boom" Powell

1966-67: Valions Skyhawk BuNo 148495, AK-203, being manually moved into position in the Intrepids hangar bay.
US Navy via "Boom" Powell

1966-67: Valions Skyhawk BuNo 148495, AK-203, as the Ordies prepare to hand an MBER on the port side pylon.
US Navy via "Boom" Powell

1966: BuNo 144882, AK-303, brings up the rear as the squadrons Skyhawks wait to be loaded aboard the USS Intrepid.
Unknown photographer via W. Mutza

right side view of Valions Skyhawk BuNo 142945, AK-305, as she taxis by the photographer. Butlers Last Chance Gas Station is painted on the tail and LCDR Dave Carroll below the cockpit.
Tom Hansen

1966-67: BuNo 144997, AK-308, assigned to LCDR Dave North as she taxis by the photographer.
Unknown photographer via W. Mutza

1966-67: Valions Skyhawk BuNo 148484, AK-214, and VSF-3 Skyhawk BuNo 142126, AK-103, on the Intrepids hangar deck during a sweepdown.
U.S. Navy photo via "Boom" Powell

1966: VA-15 Valions A-4B Skyhawk BuNo 144997, AK-308, with 5.0" FFAR ZUNI's on the deck edge elevator of the USS Intrepid during the April 1966 - November 1966 cruise. Photo by Sam Taylor.

1966 VA-15 Valions A-4B Skyhawk BuNo 144997, AK-308, on board the USS Intrepid during the April 1966 - November 1966 cruise.
photo by Sam Taylor.

1966 VA-95 Green Lizards A-4B Skyhawk BuNo 142900, AK-506, configured as a tanker, VA-15 Valions A-4B BuNo 142945, AK-305, VA-95 A-4B BuNo 145037, AK-501, VA-95 Green Lizards A-4B BuNo 142738, AK-503, and VA-15 Valions A-4B BuNo 144918, AK-310, all configured with TER's and Mk-8x's aboard the USS Intrepid during the April 1966 - November 1966 cruise. Photo by Sam Taylor.

1966 USS Intrepid flight deck during the April 1966 - November 1966 cruise. At left VA-95 Green Lizards A-4B Skyhawk BuNo 142833, AK-50?, VA-95 A-4B BuNo 145037, AK-501, VA-15 Valions A-4B BuNo 144918, AK-310, VA-95 A-4B BuNo 142905, AK-509, VA-95 A-4B BuNo 142900, AK-506, VA-15 A-4B BuNo 144881, AK-304, VA-15 A-4B BuNo 144988, AK-309. At right VA-95 A-4B BuNo 142783, AK-503, VA-95 A-4B BuNo 145059, AK-502, VA-15 A-4B BuNo 144997, AK-308,VA-95 A-4B BuNo 142908, AK-50?, VA-95 A-4B BuNo 142913, AK-508, VA-15 A-4B BuNo 142945, AK-305, VA-15 A-4B BuNo 145057, AK-301, VA-15 A-4B BuNo 145013, AK-300, and VA-15 A-4B BuNo 142868, AK-306. In the middle are VA-165 Boomers (AK-2xx) and VA-176 Thunderbolts (AK-4xx) A-1H/J Skyraiders. The EA-1F Skyraider looks to be VAW-33 #772.
photo by Sam Taylor.

A-4C BuNo 149621 leading A-4B BuNo 142717, A-4B BuNo 145013 & A-4B BuNo 144997 (Early 1967)
courtesy of Jerry "Possum" Terrell
In 1965, VA-15 initially had A4C's. Then we started exchanging the A4C's for A4B's. The Bravos were in great shape and we had 16 of them on our '66 Westpac cruise - 300 series blue tails.. This picture was taken after that cruise in late 1966 or more likely early 1967....hence the "Tokin Gulf Yacht Club" decal on the tail and the bomb clusters behind the squadron patch of the Bravo's. Each bomb cluster represents 25 missions by that aircraft so 308 had 125+ missions.
In this photo, Jerry Tuttle was flying the Charlie, 201. I was flying one of the Bravos. As we flew a mix of B's & C's until the retransition was complete I always preferred the better performing A4B - about 1800 lbs lighter I think.
For our 1967 cruise in Charlie's, we were 200 series yellow tails, but used gold instead of yellow - 14 aircraft. Our squadron patch had been a decal but we were unable to use it on the Charlie's because of a new door opening for shoehorn equipment? So they painted a gold and black lion's head instead.
Dave Thornhill

1967: flight of eleven Valions Skyhawks.
Photo from "Boom" Powell.

25 May 1967 BuNo 145013, AK-00, parked on the ramp.
Photo by Clay Jansson via Tailhook Association.

Artwork on BuNo145013.
Javier Ruberto

25 May 1967 BuNo 145013, AK-00 tail.
Photo by Clay Jansson via Tailhook Association.

VA-15 Skyhawks Reload - 1967.
This picture was taken early in 1967 as VA-15 got ready for another combat tour to Vietnam. The closest three planes (BuNo. 144997 AK 308; BuNo. 145013 AK 00; BuNo. 142717 AK 311) are holdovers from the previous combat cruise of 5/1/66 to 10/30/66 on the United States Ship Intrepid CVS-11 as evidenced by their 3xx side numbers. The furthest A-4C (BuNo. 149621 AK 201) is partially ready for the next Vietnam tour - 6/21/67 to 12/9/67 - again on Intrepid.
United States Navy photograph.

1967 Valions Skyhawk BuNo 148446, AK-210, ready to be launched from the USS Intrepid.
Photo credit unknown.

1967: a flight of eleven Valions Skyhawks.
"Boom" Powell

1967: an unknown Valions Skyhawk on the cat with the bridle in tension and ready to launch from the USS Intrepid.
"Boom" Powell

August1967: USS Intrepid flight deck Skyhawks and Skyraiders, left side: VA-15 149524 AK-202; VA-15 148495 AK-203; VA-34 149518 AK-307; VA-15 148484 AK-214; VA-15 149529 AK-206 and VA-34 149593 AK-305.2nd from left: VA-145 AD's and VAW-33 EA-1F. 2nd from right: VSF-3 1421__ AK-10_; VA-15 149619 AK-2__; VA-15 14____ AK-2__; VSF-3 145029 AK-10_; VA-34 149588 AK-309; VA-34 149___ AK-306; VA-34 149640 AK-311; VSF-3 142687 AK-101 and VA-34 148487 AK-300.
Right side: VSF-3 142133 AK-10_; VA-15 149507 AK-2__; VSF-3 142140 AK-105; VA-34 149519 AK-304; VA-34 149590 AK-301; VA-34 149591 AK-302; VSF-3 142126 AK-103; VSF-3 145043 AK-106; VA-15 148446 AK-210 and VA-15 147670 AK-2__. Photo by Sam Taylor.

1967-68: Valion Green Lizard Skyhawks aboard the Intrepid as she transits the Suez. cw from lower left: VA-15 BuNo 144988, AK-309; VA-95 BuNo 142900, AK-506; VA-15 BuNo 145013, AK-300; VA-15 BuNo 144997, AK-308; and VA-15 BuNo 145001, AK-3xx.
"Boom" Powell

May 1968 Valions Skyhawk BuNo 149639, AA-00, as LT Gene "Wimpy" Atkinson receives the BE BE bomb from CAPT R.B. Baldwin after chalking up an amazing perfect score at Fallon. Also present are CDR's Bob Ferguson & Jim Snyder.
Naval Aviation News Photo.

A-4C Skyhawk BuNo. 149621 - 1970. was again photographed July 16, 1970 at Atsugi, Japan. At that time 149621 was with VA 172 flying from the Shangri-La as AJ 300.
Photograph by and courtesy of Takafumi Hiroe of Yokohama, Japan.

Thornhill bagged - August 1, 1967.
Lieutenant Dave Thornhill was shot down in A-4C Skyhawk BuNo. 147670 by North Vietnamese Triple A fire during a mission to Hon Gai, North Vietnam. Pictures here are of Daves return to Intrepid.
United States Navy photographs from Dave Thornhill.

VA-15 Skyhawks.
A flight of four VALion Skyhawks.
United States Navy photograph

VA-15 A-4C Skyhawk BuNo. 148543 - 1968.
VALion A-4C Skyhawk BuNo. 148543 (in the background) readies for flight during the United States Ship Forrestal CVA-59 and Carrier Air Wing 17's 1968 - 1969 Mediterranean cruise. This was VA-15's last cruise using the Skyhawk.
Also in this picture are North American RA-5C Vigilante BuNo. 148281 side number 605; and in the foreground VA-152 Fighting Aces A-4B Skyhawk BuNo. 145022 side number AA 511 -- this cruise was probably the last A-4B Skyhawk cruise.
Photograph by and from Warren A. Harms

VA-15 A-4C Skyhawk BuNo. 148460 - 1968.
VALion A-4C Skyhawk BuNo. 148460 side number AA 402 on the United States Ship Forrestal CVA-59 port cat.
Photograph by and from Warren A. Harms

VA-15 A-4C Skyhawk BuNo. 147696 and 147688 - 1968.
Lieutenant Warren Harms parks VA-15 A-4C Skyhawk BuNo. 147696 side number AA 403 on the starboard bow after trapping onboard United States Ship Forrestal CVA-59. Already parked is VALion A-4C Skyhawk BuNo. 147688 side number AA 416.
Photograph by and from Warren A. Harms

May 1980 BuNo 147830, AA-406, parked on the ramp.
Tailhook Association.

VA-15 A-7s in formation
Valion's in formation near NAS Fallon aproximately 1980.
Photograph supplied by Valion Chuck Rider
 


Off-Duty Info

VA-15 2002 Reunion.

September 2005 Reunion at New Orleans.
Pictures from Will McManus of New Orleans Reunion.


 

A-4 Skyhawk aircraft assigned to this unit:

 

Douglas A4D-2 (A-4B) Skyhawk

142121 c/n 11375

06 Jan 1966 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

23 May 1967 - VA-72 - USS FD Roosevelt

 

142717 c/n 11779

02 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

25 May 1967 - VA-72 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

142741 c/n 11803

24 Feb 1966 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

30 Mar 1967 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

142745 c/n 11807

02 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

21 Apr 1967 - VA-72 - USS FD Roosevelt

 

142798 c/n 11860

27 Jan 1966 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

28 May 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid (Last)
- Assume Stricken
- No further records found

 

142836 c/n 11898

26 May 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

27 Mar 1967 - Stricken - 1S

 

142868 c/n 11930

01 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

31 Jan 1966 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

142895 c/n 11957

08 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

14 Mar 1966 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

142945 c/n 12007

04 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

29 Dec 1966 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

144881 C/N 12127

08 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

21 Dec 1966 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

144882 C/N 12128

01 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

23 Jun 1966 - NAS - NAS Atsugi, Japan

 

144894 C/N 12140

09 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

02 Feb 1967 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

144918 C/N 12164

05 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

15 Dec 1966 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

144930 C/N 12176

02 Feb 1966 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

14 Mar 1966 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

144948 C/N 12194

12 Feb 1966 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

15 Mar 1966 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

144988 C/N 12234

07 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

29 Dec 1966 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

144997 C/N 12243

17 Jan 1966 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

17 Jan 1967 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

145001 C/N 12247

02 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

01 Feb 1967 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

145013 C/N 12259

09 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

30 Dec 1966 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

145035 C/N 12281

19 Jan 1966 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

03 Dec 1967 - VC-8 - NS Roosevelt Roads, PR

 

145040 C/N 12286

18 Dec 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

07 Aug 1966 - Stricken - 1S

 

145057 C/N 12303

26 Aug 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

15 Dec 1966 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

 

 

Douglas A4D-2N (A-4C) Skyhawk

145099 c/n 12345

26 Nov 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

27 Dec 1965 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

147670 C/N 12434

09 Feb 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

09 Feb 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

 

147688 C/N 12452

22 Jan 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

16 May 1969 - VA-66 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

147696 C/N 12460

29 Jan 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

07 May 1969 - VA-64 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

147745 C/N 12509

28 May 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

02 Jul 1968 - VA-12 - USS Shangri La

 

147783 C/N 12547

27 May 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

17 May 1969 - VA-106 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

147785 C/N 12549

29 Dec 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

04 Apr 1967 - VA-12 - USS FD Roosevelt

 

147789 C/N 12553

04 Mar 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

18 Aug 1968 - Stricken - 1SA

 

147792 C/N 12556

20 Oct 1967 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

05 Jan 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

05 Jun 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

20 May 1969 - VA-66 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

147803 C/N 12567

15 Aug 1967 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

16 Jan 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

147806 C/N 12570

05 Jan 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

28 Apr 1967 - VA-12 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

147830 C/N 12594

26 Jan 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

14 Mar 1968 - VA-125 - NAS Lemoore, CA

 

25 Jun 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

22 May 1969 - VA-64 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

147845 C/N 12609

03 Jan 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

01 May 1967 - VA-172 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

148440 C/N 12633

24 Feb 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

25 Aug 1967 - Stricken - 1S

 

148446 C/N 12639

24 Jan 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

08 Feb 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

148452 C/N 12645

24 Jan 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

07 May 1969 - VA-64 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

 

Douglas A4D-2N (A-4C) Skyhawk (Continued)

148459 C/N 12652

18 Jan 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

25 Oct 1968 - Stricken - 1SA

 

148460 C/N 12653

11 Jan 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

16 May 1969 - VA-44 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

148463 C/N 12656

15 Jan 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

16 May 1969 - VA-106 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

148466 C/N 12659

16 Dec 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

30 Jun 1967 - Stricken - 1S

 

148470 C/N 12663

23 Nov 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

07 Feb 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

148480 C/N 12673

22 Sep 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

14 Dec 1965 - VA-106 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

09 Dec 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

30 Mar 1967 - VA-12 - USS FD Roosevelt

 

148484 C/N 12677

23 Nov 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

22 Jan 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

148487 C/N 12680

08 Dec 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

29 Mar 1967 - VA-12 - USS FD Roosevelt

 

148495 C/N 12688

29 Oct 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

21 Dec 1965 - VA-106 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

07 Dec 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

20 Jan 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

148503 C/N 12696

22 Sep 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

07 Jan 1966 - VA-106 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

06 Dec 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

10 Mar 1967 - NARF - NAS Jacksonville, FL

 

148516 C/N 12709

24 Sep 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

17 Feb 1966 - VA-106 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

148528 C/N 12721

25 Jul 1967 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

24 Jan 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

148529 C/N 12722

07 Feb 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

25 Jan 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

148543 C/N 12736

24 Sep 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

17 Feb 1966 - VA-106 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

24 Jan 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

09 May 1969 - VA-66 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

148544 C/N 12737

20 Dec 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

04 Jul 1967 - Stricken - 1S

 

148545 C/N 12738

21 Sep 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

21 Feb 1966 - VA-106 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

05 Dec 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

30 Mar 1967 - VA-12 - USS FD Roosevelt

 

148571 C/N 12764

26 Jan 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

13 May 1969 - VA-66 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

148591 C/N 12784

14 Feb 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

04 Apr 1967 - VA-12 - USS FD Roosevelt

 

148594 C/N 12787

17 Feb 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

24 Nov 1966 - VA-66 - USS America

 

07 Feb 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

20 Mar 1968 - Stricken - 1S

 

148599 C/N 12792

29 May 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

03 Jun 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

148610 C/N 12803

23 Oct 1967 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

26 Jan 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

149493 c/n 12818

09 Sep 1967 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

15 Jan 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

149524 c/n 12849

16 Jan 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

16 May 1969 - VA-66 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

149529 c/n 12854

28 Dec 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

20 Oct 1967 - NAS - NAS Atsugi, Japan

 

149530 c/n 12855

06 Feb 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

07 May 1969 - VA-64 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

149569 c/n 12894

23 Mar 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

07 Jun 1968 - NARF - NAS Jacksonville, FL

 

149586 c/n 12911

11 Jul 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

10 Jan 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

149601 c/n 12926

21 Nov 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

16 May 1969 - VA-66 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

149607 c/n 12932

17 Feb 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

11 Jan 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

149611 c/n 12936

22 Oct 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

07 Jan 1966 - VA-106 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

09 Feb 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

14 Feb 1967 - Stricken - 1S

 

149619 c/n 12944

11 May 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

04 Oct 1967 - Stricken - 1S

 

149621 c/n 12946

22 Oct 1965 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

28 Jan 1966 - VA-106 - USS Saratoga

 

05 Dec 1966 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

24 Jan 1968 - VA-66 - USS Intrepid

 

149628 c/n 12953

21 Nov 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

16 May 1969 - VA-106 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

149636 c/n 12961

06 Jan 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

28 Apr 1967 - VA-172 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

 

149638 c/n 12963

30 Jan 1968 - VA-15 - NAS Cecil Field, FL

26 Jul 1968 - VA-172 - USS Shangri La

 

150600 c/n 13011

05 Jan 1967 - VA-15 - USS Intrepid

14 Feb 1967 - Stricken - 1S

 

 

 

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