VMA-142

VMA-142 Flying Gators

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VMA-142 Flying Gators
Courtesy of Randy Toskin

MAG42 Det A
Courtesy of Randy Toskin

Patch

No info yet.

Sources

David Weber

Randy Toskin

John Gabbard

Handle

Flying Gators

Heritage

March 1, 1942: Activated at Camp Kearney, California. See "EVENTS" below.

Home Ports

1970's - - - - - - - - - - - - - NAS Jacksonville

1970's - - - - - - - - - - - - - NAS Cecil Field

Air Wings li>1970's - - - - - - MB - - - - - VMA-142 and MAG-42

 

Aircraft

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

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

1965 - - - - - - - A-4C Douglas Skyhawk*.

1965?- - - - - - - A-4L Douglas Skyhawk**.

1976 - - - - - - - A-4F Douglas Skyhawk**.

19?? - - - - - - - TA-4J Douglas Skyhawk***.

197? - - - - - - - A-4M Douglas Skyhawk****.

*MAG-42 Det A transitioned to the A-4? in 1964.

**MAG-42 Det A flew the A-4L from NAS Jacksonville and transitioned to the A-4F in 1976.

***MAG-42 Det A also flew several TA-4Js.

****Flew the A-4F and A-4M at Cecil Field, Florida.

Deployments

WWII - - - - - - - - - Guadalcanal

WWII - - - - - - - - - Southern Solomons

WWII - - - - - - - - - Luzon

WWII - - - - - - - - - Southern Philippines

Commanding Officers

No info yet.

Awards

No info yet

No additonal info

Events

March 1, 1942: Activated at Camp Kearney, California as Marine Scout Bombing Squadron 142, Marine Aircraft Group 14, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force.

August 1942: Assigned to Marine Aircraft Group 12, 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force.

September 1942: Reassigned to Marine Aircraft Group 11, 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force.

October-November 1942: Deployed to Espiritu Santo, New Hebrides, and reassigned to Marine Aircraft Group 11, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force.

August 1942: Relocated to El Toro, California, and reassigned to Marine Base Defense Aircraft Group 41, Marine Fleet Air, West Coast.

April 1944: Relocated to Ewa, Territory of Hawaii, and reassigned to Marine Aircraft Group 32, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force.

September 21, 1945: Deactivated.

1946 - 1997:

July 1, 1946: Reactivated at Miami, Florida, as Marine Fighting Squadron 142 and assigned to Marine Air Detachment, Naval Air Reserve Training Unit, Naval Air Station, Miami, Florida.

December 1946: Reassigned to Marine Air Reserve Training Command, Naval Air Reserve Training Unit, Naval Air Station, Miami, Florida.

April 1, 1949: Re-designated as Marine Fighter Squadron 142, Marine Air Reserve Training Command, Naval Air Station, Miami, Florida, Naval Air Station Miami, Florida, re-designated during February 1952 as Marine Corps Air Station, Miami, Florida.

September 1953: Re-designated as Marine Fighter Squadron 142, Marine Air Reserve Training Detachment, Marine Air Reserve Training Command, Marine Corps Air Station, Miami, Florida.

May 15, 1958: Re-designated as Marine Attack Squadron 142.

March 1959: Relocated to Naval Air Station, Jacksonville, Florida.

January 1971: Reassigned to the 4th Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force.

December 1978: Relocated to Naval Air Station, Cecil Field, Florida.

January 1979: Reassigned to Marine Aircraft Group 42 Detachment, 4th Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force.

January 1980: Reassigned to Marine Aircraft Group 42, Detachment A, 4th Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force.

December 21, 1990: Re-designated as Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 142.

August 1997: Relocated to Naval Air Station, Atlanta, Georgia.

Marine Aircraft Group 42 Detachment A.

1946: Marine Aircraft Group 42 Detachment A, was organized as Marine Air Detachment, Jacksonville Naval Air Station, Jacksonville, Florida. They were tasked to supervise, train, and support VMF-144.

1953: Re-designated Marine Air Reserve Training Detachment (MARTD).

1958: HMM-765 was activated and attached to MARTD Jax for support. This was followed later with the relocation of VMF-142 from Miami, Florida to Jacksonville.

1965: VMF-144 and VMF-142 were re-designated VMA's with the transition to the A-4 Skyhawk aircraft; the two Squadrons were merged to form VMA-142.

December 3, 1967: While landing A-4B BuNo 144970 at NAS Cecil Field a landing gear crumpled. Maj. Walter Bryson of VMA-142 pulled up to a safe altitude and ejected over a wooded area
San Antonio, TX San Antonio Express article

1968: HMM-765 was relocated to Atlanta, Georgia.

1962 - 1974: During the Vietnam era, no MARTD Jax units were activated. VMA-142 was held in a standby status. This era witnessed a substantial growth in the number of reserve personnel joined to VMA-142.
The numbers and experience of personnel were such that it was deemed feasible in 1977 to organize a Headquarters and Maintenance Squadron (H&MS-42 Det A) and a Marine Air Base Squadron (MABS-49 Det C). Excess VMA-142 personnel were assigned as appropriate to better utilize skill and experience.

1978: MARTD Jax and its attached reserve units relocated to Cecil Field Naval Air Station, thus becomming MARTD Cecil Field. This name was short lived due to a reorganization of the Fourth Marine Air Wing and MARTD Cecil Field was designated Marine Aircraft Group 42 Detachment A (MAG-42 Det A). The purpose of the rerganization was to fully incorporate all active duty MAG-42 Det A Maines into the table of organization of its attached units upon mobilization.

July 1985: The MABS detachment was deactivated, and its personnel were transfered to VMA-142 and H&MS-42 Det A for training. H&MS-42 Det A was redsignated as Marine Avation Logistics Squadron 42 Detachment A (MALS-42 Det A) in 1988, while VMA-142 was redesignated in 1990 as VMFA-142 upon replacement of the A-4 Skyhawk with the F/A-18 Hornet aircraft.

August 1997: MAG-42 Det A, MALS-42 Det A, and VMFA-142 relocated to Naval Air Station, Atlanta, Georgia. Thus ending a 50 year history in the state of Florida.

Unit Photos

1961: MAJ Dean H. Maderis checks out one of the new Skyhawks that are replacing the squadrons F9F Cougars. Naval Aviation News.

Circa 1964: Unknown A-4B with VMA-142, side number 6F-29. NAN.

1970: BuNo.147726 in a 1970 photo of the reserve flight line at NAS JAX. This VMA-142 A-4C previously was owned by VA-44, where Dave Dollarhide flew it in 1966. Photo provide by Dave Dollarhide.

DEC70-APR76: BuNo 147807, MB-9, parked on the flight-line. Lionel Paul.

Skyhawk BuNo 147815, MB-7, parked on the flight-line. Unknown photographer via W. Mutza.

1974: Flying Gators Skyhawk BuNo 149594, MB-3, parked on the ramp. Unknown photographer via W. Mutza.

March 1974: VMA-142 A-4L BuNo 148436, MB-8, parked on the ramp. L.B. Sides.

NOV75-SEP77: BuNo 154207, MB-15, parked on the ramp with a centerline tank. Gary Verver Collection.

1976: VMA-142 Flying Gators A-4L Skyhawk BuNo 149594, MB-3 on the ramp. Photographer unknown.

17 OCT 1976: Right side view of MARTD JAX VMA-142 Gators TA-4J Skyhawk BuNo 153689, MB-22, on the ramp, Dobbins AFB, 17 October 1976. Copyright R.W. Harrison.

May 1977: VMA-142 TA-4J BuNo 155082, MB-21. Name below the canopy is Lt.Col. Herlocker, commanding officer. Photo by L.B. Sides.

24JUL77: BuNo 154979, MB-09, parked on the flight line next to VMA-331 A-4M BuNo 158183. Gary Verver Collection.

Date unknown: Right side view of VMA-142 Flying Gators A-4M Skyhawk BuNo 159472, MB-11, on the ramp with a centerline tank and painted in a lo-vis grey scheme. Photo from W. Munzenmaier.

14NOV77: BuNo 155024. Photographer unknown, from Verver Collection.

1978: Flying Gators Skyhawk BuNo 154976, MB-10, painted in a brown/tan camouflage scheme. Harry Gann.

1979: VMA-142 A-4F Skyhawk BuNo. 155030. A-4F Skyhawk BuNo. 155030 side number 04 of Marine Reserve squadron VMA-142/MAG-42 Det "A" the "Flying Gators" from Naval Air Station Cecil Field near Jacksonville, Florida. The "Fox" is carrying "shake and bake" as it departs Cecil for fun and adventure. Photo by and from John W. Street MGySgt - USMC-Ret.

1979: BuNo 155022, MB-06, parked on the ramp. Gary Verver Collection.

APR79: BuNo 154209, MB-12 parked on the Yuma ramp. Gary Verver Collection.

APR80: BuNo 154209, MB-12 parked on the ramp with a centerline tank and wing mounted TER's. Gary Verver Collection.

APR80: BuNo 154971, MB-11, parked on the flight line. Gary Verver Collection.

APR80: BuNo 155034, MB-03, parked on the flight line. Gary Verver Collection.

MAY80: Left front view of Flying Gators Skyhawk BuNo 154976, MB-10, parked on the ramp with a centerline tank in a two-tone camouflage scheme. Gary Verver Collection.

MAY80: BuNo 155030, MB-04, parked on the ramp. Gary Verver Collection.

OCT80: Flying Gators Skyhawk BuNo 155013, MB-07, as she taxis by the photographer. Gary Verver Collection.

NOV80: Nov 1980 BuNo 155022, MB-06, parked on the ramp. Gary Verver Collection.

DEC80: BuNo 155013, MB-07, parked on the ramp. Rob Mignard.

MAR84: Flying Gators Skyhawk BuNo 154209, MB-00, parked on the ramp. Ted Paskowski, Gary Verver Collection.

MAY85: BuNo 155028, MB-16, parked on the El Paso ramp. Gary Verver Collection.

DEC85: Flying Gators Skyhawk BuNo 154989, MB-12, parked on the Andrews ramp in a lo vis gray paint scheme. Gary Verver Collection.

03SEP88: BuNo 159482, MB-12, parked on the ramp. Gary Verver Collection.

03SEP88: Right rear view of VMA-142 Gators A-4M Skyhawk BuNo 159482, MB-12, on the Andrews ramp next to an unknown VT-10 T-2C Buckeye, 03. Gary Verver Collection.

1988: VMA-142 A-4M Skyhawk BuNo. 158162. Marine Reserve squadron VMA-142 "Flying Gators" A-4M BuNo. 158162, side number Mike Bravo 01. This is the Commanding Officer's bird from Naval Air Station Cecil Field, Florida. It is pictured at Naval Air Station Atlanta in December, 1988. Colors are tactical paint scheme ghost grays ("low-vis"). Photo by and from Frank J. Mirande.

1988-90: Left side view of VMA-142 Flying Gators A-4M Skyhawk BuNo 158165, MB-02, on the ramp in a lo-vis grey scheme next to MB-00, Luke AFB, 1988-1990. P/C is SGT Pipki From W. Munzenmaier.

Sketch drawn by a Squadron ordinance man. Sketch from Randy Toskin.

A-4 Skyhawk Ejection Seat. Drawing from Randy Toskin.


Off-Duty Photos

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