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VT-4 Mighty War Bucks - 1963
Patch drawn by Bud Southworth
Duck patch used from 195? - present.
Mighty War Bucks.
195?: Basic Training Group NINE (BTG-9) established at Naval Air Station Memphis, Tennessee.
01 May 1960: Basic Training Group NINE (BTG-9) was re-designated as Training Squadron FOUR VT-4 at Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida.
195?: Naval Air Station Memphis, Tennessee.
1960: Forest Sherman Field, Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida.
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Date Type First Received - - - - - - Type of Aircraft:
195?- - - - - - - - - - Lockheed T2V-1 Sea Star.
May 1960 - - - - - - North American T2J-1 / T-2A Buckeye.
December 1965- - - North American T-2B Buckeye.
May 1970 - - - - - - North American T-2C Buckeye.
September 1972 - - Grumman F9F-8T (TF-9J) Cougar *
24 March 1982- - - Douglas TA-4F Skyhawk.
2 November 1973 - Douglas TA-4J Skyhawk.
19??- - - - - - - - - - Beechcraft T-34C Mentor.
* November 30, 1962
For A-4 Skyhawk aircraft assigned to this unit see lower in this page:
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1960: CDR H. V. Weldon
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No additional info
195?: Basic Training Group NINE (BTG-9) established at Naval Air Station Memphis, Tennessee, flying the Lockheed T2V-1 Sea Star.
May 1, 1960: Basic Training Group NINE was redesignated as Training Squadron FOUR (VT-4) at Forest Sherman Field, Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida, flying the Lockheed T2V-1 Sea Star and North American T2J-1 Buckeye. The mission was to provide basic jet flight instruction consisting of basic and radio instrument procedures, formation, night flying, air to air gunnery and carrier qualifications.
Fall 1963: The Training Squadron FOUR flight instruction sylabus was changed to air to air gunnery and carrier qualification training.
Training Squadron Four is tasked with all phases of basic jet training in the North American T-2J-1 Buckeye. VT-4 receives the top Training Squadron ONE graduates, students. VT-4 provides each student pilot about 200 hours of academic instruction and about 50 hours of flight support lectures.
VT-4 student Naval Aviators fly over 100 hours in the Navy's latest and only basic jet training plane the T-2J "Buckeye." The VT-4 training syllabus includes: transition, precision flying, acrobatics, basic instruments, radio instruments, navigation, night flying, formation flying, air-to-air gunnery and carrier qualification.
Students climax their flight instruction by jet carrier qualifying aboard the United States Ship Antietam CVS-36, operating in the Gulf of Mexico. The Antietam was for VT-4 student and instructor carrier qualifications intil 1963.
VT-4 at Forest Sherman Field provided students air-to-air gunnery training from 1960 to 1971.
1962 to 198?: Student and instructor carrier qualifications on United States Ship Lexington CVS-16.
1963 to 1965: Student and instructor carrier qualifications carried out on varous carriers while Lexington in overhaul.
1963 United States Ship Intrepid CVS 11
1963 United States Ship Essex CVS 9
1963 United States Ship Shangri La CVA 38
1964 United States Ship Intrepid CVS 11
1964 United States Ship Wasp CVS 18
1964 United States Ship Essex CVS 9
1964 United States Ship Franklin D. Roosevelt CVA 42
December 1965: Training Squadron FOUR transitioned to the North American T-2B Buckeye aircraft. VT-4's mission was to be the Naval Air Training Command sole site for providing basic jet flight instruction in aerial gunnery and carrier qualification.
January 1970: Student and instructor carrier qualifications carried out on United States Ship Intrepid CVS 11 while Lexington in overhaul.
May 1970: Training Squadron FOUR assigned the North American T-2C Buckeye.
March 1971: The Navy switched training concept to parallel flow. VT-4 provided basic flight training in Transition, Precision Acrobatics, Basic Instruments, Radio Instruments, Night Flying, Formation Flying, Air-to-air Gunnery and Carrier Qualification
September 1972: Training Squadron FOUR was assigned the training concept of Basic and Advanced flight training. Training Squadron FOUR was assigned the Grumman TF-9J Cougar for advanced training.
November 1973: Training Squadron FOUR assigned the Douglas TA-4J Skyhawk to replace the Cougar. From 1973 to 1978, VT-4 provided summer jet orientation flights for midshipmen of the United States Naval Academy and the Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps.
FEB 1974: Last TF-9J Cougar retired from Navy use.
1975: Training Squadron FOUR tasked with Flight Surgeon flight training in the Douglas TA-4J Skyhawk. VT-4 was given the added mission of providing flight instruction for allied foreign military pilots. Flight training was given to student pilots from Kuwait, Spain, Singapore and Indonesia.
October 19, 1976
February 14, 1985: Capt. Richard Packer ejected safely when his TA-4J BuNo 158483 clipped the roof of a house while returning to NAS Pensacola, FL and crashed in the densely populated Navy Point residential area west of Pensacola.
December 1985: Training Squadron FOUR mission was changed from strike training to being the sole site of E-2/C-2 intermediate training in CNATRA. The squadron was tasked with Grumman E-2 pilot training comprised of 68 training flights in the T-2C Buckeye.
April 16, 1986: VT-4's last TA-4J Skyhawk was transfered to Training Squadron SEVEN at Naval Air Station Meridian, Mississippi.
January 1992: VT-4's mission changed to being the E-2/C-2 advanced training site using the T-2C.
1996: VT-4 grew from a small all Navy Advanced E-2/C-2 pilot training squadron with a student throughput of 36 per year it became a joint Primary and Intermediate Naval Flight Officer/Navigator training squadron with an annual student throughput of 450. Instructor ranks grew from fourteen Navy pilots to 71 Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force pilots and NFO/Navigators. The squadron transitioned from flying the T-2C to flying the T-34C Turbo Mentor and T-1A Jayhawk. VT-4 also instructs student navigators from Germany, Italy, Saudi Arabia, Norway and Denmark.
April to September 1996: VT-4 conducted simultaneously primary NFO/NAV and advanced pilot training. Following the final CQ detachment in September, the mission converted entirely to NFO/NAV training. On 30 September 1996, the last VT-4 Naval Aviators earned their wings. Since its commissioning, VT-4 amassed over 600,000 flight hours and logged 42,000 carrier landings.
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A-4 Skyhawk aircraft assigned to VT-4: