Point of Contact = Squadron Duty Officer (SDO). See FAQ/Research/Contact link under [SA] in the menu.
Patch from G. Verver
Patch from G. Verver
Patch from G. Verver
Dedicate this page to a former VX-4 Evaluator Pilot or Bluejacket. The Skyhawk Association is looking for a Pilot or Bluejacket whose loss of life, while assigned to VX-4, merits the posthumous dedication of this web page: email email@example.com
VX-4 Robert Lay patch 1975
Jim Nicholas, AE1 Ret.
The original VX-4 came to life in 1950 at a base in New England, where it's primary focus was the development of AEW systems. After moving to Pax River the squadron disestablished in 1951.
The second VX-4 was commissioned at NAS Point Mugu on 11 September 1952 & spent it's whole life dedicated to the operational test and evaluation of fighter aircraft and systems destined for fleet units. In April 1994 VX-4 was combined with VX-5 from NAWC China Lake to form the VX-9 Vampires.
In it's 42 year history VX-4 had one aim:- to subject new aircraft, systems and weapons to the type of punishing service they could expect with fleet units. VX-4 found the limits, ensured new systems met their promises and reported back to NAVAIR as to which were worth expenditure on. As a result VX-4 was primarily an operational unit, assigned a test role. Aircrew had to keep up with Fleet requirements for carrier qualification, ACM and more. In addition to deciding which kit was worth buying the unit wrote manuals and developed tactics for systems prior to fleet introduction.
Being involved in evaluating all new systems destined for the fleet meant that during it's life the squadron operated almost every type of fighter aircraft the Navy has flown since 1952. The first F-14A arrived September(?) 1972, fresh from Naval Air Test Centre evaluation. VX-4 carried out OPEVAL for the F-14A (in much the same way that VX-9 is currently undertaking OPEVAL for the F/A-18E/F), ensuring it was ready for the rigors of shipboard life and developing, then writing the tactics and manuals that would cover not only how it fought, but how it was maintained.
; VX-4 then became involved in the AIMVAL/ACEVAL tests of the late 1970's, which saw F-14As from VF-1 and VF-2 deploy to Nellis AFB for several months of tests, flying against F-5s and F-15s. The results helped forge US fighter fundamentals for the 1980s and 90s and also provided vital data for the formulation of requirements that would lead to development of the AIM-120 AMRAAM.
The Evaluators helped prove the F-14/AWG-9/AIM-54 mix, ensuring it could meet it's promised multi-target track and engagement requirements. A F-14A from VX-4 was the aircraft that engaged six drones at various speeds and altitudes on the 8th of June 1973. Pilot 'Smoke' Wilson and RIO Jack Hawver fired six AIM-54's in 38 seconds. Despite one missile having an in flight malfunction and a drone going off course the test was a success - four drones were destroyed and another scored as a lethal miss. The F-14A had passed it's toughest test, one that reduced the threat of the Tomcat being cancelled, a very real threat at that time.
NAS Point Mugu, CA
No info yet.
Date Type First Received - - - - - - Type of Aircraft:
20 March 1959- - - - Douglas YA4D-1 (A-4A) Skyhawk *
15 March 1961- - - - Douglas A4D-1 (A-4A) Skyhawk *
24 january 1958- - - Douglas A4D-2 (A-4B) Skyhawk *
26 April 1962- - - - Douglas A4D-2N (A-4C) Skyhawk
1 October 1973 - - - Douglas A-4F Skyhawk
15 April 1969- - - - Douglas TA-4F Skyhawk
6 May 1975 - - - - - Douglas TA-4J Skyhawk
197? - - - - - - - - Grumman F-14A/D Tomcat
196? - - - - - - - - Grumman A-6A, A-6E & A-6F Intruder
19?? - - - - - - - - Lockheed DC-130H Hercules
195? - - - - - - - - McDonnell/Douglas F/A-18 Hornet
19?? - - - - - - - - McDonnell F4H-J & F-4S Phantom II
19?? - - - - - - - - CH-46 Sea Knight
* November 30, 1962
The YA4D-1 designation was changed to A-4A
The A4D-1 designation was changed to A-4A
The A4D-2 designation was changed to A-4B
The A4D-2N designation was changed to A-4C
For A-4 Skyhawk aircraft assigned to this unit see lower in this page:
Assumed Command - - - - - Commanding Officer
Aug 1945 - - May 1948 - - Cdr. Lucien A Dodson
May 1948 - - May 1950 - - Cdr. F.E. Bardwell
May 1950 - - Sep 1952 - - Cdr. A.F. Fleming
Sep 1952 - - Jan 1954 - - Cdr. James G. Sliney
Jan 1954 - - Aug 1954 - - Cdr. Harold W. Calhoun
Aug 1954 - - Sep 1955 - - Cdr. H.H. Larsen
Sep 1955 - - Jul 1957 - - Capt. Roger R. Hedrick
Jul 1957 - - Mar 1959 - - Capt. Vincent P. DePoix
Mar 1959 - - Jul 1959 - - Cdr. James A. Riner, Jr.
Jul 1959 - - Jan 1961 - - Capt. Joseph G. Smith
Jan 1961 - - Apr 1962 - - Capt. William H. Livingston
Apr 1962 - - Jul 1963 - - Cdr. Hugh N. Batten
Jul 1963 - - Jul 1964 - - Cdr. John A Gilcrist
Jul 1964 - - Nov 1965 - - Cdr. Chandler V. Merrell
Nov 1965 - - Jan 1967 - - Cdr. R.C. Stewart
Jan 1967 - - Jan 1969 - - Capt. Constantine N. Pierozzi
Jan 1969 - - Apr 1971 - - Cdr. James R. Foster
Apr 1971 - - Mar 1974 - - Capt. T.J. Cawley
Mar 1974 - - Jul 1976 - - Capt. F.A.W. Franke, Jr
Jul 1976 - - Jun 1979 - - Capt. Richard W. Burnett
Jun 1979 - - Jun 1981 - - Capt. George W. White, Jr.
Jun 1981 - - Jan 1983 - - Capt. R. Charles Schroeder, Jr.
Jan 1983 - - Jun 1984 - - Capt. J. Michael Welch
Jun 1984 - - Aug 1985 - - Capt. R.M. Vance
Aug 1985 - - Dec 1985 - - Capt. Henry M. Kleemann
Dec 1985 - - Jan 1986 - - Cdr. V.J. Larson (acting CO
Jan 1986 - - Mar 1988 - - Capt. Larry G. Pearson
Mar 1988 - - May 1990 - - Capt. F.G Ludwig, Jr.
May 1990 - - May 1991 - - Capt. P.G. Howard
May 1991 - - May 1993 - - Capt. T.A. Perkins
May 1993 - - Present - - -Capt. Daniel R. McCort
No info yet
No additional info
January 19, 1970
A-4 Skyhawk aircraft assigned to this unit: