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HistoryCPW-5 HistoryHistory

Circa 2010

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing FIVE..." Contributed by VP-10 Alumni vp10_archives@juno.com [31MAR2010]

All,

Today I have the honor of hauling down the CPRW-5 pennant for the final time as the 20th and last Commodore. I would be remiss of me if I did not highlight some of the command's history and how it has touched nearly every maritime patrol aviator in our great Navy. From Wing FIVE's origin in 1937 onboard the flagships USS Owl and seaplane-tenders USS Gannet and USS Goldsborough, through transitions ashore to NAS Norfolk, Virginia, NAS Boca Chica, Florida, NAS Patuxent River, Maryland, and finally NAS Brunswick, Maine, Wing FIVE has had one goal: to prepare squadrons to support and defend our national interests both abroad and off our own shores.

Wing Five squadron tail flashes have proudly adorned aircraft nicknamed Catalina, Marlin, Neptune, Orion and most recently, Global Hawk. Wing Five based aircrews have always strived to answer the call of duty, whether it be: Atlantic neutrality patrols; coastal ASW patrols after Pearl Harbor; Gulf Coast Frontier patrols; 38th parallel patrols; Cold War patrols from NAS Keflavik, Iceland to NS Rota, Spain / NAF Lajes, Azores, Portugal to NAS Bermuda to the Caribbean; Cuban Missile Crisis surveillance patrols; Mercury and Gemini support; Vietnam patrols; Mediterranean patrols; Desert Shield and Storm; Yugoslavia/Kosovo; and finally, Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. Our squadron mates have operated from the North Pole to the most southern tip of South America.and on any given day, any latitude and longitude between the International Date Line and Greenwich Meridian.

Many of you have fond memories of cutting your teeth on anti-submarine patrols in the local warning areas and flying home marveling at the beautiful Maine coast. There was no better feeling than when driving by Fat Boy's on Old Bath Road, seeing your squadron's tail flash pass overhead on final approach.

On behalf of the last Sailors at CPRW-5, we salute all our squadron mates from units present and past (VP-8, VP-10, VP-11, VP-14, VP-15, VP-21, VP-23, VP-26, VP-44, VP-92, VPU-1, TSC NAS Brunswick, Maine, FMP MOCC ALFA, FSU-5, NAVCOMTELDET, NCTAMSLANTDET, ASD and AIMD). The bonds of Sailors serving at Wing Five and in Brunswick, Maine have strongly influenced our maritime community and we hope it will remain an enduring legacy of excellence for many operations and missions to come.

Best wishes to all in the future as we haul down our pennant for the final time. It has been an honor to serve in this capacity and with so many phenomenal people. Fly safe and Godspeed. Wing Five....out.

V/r,

Captain Jim Hoke
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing FIVE


Circa 2009

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...CPRW-5's VP-10, VP-26 and FSU-5 move to CPRW-11 in NAS Jacksonville, Florida..." Forwarded by SAVIEO, AT3 Gene gsavieo@gmail.com [26DEC2009]

CPRW-5 Sends:

All,

Last Friday we formally shifted control of VP-10, VP-26 and FSU-5 to CPRW-11 in NAS Jacksonville, Florida. With that, CPRW-5 is out of the operational business. By every measure, the difficult process of moving our squadrons and units while continuing to prepare them for deployments set a new standard for how to do it right while always taking care of our Sailors. There is no doubt that every organization on this great base played a key role in that, and I want to personally thank you. Throughout our history, our squadrons have always been able to raise the bar in deployment performance, just as VP-10 did on their last one.

I am often asked why that is, and the one thing I can point to is the amazing team approach that the base has always had. Each and every one of you understand the importance of what our Sailors do, and bend over backwards to ensure that they and their families are fully supported and always taken care of. I am humbled and honored to have had the chance to serve with each and everyone of you (many through multiple tours), and again want to express my sincere appreciation for all you have done for this Wing.

All the best and Happy Holidays. V/r, Jim

Captain Jim Hoke
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing FIVE
5 Jay Beasley Circle
Brunswick, ME 04011
(207) 921-2424 DSN 476-2424

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...OPNAV NOTICE 5400 - April 29, 2009 - Disestablishment of Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing Five and Officer in Charge, Commander Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing Five Detachment Aviation Intermediate Maintenance Detachment..." Contributed by GALLARDO, LCDR Orlando gallardo@lhd2.navy.mil [12MAY2009]

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Circa 2008

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraVPU-1 Mishap WebSite: CenterSeat http://www.centerseat.net/ [30NOV2008]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Navy reassigns commander of P-3 that crashed - Rachel_Ganong@TimesRecord.Com - 10/24/2008..." WebSite: TimesRecord http://www.timesrecord.com [25OCT2008]

BRUNSWICK Navy officials have temporarily reassigned the officer piloting a NAS Brunswick, Maine-based plane that crashed Tuesday at Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan, according to a release from Naval Air Force Atlantic issued today.

The release said Cmdr. Llew Lewis, commanding officer of a Navy squadron assigned to CPRW-5 based at NAS Brunswick, Maine, was at the controls of the P-3 Orion aircraft when it overshot a runway at Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan on Tuesday.

No one was killed, but one crew member, who has not been identified, sprained an ankle as a result of the crash, base spokesman John James told The Times Record Tuesday.

James said the plane's right main landing gear collapsed and both right engines caught fire.

Navy officials are investigating the crash, the release said. Capt. James Hoke has reassigned Lewis from command of the squadron pending its completion, according to the release.

"That is standard procedure to temporarily reassign personnel pending the outcome of any aircraft investigation," James said.

In the meantime, Cmdr. Craig Lee, executive officer of the squadron, has temporarily assumed command of the squadron.

Mass Communications Specialist 2 David Hewitt, of NAS Brunswick, Maine Public Affairs Office, said he could not indicate how many people were on the plane at the time of the crash or how long the investigation will last.

But the crash rendered the P-3 out of commission, resulting in a multi-million-dollar loss. P-3 Orions, 23 of which fly out from NAS Brunswick, Maine, were last produced for the U.S. Navy in 1990 for $36 million apiece.

Tuesday's crash was the first in decades involving an aircraft stationed at NAS Brunswick, Maine. According to Times Record research, the last time a Brunswick-based plane crashed was Sept. 22, 1978, when eight crew members died in Poland after a structural failure caused a Navy P-3 to break up in flight.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Afghan crash latest blow to Orion fleet - By Andrew Tilghman - Staff writer - Posted : Thursday Oct 23, 2008 11:53:44 EDT..." WebSite: NavyTimes http://www.navytimes.com/ [24OCT2008]

Waiting for permission to post entire article.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...P-3 Orion based at BNAS crashes in Afghanistan - 10/22/2008..." WebSite: TimesRecord http://www.timesrecord.com/ [23OCT2008]

BRUNSWICK For the first time in more than 30 years, a NAS Brunswick, Maine-based plane crashed Tuesday, as a P-3 Orion missed a runway in Afghanistan and was destroyed.

There were no fatalities in the crash, and only one crew member suffered a minor injury.

John James, public affairs Officer at the NAS Brunswick, Maine, said Tuesday he couldn't divulge which patrol squadron the plane belonged to, nor the name of the crew member who was injured.

"It was a Wing 5 aircraft deployed to Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom," James told The Times Record. "The aircraft overshot the runway at Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan. The right main landing gear collapsed and both right engines then caught fire. The Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan fire department responded immediately and distinguished the fire.

"All of the crew exited the left side of the airplane and there was only one minor injury, which was a sprained ankle," he continued.

An American Forces Press Service report from Afghanistan claims that the injured crew member was treated at Craig Joint Theater Hospital at the Bagram location. The report also said the crash is still under investigation.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Landing accident at Bagram Airfield leaves one injured, loss of airplane from U.S. Forces Afghanistan..." WebSite: Bagram Air Base http://www.bagram.afcent.af.mil/ [22OCT2008]

10/21/2008 - KABUL, Afghanistan -- A Navy P-3 Orion airplane overshot the runway surface while landing at Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan early today.

The airplane sustained serious structural and fire damage. Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan-based emergency-response units took action on scene to extinguish the fires.

The entire crew survived, though one U.S. crew member suffered a broken ankle and was treated at Craig Joint Theater Hospital on Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan.

The cause of the accident is under investigation.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...U.S. plane overshoots runway in Afghanistan - By Joseph Giordono, Stars and Stripes - Mideast edition, Wednesday, October 22, 2008 ..." WebSite: Stars and Stripes http://www.stripes.com/ [22OCT2008]

A U.S. Navy reconnaissance plane was destroyed when it overshot the runway at the large U.S. air base north of the Afghan capital early Tuesday, officials said.

All of the crewmembers survived the crash, though one suffered a broken ankle.

"A Navy P-3 Orion airplane overshot the runway surface while landing at Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan early [Tuesday]," a United States Forces Afghanistan release read.

"The airplane sustained serious structural and fire damage. Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan-based emergency-response units took action on scene to extinguish the fires."

The injured crewmember was treated at the Craig Joint Theater Hospital on Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan, officials said.

The P-3 is a four-prop plane that was originally developed during the Cold War, when its primary mission was tracking missiles and attack submarines.

Since early in the Afghan war, Navy P-3s have been used in landlocked Afghanistan to support coalition ground forces.

Officials have said the aircraft are used to gather intelligence and provide surveillance and reconnaissance for commanders in the Arabian Sea and on the ground in Afghanistan.

The plane that crashed Tuesday is deployed from PATWING FIVE out of NAS Norfolk, Virginia, said Cmdr. Jane Campbell of the Navy. While deployed, the aircraft falls under CTF-57, she said.

Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan is the largest U.S. military base in Afghanistan and a main flying hub.

The crash is under investigation, officials said.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "... FROM NAS Brunswick, Maine TO NAS Jacksonville, Florida By LCDR Mary Anne Andrews - CPRW-11 (Squadrons Mentioned: CPRW-5, VPU-1, VP-8, VP-10 and VP-26)..." Contributed by Antonio Diana tonidibla@netscape.net [27JUN2008]

CPRW-5 Commanding Officer Capt. Tyrone Payton and VP-8 Commanding Officer Cmdr. Eric Wiesz hosted an informational fair June 10 at NAS Brunswick, Maine for Sailors and their families who will be part of the homeport change to NAS Jacksonville, Florida beginning in the summer of 2009.

Four P-3C Orion patrol squadrons (VPU-1, VP-8, VP-10 and VP-26) and up to 1,300 Sailors will make the transition from Maine to Florida.

NAS Jacksonville, Florida Commanding Officer Capt. Jack Scorby Jr. attended the event and presented an overview of NAS Jax and current construction projects, including the $123 million hangar that will house five P-3C Orion squadrons and a C-130 Hercules logistics squadron.

The 277,000-square-foot hangar has room for approximately 33 P-3Cs, four C-130s and more than 1,600 personnel.

Scorby introduced Sally Patch from the Jacksonville Regional Chamber of Commerce, whose presentation covered many aspects of life in Northeast Florida, including demographics, neighborhoods and job opportunities.

She concluded her briefing with a photographic tour of the area's recreational and historical attractions.

After the seated presentation, approximately 350 Sailors and family members toured the 17 information booths, including: the NAS Brunswick Personal Property Office; the Clay County and Jacksonville Chambers of Commerce; Duval County Public Schools; local colleges; the NAS Jax Fleet and Family Support Center; housing experts and others.

In 2005, the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) committee voted to close NAS Brunswick and move its aircraft operations to NAS Jacksonville. By law, the base must close by Sept.15, 2011.

"The focus today is to increase Sailors' knowledge and comfort about the move to Jacksonville," said Freddie Byers of the NAS Jacksonville BRAC office.

"We gave out a lot of good information. Our goal is to make this move less stressful and very successful."

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Wings of Gold Thumbnail "...Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Group - RADM Brian C. Prindle, USN. Wings of Gold - Spring 2008 - Page 6-8. (Squadrons/Wings Referenced: VP-62, VP-69, VQ-1, VQ-2, VPU-1, VPU-2, VP-1, VP-4, VP-5, VP-8, VP-9, VP-10, VP-16, VP-26, VP-30, VP-40, VP-45, VP-46, VP-47, CPRW-2, CPRW-5, CPRW-10 and CPRW-11..." WebSite: Association of Naval Aviation http://www.anahq.org/index.htm [23APR2008]
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Circa 1994

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation News Magazine "...Patrol Aviation In The Atlantic In World War II - Naval Aviation News - November - December 1994.." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1990s/1994/nd94.pdf [12NOV2004]

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Circa 1990

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation January-February 1990 "...To Keep Us Out Of World War II? - Page 18 to 27 - Naval Aviation News - January-February 1990..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1990s/1990/jf90.pdf [22OCT2004]

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Circa 1989

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation September-October 1989 "...Survival In The Artic - Page 4 to 6 - Naval Aviation News - September-October 1989..." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1980s/1989/so89.pdf [22OCT2004]

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Circa 1957

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "... NAS Norfolk, Virginia, COMFAIRWING FIVE/COMFAIRWINGSLANT IN 1957 & 1958. The squadrons based there were VP-44 and VP-56..." Contributed by Ronald Smith humbirds@epix.ne [28DEC99]


Circa 1942

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Patrol Wings - Rear Admiral A. D. Bernhard - August 1942..." Contributed by John Lucas JohnLucas@netzero.com [28DEC2005]

PATROL WINGCOMMANDING OFFICER
CPW-3CDR G. L. Compo
CPW-5CDR G. R. Owen
CPW-7CDR F. L. Baker
CPW-9CDR O. A. Weller
CPW-11CDR S. J. Michael
SQUADRON
TENDER
COMMANDING OFFICER
VP-31LCDR A. Smith
VP-32LCDR B. C. McCaffree
VP-33LCDR H. D. Hale
VP-34LCDR R. S. Calderhead
VP-52LCDR F. M. Hammitt
VP-53LCDR F. M. Nichols
VP-73LCDR J. E. Leeper
VP-74LCDR W. A. Thorn
VP-81LCDR T. B. Haley
VP-82LCDR J. D. Greer
VP-83LCDR R. S. Clarke
VP-84LCDR J. J. Underhill
VP-92LCDR C. M. Heberton
VP-93LCDR C. W. Harman
VP-94LCDR D. W. Shafer
TENDERCOMMANDING OFFICER
USS Albemarle (AV-5) 
USS Pocomoke (AV-9) 
USS Chandeleur (AV-10) 
USS Clemson (AVP-17) 
USS Goldsborough (AVP-18) 
USS Lapwing (AVP-1) 
USS Sandpiper (AVP-9) 
USS Barnegat (AVP-10) 
USS Biscayne (AVP-11) 
USS Humboldt (AVP-21) 
USS Matagorda (AVP-22) 
USS Rockaway (AVP-29) 
USS San Pablo (AVP-30) 
USS Unimak (AVP-31) 

Circa 1941

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Reflections on the Early History of Airborne Radar - By Dave Trojan, Aviation Historian, 27 Mar 2007...Squadrons/Patrol Wings (only part of file containing VP related information) Mentioned: VP-54, VP-71, VP-72, VP-73, VP-74, CPW-5 and CPW-7..." http://www.exreps.com/ [23JUL2009]

MIT radar receiver laboratory 1941

In mid 1941, a PBY-2 aircraft 54-P-10, BuNo 0456 belonging to VP-54, was equipped with the first operational radar aboard a US Navy aircraft. The ASV radar equipment used long separate transmitting and receiving antennas mounted on insulated stub supports along the forward hull of the PBY.

The British had already put ASV Mark II on their Consolidated Catalina flying boat patrol aircraft, so it was straightforward to mount it on US Navy Catalina's. The installation was completed at NAS Anacostia, Washington, D.C. NAS Anacostia, Washington, D.C. was the site of the Fleet Air Tactical Unit.

They conducted experiments with new aircraft and equipment in order to determine their practical application and tactical employment. NAS Anacostia, Washington, D.C. was a primary training base for naval aviation and the home of all Navy flight test operations until overcrowding caused that mission to be moved in 1943 to NAS Patuxent River, Maryland. At the time of the radar installation, VP-54 was assigned to CPW-5, stationed at NAS Norfolk, Virginia.

The VP-54 aircraft was most likely selected because the squadron had aircraft available in the area and was also experienced with working with the British RAF. VP-54 had conducted neutrality patrols in the Atlantic daily, weather permitting, from Newport to Nova Scotia in June 1939 to February 1941, and also from Bermuda, B.W.I. in September 1940 to January 1941.

VP-54 PBY BUNO 54-P-10. The first operational radar on a U. S. Navy PBY-2 is shown 9 June 1941 at NAS Anacostia, Washington, D.C.

Commander J. V. Carney, Senior Support Force Staff Officer, reported on 18 July 1941 that British type ASV radar has been installed in one PBY-5 Catalina each of VP-71, VP-72, and VP-73 and two PBM-1's of VP-74. Initial installation of identification equipment (IFF) was made about the same time. In mid-September, radar was issued for five additional PBM-1's of VP-74 and one PBY-5 of VP-71, and shortly thereafter for other aircraft in CPW-7 squadrons. Thereby CPW-7 became the first operational Wing of the U.S. Navy to be supplied with radar-equipped aircraft. Its squadrons operated from NAS Norfolk, Virginia, NAS Quonset Point, Rhode Island and advanced bases on Greenland, NAS Argentia, Newfoundland, Canada and NAS Keflavik, Iceland during the last months of the neutrality patrol. Radar introduced both aircrew and ground personnel to a whole new capability for Navy airborne operations. The early installations were awkward due to their long separate transmitting and receiving antennas mounted on insulated stub supports along the forward hull of the PBYs.

ASV Mark II Antennas installed by General Electric on a PBY-5A Catalina at the Consolidated Aircraft Factory, 11 Feb 1942.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Hearings Before The Joint Committee On The Investigation Of The Pearl Harbor Attack - Congress Of The United States - Seventy-Ninth Congress...Squadrons mentioned: VP-11, VP-13, VP-14, VP-21, VP-22, VP-23, VP-24, VP-31, VP-32, VP-41, VP-42, VP-43, VP-44, VP-51, VP-52, VP-71, VP-72, VP-73, VP-74, VP-81, VP-82, VP-83, VP-84, VP-91, VP-92, VP-93, VP-94, VP-101, VP-102, CPW-1, CPW-2, CPW-3, CPW-4, CPW-5, CPW-7, CPW-8 and CPW-9..." WebSite: The public's library and digital archive http://www.ibiblio.org/pha/pha/misc/rainbow5.html [01APR2005]
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Circa 1938

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: VP-14 and VP-15 made up Patrol Wing FIVE in 1938
Title: U.S. Navy Aircraft 1921-1941, U.S. Marine Corps Aircraft 1914-1959: Two Classics in One Volume [Squadron insignias, aircraft, and more!] by William T. Larkins [10SEP98]


Circa 1937

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing FIVE History..." http://www.cpw5.navy.mil/history.htm [20JUN2003]

Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing FIVE was established in 1937 as Patrol Wing FIVE. The Wing consisted of only two Patrol Squadrons, VP-14 and VP-15, which flew the PBY "Catalina" aircraft. The flagship was the USS OWL, home ported in Norfolk, Virginia. By mid 1939, Commander Patrol Wing FIVE (COMPATWING FIVE) was assigned three more squadrons and merged with Commander Patrol Wings, U.S. Atlantic Fleet (COMPATWINGSLANT) under a single command. The flagship was initially changed to the small seaplane tender USS GANNET, but in May 1940 the command moved its flag to the USS GOLDSBOROUGH, a torpedo boat configured as a seaplane tender.

Following the German invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939, the Wing participated in Neutrality Patrols to ensure the safety of American ships in the Atlantic. After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Patrol Bomber Squadrons conducted daylight patrols off the U.S. Atlantic coast, while dawn and dusk patrols were relegated to Fighter Squadrons. Patrol Squadrons conducted Antisubmarine Warfare (ASW) patrols around the clock.

In June 1942, the Patrol Wing moved ashore to Naval Air Station (NAS) Norfolk, and the area from Norfolk to Bermuda and south was designated as its primary patrol area of responsibility. Detachments to provide material and maintenance support were established in Jacksonville, Florida and Bermuda. COMPATWINGSLANT and COMPATWING FIVE were established once again as separate commands in July 1942.

In November 1942, COMPATWING FIVE was redesignated Commander Fleet Air Wing FIVE (COMFAIRWING FIVE) and its Patrol Squadrons transitioned to PBM and PV aircraft. In August 1943, COMFAIRWING FIVE primarily became a Training Wing by the direction of the Commander in Chief, U.S. Atlantic Fleet.

January 1944 saw the organization of the COMFAIRWING FIVE ASW Training Unit at Boca Chica in the Florida Keys. This detachment supplemented Gulf Coast Frontier Patrols and provided refresher and advanced ASW, rocket and torpedo training for aircrews. In addition to the many U.S. aircrews trained at Boca Chica, the French Patrol Squadron VFP-1 and a detachment of Brazilian officers received their training in the Florida Keys.

Throughout 1945 and 1946, units associated with Fleet Air Wing FIVE were decommissioned or demobilized to post war levels of men and equipment. In 1948, Commander Fleet Air Wings, Atlantic Fleet and Fleet Air Wing FIVE were again made a unified command when Patrol Squadrons transitioned to the P2V "Neptune" aircraft.

After the North Koreans crossed the 38th parallel in 1950, the American reduction-in-forces trend was reversed, and several of the subordinate commands belonging to COMFAIRWING FIVE were recommissioned. Although Fleet Air Wing FIVE was not directly involved in the Korean conflict, its squadrons contributed to the war effort by assuming many of the responsibilities of commands, which had gone to the Pacific. The P5M-1 and the P2V were the mainstays of America's Patrol Squadrons throughout the 1950s and into the 1960s. After the Korean conflict, Fleet Air Wing FIVE coordinated the cold war ASW missions of squadrons operating from more than a dozen different bases in Europe, Africa and North America.

The 1960s marked the beginning of a new era in Naval Patrol Aviation. In 1962, Wing FIVE began the transition to the P3A "Orion" maritime patrol aircraft. During the Cuban Missile Crisis, both the P2V and the P3A became internationally well known due to their surveillance of Soviet ships. Fleet Air Wing FIVE aircraft also played an important part in America's early manned space program, helping to locate Mercury and Gemini capsules after splashdown. In 1966, Wing FIVE began deployments in the Western Pacific. Based at Naval Station Sangley Point in the Philippines, squadrons flew patrol and combat missions in support of Seventh Fleet operations in Vietnam.

The present Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing FIVE structure was developed in the early 1970s. Fleet Air Wings Atlantic/Fleet Air Wing FIVE was relocated to Brunswick, Maine and assumed command of Patrol Squadrons TEN, ELEVEN, TWENTY-THREE, and TWENTY-SIX upon the disestablishment of Fleet Air Wing THREE. Patrol Squadrons FORTY-FOUR and EIGHT were transferredred to Brunswick in 1970 and 1971 respectively, completing the makeup of COMFAIRWINGSLANT/COMFAIRWING FIVE which returned to its former designation as COMPATWINGSLANT / COMPATWING FIVE. Three years after the move to Brunswick, Commander Patrol Wing FIVE was again established as a separate command.

With the end of the cold war, Maritime Patrol Squadron assets were reduced and relocated. COMPATWING FIVE disestablished Patrol Squadron FORTY-FOUR in May 1991, Patrol Squadron TWENTY-THREE in December 1994, and Patrol Squadron ELEVEN in August 1997.

COMPATWING FIVE units have played an important role in world affairs throughout the 1990s. Patrol Squadron TWENTY-THREE was the first East Coast maritime patrol squadron in the theater for Operation Desert Shield, providing maritime surveillance throughout the Red Sea. Patrol Squadron EIGHT participated in joint operations during Desert Storm, flying combat sorties in the effort to liberate Kuwait from Saddam Hussein. During the mid 1990s with the breakup and subsequent conflict in the former Republic of Yugoslavia, Patrol Squadrons EIGHT, TEN, ELEVEN and TWENTY-SIX were called upon to fly countless sorties in the Adriatic Sea in support of Operation Sharp Guard.

In January 1999, Patrol Wing FIVE received its first P3C Anti-Surface Warfare Improvement Program (AIP) aircraft. With its greatly improved intelligence gathering capabilities, advanced electro-optical sensing equipment and ability to provide transmission of real time voice, images, and data to battlefield and theater commanders, the P3C AIP aircraft provided COMPATWING FIVE the capability to expand its traditional maritime patrol capabilities overland. In response to this new capability, on 26 March 1999, COMPATWING FIVE was redesignated Commander Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing FIVE (COMPATRECONWING FIVE).

Today, COMPATRECONWING FIVE supervises the training, readiness, logistics and administration of the three Patrol Squadrons based at NAS Brunswick. As Commander of the local ASW Sector, he is responsible for all Patrol Squadron Operations in the Northwestern Atlantic. The staff of 26 officers and 100 enlisted personnel develops Navy maritime patrol tactics, doctrine and operating procedures. Many staff members work in the Tactical Support Center (TSC) where intelligence and surveillance information is analyzed using sophisticated electronic equipment.

The Patrol Squadrons deploy to bases in Italy, Puerto Rico and Iceland on a rotating basis with squadrons from COMPATRECONWING ELEVEN in Jacksonville, Florida, so that only two squadrons are in Brunswick at any one time. From Brunswick and these deployment sites, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing FIVE Squadrons patrol the Atlantic, Caribbean, and Mediterranean daily, locating and monitoring the movements of surface ships and submarines.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...CPW-5 HISTORY..." http://www.cpw5.navy.mil/main.htm [07MAY99]

Patrol Wing FIVE was established in 1937. The Wing consisted of only two Patrol Squadrons, VP-14 and VP-15, and flew the PBY "Catalina" aircraft. The flagship was the USS OWL, home ported in Norfolk, Virginia. By mid 1939, Commander Patrol Wing FIVE (COMPATWING FIVE) was assigned three more squadrons and merged with Commander Patrol Wings, U.S. Atlantic Fleet (COMPATWINGSLANT) under a single command. The flagship was initially changed to the small Seaplane Tender USS GANNET, but in May 1940 the command moved its flag to the USS GOLDSBOROUGH, a torpedo boat configured as a Seaplane Tender.

Following the German invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939, the Wing participated in Neutrality Patrols to ensure the safety of American ships in the Atlantic. After Pearl Harbor, daylight patrols off the coast were conducted by Patrol Bomber Squadrons while dawn and dusk patrols were relegated to Fighter Squadrons. Patrol Squadrons conducted Antisubmarine Warfare (ASW) patrols around-the-clock.

In June 1942 the Patrol Wing moved ashore to NAS Norfolk, Virginia and the area from Norfolk to Bermuda and south was designated as its primary patrol responsibility. Detachments providing material and maintenance support were set up in Jacksonville, Florida and Bermuda. COMPATWINGSLANT and COMPATWING FIVE were established once again as separate commands in July 1942.

In November 1942, COMPATWING FIVE was redesignated Commander Fleet Air Wing FIVE (COMFAIRWING FIVE) and its Patrol Squadrons transitioned to PBM and PV aircraft. In August 1943, COMPATWING FIVE became primarily a training Wing by the direction of the Commander in Chief, U.S. Atlantic Fleet.

January 1944 saw the organization of the COMFAIRWING FIVE ASW Training Unit at Boca Chica on the Florida Keys. This detachment supplemented Gulf Coast Frontier Patrols and provided refresher and advanced ASW, rocket and torpedo training. In addition to the many U.S. aircrews trained at Boca Chica, the French Patrol Squadron VFP-1 and a detachment of Brazilian officers were trained there.

Throughout 1945 and 1946, units associated with Fleet Air Wing FIVE were decommissioned or demobilized to post war levels of men and equipment. In 1948, Commander Fleet Air Wings, Atlantic Fleet and Fleet Air Wing FIVE were again made a unified command and Patrol Squadrons transitioned to the P2V "Neptune" aircraft.

After the North Koreans crossed the 38th parallel in 1950, the American reduction-in forces trend was reversed, and several of the subordinate commands belonging to COMFAIRWING FIVE were recommissioned. Although Fleet Air Wing FIVE was not directly involved in combat in Korea, its squadrons contributed to the war effort by assuming many of the responsibilities of commands which had gone to the Pacific. The P5M-1 and the P2V were the mainstays of America's Patrol Squadrons throughout the 1950's and into the 1960's. After the Korean War, Fleet Air Wing FIVE coordinated the cold war ASW missions of squadrons operating from more than a dozen different bases in Europe, Africa and North America.

In 1962, Wing FIVE began the transition to the P-3A "Orion," marking the beginning of a new era in Naval Patrol Aviation. During the Cuban Missile Crisis, both the P2V and P-3A became nationally well known due to their surveillance of Soviet ships. Fleet Air Wing FIVE aircraft also played an important part in America's early manned space program, helping to locate Mercury and Gemini capsules after splashdowns. In 1966, Wing FIVE Squadrons began deployments in the Western Pacific. Stationed at NS Sangley Point, Philippines, squadrons flew patrol and combat missions in support of Seventh Fleet operations in Vietnam.

The present Patrol Wing FIVE structure was developed in the early 1970's. Fleet Air Wings Atlantic/Fleet Air Wing FIVE was relocated to Brunswick, Maine and assumed command of VP-10, VP-11, VP-23, and VP-26 upon the disestablishment of Fleet Air Wing THREE. VP-44 and VP-8 were transferredred to NAS Brunswick, Maine in 1970 and 1971 respectively, completing the makeup of COMFAIRWINGSLANT and COMFAIRWING FIVE which returned them to their former designation as COMPATWINGSLANT/COMPATWING FIVE. Three years after the move to Brunswick, Commander Patrol Wing FIVE was again established as a separate command.

With the end of the cold war, maritime patrol squadron assets were reduced and relocated. COMPATWING FIVE disestablished VP-44 in May, 1991 and VP-23 in December, 1994.

COMPATWING FIVE units played an important role in both Desert Shield and Desert Storm. Patrol Squadron TWENTY-THREE was the first East Coast maritime patrol squadron in the theater for Operation Desert Shield, providing maritime surveillance throughout the Red Sea. VP-8 participated in the joint combat operations of Desert Storm, performing countless sorties in the effort to liberate Kuwait from Sadam Hussein.

Today, COMPATWING FIVE supervises the training, readiness, logistics and administration of the four patrol squadrons based at NAS Brunswick, Maine. As Commander of the local ASW Sector, he is responsible for all Patrol Squadron operations in the northwestern Atlantic. The staff of 26 officers and 100 enlisted personnel develop Navy patrol ASW and Mine Warfare tactics, doctrine and operating procedures. Many work in the Tactical Support Center (TSC), where intelligence and surveillance information is analyzed using sophisticated electronic equipment.

Each of the Patrol Squadrons consists of nine P-3C Update II/III Orion aircraft, 65 officers and 290 enlisted personnel. These squadrons deploy to bases in Italy, Puerto Rico and Iceland on a rotating basis, so that only two or three squadrons are in Brunswick at any one time. From Brunswick and these deployment sites, Patrol Wing FIVE Squadrons patrol the Atlantic, Caribbean, and Mediterranean daily, locating and monitoring the movements of surface ships and submarines.


Circa Unknown
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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...The Neutrality Patrol: To Keep Us Out of World War II? Part 1 of 2 - By Capt. William E. Scarborough, USN(Ret.) - Naval Aviation News March - April 1990...This Squadron Mentioned...Naval Historical Center ADOBE Download File: http://www.history.navy.mil/download/ww2-4.pdf [27MAY2003]
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Open VP History Adobe FileThe Neutrality Patrol: To Keep Us Out of World War II? - Part 1 of 2 1926KB


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