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HistoryVQ-2 HistoryHistory

Circa 2009

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraVP-46 History "...Wing 10 Change of Command Season Wraps Up by LT(jg) Daniel MacCabe Wing 10 - Thursday, June 4, 2009 (Squadrons Mentioned: CPRW-10, VP-1, VP-40, VP-46, VQ-1 and VQ-2)..." WebSite: NorthWest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ [05JUN2009]

Photograph Caption: Following VP-46's change of command ceremony May 22, four of the five new Patrol and Reconnaissance squadron commanding officers flank Capt. Ken Seliga, commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10. From left the new skippers are Cmdr. Brett Coffey, VQ-2; Cmdr. Mark Hamilton, VP-46; Cmdr. Michael Giannetti, VQ-1; and Cmdr. Mark Rudesill, VP-1. Not pictured is Cmdr. Michael McClintock, VP-40. Photograph by LT(jg) Daniel MacCabe

The Grey Knights of Patrol Squadron 46 celebrated their 73rd change of command May 22. After serving one year as commanding officer and guiding the squadron through a combat deployment in the 5th Fleet area of operations, Cmdr. Carlos Sardiello was relieved by Cmdr. Mark Hamilton.

For Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10, VP-46s change of command ended a very compressed turnover season that began May 1 with Patrol Squadron 40 "Fighting Marlins" changing hands as Cmdr. Michael McClintock relieved Christopher Saindon. VP-40 has since departed for a six-month deployment with 5th and 6th Fleets supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Enduring Freedom and other European Command missions.

The following week, Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron 2 "Rangers" celebrated their leadership's turnover as Cmdr. Brett Coffey assumed command from Cmdr. Robert Pauley, May 7 and the Patrol Squadron 1 "Screaming Eagles" followed suit the next day with Cmdr. Mark Rudesill relieving Cmdr. Christopher Corgnati.

The season continued May 14 as the Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron 1 "World Watchers" held their change as Cmdr. Michael Giannetti took over for Cmdr. James Gibson.

"It is with a great sense of pride that we celebrate the end of each commanding officer's extraordinary level of commitment, sense of duty and superb leadership each brought to bear within the command during their tours," said Capt. Ken Seliga, Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10. "We look forward to the energy and leadership each new commanding officer will bring in the year ahead."

© 2009 Sound Publishing, Inc.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Wing 10 Honors best, Brightest By MC2 Elizabeth Acosta - NPASE Det. NW - Thursday, April 30, 2009 (Squadrons Mentioned: CPRW-10, VP-1, VP-40, VP-46, VP-69, VQ-1 and VQ-2)..." WebSite: NorthWest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ [01MAY2009]

Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing (CPRW) 10 held its annual ceremony to recognize the contributions of their Sailors, April 23.

This is the 14th year CPRW-10 and the Oak Harbor community honored the significant accomplishments of Wing 10 Sailors.

"Each of you earned your command's nomination because of your selfless sacrifice and commitment. Your work has made us a better wing and I hope each of you finds pride in your many contributions," Capt. Ken Seliga, commodore of CPRW-10.

The CPRW Sea Sailor of the Year (SOY) was Personnel Specialist 1st Class (AW) Gladys Willis, of VP-1, who was also recognized as the Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Group (CPRG) Pacific Sea SOY in January, and Junior Sailor of the year was Naval Aircrewman Operator 2nd Class (AW/NAC) Mark Hill of VP-1. The Shore Sailor of the Year was Aviation Electronics Technician 1st Class (AW) Danyall Benavides, of CPRW-10, whose contributions also led to recognition by CPRG as their Pacific Shore SOY, and Junior Sailor of the Year was Information Systems Technician 3rd Class Blake Hausman, of CPRW-10. The Reserve Sailor of the year was Naval Aircrewman Operator 1st Class (AW/NAC) Stephen Daley, of VP-69.

"It's pretty big; It feels really good to get this award. It was a very honorable experience" said Benavides.

Gifts were presented by Jim Slowik, Mayor of Oak Harbor, Patrick Travenetti, director, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, Marjean Knokey, Columbia College, Barbara Bockman, Chapman University, Mike Sevy, USAA Insurance Company, Kim Braylens and Robin King, of Navy Federal Credit Union, to further recognize the contributions these Sailors make.

The Battle Efficiency award was presented to VQ-2, the Commander Naval Air Pacific Isbell Trophy, VP-1, and the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Aviation Safety award, VQ-1. Also honored at the ceremony was the Aviator of the Year, Lt. Ronald Rumfelt, of VP-40, and Flight crew of the Year, Combat Aircrew 2, of VP-46.

"As we congratulate the winners of each category this morning, I ask that you take a moment to appreciate the momentous commitment and sacrifices our Sailors made during the past year to ensure we were prepared for, and executed, each mission we were asked to complete. And may you especially recall the commitment to excellence of our award winners today- those who went above and beyond to earn the endorsement of their respective command," said Seliga.

© 2009 Sound Publishing, Inc.


Circa 2008

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Command of VQ-2 Changes Hands - Friday, April 25, 2008..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ [26APR2008]

Cmdr. Robert E. Pauley relieved Cmdr. Joseph M. Hart as commanding officer, VQ-2 in a formal ceremony at NAS Whidbey Island, Washington April 18.

Pauley, a native of Vancouver, Wash. received his commission through Reserve Officer Training Corps following graduation from the University of Idaho and received his wings as a Naval Flight Officer in 1992.

His operational assignments include: VQ-2; USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72); VQ-1; CPRW-10; and Naval Personnel Command.

Pauley resides with his wife Janet, and two children, Grace and Wyatt.

Cmdr. Hart will report to NASC-AIR 3.0 as P-3 assistant program manager for logistics. Under his leadership, VQ-2 flew more than 450 missions encompassing more than 5,000 hours in numerous naval operations, and won the 2007 Commander Naval Air Forces Battle "E" award, the 2007 Chief of Naval Operations Aviation Safety "S" award, and the Secretary of Defense Phoenix award.

© 2008 Sound Publishing, Inc.

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 2008

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Command of VQ-2 Changes Hands - Friday, April 25, 2008..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ [26APR2008]

Cmdr. Robert E. Pauley relieved Cmdr. Joseph M. Hart as commanding officer, VQ-2 in a formal ceremony at NAS Whidbey Island, Washington April 18.

Pauley, a native of Vancouver, Wash. received his commission through Reserve Officer Training Corps following graduation from the University of Idaho and received his wings as a Naval Flight Officer in 1992.

His operational assignments include: VQ-2; USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72); VQ-1; CPRW-10; and Naval Personnel Command.

Pauley resides with his wife Janet, and two children, Grace and Wyatt.

Cmdr. Hart will report to NASC-AIR 3.0 as P-3 assistant program manager for logistics. Under his leadership, VQ-2 flew more than 450 missions encompassing more than 5,000 hours in numerous naval operations, and won the 2007 Commander Naval Air Forces Battle "E" award, the 2007 Chief of Naval Operations Aviation Safety "S" award, and the Secretary of Defense Phoenix award.

© 2008 Sound Publishing, Inc.

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 2007

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraMidshipmen "...VQ-2 hosts midshipmen for summer training - By Lt.j.g. Caleb McDonald - Friday, June 22, 2007..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ index.php/ navigator/ whidbey/ vq_2_hosts_midshipmen_for_summer_training/ [22JUN2007]

Photograph Caption: Midshipmen David Porter and Robert Tumminello. Photograph by Lt.j.g. Caleb McDonald

Patrol Squadron (VQ) 2 and the rest of Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10 hosted first class midshipmen from Reserve Officers Training Corps units and the United States Naval Academy.

Every summer, midshipmen are sent to different ships and squadrons throughout the Navy to give them hands-on training on what it is like to be a Naval Officer.

Sending midshipmen to the fleet to experience real life training on what it is like to be an officer has always been a hallmark of naval officer training.

Midshipmen David Porter, studying psychology at Rochester Institute of Technology, and Midshipmen Robert Tumminello, studying economics at the United States Naval Academy, joined VQ-2 for four weeks. They got the opportunity to fly on training flights and participate in many other junior officer activities.

Midshipmen also got a host of tours of local naval facilities including USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72).

"I hope to experience many of the things that I can expect as a junior officer," said Porter. It's one of the last major training periods they will see until they are commissioned as ensigns a year from now. We hope to see Porter and the rest of the midshipmen back here as officers in a few years.

© 2007 Sound Publishing, Inc.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraCDR Joe Hart "...Hart takes command of VQ-2 - Friday, April 13, 2007..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ index.php/navigator/ whidbey/hart_takes_command_of_vq_2/ [13APR2007]

The Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron (VQ) 2 Rangers held a change of command ceremony April 4 as Cmdr. Joe Hart assumed command from Cmdr. Mike Burns.

Capt. Richard Heimerle, Special Advisor to the Vice President for National Security Affairs, was guest speaker.

During Burns' tour, VQ-2 has successfully fielded the first operational deployment of the new EP-3 Joint Common Configuration Spiral One Aircraft and through Burns' leadership, VQ-2 was able to employ new technologies in the war on terrorism which rapidly adapted the EP-3 collection capability to the current dynamic warfare environment.

Burns' next duty assignment will take him and his family to Washington D.C. where he will serve in the Chief of Naval Operation's Office as the EP-3E requirements officer.

Hart, a native of Iowa City, Iowa first reported to VQ-2 in April 2001 for his department head tour where he served as maintenance officer.

In December 2004, Hart reported to Commander 7th Fleet on USS Blue Ridge in Yokosuka, Japan where he served as the North East Asia Policy and Engagement officer.

Hart reported in May 2006 as executive officer of VQ-2.

© 2007 Sound Publishing, Inc.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraPhoto by MC2 Elizabeth Acosta "...Wing 10 recognizes its best - By Lt.j.g. Evan Larsen - Wing 10 reporter - Friday, March 30, 2007 - Squadrons Mentioned: , VP-1, VP-46, VP-69, VQ-1 and VQ-2..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ index.php/navigator/whidbey/ wing_10_recognizes_its_best/ [31MAR2007]

Photograph Caption: Award-winning CPRW-10 squadrons and individual personnel take the spotlight for their impressive work over the past year.

CPRW-10 honored its top squadrons, flight crews and personnel March 23. Capt. David Taylor, Commander, CPRW-10, hosted the ceremony alongside distinguished visitors to present the awards to the awardees.

VP-46 and VQ-1 won the Pacific Fleet Battle Efficiency (E) award for 2006. The Battle ‘E' focuses on a naval unitís overall readiness to complete assigned warfare missions.

The Grey Knights of VP-46 returned from a Western Pacific Deployment last December, during which they demonstrated superior readiness and combat operations in support of Operation Enduring Freedom-Philippines and Exercise Valiant Shield.

Throughout 2006, VP-46 maintained sustained their commitment to professionalism and aviation safety reflected with more than 292,000 mishap-free flight hours spanning 43 years of service.

The World Watchers of VQ-1 maintained a continuous 365-day presence in the Fifth and Seventh Fleet Areas of Responsibility, contributing vital intelligence the respective Regional Combatant Commanders.

In 2006, VQ-1 flew over 4,000 mission hours spread among over 500 sorties, demonstrating unit efficiency and flexibility with limited assigned aircraft.

Other mentionable unit awards included VP-1 receiving the Arleigh Burke trophy, as well as VQ-2s nomination for the Chief of Naval Operations Safety Award.

The Flight Crew of the year honor went to VP-1s Crew 10, while the Electronic Warfare Crew of the Year honors went to VQ-2s Crew 26. Also recognized was VP-46s Crew 4 as the Order of Daedalianís Crew of the Year.

For individual awards, Lt. Jamie Delcore of VQ-1 was recognized as aviator of the year. Additionally, his nomination as Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Groupís Naval Flight Officer of the Year was recognized during the ceremony.

Likewise from VQ-1, Aviation Electronics Technician 1st Class Joseph Medina was recognized as CPRW-10 and Patrol and Reconnaissance Groupís Aircrewman of the Year.

Among the maintenance awards, VP-69s Aviation Structural Mechanic 1st Class Gerald Campbell was recognized as CPRW-10s Maintenance Professional of the Year for his leadership while on a Search and Rescue detachment to Guam.

Taylor emphasized the importance this yearís ceremony placed in recognition of CPRW-10s many 2006 accomplishments, but he stressed the need to remember those Sailors unable to attend who are forward deployed in harmís way.

© 2007 Sound Publishing, Inc.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraVQ Reserve Center Change-of-Command "...Photograph from the change of command. The photograph is of all the VQ-2ers that came. Captain Scorby was the guest speaker, and I relieved CDR Mikulla. The time frame for these VQers was NS Rota, Spain/1996-2000. From L to R: LCDR Bryan Durkee, LCDR Tom Hoover, LCDR Jenna Hausvick, LCDR Dan Hopkins, Captain Jack Scorby, CDR Wade Mikulla, Rabbi Josh Levy, LCDR Matt Pearson (MSC officer), and LCDR Emilio Martinez (RET/Jet Blue). Bottom row: LCDR Silvio Barbosa, and LCDR Joseph Vaccarella (IRR/JP Morgan and Chase)..." Contributed by LCDR Silvio J. Barbosa silvio.barbosa@navy.mil [11MAR2007]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraAW1 (AW/NAC) Matthew Robinson "...Wing 10 selects year's top Sailors - By Lt.j.g. Evan Larsen - CPRW-10 reporter - Friday, January 26, 2007. (CPRW-10, VP-1, VP-40, VP-46, VP-69, VQ-1 and VQ-2 menioned)..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/ index.php/navigator/whidbey/ wing_10_selects_years_top_sailors/ [01FEB2007]

Photograph Caption: AW1 (AW/NAC) Matthew Robinson is seen on patrol in Iraq during Individual Augmentation duty.

Aviation Warfare Systems Operator 1st Class (AW/NAC) Matthew Robinson was recognized, Jan. 19, by Commodore David Taylor as the 2006 CPRW-10, Shore Sailor of the Year.

His selection came as a result of his tremendous professionalism and steadfast sacrifice exerted during a 300-day Individual Augmentation while supporting the U.S. Army's 13th Sustainment Command in Iraq. As a member of the Joint Crew Composite Squadron One, and aligned with ground combat troops, he utilized his electronic warfare expertise to develop training and maintenance programs for ground forces which mitigated the radio-controlled improvised electronic device threat.

While conducting a routine ground combat patrol, he demonstrated uncommon valor during an attack on his patrol by stabilizing the wounded and preparing a landing zone for a medical evacuation helicopter.

Additionally, he showed the initiative to continue the patrol and search for secondary IEDs, resulting in a Meritorious Service Medal awarded from the Brigade's Commanding General.

Aviation Ordnanceman 1st Class (AW/NAC) Robert Parish of Patrol Squadron 69 (VP-69) received top honors as CPRW-10 Senior Sea Sailor of the Year for 2006.

A consummate expert and extraordinary leader, his enthusiasm, professionalism and dedication to his shipmates' career advancement and education resulted in his selection as the Sea Sailor of the Year.

One of only five full system Quality Assurance Representatives, he proved invaluable during a number of engine changes and the quality inspection of countless work center repairs which directly contributed to the high level of operational success achieved by the six operational squadrons assigned to CPRW-10.

The award for CPRW-10 Shore Junior Sailor of the Year went to Aviation Warfare Specialist 2nd Class (NAC) Carey Langley of CPRW-10.

Her expertise proved crucial in supporting 36 forward-deployed aircrews, as a result of her keen analysis from over 260 missions. As a leader in her field, Langley's attention-to-detail led to critical enhancements in our national security.

CPRW-10 Junior Sea Sailor of the Year honors went to Avionics Electrician Mate 2nd Class (AW) Justin Leetham, currently serving in VP-46. Leetham recently returned from deployment with VP-46 in which he proved to be an exceptional leader.

He demonstrated honesty, integrity and an absolute dedication to duty. While at VP-46, his actions increased aircraft availability that executed 220 combat sorties and over 2,000 mishap-free flight hours in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Oak Harbor Mayor Pro-Tem Danny Paggao, along with several local business and educational organizations, took time to pay homage at all the Sailors of CPRW-10.

As in the past, they provided gifts to recognize the winners and participate in recognition of the finest examples the Navy has to offer.

Every command in CPRW-10 had their senior and junior Sailors of the Year present for the presentation ceremony. These included;

-- VP-1 Senior Sailor of the Year, PS1(AW) Jared Zdrojowy; Junior Sailor of the Year, AW2(AW) Michael Headings;

-- VP-40 Senior Sailor of the Year, AM1(AW) David Anderson; Junior Sailor of the Year, AM2(AW) Matthew Vitello;

-- VP-46 Senior Sailor of the Year, AW1(AW) Gamorro Cameron; Junior Sailor of the Year, AE2(AW) Justin Leetham;

-- VP-69 Senior Sailor of the Year, AO1 (AW/NAC) Robert Parish; Junior Sailor of the Year, AT2(AW/NAC) David A. Smith; Selected Reserve PR1 (AW) Mark Wilde;

-- VQ-1 Senior Sailor of the Year, AM1 (AW) Luigi Giugliano; Junior Sailor of the Year, YN2(AW) Nicholas Hulse;

-- VQ-2 Senior Sailor of the Year, AM1(AW) John Bouquio; Junior Sailor of the Year, AT2 (AW/NAC) Peter Benninger;

-- Mobile Operations Command and Control Center Golf Senior Sailor of the Year, ET1(SW) William Lewis, Junior Sailor of the Year, ET2 Colleen Colver; and

-- CPRW-10 Shore Sailor of the Year, AW1 (AW/NAC) Matthew Robinson; Junior Sailor of the Year AW2 (NAC) Carey Langley.

© 2007 Sound Publishing, Inc.


Circa 2006

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...VQ-2 Receives 2005 Battle ‘E' - By Lt. Ivan Torres - Rangers Reporter - Friday, June 23, 2006..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/vq_2_receives_2005_battle_e/ [24JUN2006]

On June 9, Commander Patrol and Recon-naissance Wing 10, Capt. John Dziminowicz presented Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron (VQ) 2 with the 2005 Battle ‘E' award in a brief ceremony in the base theater.

The Battle ‘E' rewards the squadron for a very eventful year during which the squadron conducted its overseas homeport change from NS Rota, Spain to NAS Whidbey Island, Wash., while simultaneously maintaining full, uninterrupted worldwide operational deployment responsibilities. The squadron's hard work and dedication lead to a seamless relocation of 950 personnel and their families, 300 privately owned vehicles, and more then 45 metric tons of furniture and equipment over a distance of 7,000 miles without a single ground or aviation mishap. These efforts were instrumental in maintaining a high state of morale during an extremely challenging transition.

In addition to the move, VQ-2 amassed over 4,550 mishap-free flight hours during 936 sorties while maintaining a mission-capable rate above 72 percent.

Operations, Training and Maintenance departments were also kept busy with the implementation of numerous EP-3E upgrades, such as the fielding of the first JMOD Common Configuration Aircraft, as well as work on the Sensor System Improvement Program 4.0.

Squadron medical personnel contributed to the effort by achieving a 92 percent medical readiness level. The squadron also maintained a solid 67 percent retention rate for the year.

On achieving the award, VQ-2 Operations Officer Lt. Cmdr Cory Howes comments that "The Battle Efficiency award evaluates commands from bottom to top, including operations, readiness, retention, mission completion rate, and tactical advancement. VQ-2 excelled in all these areas in 2005, but perhaps our proudest achievement was our continuous worldwide presence, flying combat reconnaissance missions in the war on terror. At one point during the year, VQ-2 was operating in all four major theaters simultaneously, which spawned the motto ‘The Sun Never Sets on VQ-2.'"

While supporting the squadron's mission, individual members also achieved numerous accolades including one Meritorious Service Medal, 42 Air Medals, 35 Navy Commendation Medals, 104 Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medals, as well as more than 120 other individual awards and commendations.

This is the eighth Battle ‘E' awarded to VQ-2.

© 2006 Sound Publishing, Inc.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraPhoto by YN2 Todd Harris "...VQ-2 Rangers hold CONUS CoC ceremony - By YN2 Todd D. Harris - Rangers reporter - Friday, June 2, 2006..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/vq_2_rangers_hold_conus_coc_ceremony/ [03JUN2006]

Photograph Caption: Cmdr. Michael Burns, right, cuts a ceremonial cake with Cmdr. Clayton Grindle, outgoing VQ-2 commanding officer.

The VQ-2 Rangers held their first continental U.S. (CONUS) change of command ceremony in more than 50 years, May 26 as Cmdr. Michael P. Burns assumed command from Cmdr. Clayton A. Grindle. Rear Adm. Harry B. Harris Jr., commander, Joint Task Force, Guantanamo Bay, was guest speaker.

Clayton Grindle

VQ-2 was awarded the Battle "E" during Grindle's tour. They also conducted a homeport change that relocated the command from Naval Station Rota, Spain to NAS Whidbey Island.

While moving the entire squadron in just three months, VQ-2 maintained operational deployment responsibilities in every major theatre around the globe. His guidance ensured a seamless relocation of 950 members and their dependants, 300 privately owned vehicles and more then 45 metric tons of furniture and equipment over a distance of 7,000 miles without a single ground or aviation mishap.

Grindle's next duty assignment takes him to the Joint Staff in Washington D.C.

Michael Burns

Burns is a graduate of Villanova University who received his commission through NROTC in 1988. He entered the aviation training pipeline and was designated a naval flight officer in 1989.

Burns has done operational flying tours with VPU-1 and VQ-2 and a tour on USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) as the ship's electronic warfare officer.

While serving at VX-20, Burns flight-tested new mission avionics systems for the EP-3E and VPU aircraft. He was operations officer at VP-30, the P-3 Fleet Replacement Squadron, before his arrival at VQ-2.

Burns is married to the former Sheri Sencabaugh of Wilmington, Mass. They are the parents of Maribeth, Caroline, Erin, Joseph and Andrew. He is also a loyal Boston Red Sox fan.

© 2006 Sound Publishing, Inc.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraYN3 Christine Blackstad and AT1 Jayson Child "...VQ-2 Fleet NATOPS evaluation a great success - By YN2 Todd D. Harris - Rangers reporter - Friday, March 17, 2006..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/vq_2_fleet_natops_evaluation_a_great_success/ [17MAR2006]

Photograph Caption: YN3 Christine Blackstad and AT1 Jayson Child look over NATOPS jackets during FNE preparations.

VQ-2 recently completed its Fleet NATOPS Evaluation conducted by VP-30 from NAS Jacksonville, Fla.

An overwhelming success rate of 99 percent passing was achieved in the testing portion of the evaluation. All NATOPS and Training Programs were reported as on track after a thorough administrative review.

According to Lt. Zane Stickel of VQ-2s Safety/NATOPS department, everyone selected for positional instructors in the aircraft passed their flights with flying colors. Additionally, random check-rides that were conducted were a great success Stickel added.

This accomplishment highlights the squadron and the challenges posed in maintaining readiness and standardization of aircraft procedures while transitioning from one homeport to another within the past year. During this difficult process, the focus on programs, safety of flight, and overall attention to detail greatly contributed to VQ-2 exceeding all previous squadron marks.

"Maintaining the highest level of readiness and standards in a squadron as large and dynamic as ours is a serious challenge under any circumstance," said Stickel.

"The fact that our programs received an outstanding evaluation from the Fleet NATOPS team immediately following the move to Whidbey Island is a testament to the enormous efforts made by every member of the Ranger Team. The results of this year's FNE are certainly something to be proud of," she added.

I also gained some perspective on how challenging the whole process was through Lt. Ian Lilyquist, also a member of VQ-2s Safety/NATOPS department.

"The paperwork intensive nature of both Training and NATOPS posed a challenge in the tracking of important documentation while the squadron was in transition," said Lilyquist. "In addition, VQ-2 had to overcome the loss of many senior aircrew, both officer and enlisted, and still maintain expertise at all levels of qualification and training. Through all this, everyone involved performed well and their efforts reflected their extensive preparation," said Lilyquist.

© 2006 Sound Publishing, Inc.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraWing 10 Photo "...Heroes declared this President's Day - Friday, February 24, 2006 - Squadrons Mention: CPRW-10, VP-1, VP-40, VP-46, VQ-1 and VQ-2..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/heroes_declared_this_presidents_day/ [27FEB2006]

Photograph Caption: Lt. Cmdr. Steven Richards and Aviation Structural Mechanic (Safety Equipment) 2nd Class (Air Warfare/Naval Aircrewman) Kyle Musto, VP-46, just two of the Wing 10 aviation professionals recognized at the recent annual awards ceremony, stand ready by the P-3 Orion.

Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing Ten (CPRW-10) held its annual awards quarters Wednesday. The heroes we recognized on President's Day, like our forefathers, exemplify what it means to be a patriot; giving of themselves to make this a better country, one shipmate at a time.

"There are few duties more rewarding than the opportunity to thank these tremendous performers who are flying and maintaining our combat aircraft," said Capt. John Dziminowicz, commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10. "I treasure these opportunities to acknowledge the excellent men and women who make our Force a capable, formidable tool for war fighting commanders across the globe."

Command Support Professional

Awarded to Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class(AW) Maurice Brown, of Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron Two (VQ-2). Brown ensured squadron medical readiness in the midst of a complex homeport move from Rota, Spain to NAS Whidbey and with consistent attention to detail, enabled the smooth and on-time deployment of 22 detachments,

Maintenance Professional

Awarded to Aviation Ordnanceman 1st Class (AW) Donald Weatherby of Patrol Squadron One (VP-1). Weatherby achieved numerous qualifications including Safe for Flight (releasing aircraft for flight), a position not normally achieved by a first class petty officer. His leadership in Maintenance Control was instrumental in executing over 40 percent of VP-1's flight hours, and resulted in zero discrepancies for the ordnance shop during the most recent Aviation Maintenance Inspection.

Aircrewman

Aviation Electronics Technician 1st Class (AW/NA) Joseph Medina of VQ-1 was recognized for his leadership as president of VQ-1s 1st Class Petty Officer Association, leading 77 first class petty officers in numerous volunteer efforts. He authored and taught 15 avionics presentations, trained 29 aircrew, significantly increasing the squadron's operational readiness. As Aircrew Detachment leading petty officer he trained and led eight aircrewmen in the repair of 40 in-flight discrepancies, resulting in a 100 percent sortie completion rate.

Enlisted Instructor

Aviation Structural Mechanic (Safety Equipment) 2nd Class (AW/NA) Kyle Musto, VP-46s top Flight Engineer, played an integral part in training 18 flight engineers, instructor pilots, and observers. As an instructor and handpicked as primary Flight Engineer Evaluator, he administered check rides and proctored positional exams, while racking up over 390 aircraft hours and 200 simulator hours as an instructor.

Officer Instructor

Lt. Edward Kribs, also of VP-46, recognized as the officer instructor of the year, attained every qualification available to a first tour pilot, with 450 hours as an aircraft commander and over 200 as an instructor. Leading the VP-46 training department, often under challenging conditions, he directly contributed to the qualification of 15 plane commanders and pilots and sat on 28 qualification boards.

Aviator

Lt. Jeffery Walker of VQ-1 is a fully qualified Senior Evaluator and Mission Commander and has been an outstanding performer during unit evaluations, achieving his warfare qualification 10 months ahead of the Wing 10 goal. While accumulating over 900 flight hours, including 263 combat hours, he remains committed to mentoring other junior officers. His guidance as NFO training officer significantly reduced training time for NFO "upgraders."

Electronic Warfare Crew

VQ-2s Combat Reconnaissance Crew 24 has flown 233 mishap-free combat hours in Operation Iraqi Freedom and for the Coalition Forces Maritime Component Commander in the Arabian Gulf. They spent 71 days in the Central Command Area of Responsibility, during which time they were the sole provider of threat intelligence that saved American lives during an OIF combat mission. As the first to arrive in response to troops under fire, they increased the situational awareness and security of ground forces under attack.

Flight Crew

VP-40s Combat Aircrew 6 flew over 170 combat flight hours in support of Operation Enduring Freedom-Philippines, providing real-time imagery and data collection for forces on the ground. Due to their professionalism and dedication to performance, they maintained 100 percent readiness throughout the home cycle and qualified three designated aircrew instructors.

Junior Officer Leader Excellence

Lt. Michael Haymon of VP-40 is a combat-tested veteran, who flew over 107 flight hours in support of OEF-P, and is directly responsible for his crew's unprecedented success in providing crucial information to ground forces. As the senior naval flight officer instructor he ensured compliance and currency of all 26 NFO's, leading them through the last Seventh Fleet deployment.

Peer Leadership

The Navy and Marine Association recognized the following individuals based on votes by their peers.

E-7 to E-9 category, Senior Chief Aviation Machinist Mate (AW/NA) Glenn Grimmer, VP-1

Junior Officer (O-1 to O-3) category, Lt. Dennis Jensen, VP-40

Department Head (O-4) category, Lt. Cmdr. Steven Richards, VP-46

Command (O-6) category, Cmdr. Raymond Keledei, VP-46

Dziminowicz closed the ceremony with thanks to all the men and women of Wing 10 who faced and mastered the numerous challenges in 2005, both here at home and around the world.

© 2006 Sound Publishing, Inc.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraAT3 Daren Huffman "...Huffman in Rangers spotlight - By YN2 Todd D. Harris - Rangers reporter - Friday, January 27, 2006..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/huffman_in_rangers_spotlight/ [27JAN2006]

Every day I am amazed at how many goal-oriented and driven Sailors that walk the halls of the VQ-2 Rangers. I have the great opportunity to tell their stories here each week and no two are ever alike, but they do share the constant theme of determination and drive.

This week's member of the team, Aviation Electronics Technician 3rd Class Daren Huffman, is no exception.

I would describe him as well spoken with the utmost sense of professional pride and extremely good manners.

He discussed his decision to join the Navy and how it has guided him on his current path.

"I worked a series of jobs," he said. "I was a police officer for a brief period, but it just wasn't for me.

"When I decided to join the Navy, my parents actually tried to dissuade me, but I felt in my heart it was time for me to go in my own direction."

This eagerness to shape his individual destiny had a profound impact on him growing up. He regards his parents as a strong force in achieving personal greatness.

"I always had a good support system, so anything I set my heart out to do was met with great optimism by my mom and dad," he said.

He also described his love of experiencing different cultures and that the Navy offers unique opportunities to travel on various deployments and duty assignments.

"It's easier for one to travel and see the world with the Navy than it would if you were paying for it yourself," he said. "This way, I get to travel and see places I probably wouldn't have the means to do otherwise."

He is actively pursuing a career as a pilot, because he loves the excitement of flying aircraft and admits it's a great rush. "I love the whole aspect of what a pilot gets to do, and that is flying missions.

This is especially important right now, given the current state of affairs in the world. I hope to make this dream become a reality while serving in the Navy," he said.

Other than flying, he loves jazz, especially John Coltrane, Dexter Gordon and Thelonious Monk. He also is interested in a variety of sports.

"I especially have a great admiration for Lance Armstrong," Huffman said. "A decade ago, he had testicular, lung and brain cancer and was given almost no chance to survive. Now he's the most dominant athlete ever in any sport."

Finally, I asked the question that closes most interviews and that is, "What one person, living or dead, would you like to meet?"

"That would have to be Albert Einstein," Huffman said. "He is the most fascinating and intelligent person I've ever read about."

© 2006 Sound Publishing, Inc.


Circa 2005

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraVQ-2 Photo "...VQ-2 ombudsmen ready to serve - Friday, November 25, 2005..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/vq_2_ombudsmen_ready_to_serve/ [30NOV2005]

Photograph Description: VQ-2 ombudsmen, from left to right, Kandice Dickover, Marcy Fundalewicz and Melissa Wissel.

How many people know who the ombudsmen are in their commands today? Who knows what services their command ombudsmen can provide them? What does an ombudsman have to do with the squadron itself?

At VQ-2 there are three genuine and dedicated ombudsmen who have volunteered to help meet the needs of the squadron family members. They are Kandice Dickover, Marcy Fundalewicz, and Melissa Wissel.

The Navy family Ombudsman program was established in 1970 by then Chief of Naval Operations, Adm. Elmo Zumwalt.

The purpose of the Ombudsman program is to ensure the lines of communication are maintained between the command leadership and the families of the sailors in the command. This communication varies from information concerning a spouse on detachment to family issues at home.

Each of these ladies have only been ombudsmen for a short time, but are eager to jump in and "give back to the squadron on a level of being a resource," Wissel said.

"We are all in a unique situation, all in the same boat because of the move. We are all sharing in the experience and supporting each other together," said Dickover.

They have chosen to be command ombudsmen because they enjoy helping others and the pride and responsibility that comes along with that. Having received their training from former ombudsmen who come to the Fleet and Family Support Center, these ladies are well equipped for all situations.

They are the liaison between the family members and the command leadership.

"People can approach us with any problems, questions, or family issues," said Dickover. "Everything is held in strict confidentiality unless permission is given by the family member to tell the command leadership."

"We're not counselors, but we are there to refer and provide resources that can give the help that is needed," said Fundalewicz.

It is easy to fall into the misconception that the Ombudsmen are primarily for the spouses of married Sailors, but ombudsmen are here for all family members directly related to the service member, especially those of the single Sailors. This includes parents, siblings, and grandparents.

On Nov. 9 the ombudsmen held a gathering at the military wives meeting place on Midway Blvd. It was an event in which they were able to meet with the families face to face and allow the family members to get to know who they are. Topics such as holiday leave periods, Christmas parties, and playgroups were discussed.

The VQ-2 ombudsmen work very hard and sacrifice a lot of their personal time in order to serve and meet the needs of the family members in the squadron. They are resources eager to aide in whatever way they can.

It is essential, with the detachment cycles the way they are in VQ-2, for family members to know whom their ombudsmen are and what services they are able to provide.

© 2005 Sound Publishing, Inc.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraVQ-2 Photo "...VQ-2 is back in Europe - Friday, November 18, 2005..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/vq_2_is_back_in_europe/ [18NOV2005]

Photograph Description: Reestablishing operations for VQ-2 has gone so well, it's almost as if they never left.

Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron Two (VQ-2) is currently making its first Expeditionary Detachment from NAS Whidbey Island, Washington to the European Theater.

The U.S. European Command area of operations has previously gone without a significant VQ presence from Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10, and VQ-2 is happy to add that feather to an already multi-plumed hat.

VQ-2 was born in the European Theater when it was established in Port Leyute, Morocco in 1955, then moved its homeport of operations to Rota, Spain in 1960. For 50 years the squadron deployed under the guidance of Sixth Fleet and Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 11 through direction from Commander, Task Force 67, currently based in Sigonella, Italy.

In July of 2005, VQ-2 withdrew operations from the European theater to make a homeport change to NAS Whidbey Island, Washington.

Due to the Navy's emphasis on Effects-Based Tasking, combined with implementing a cost cutting business-like model, VQ-2 has transitioned from being permanently stationed in EUCOM to conducting expeditionary operations there.

"The VQ community's transition to conducting global expeditionary operations is vital to our nation's security," said Lt. Cmdr. Michael Jones IV, current and founding detachment officer in charge.

Additionally, he has been pleased with how smoothly the whole process of reestablishing operations has gone, saying, "It's almost as if we never left."

The detachment is currently in its second week of establishing a mobile base of operations, and many have noted that the process has been extremely motivational.

"I think the reason why we have been accepted here so enthusiastically is because the theater leadership realizes that what we bring to the fight is absolutely necessary," explained Mission Commander Lt. Ingrid Peterson.

Aircraft Commander Lt. Chris Kerns added, "CTF-67 has really been helpful. They have definitely gone out of their way and given 110 percent to make us feel at home after our brief hiatus from the AOR."

Many others on the crew quickly echoed that sentiment. But a very serious mission underlies each crewmember's excitement, and all are cognizant that they provide a new tool for the multilayered offensive against the terrorist enemy.

The Navy's new policy of "intrusive leadership" also makes it absolutely imperative to establish easily recognizable measurements of success so that the top leadership is constantly aware of the tangible effects the EP-3 mission brings to the table.

"We're not in the same Navy we were in just a few years ago," said VQ-2 Commanding Officer Cmdr. Clayton Grindle. "We need to be where we can bring the most to the fight, and right now that requires us to conduct operations in three different theaters. We will continue to go wherever our contributions will be most effective."

© 2005 Sound Publishing, Inc.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraVQ-2 Photo "...VQ-2 Ranger in the spotlight - By YN2 Todd Harris - Rangers Reporter - Friday, November 11, 2005..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/vq_2_ranger_in_the_spotlight/ [11NOV2005]

Photograph Description: Chief Aviation Machinist's Mate Henry Fox.

There are many facets to working in a squadron, including working on aircraft, flying as an aircrewman, or handling challenging personnel issues on the administrative side of things.

The following "spotlight" on VQ-2 Rangers will focus on someone in the squadron to provide a little insight into someone you may know in passing or work alongside accomplishing the Navy's mission, Chief Aviation Machinist's Mate Henry Fox.

What is your job title and brief description of what you do for the squadron?

"I'm a flight engineer NATOPS instructor. I do in-flight training for flight engineers and pilots. And I am a Maintenance Control chief. My job is to ensure squadron aircraft are released to the aircrews in the safest possible condition. I'm also responsible for all the squadron programs related to Safety."

What was your first duty assignment?

"It was VAW-111, San Diego Ca., an E-2C Hawkeye squadron, based aboard the USS Independence. While there, I was advanced from ADAA to AD2 via the accelerated advancement program. I was a plane captain, responsible for launching and recovering aircraft. I was also an engine operator, starting engines after maintenance was completed, to ensure proper operation. Working on the flight deck of an aircraft carrier was unlike any other experience I will ever have; the most demanding, dangerous, yet rewarding job in the world."

What has been your best experience in the Navy so far?

"I would have to say that the traveling all around the world is the best part of my job. Of course, being able to serve my country is what I am most proud of."

If you could name one person who has had the most influence on you, who would it be and why?

"ADCS Douglas Brock. He was my mentor when I was a Petty Officer 1st Class stationed at NAS PAX River, Md. He taught me when to keep my big mouth shut, and when not to. He also helped me to become a Chief Petty Officer."

What is your favorite music group?

"Led Zeppelin."

What are your favorite sports teams?

"The New York Yankees and the Buffalo Bills."

What is your favorite food?

"Elk steak, salmon, and pizza!"

What is your favorite color?

"Blue and gold!"

What is one life lesson that you will take with you when you leave the Navy?

"There is no "I" in team."

What advice do you have for first-term Sailors who are considering the Navy as a career?

"Don't let the first few years of your career be the deciding factor. They are the toughest on all Sailors, with all the less than glamorous jobs: sweeping, swabbing, taking out the trash etc. After this period, when you have your qualifications, a little seniority, and an actual clue about what is going on around you, it is a very rewarding and challenging profession, whatever it may be. If you see that you are not happy in your chosen profession, there are many avenues to pursue a change. Remember, we are not in this to get rich! We are in this for a much higher purpose - the privilege of serving in the world's finest Navy."

What one person (living or dead) would you like to meet and why?

"Chuck Adams, he is a world-renowned big game bow hunter with hundreds of world records to his credit. I would like to get some tips and insight to his methods. I have several kills myself, but nothing of his caliber."

© 2005 Sound Publishing, Inc.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraVQ-2 History "...VQ-2 celebrates golden anniversary - By Lt.j.g. Adam Huckaby - Ranger Reporter - Friday, October 28, 2005..." WebSite: Northwest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/vq_2_celebrates_golden_anniversary/ [28OCT2005]

The year was 1955. The hostilities on the Korean Peninsula had settled down and the Armistice had been signed. However, a new threat had emerged that would stain foreign relations to the breaking point: the Cold War. As the world continued to change, America was recognized as a global super power. To answer the needs of this new environment, on September 1st at NAF Port Lyautey, Morocco, Electronic Countermeasures Squadron Two (ECMRON-2) was established. It would later become Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron Two (VQ-2).

Today the Rangers of VQ-2 continue to provide unwavering support as threats and crises arise all over the world. This year VQ-2 celebrates its 50th Anniversary.

It was during World War II when the development of electronic countermeasures (ECM) began. Specially trained personnel, implementing various methods of ECM, detached with patrol squadrons flying PB4Y-1 Liberators and PB4Y-2 Privateers. The commissioning of a squadron that strictly focused on electronic countermeasures was the direct result of the success of these early ECM pioneers.

VQ-2's primary area of operation was the European/Mediterranean Theater. The squadron grew over the years as more planes, more personnel, and more capabilities became necessary. The platforms first flown by VQ-2 were the P4M Mercator and the P2V Neptune which had been modified to conduct the ECM mission.

After five years and three primary aircraft upgrades, VQ-2 was relocated. As of 1 January 1960 the name was officially changed to Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron Two. On 14 January the shift from NAF Port Lyautey, Morocco to NS Rota, Spain became official. The squadron continued to fly in the European theater and as new crises arose they went to meet those demands. In the mid-1960s VQ-2 began flying EA-3B Skywarriors, also known as "Whales", from aircraft carriers deployed to the Mediterranean Sea. VQ-2 flew the EA-3B and EC-121M Super Constellation during numerous crises throughout the European Theatre.

Between 1971 and 1976 VQ-2 received six EP-3E aircraft, which is the current platform employed today. It greatly increased their ability to perform fleet air reconnaissance and meet new demands that the aging EC-121M could not. In the 1980s and 1990s VQ-2 continued to maintain its presence by detaching combat reconnaissance crews from NS Rota, Spain.

As of 30 September 2005, VQ-2 was relocated again to NAS Whidbey Island, Washington. This co-located VQ-2 along side her sister squadron, VQ-1. Until then, VQ-2 was the only squadron never to have been stationed in the United States.

They have gone from being focused on the European Theater to having a global presence. They now operate around the globe in every theater.

The current successes of VQ-2 could not have been achieved apart form the legacy that was created over the past fifty years. We are standing on the shoulders of those who came before us: those who saw a way to exploit the airwaves of our adversaries and did something about it. Because of their dedication and commitment to God and country, VQ-2 has maintained itself as a global force dedicated to protecting the freedoms and liberties we all share today.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: VP History ThumbnailCameraVQ-2 History "...VQ-2's LT David Lundahl was awarded the Force Support and Special Mission Award - ANA - Wings OF Gold - Summer 2005 - Page 33..." WebSite: Association Of Naval Aviation http://www.anahq.org/about/index.htm [20OCT2005]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: VQ-2 History ThumbnailCameraRangers photo "...Base, city welcomes VQ-2 to NAS Whidbey Island, Washington - By Lt. Ryan Kahle - Rangers reporter - Friday, October 7, 2005..." WebSite: NorthWest Navigator http://www.northwestnavigator.com/index.php/navigator/whidbey/base_city_welcomes_vq_2_to_whidbey_island/ [08OCT2005]

Picture: "Welcome to Team Whidbey" framed print depicting an EA-6B, P-3C and EP-3 aircraft is given to Cmdr. Clayton Grindle from base Commanding Officer Capt. Syd Abernethy to hang in their news spaces in Hangar 6.

The move was complete as of Oct. 1, when Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron Two (VQ-2) officially arrived at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island.

At a ceremony Sept. 30, Commodore John Dziminowicz, commander Patrol & Reconnaissance Wing 10; Capt. Syd Abernethy, NAS Whidbey commanding officer; Oak Harbor Mayor Pro Tem Danny Paggao, along with city and school officials welcomed VQ-2 to "Team Whidbey" at the Nor'Wester Activity Center.

With about 150 squadron personnel in ranks, Abernethy told the crowd, "Little did I know when I left beautiful NS Rota, Spain and VQ-2 back in 1998 (as your commanding officer) that seven short years later I would have the honor to welcome you to the great Pacific Northwest. We're excited you're here."

For the last several months VQ-2 has been relocating from NS Rota, Spain to NAS Whidbey Island, Washington as part of the Navywide plan to streamline itself in order to meet emerging threats. The move greatly enhances the squadron's overall efficiency and improves the operational capabilities of both VQ-1 and VQ-2.

Aside from the operational aspect of the move, the members of VQ-2 and their families are extremely enthusiastic about becoming involved in the community, and taking part in the area's various activities.

Cmdr. Clayton Grindle, commanding officer of VQ-2, has expressed his wholehearted embrace of this new homeport location, saying, "Whidbey Island creates a tremendous number of opportunities for the VQ-2 family both professionally and personally."

Since its original commissioning date on Sept.1, 1955 as Electronic Countermeasures Squadron Two (ECMRON TWO) at the U. S. Naval Air Station, Port Lyautey, Morocco, VQ-2 has been stationed overseas. In January 1960, the squadron transferred to Naval Station Rota, Spain and was renamed Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron Two (VQ-2).

VQ-2 has always maintained a first-rate working relationship with its homeport communities and expects to maintain nothing less than an outstanding rapport as they transition to becoming members of the area. Because of its varied past locations, VQ-2 shows promise to bring new perspectives to an already diverse community.

The squadron has a rich history of excellence as evidenced by a multitude of awards which include the Joint Meritorious Unit Award, the Navy Unit Commendation, the Meritorious Unit Commendation, the Navy Expeditionary Medal, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, the NATO Medal, the Battle "E" for 1990, 1991, 1993-1996, 1999, 2000, and 2002, the Chief of Naval Operations Aviation Safety Award for 1993 and 1999, the Golden Anchor Award for 1993, 1994, 1998, 1999, and 2004 the Golden Wrench Award for 1999 and 2001, and the Association of Old Crows Award for 1991, 1994, 1996, 1997, and 2001.

While in Spain VQ-2 flew in Operations Southern Watch, Northern Watch, Mountain Lion, Mountain Sweep, Joint Guardian, Joint Force, and Dolphin Eagle. Additionally, they saw extensive overland combat action in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. VQ-2 is currently continuously deployed and flies from detachments in three separate operational theatres.

As an essential element of the U.S. military transformation, the VQ-2 move has been embraced with tremendous reception from the local community as well. Whidbey Island provides a beautiful and secure location that will allow the squadron to swiftly move to any part of the world to protect United States interests. Having the EP-3E squadrons co-located along with the MPR assets allows VQ-2 to be more efficient and more capable than ever before.

"We have a wonderful community that will wrap its arms around you ant take good care of you and your families while you're home and when you deploy," Abernethy said in closing.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Rota sailors have mixed feelings about VQ-2 move - By Jason Chudy, Stars and Stripes - European edition, Wednesday, June 15, 2005..." WebSite: Stars and Stripes http://www.estripes.com/article.asp?section=104&article=29750 [16JUN2005]

With the Navy's recent announcement that Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron 2 will be moving from Naval Station Rota, Spain, to Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash., later this year, squadron members are expressing mixed feelings and concern about the coming move.

"People have been talking about this for several years," said Cmdr. Clayton Grindle, skipper of the squadron commonly referred to as VQ-2, last week. "My sailors knew it was coming, so it was no surprise."

And though it's not a surprise, some of the sailors feel a little in the dark about the coming move.

"I think people are still confused, especially the junior sailors," said Petty Officer 2nd Class Hannah McKee.

Others are upset at having to make a quick return to the United States after transferring to Rota as recently as six months ago.

Petty Officer 1st Class John Allen, who's been with the squadron for about seven months, said he's "a little surprised and disappointed" that he'll be moving back to the States so soon from what is one of the Navy's best- rated European bases.

Allen, because he's married, expected to remain in Spain for the three years listed on his orders. Single sailors are sent to Rota for a minimum of two years.

"A lot of people came to VQ-2 under the pretense that they'd do two or three years in Spain," said McKee, who'll finish her two- year tour in Rota this December.

"I'd say half the people I've spoke to are shocked," Allen said about the announcement and quick moves.

Plus, squadron aircraft deploy to some unique places — many of which won't be publicly released because of the secretive nature of the squadron's reconnaissance operations — so some of the squadron members are having to start the transfer process from somewhere other than Rota.

VQ-2 aircraft "are scattered throughout the world," said Grindle. The squadron has called Rota home for 45 years.

"The good thing about this squadron is if you like to travel, this is the right place," said McKee. "If you're in a deployed status, you're going to hit the road and visit different countries."

Despite a heavy deployment schedule, Grindle said, squadron officials are making sure that all of the deployed aircraft fly through Spain on their way to the States.

"Everyone's going to come back to Rota to pack out," Grindle said.

Another concern for some sailors is what to do with their cars. Many bought used vehicles when they reported, and because they don't meet U.S. standards, they can't be shipped home.

Plus, with about 17 percent of the base leaving in the coming year because of VQ-2's move and the closure of two smaller commands, there will be a lot of competing "for sale" signs.

"In my case I've got two cars I'm trying to get rid of," said McKee, who expects to lose thousands of dollars when she sells the vehicles — if, that is, she can even sell them.

McKee, however, will have more time than most to sell her cars. She's not due to leave until December, when she transfers from the squadron and gets out of the Navy.

"I'll be one of the last ones here to shut off the lights," she said.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Navy Marine Corps News - Aug 13, 2005 - Quality Of Life - VQ-2 and VQ-2...VIDEO..." WebSite: Navy News http://www.news.navy.mil/management/videodb/player/video.aspx?ID=5352 [14AUG2005]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Rota sailors have mixed feelings about VQ-2 move - By Jason Chudy, Stars and Stripes - European edition, Wednesday, June 15, 2005..." WebSite: Stars and Stripes http://www.estripes.com/article.asp?section=104&article=29750 [16JUN2005]

With the Navy's recent announcement that Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron 2 will be moving from Naval Station Rota, Spain, to Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash., later this year, squadron members are expressing mixed feelings and concern about the coming move.

"People have been talking about this for several years," said Cmdr. Clayton Grindle, skipper of the squadron commonly referred to as VQ-2, last week. "My sailors knew it was coming, so it was no surprise."

And though it's not a surprise, some of the sailors feel a little in the dark about the coming move.

"I think people are still confused, especially the junior sailors," said Petty Officer 2nd Class Hannah McKee.

Others are upset at having to make a quick return to the United States after transferring to Rota as recently as six months ago.

Petty Officer 1st Class John Allen, who's been with the squadron for about seven months, said he's "a little surprised and disappointed" that he'll be moving back to the States so soon from what is one of the Navy's best- rated European bases.

Allen, because he's married, expected to remain in Spain for the three years listed on his orders. Single sailors are sent to Rota for a minimum of two years.

"A lot of people came to VQ-2 under the pretense that they'd do two or three years in Spain," said McKee, who'll finish her two- year tour in Rota this December.

"I'd say half the people I've spoke to are shocked," Allen said about the announcement and quick moves.

Plus, squadron aircraft deploy to some unique places — many of which won't be publicly released because of the secretive nature of the squadron's reconnaissance operations — so some of the squadron members are having to start the transfer process from somewhere other than Rota.

VQ-2 aircraft "are scattered throughout the world," said Grindle. The squadron has called Rota home for 45 years.

"The good thing about this squadron is if you like to travel, this is the right place," said McKee. "If you're in a deployed status, you're going to hit the road and visit different countries."

Despite a heavy deployment schedule, Grindle said, squadron officials are making sure that all of the deployed aircraft fly through Spain on their way to the States.

"Everyone's going to come back to Rota to pack out," Grindle said.

Another concern for some sailors is what to do with their cars. Many bought used vehicles when they reported, and because they don't meet U.S. standards, they can't be shipped home.

Plus, with about 17 percent of the base leaving in the coming year because of VQ-2's move and the closure of two smaller commands, there will be a lot of competing "for sale" signs.

"In my case I've got two cars I'm trying to get rid of," said McKee, who expects to lose thousands of dollars when she sells the vehicles — if, that is, she can even sell them.

McKee, however, will have more time than most to sell her cars. She's not due to leave until December, when she transfers from the squadron and gets out of the Navy.

"I'll be one of the last ones here to shut off the lights," she said.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: VQ-2 History ThumbnailCamera021024-N-4374S-048 Central Command Area of Operation (Oct. 24, 2002) "...VQ-2 Scheduled for Homeport Change - Story Number: NNS050608-03 - Release Date: 6/8/2005 10:06:00 AM..." http://www.news.navy.mil/search/display.asp?story_id=18681 [09JUN2005]

Picture: A crewmember assigned to the "Rangers" of Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron Two (VQ-2) returns to the base after completing a routine mission. VQ-2 is based in NAS Whidbey Island, Washington, and is on a regularly scheduled six-month deployment to the Middle East conducting missions in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 2nd Class Michael Sandberg. (RELEASED)

From Commander, Naval Forces Europe/Commander, U.S. 6th Fleet Public Affairs

ITALY (NNS) -- Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron (VQ) 2 will relocate from NS Rota, Spain, to NAS Whidbey Island, Washington, effective Sept. 1.

The relocation of VQ-2's six aircraft and 450 Sailors to the United States is in keeping with the Navy's ongoing transformation of forces in Europe, and will help reduce costs and eliminate redundancies throughout its force structure worldwide.

The move will co-locate the squadron with VQ-1, already based at NAS Whidbey Island, Washington, and will realize efficiencies through the consolidation of personnel deployment practices, aircraft maintenance practices and air crew training for these unique Navy squadrons.

"This move is an essential element of our transformation in Europe, greatly enhancing our overall efficiency and, in the process, improving the operational capabilities of both VQ-1 and VQ-2," said Adm. Harry Ulrich, commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe.

"Both squadrons will now be strategically located together, maximizing their training and readiness posture and their ability to surge worldwide as required," said Ulrich. "The officers and Sailors of VQ-2 are true professionals and have carried on a proud legacy here in Europe. Theirs is a tremendous record of success and excellence. I have no doubt they will continue that record in the future."

VQ-2, established in 1955, has been operating out of NS Rota, Spain since 1960, and was at the forefront of the Navy's reconnaissance operations for the majority of the Cold War. The squadron was instrumental in providing reconnaissance collection for NATO operations in the Balkans in the 1990s, and operated alongside VQ-1 to enforce no-fly zones with operations Northern Watch and Southern Watch during the same period. More recently, VQ-2 deployed to support both operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom in the Middle East.

The closure of VQ-2 facilities in NS Rota, Spain is being done in phases, with most of the Sailors and their family members being permitted to complete their tours in Spain, while new personnel report to facilities in NAS Whidbey Island, Washington.

Additionally, two smaller associated units, Naval Security Group Activity NS Rota, Spain and Aviation Intermediate Maintenance Unit NS Rota, Spain, will be disestablished through the ongoing transformation efforts.


Circa 2004

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Rota Security Department Provides Range Training, Safety, Qualifications - Story Number: NNS040116-08 - Release Date: 1/16/2004 12:47:00 PM - By Journalist 2nd Class Tina Villalobos, Naval Station Rota Public Affairs..." http://www.news.navy.mil/search/display.asp?story_id=11392 [03MAR2004]

ROTA, Spain (NNS) -- More than 14 people showed up at Naval Station Rota Security Department's shooting range for training and testing qualifications with 9mm pistols and 12-gauge shotguns. The course and qualifications tests are held on an as-needed basis, and the weapons and ammunition are provided by Security Department.

Members of Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron (VQ) 2 showed up to qualify at the range Jan. 13, adding to the approximately 1,600 Naval Station Rota and tenant commands that have already qualified with at least marksman level ability in FY 03, according to Mineman 2nd Class Steven R. Buck, Arms, Ammunition and Explosives leading petty officer.

Commands that wish to have people qualify on the range must be able to articulate the need for the qualification associated with the duties of the position.

"Qualification depends upon the needs of the person's job," said Master-at-Arms 1st Class Christopher L. Manning, training leading petty officer. "We mainly qualify Security, Auxiliary Security Force, Seabees, Weapons and VQ-2, as well as personnel from visiting ships."

The members of the recent range group appreciated their training and understood the importance of qualifying.

"It's part of our annual training and quarterly training with weapons for when we deploy to detachment sites," said Aviation Structural Mechanic 1st Class (AW) Trent Davis, flight engineer, VQ-1. "It prepares you. You never know what will arise when you're on detachment, especially to a foreign country — a land you rarely operate in."

Shooting accuracy determines overall scores. Earning a marksman ribbon requires a score ranging from 180-203; for a sharpshooter ribbon, a score of 204-227; and to be an expert entitled to wear the medal, a score ranging from 228-240. A score of 240 is the highest available.


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