I never thought I'd read these words and I'm pretty upset about the whole damn thing... I worked on these engines and gearboxes and I had a lot of brothers in HMM-164 back in the day. This is like reading the obituary of an old friend. Fitting for Memorial Day weekend.
Last Phrog pilot to take final check ride
By Gidget Fuentes - Staff writer, Marine Corps Times
Posted : Tuesday May 22, 2012 20:33:05 EDT
OCEANSIDE, Calif. The Marine Corps last officer to be trained to fly the CH-46E Sea Knight helicopter will do his final check ride Wednesday at Camp Pendleton, Calif., according to 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing.
The pilot, whose name wasnt released yet, will take off for the afternoon flight with Marine Medium Helicopter Training Squadron 164, which trains pilots and aircrews in the CH-46E, said 1st Lt. Tyler Balzer, a wing spokesman at Miramar Marine Corps Air Station in San Diego.
The pilot will be joined by the squadron commander for the flight, Balzer said, and then the entire squadron will put all 12 helicopters in the air for a ride the barn roundtrip flight to San Diego to mark the event. After returning to the base, the junior pilot will be awarded the Phrog patch, which he will wear on his flight suit, marking completion of his training. Balzer said. Itll be kind of an end of an era, he said.
The check ride is a milestone for the Marine Corps Phrog community of CH-46Es, which since 1964 and through several wars and major contingency operations has been the primary medium-lift legs for two generations of combat Marines.
The squadron, which first trained new pilots and aircrews and provided refresher training for others as the fleet replacement squadron in 1999, will transition to the MV-22 Osprey in 2014.
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