VMA-214 Black Sheep
Point of Contact = Squadron Duty Officer (SDO).
Courtesy of Jimmie Little
60 Years over the Pacific
Courtesy of R. H. Melville Jr.
VMA-214 Westpac 1963-1964
VMA-214 Night Attack
July 1942: Swashbucklers
07 August 1943 to present: Black Sheep
Robert H. Melville Jr.
01 JUL 1942 to AUG 1943: VMF-214 "Swashbucklers"
07 AUG 1943 to present: Black Sheep
July 1, 1942 - Marine Fighter Squadron 214 - MCAS Ewa, Hawaii Territory.
1942: MCAS Ewa, Hawaii.
29 JAN 1944: MCAS Goleta, Santa Barbara CA.
APR 1945: MCAS El Centro CA.
OCT 1945: MCAS El Toro CA.
MAY 1965: Air Station Iwakuni Japan
APR 1967: MCAS El Toro CA
SEP 1987: MCAS Yuma AZ
MAY 1965: WE - MAG-12 - Iwakuni, Japan
APR 1967: MAG-33 - El Toro, CA
DEC 1970: MAG-13
Date Type First Received - - - - - - Type of Aircraft:
1942: Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat.
1942: Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat.
1943: Vought F4U-4 Corsair.
1952: Grumman F9F Panther;
1953: F2H-4 Banshee;
MAR 1958: FJ-4 Fury
JAN 1959: FJ-4B Fury
8 JAN 1962: Dogulas A4D-2 (A-4B) Skyhawk *
3 MAR 1964: Douglas A4D-2N (A-4C) Skyhawk *
24 MAR 1970: Douglas A4D-5 (A-4E) Skyhawk *
3 DEC 1970: Douglas A-4F Skyhawk
25 SEP 1972: Douglas A-4M Skyhawk.
OCT 1991: AV-8B Harrier.
* November 30, 1962:
The A4D-2 designation changed to A-4B
The A4D-2N designation changed to A-4C
The A4D-5 designation changed to A-4E
For A-4 Skyhawk aircraft assigned to this unit see lower in this page:
1942 ---- 1945 - Western Pacific WWII
194x --------- USS Rendova (CVE-114)
194x --------- USS Baroko (CVE-115)
194x --------- USS Badoeng Straight (CVE-116)
194x --------- USS Boxer (CV-21)
AUG 1950 - 1952 -Korea
1950 --------- USS Boxer (CV-21)
1963 --------- Viet Nam
Oct 10 1963 - Apr 15 1964 - DET.N - A-4B - CVS-12 - CVSG-57 - WE-81/84 - WestPac
1964 - MAY31 1965 -----A-4C - MAG-12/MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
Jun 01 1965 - Jun 21 1965 -A-4C - MAG-15/MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
Jun 21 1965 - Feb 16 1966 - A-4E - MAG-12/Chu-Lai, South Vietnam
Feb 16 1966 - Apr 29 1966 -A-4C - MAG-15/MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
Apr 29 1966 - Mar 1967 ---A-4E - MAG-12/Chu-Lai, South Vietnam
Jul 1977 ---- Jul 1978 --- A-4M - MAG-12/MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
Jun 1980 ---- Dec 1980 --- A-4M - MAG-12/MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
Dec 1981 ---- Jun 1982 --- A-4M - MAG-12/MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
Dec 1986 ---- Jun 1987 --- A-4M - MAG-12/MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
Jun 1988 ---- Dec 1988 --- A-4M - MAG-12/MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
OCT 1991 ------------- Iwakuni Japan
DEC 1993 ------------ U.S.S. Peleliu LHA-5
OCT 1994 ----------- Det. deployment on U.S.S. Essex LHD-2.
APR 1996 ----------- Det. on U.S.S. Tarawa LHA-1
1997 --------- Det. on the U.S.S. Peleliu LHA-5.
1998 -------- 1999 --------- Deployment on U.S.S. Boxer LHD-4.
2000 ---------2001 ---------- Dets. to Iwakuni, Japan and U.S.S. Tarawa (LHA-1)
July 1, 1942 : Captain C. W. SOMMERS
July 21, 1942 : --- Captain G. F. Britt
June 9, 1943 Major H. A. ELLIS JR
July 12, 1943 : Major W. A. PACE
August 7, 1943 : Captain J. R. BURNETT
September 7, 1943 to January 3, 1944 -Boyington
February 9, 1944 : 2nd Lt R. R. TILTON
March 1, 1944 : Major W. H. McPHERSON
April 10, 1944 : Major S. R. BAILEY
June 11, 1945 : Major J. W. MERRITT
July 1, 1945 : Lt R. J. McDONNELL
August 1, 1945 : Major G. L. HOLLOWELL
November 1, 1945 : Major T. W. FURLOW
March 7, 1946 : Major S. GIER
March 20, 1946 : Major H. A. PETERS
April 15, 1947 : Major D. H. SAPP
November 19, 1948 : Major S. G. CORTELYOU
July 16, 1949 : Lt Colonel H. A. YORK
July 8, 1950 : Lt Colonel W. E. LISCHEID (KIA)
November 1, 1950 : Major W. M. LUNDIN
January 1, 1951 : Lt Colonel J. A. FEELY JR
May 16, 1951 : Lt Colonel J. W. POINDEXTER
November 4, 1951 : Major C. M. KUNZ
December 4, 1951 : Lt Colonel C. C. LEE
March 11, 1952 : Major M. C. GREGORY
April 9, 1952 : Lt Colonel M. M. COOK JR
June 3, 1953 : Lt Colonel W. J. CARR JR
December 15, 1953 : Lt Colonel J. T. McDANIEL JR
March 10, 1954 : Lt Colonel A. S. WALKER
October 26, 1954 : Lt Colonel R. F. FLAHERTY
March 23, 1955 : Lt Colonel H. M. TURNER
December 2, 1955 : Lt Colonel A. N. NEHF
November 5, 1957 : Lt Colonel J. F. BOLT
August 15, 1959 : Lt Colonel R. BAIRD
January 10, 1961 : Major H. D. HUFFSTUTTER
July 29, 1961 : Major G. KUPRASH
December 15, 1961 : Lt Colonel R. WULLANE
January 8, 1963 : Lt Colonel E. B. LONG
October 9, 1963 : Lt Colonel O. E. HOWE JR
July 11, 1964 : Lt Colonel K. O'KEEFE
April 2, 1966 : Lt Colonel D. L. DAVIS
June 9, 1966 : Lt Colonel R. D. WALLACE
December 1, 1966 : Major R. E. HEMMINGWAY
April 1, 1967 : Lt Colonel D. D. PARISH
April 4, 1968 : Lt Colonel J. J. WENT
January 29, 1969 : Lt Colonel W. R. SMITH
February 4, 1970 : Lt Colonel R. J. REID
June 5, 1971 : Lt Colonel J. J. McCARTHY
August 15, 1972 : Lt Colonel D. F. NEWTON
July 10, 1973 : Lt Colonel C. L. DAVIS
June 15, 1974 : Lt Colonel R. H. ALLEY
August 16, 1975 : Lt Colonel J. R. THOMPSON
August 26, 1976 : Lt Colonel D. C. FITZGERALD
August 4, 1978 : Lt Colonel J. L. UNDERWOOD
May 4, 1979 : Lt Colonel P. B. WYRICK
December 20, 1980 : Lt Colonel E. E. HASTINGS
July 16, 1982 : Lt Colonel J. P. OPPENHUIZEN
December 10, 1983 : Lt Colonel J. D. JEWELL
November 23, 1985 : Lt Colonel N. N. KIRBY
August 29, 1987 : Lt Colonel T. R. CARSTENS
July 6, 1989 : Lt Colonel R. M. STROMBERG
August 3, 1990 : Lt Colonel R. V. DELONEY
July 16, 1992 : Lt Colonel H. J. COBLE
May 26, 1994 : Lt Colonel M. J. KELLY
April 26, 1996 : --
October 25, 1997 : Lt Colonel D. H. TIERNEY
1943: Presidential Unit Citation
29 AUG 1961: CMC Safety Award
1966: Navy Unit Commendation: With Bronze Star
OCT 1982: Lawson H.M Sanderson Award (Attack Squadron of the Year)
17 OCT 1987: Lawson H.M Sanderson Award (Attack Squadron of the Year)
AUG 1997: Lawson H.M Sanderson Award (Attack Squadron of the Year)
July 1, 1942: VMA-214 was commissioned at Station Ewa, Oahu Hawaii. They were decommissioned after their combat tour. They were know as the "Swashbucklers".
August 7, 1943: The orginial "Black Sheep" of twenty seven men led by Major Gregory "Pappy" Boyington formed a new VMF-214 at Espiritu Santo in the Western Pacific. Major Boyington had recently returned from a year's tour with the American Volunteer Group (aka "Flying Tigers") in China.
January 8, 1944: Commanding officer Major Gregory "Pappy" Boyington is shot down and captured by the Japanese.
Medal of Honor holder, Marine Aviator and AVG Flying Tiger Pilot.
Major, United States Marine Corps Reserve, Marine Squadron 214.
Central Solomons area, from 12 September 1943 to 3 January 1944.
For extraordinary heroism and valiant devotion to duty as commanding officer of Marine Fighting Squadron 214 in action against enemy Japanese forces in the Central Solomons area from 12 September 1943 to 3 January 1944.
Consistently outnumbered throughout successive hazardous flights over heavily defended hostile territory, Major Boyington struck at the enemy with daring and courageous persistence, leading his squadron into combat with devastating results to Japanese shipping, shore installations, and aerial forces.
Resolute in his efforts to inflict crippling damage on the enemy, Major Boyington led a formation of 24 fighters over Kahili on 17 October and, persistently circling the airdrome where 60 hostile aircraft were grounded, boldly challenged the Japanese to send up planes. Under his brilliant command, our fighters shot down 20 enemy craft in the ensuing action without the loss of a single ship.
A superb airman and determined fighter against overwhelming odds, Major Boyington personally destroyed 26 of the many Japanese planes shot down by his squadron and, by his forceful leadership, developed the combat readiness in his command which was a distinctive factor in the Allied aerial achievements in this vitally strategic area.
Colonel Boyington was the total victor in many more than twenty-six aerial combats during World War II in the Pacific and Asia. "Pappy" Boyington was finally shot down and captured. As a prisoner of war Colonel Boyington suffered brutal and horrible prolonged torture at the hands of the Japanese before being released at war's end. Colonel Boyington died of cancer January 12, 1988.
January 13, 1944: VMF-214's combat tour ends and the unit is disestablished.
January 29, 1944: VMF-214 is re-established at MCAS Goleta, Santa Barbara CA.
February 4, 1945: VMF-214 deploys aboard the U.S.S. Franklin, CV-13 to the Western Pacific for combat operations against Okinawa and Japan.
March 19, 1945: A Japanese Bomber strikes CV-13 and the resulting fire kills 772 crew members, including 32 Black Sheep. This ended the unit's involvement in WWII.
April 1945: VMF-214 are relocated to MCAS El Centro CA.
October 1945: VMF-214 relocated to MCAS El Toro CA.
1945-5x: VMF-214 deploys aboard U.S.S. Rendova (CVE-114), U.S.S. Baroko (CVE-115), U.S.S. Badoeng Straight (CVE-116), and the U.S.S. Boxer (CV-21).
August 1950: VMF-214 is the first Marine Squadron to see combat in Korea. They were flying from the U.S.S. Boxer, CV-21.
1952: VMF-214 gave up their Corsairs for their first jets, the F9F Panther.
1953: The Panthers gave way to the F2H-4 All Weather Banshee.
December 31, 1956: VMF-214 is re-designated VMF-21(AW), for "All Weather".
February 1957: The Black Sheep become the first Marine Squadron to be qualified in the delivery of "Special Weapons" aka "Nukes".
July 9, 1957: The Black Sheep's unit designation VMF is changed to VMA.
March 1958: VMA-214 get new aircraft, the FJ-4 Fury.
January 1959: VMA-214 again gets new aircraft, the FJ-4B.
January 23, 1962: VMA-214 receive the A4D-2 Skyhawk. They were to fly Skyhawks for the next 27 years.
October 10, 1963: VMA-214 detachment ("N") deployed on a Westpac cruise aboard the USS Hornet. The detachment was assigned to intercept Soviet Tupolev Tu-95 "Bear" and Tupolev Tu-16 "Badger" aircraft flying toward the anti-submarine naval task force in the Sea of Japan. They returned to MCAS Kaneohe Bay in April 1964.
May 1965: The Black Sheep were Assigned to Marine Air Group 12 and relocated to Iwakuni Japan.
June 21, 1965: The first division of Black Sheep Skyhawks fly into Chu Lai, Republic of Vietnam utilizing a new 4,000 foot Marine "SATS" runway.
September 24, 1965: An unidentified pilot of A-4C BuNo 148508 pulled out of a dive a little too late and caught the tree tops heavily damaging the A/C but flew the thing home. Pilot was uninjured. Photo by MSgt Russell Richard Bell courtesy of Ralph Bell Jr.
February 1966: VMA-214 is rotated out of Vietnam.
March 28, 1966: Capt. Jack Dennison Rothwell, 34, was killed when his A-4 (BuNo 145109) crashed in Subic Bay during a night ordnance delivery training exercise at Cubi Point in the Philippine Islands, Cedar Rapids Gazette, Friday, April 1, 1966. Capt. Rothwell (MAG-13 1stMAW FMFPAC) was stationed in Da Nang in March 1966 when he was sent TDY to the Philippines for training. Posthumously promoted to the rank of Major. From Jim Rothwell.
May 12, 1966: pilot J.S. Sramek. A-4C BuNo 148535 was DBR when he landed short and went off the side of the Chu Lai runway when returning from a combat mission.
April 1966: the Black Sheep return to Chu Lai in force. The unit won the Navy Unit Commendation w/ Bronze Star for their efforts.
March 17, 1967: Capt. Robert Boughton Beale was killed after his Skyhawk (BuNo 148585) was hit by automatic weapons fire during a coastal reconnaissance mission and crashed into the sea five miles off Tam Ky.
Post April 1967: VMA-214 returns to MCAS El Toro CA and is assigned to MAG-33. Their new mission is to train pilots for Vietnam combat tours.
July 15, 1968: Capt. David W. Bittig was killed when his El Toro based VMA-214 A-4C Skyhawk (BuNo 147769) crashed on a desert plateau 218 miles north of Fallon during a navigation training flight Monday. Reno Evening Gazette, Wednesday, July 17, 1968.
30 October 1968: A-4C Skyhawk BuNo 148471 was SOC when J.J. Brennan went off the end of the runway and John Fisher took the gear on a double abort while deployed to Yuma. Aircraft did not burn but was an alpha loss.
September 14, 1969: Maj. Charles C. McLennan, 33, was killed when his A-4C Skyhawk (BuNo 149644) crashed 15 miles northwest of Creede while he was on a training mission enroute from Luke AFB in AZ to Peterson Field in Colorado Springs. The wreckage was spotted Monday afternoon by a CAP aircraft and a helicopter from Ft. Carson was sent to the scene. CWO Joseph Pagan, co-pilot of the helicopter said the wreckage was strewn over a large area. There was no evidence that the pilot had ejected. Colorado Springs Gazette, Wednesday, September 17, 1969. Maj. Charles C. McLennan, was killed Sunday, September 14, when his A-4C Skyhawk crashed in the rugged Rocky Mountains near Colorado Springs, CO (5 miles west of Lake City, CO) while he was on a routine high level navigation cross-country training flight. San Mateo Times, Friday, September 19, 1969.
December 28, 1969: Capt. Robert P. Rogers, 30, escaped serious injury yesterday when his A4 (BuNo 148511) Skyhawk crashed while landing at MCAS Yuma while enroute from Davis-Monthan AFB in Tucson, AZ, to MAS EL Toro at Santa Ana, CA. High winds apparently made the aircraft veer off the runway. The Arizona Republic, Monday, Dec. 29, 1969.
May 7, 1970: Capt. Jack A. Chiarmonte (El Toro) was presumed killed after his A-4E Skyhawk (BuNo 150046) crashed in the Pacific off Santa Catalina Island Thursday night. The 18 hour search by the Navy, USCG and USMC was concentrated in a 20 mile radius from the crash site pinpointed by a fellow pilot. Independent Press-Telegram, Long Beach, CA, Sat., May 9, 1970.
September 8, 1970: Capt. Patrick G. Carroll, 27, ejected safely from his A-4 Skyhawk (BuNo 150089) when it crashed in rugged Lovelace Canyon, south and west of Lucerne Valley today. Redlands Daily Facts, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 1970. The impact touches off a 30-acre brushfire in Lovelace Canyon, south and west of the Lucerne Valley, which was still burning the following day. Eight retardant-dropping fire bombers are diverted from another blaze near Devore, California in the Cajon Pass to help contain the burn. A total of 12 California Division of Forestry and other trucks are also dispatched to the site to fight the fire. The pilot, who was flying north over Big Bear Lake on a navigation training flight, suffered an undetermined malfunction, said a public information spokesman at MCAS El Toro, California. He was seen as he ejected by a gas company serviceman, James Kennedy, who picked him up and drove him to near-by Sky-High Ranch. Carroll, a Vietnam veteran, is picked up by a rescue helicopter from George AFB, CA, and was not injured. Firefighters were hindered by rough, rocky terrain and a truck that overturned on an access road, blocking the path for over an hour. Fire crew were lifted to the site by helicopter or had to walk in 1 1/2 miles from Highway 18 near the Lucerne Valley. CDF officials expected the blaze to be contained by 1800 hrs., 9 September, unless winds developed.
April 21, 1971: Capt. James E. Stroupe, 27, was killed when his A-4 (BuNo 154985) Skyhawk crashed about 9:45 a.m. while pulling out of a low level bombing run over a desert training area near Yuma, AZ. The Arizona Republic, Thursday, April 22, 1971.
July 22, 1972: Capt. E. M. "Mike" Ozmett and 1st Lt. Carl C. Chappell (BuNo's 154186 and 154192) ejected on takeoff when caught in a sudden and severe crosswind at Buckley ANG base. The crashes occurred within 10 seconds of each other. Ozmett was airborne when he ejected and his plane crashed east of Buckley Road near sixth Ave. starting a grass fire that scorched several acres. The plane then bellied across the road for an additional 200 yards before stopping. Chappell's veered off the runway seconds later starting a fire that burned about 20 acres. A third USMC pilot, Capt. H.C. Widener (VMA-214) witnessed the crashes and didn't attempt a takeoff. The El Toro, CA, based aircraft had flown from Wichita Falls, TX and stopped at Buckley to refuel. Rocky Mountain News, photo, Sunday, 23 July 1972.
I just opened the old log book, because I was on the periphery of that event at Buckley. 'Twas 21/22 Jul 72 and I (1stLt Steve Linder) was on a cross-country with our skipper, LtCol. J.J. McCarthy (VMA-214) flying A-4Fs from El Toro to RON at Buckley. There was another flight of three from our squadron RONing at Buckley that same night. On the 22nd, the skipper and I departed late in the morning without incident. About 1/2 hour later we received a call on guard from the Buckley tower asking if there was a LtCol. McCarthy aboard. After the affirmative reply, we were asked to return to the scene of the accident. We saw the wreckage of Dash two off to the left side of the runway (I think it was runway 35 or 36.)
To the best of my recollection, here is how it unfolded. The flight of three behind us had seen us depart and expected the same conditions. They were cleared for takeoff with winds reported as light and variable. Lead (Capt Mike Ozment - A-4F BuNo 154192) rolled with Dash two (1stLt Carl Chappell A-4F BuNo 154186) 10 seconds behind. The 60 knot gust (90 degree crosswind from the left) did come out of nowhere hitting Lead and Dash two.
June 26, 1973: Capt. Dale "Stump" Kennedy ejected when he rolled into his 5th ZUNI run and stabilized in a 20 degree dive, accelerated to 430 kias and noticed the right wing begin to drop. He moved the stick to the left and felt it bind momentarily and then feel like it was free in his hand. The Skyhawk (BuNo 158431) continued to roll right and he attempted using left rudder which only slowed the roll. As he was passing 55 degrees of bank he ejected with his right hand holding the stick left and aft and his left hand actuating the ejection handle. Following ejection the aircraft continued to roll and impacted a hillside in a wings level inverted attitude. The pilot was picked up in rocky terrain about 20 minutes later by a helicopter in the area and taken to a nearby hospital with major injuries. NAN, Pettibone, March 1974.
May 6, 1975: Capt. Dave Stamper (F-4 pilot) ejected safely when he lost control (BuNo 158434) during an ACM engagement (inverted spin, that's what the AAR stated) out in Warning Area 291. From Jim Underwood OIC of the old MAWTUPAC.
August 3, 1976: 1st Lt. Wade C. Straw, 28, ejected safely when his El Toro based A-4 Skyhawk (BuNo 158432) crashed in the desert near Needles, CA, Tuesday while on a training mission. The Press-Courier, Wednesday, August 4, 1976. The pilot was part of a two plane low level training flight an A-4M Skyhawk. They began a descent from flight level 230 so the VFR portion of the flight plan could be conducted. As the aircraft were passing flight level 210 the leader performed a 360-degree roll to the left to increase his rate of descent and to observe his position in relation to the low-level start point. Coming out of the roll at about 300 knots the nose began to rise. He countered with forward stick and noted that the nose trim was in the vicinity of zero and not coming up. There wasn't enough forward stick available so he used the stick trim button in an attempt to trim nose down. The pilot then began getting erratic input movements in the stick which wanted to do its own thing, moving in all quadrants. The nose continued to rise and the pilot utilized rudders to do a barrel-roll type recovery to the left. The A-4M emerged from this maneuver, left wing down, in a left hand spiral, 60-80 degrees nose low. The pilot reduced power and extended speed brakes and tried to check disengagement of stab Aug. He disconnected as a last resort just prior to ejection. NAN, Pettibone, February 1977. It was determined that the AFCS had an internal short and was inputting sporadic movements to the stick even though it was not engaged. A check with the Safety Center, indicated this had occurred a few times previously. The procedure in this case was to employ the RAT which takes the AFCS off line. Wade never indicated that he considered this, but instead pulled the disconnect which made the situation much worse. The board found that pilot action contributed to the accident. From Harvey Crouch.
June 9, 1981: Capt. Joseph J. Krejmas, 27, of Greenfield, Mass., ejected safely from his MCAS El Toro A-4 Skyhawk (BuNo 159481)before it crashed next to the Southern Pacific railroad's main line slightly damaging one rail of the track, forcing traffic to be halted for slightly over an hour. Santa Ana Orange County Register, Tuesday, June 9, 1981. I was Ops Officer of 214 when this happened. It happened in the break when the pilot retarded power on the turn to down wind. Everyone assumed that he pulled the throttle around the horn, which shut down the engine. However, it was a broken PS-4 line, which caused the power to reduce to idle (think that's right) rather than shut down. Pilot was J.J. "Famous" Krejmas. From Bob Hickerson. VMA-214 A-4M BuNo 159481 was destroyed at Yuma after aircraft crashed while in landing pattern, 09 June 1981. Pilot ejected. Naval Safety Center via Jim Winchester. The pilot was in the air station landing pattern with gear down when he noted a loss of thrust upon reduction of power. He advanced the throttle to military but noted no engine response and an increasing angle of attack. The pilot leveled the wings and ejected at the 90 degree position. From Aircraft Mishaps.
March 15, 1983: unknown USMC pilot okay, landed short, halted when nose gear became stuck in arresting cable, caught fire Twenty-nine Palms. Perhaps a VMA-223 contribution to a MAWTS class. VMA-214 A-4M BuNo 160041 was destroyed at 29 Palms when aircraft touched down short of the runway and caught fire, 18 February 1983. Pilot egressed. Naval Safety Center via Jim Winchester.
May 28, 1983: Capt. Mike “Nacho” Lyden (VMAT-102 flying WTI (Weapons and Tactics Instructor) VMA-214 A-4M BuNo 160028) was on a low level laydown on Target # 103a, North Tactical Target, (S of GBN) a simulated train marshaling yard with 1/7th scale train targets, from west to east into the early sun and gradually rising terrain with a pitted wind screen. He hit the ground on pull-up and the aircraft separated behind the cockpit. Nacho safetied the seat, opened the cockpit, released his fittings and crawled out. Only injuries were burns on his wrists and neck. RF-4 overhead actually captured it on film… From Paul E. Backs, 28 January 2016. The jet had Captain Ken Ferrara's (sp?) name nicely painted under the canopy rail. He was thoughtful enough to call me in the Yuma hospital and congratulate me on surviving . . . and that 160028 was 'his jet'. From Mike Lyden. The seat with Mike still attached was flung free and landed in a desert bush, upright, He was initially unconscious, but when he regained consciousness he released his fittings and with help from medical personnel headed for Yuma. I was on the accident board and arrived at the site about 30 minutes after the accident, there were very few large pieces of the aircraft remaining. The accident was not in the R-2301 east of Yuma. From Cliff Gion. VMA-214 A-4M BuNo 160028 was destroyed at Yuma when aircraft struck ground during bombing run, 28 May 1983. Pilot sustained major injuries. Naval Safety Center via Jim Winchester.
September 1987: VMA-214 is relocated to MCAS Yuma AZ.
June 1989: The Black Sheep became the first Marine Squadron to fly the AV8B Harrier.
October 1991: Twenty Black Sheep Harriers deploy to Iwakuni Japan.
July 1993: VMA-214 deploys Harriers to 29 Palms CA for a "Night Sytems" operation.
December 1993 to July 1994: Deployment aboard the U.S.S. Peleliu LHA-5.
October 1994: A Black Sheep Detachment deploys aboard the U.S.S. Essex LHD-2.
April 1996: Deployment on the U.S.S. Tarawa LHA-1. The participated in "Operation Southern Watch" and "Operaton Desert Strike"
1997: Black Sheep Detachment on the U.S.S. Peleliu LHA-5.
1998-99: VMA-214 deployment on U.S.S. Boxer LHD-4. They participated in "Operaton Desert Fox".
2000-2001: Detachments to Iwakuni Japan and aboard the U.S.S. Tarawa LHA-1.
1943: Twenty-three VMA-214 pilots are shown seated behind the men in the numerals.
VMA-214 at Guadalcanal: From a Navy NATOPS, a picture of the "Black Sheep" briefing. From Joseph C. Baldwin Jr., son of Marine Aviator Lt.Col. J.C. Baldwin.
1958: Picture of Black Sheep pilots taken at MCAS Kaneohe Bay in 1958/59. Squadron FJ-4B Furies are in the background. The Commanding Officer, Lt.Col. Jack Bolt, is in the center of the photo, Lloyd Gailey is sitting at the far right. Photograph from Lloyd Gailey.
12DEC63: VMA-214 Black Sheep, Det. N, A-4B Skyhawk WE-81 on the USS Hornet, CVS-12. Joe Turpen collection.
13DEC63: VMA-214 Black Sheep, Det. N, A-4B Skyhawk WE-81 on the USS Hornet, CVS-12.
VMA-214 Det N Men 1963 Photograph from the Hornet cruise book.
VMA-214 Officer in Charge Major R. J. Kern. Photograph from the Hornet cruise book.
VMA-214 Pilot Captain I. C. Archibold. Photograph from the Hornet cruise book.
VMA-214 Pilot Captain W. H. Hale. Photograph from the Hornet cruise book.
VMA-214 Pilot Captain A. G. Potenza. Photograph from the Hornet cruise book.
VMA-214 Pilot First Lieutenant R. L. Crane. Photograph from the Hornet cruise book.
VMA-214 Pilot First Lieutenant J. E. Gardner. Photograph from the Hornet cruise book.
1964: DET N A-4B BuNo 142879, WE-84, assigned to the USS Hornet parked on the ramp. Naval Aviation News Photo.
BuNo.147755 and Captain Melville with the Blacksheep. Photo provided by Robert H. Melville Jr., son of Captain Melville.
Blacksheep Drivers "huddle up" for briefing. Photo provided by Robert H. Melville Jr.
Blacksheep Drivers getting a "good hunting" handshake. Photo provided by Robert H. Melville Jr.
JUN65: A VMA-214 Blacksheep A-4C taking off using JATO from Naval Air Station Cubi Point, Philippines. Photograph courtesy of Russell Williams.
22JUN65: Blacksheep Skyhawk is pictured flying over the "tropic Q" clouds somewhere over the South China Sea between NAS Cubi Point, Philippines and Chu Lai, Vietnam. Photograph courtesy of Rusty Williams.
JUL-NOV65: VMA-214's A-4C Skyhawk BuNo. 148548 side number WE-10 near Chu Lai, South Vietnam - taken during period July to November 1965 over Vietnam. Note reddish dirt on fuselage and wings from Chu Lai clay. Photograph courtesy of Russell Williams.
1965-1968: Right rear in-flight view of VMA-214 Blacksheep A-4C Skyhawk BuNo 147788, WE-8, with a MER with two Snakeyes on each wing station and a centerline tank. Photographer unknown.
November 1965: A-4C BuNo 145108, WE-18, waiting on repairs at Chu Lai after an encounter with a hill top. Photo from Gary Clark.
1965: VMA-214 Blacksheep A-4E Skyhawk BuNo 150027 at Chu Lai from COL Robert Clapp who says… "I flew with VMA-214 (Blacksheep), but was assigned to MACS-7 as an Air Defense Controller." COL Robert Clapp.
Circa 1966: The VMA-214 Black Sheep headquarters at Chu Lai. Photo from John Stum.
Circa 1964: A-4C BuNo 147799, WE-15, inflight with iron bombs. Harry Gann photo from Joe Baldwin Jr.
Circa 1966: Chu Lai Skyhawk Line and tent area. Note the beach front location. John Stummer.
Circa 1966: Black Sheep Skyhawks BuNo 148482 and 148508 on the taxiway at Chu Lai. John Stummer.
Circa 1966: Black Sheep Skyhawk BuNo 148548 on the taxiway at Chu Lai. John Stummer.
Circa 1966: BuNo 148436 in-flight over Vietnam. Photo from Stummer.
01 Feb 1966: Black Sheep Skyhawk line: BuNo 148494, WE-19, in the foreground followed by WE-13, WE-2, WE-11 and WE-22. U.S. Navy
1966: BuNo. 145117 on the VMA-214 flight-line in Nam. The tractor has USMC on it but no other id numbers. :)
NOV 1966: BuNo 148531, WE-4, assigned to MAJ Dave Caylor as she taxis by the photographer. USAF O-1E Bird Dog s/n 56-2569 at left. Unknown photographer via W. Mutza.
1965-67: Skyhawk BuNo 148471, WE-2, parked on the ramp next to a Skyknight. Unknown photographer.
JUL 1967: VMA-214 A-4C 150586, WE-1, location unknown. Photographer unknown.
APR 1968: BuNo 148471, WE-2, parked on the ramp with an MBER and Snakeyes on the port side. VMGR-252 Raiders KC-130F Hercules BuNo 148890, QB-890, in the background. Unknown photographer.
BuNo 148531 served all her U.S.A. time with the Marines. She later served with the Argentina Air Force as their "C-315".
1968: VMA-214 Blacksheep Squadron snapshots taken at MCAS El Toro in 1968 by Jim Larkin:
APR69: BuNo 148436, WE-12, parked on the NAS NY ramp. Dave Hansen via W. Mutza.
JUL 1969: Blacksheep Skyhawk BuNo 148531, WE-1, assigned to LCOL William R. Smith parked on the flight-line with centerline tank and MER's with 6 Mk-81's next to VA-128 A-6 Intruder BuNo 151818, NJ-45. Nick Williams.
1969: BuNo 147742 WE-24, FCLP practice at MCAS El Torro 1969.
1969: 1st Lt. Steve Sanford in BuNo 148531, WE-23, over San Francisco bay area 1969. Taken by wingman 1st Lt. R. P. "Hans" Vogelpohl.
1969: BuNo 149644 WE-27 landing at MCAS El Torro. Photos by Richard "Hans" Vogelpohl.
MAY70: BuNo 149987: WE-19, parked with some dummy bombs. Gary Verver Colleciton.
APR68-AUG70: BuNo 149536,WE-22, assigned to 1/LT D.L. Peem parked on the ramp, maybe Yuma. Jim Brady
DEC68-SEP69: BuNo 149644, WE-2, assigned to MAJ R.J. Reid parked on the line. Nick Williams.
1972: A-4M Skyhawk BuNo. 158428. Captain Hans Vogelpohl leads his wingman Captain Hal Widener in A-4M Skyhawk BuNo: 158428 side number WE 2 over southwest Texas from El Paso to Randolph on November 11, 1972. Two days later Captain Hal Widener returned in A-4M Skyhawk BuNo. 158428 to Marine Corps. Air Station El Toro --- his last military flight. Hans Vogelpohl photograph from Hal Widener.
BuNo.158428 with the Blacksheep. Photo provided by Robert H. Melville Jr.
BuNo.158428 with the Blacksheep. Photo provided by Robert H. Melville Jr.
11 Dec 1972 to 16 May 1980 VMA-214, MCAS El Toro, CA. .BuNo 158435, WE-466, parked and roped off. Gary Verver Collection.
1972-1973: Left side view of VMA-214 Blacksheep A-4F Skyhawk BuNo 155064, WE-5, on the ramp, location unknown. Copyright R.W. Harrison.
VMA-214 07 APR 1973: VMA-214 A-4M BuNo 158433, WE-8, 07 April 1973 at Hill AFB. Name below the canopy is Capt. Vogelpohl. Photographer unknown, from Gary Verver Collection.
Date unknown: VMA-214 A-4M BuNo 160044, WE-1. Also in the photo are WE-461, WE-460 and WE-453. Photo by W. Munzenmaier, from Gary Verver.
1975: BuNo 158428, WE-2, parked with canopy up and ladder attached. Gary Verver Collection.
02 Sep 1976: Blacksheep Skyhawk BuNo 158430, WE-10, parked on the flight line. Name below the canopy rail looks like LT Van Dynen. Photo by T.R. Waddington, Gary Verver collection.
November 1976: VMA-214 A-4M BuNo 158170, WE-9. Photographer unknown.
BuNo 160029, WE-15, parked. Gary Verver Collection.
1977: VMA-214 Black Sheep A-4M Skyhawk BuNo 158419, WE-14. Photographer unknown.
06 APR 1977: Blacksheep Skyhawk BuNo 160043, WE-000, parked on the ramp. Dr. C.A. "Sketch" Eddy.
JULY 1977 or 78: VMA-214 Black Sheep A-4M Skyhawks passing through MCAS Kanehoe July 1977 or July 1978. Right to left A-4M BuNo 160045, WE-450, BuNo unknown WE-454 and BuNo 158164, WE-464. Spencer Sikder.
1977: A-4M Formation, WE-12 is BuNo 160023 and behind WE-12 are WE-5, WE-7 & WE-2. WE-2 could be 160043. Four Blacksheep A-4Ms cruise the friendly skies. Photograph by Harry Gann and courtesy of Fred Lewis.
01NOV78: Two Blacksheep Skyhawks, BuNo 160040, WE-3, and WE-15. U.S. Navy photo by Cpl E. Denton.
Undated photo of BuNo 106640, WE-3, parked on the ramp with canopy open. Gary Verver Collection.
OCT 1978: Left front view of VMA-214 Blacksheep A-4M Skyhawk BuNo 159489, WE-12, on the ramp, Forbes ANGR, October 1978. Name below the canopy is 1STLT Hugh Elwood. Color image. Copyright R.W. Harrison.
MAY80: BuNo 158413, WE-21 parked. Gary Verver Collection.
1980: A-4M Skyhawk BuNo 158170. Black Sheep WE 20 approaching for landing at NAS Atsugi, Japan, September 15, 1980. Color photograph by and courtesy of Takafumi Hiroe of Yokohama, Japan. Do a search for Takafumi Hiroe's website index to his USN aircraft pictures.
1980: A-4M Skyhawk departs Cubi Point. Bill Cline snapped this picture of a Blacksheep A-4M taking off from the field at Cubi Point, Phillipines. The VMA-214 Blacksheep under the command of Lt.Col. Hastings. This picture was taken from a vantage point at the upper MAU.
Oct 1980: Right front view of VMA-214 Blacksheep A-4M Skyhawk BuNo 158156, WE-24, taxiing out on the runway with a centerline MER with MK-76 practice bombs during exercise Cope North `80, NAF Misawa, U.S. Navy photo.
15OCT80: BuNo 158165, WE-17, from Marine Light Attack Squadron 214 (VMA-214) during exercise Cope North 80. On the flight-line with an empty ZUNI FFAR launcher and an empty MER on the centerline during exercise Cope North '80, NAF Misawa, Aomori Japan. U.S. Navy photo, Tsgt Curt Eddings.
09JUN81: A-4M Skyhawk BuNo. 159481 The pilot successfully punched out, the plane skidded on the desert floor and came to a stop near Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Arizona. The Skyhawk was in the landing pattern for Yuma when it experienced a failure of the Pb4 (burner pressure) sensing line at the connection to the fuel control moisture trap. This failure caused the engine to immediately go to idle. If the pilot had more altitude he would have had time to switch to "manual" fuel control and recover, but he only had time to jam the throttle to the military stop, decide he was in trouble, and punch. The Skyhawk basically pancaked in, at the position shown in the picture. The fuselage was cut apart during the mishap investigation in order to remove the engine in an "as-is" condition for the E.I. at NARF Jax. With minor repair and replacement of the broken line we heard the engine ran 4-0 (perfectly). The pilot is reported to have been Captain Joe "Famous" Krejmas. Photograph from Bill Cline; text by John W. Street, MgySgt, USMC-Ret.
1980-84: BuNo 158165, WE-17, parked and roped off. Gary Verver Collecition.
MAY81: BuNo 158414, WE-16, with a pair of drop tanks and MBER's. Gary Verver Collection.
Date unknown: A McDonnell Douglas F-15 Eagle from Luke Air Force Base and a VMA-214 Black Sheep A-4M Skyhawk BuNo. 159779, WE 11 from Marine Corps Air Station El Toro, California. Photograph taken out of Marine Corps Air Station Yuma by Harry S. Gann.
05MAY82: BuNo 160034, WE-01, parked on the ramp at an open house. M.J. Kasiuba, G. Verver collection.
BuNo 159477, WE-5, parked with her tailhook down. Gary Verver Collection .
15APR83: A-4M Skyhawk BuNo. 160041 Bites the Dust.
Poster shot of BuNo.158155 and 158416 in Blacksheep Clothing". Source unknown.
1980s: BuNo 160022, WE-19, on display at an open house. Photo by John Freeman.
1983-88: VMA-214 Black Sheep A-4M Skyhawk BuNo 160025, WE-11, in flight with VMFA-531 Grey Ghosts F/A-18A Hornet (possibly 161752) EC-15. Robert L. Lawson Photograph Collection.
1986: Blacksheep Skyhawk flightline during a CAX exercise. WE-8 in the center and WE-15 at right.
1986: Blacksheep Skyhawk loaded with four 500lb bombs on the centerline and two 300 gallon drop tanks during a CAX exercise. F. Nunez.
1986: Blacksheep Skyhawk WE-8 taxies out loaded with 2 sets of 500lbs bombs and a center drop tank. F. Nunez.
1986-87: Blacksheep Skyhawk prepares to fly over Okinawa. VMA-214 was at Kadena AFB, during WestPac 86-87. F. Nunez.
MAY86: 158176, WE-4, parked on the flight line. Gary Verver Collection.
1986: Unidentified pilot preflights VMA-214 Blacksheep A-4M Skyhawk BuNo 160022, WE-19, and we're a go ... the engine is still in there.
SEP86: VMA-214 A-4M BuNo 159778, WE-5. Photographer unknown from Verver collection.
Date unknown: BuNo 159778, WE-5, manned and taxing out. Gary Verver Collection.
Date unknown: BuNo 159785, WE-20, taxing. Gary Verver Collection.
BuNo 158167 WE-000 taxi. 24 Dec 1986 - VMA-214 - MCAS El Toro, CA, to 30 Sep 1988 - VMA-211 - MCAS El Toro, CA. Gary Verver Collection.
28 April 1989 BuNo 160030, WE-01, parked on the ramp. Gary Verver Collection.
01 JUL 1992: Fighter Squadron 126 (VF-126) T-2C Buckeye (BuNo 1585xx, NJ-643, & BuNo 158889, NJ-642) aircraft and an A-4 Skyhawk (VMA-214, A-4M BuNo 160034) aircraft stand on the flight line prior to an exercise. The Buckeyes are used for out-of-control flight training for fighter aircrews based at Miramar. Photo by LCDR Dave Parsons.
VMA-214 Marines at Chu Lai. Photos provided Robert H. Melville Jr.
A-4 Skyhawk aircraft assigned to VMA-214: