Thirteenth “WestPac” and first Indian Ocean and Arabian Sea deployment (Operation Evening Light and Eagle Claw during the Iranian revolution & Iran hostage crisis (Iran History, Air Arm) and Cheju-Do Islands in the Sea of Japan on the way home via Korea), operating with other Aircraft Carriers and upon completion conducted training operations and Carrier Qualifications (Iran History, Air Arm, Iranian revolution & Iran hostage crisis

(13 November 1979 to 30 June 1980)

CHAPTER XXXIV

Part 1 – (13 to 30 November 1979)

Part 2 – (1 to 31 December 1979)

Part 3 – (1 to 31 January 1980)

Part 4 – (1 to 24 February 1980)

Part 5 – (25 February to 20 April 1980)

Part 6 – (21 to 24 April 1980)

Part 7 – (25 April to 30 June 1980)

 

 

 

Faddey Bellingsauzen (AGOR)

 

Chapter XXXIV

Appendix II

 

USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) arrived San Diego, Ca., concluding Indian Ocean operations during the Iranian crisis

 

    “At 1019, 25 February 1980, USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) with CVW-15 embarked arrived Naval Air Station, North Island, San Diego, California, with Captain W. Lewis Chatham as Commanding Officer, disembarking CVW-11 operating out of her home port at Naval Air Station Lemoore, ending her 12th “WestPac” deployment operating with the Pacific Fleet and tour of duty with the 7th Fleet (having originally been scheduled only for “WestPac” with a return date of 17 December 1979), while participation of MultiPleEx 1-80 barely 10 hours into the exercise, in the wake of the assassination of South Korean President Park C. Lee, was cancelled, Kitty Hawk coming about and steaming to a position in the East China Sea off Cheju Do. Super Typhoon Judy “disrupted” Fortress Gale, a large-scale amphibious exercise in the Okinawa area, forcing Kitty Hawk to evade the storm and after a visit cut short to Subic Bay, Philippines, on her third Indian Ocean and second Arabian Sea deployment, extending operations North Western Arabian Sea, ordered by the President in response to the Ayatollah R. Khomeini tacit approval given to the extremists who continued to hold 52 Americans hostage at the U.S. Embassy in Teheran, beginning on 4 November 1979 when one of the more radical groups, “Students Following the Imam’s Line,” blamed the U.S. for the discord, and sought to mobilize support for their policies by seizing the U.S. Embassy in Teheran. Kitty Hawk operated at “Camel Station,” in the northwestern Arabian Sea as flagship, TF 70 and TG 70.2 (Battle Group Bravo). The Secretary of the Navy, Edward Hidalgo, flew aboard early in the morning to greet the crew, with VADM Schoultz, Naval Air Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, COMNAVAIRPAC, escorting, along with VADM L. Baggett, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet; VADM R. F. Schoultz, Naval Air Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet and Mr. Cushman Dow, President, San Diego Chamber of Commerce visited on 25 February 1980. The Kitty Hawk’s, with all hands "Manning the Rail," steamed majestically past Point Loma and up the channel to her berth at NAS North Island. Many crewmen wept joyfully at the splendor of what was described as the largest homecoming for any ship since WWII. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 1 June 1979. En route to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, Kitty Hawk conducted TRANSITEX 8-79 Phase I from 30 May to 4 June 1979. COMTHIRDFLT visited USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) en route to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii from 4 to 5 June and Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 6 June 1979. En route to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, Kitty Hawk conducted TRANSITEX 8-79 II, MIDPAC operations and MISSILEX Barking Sands from 5 and 8 June 1979. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 6 June and Wabash (AOR-5) on 8 June 1979, during which time Kitty Hawk conducted Exercise TORPEX Barster Range from 6 and 8 June 1979; followed by NSSMS shoot Barking Sands and SINEX of opportunity on the 8th, pulling in for a port call at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii on 9 June 1979, conducting TRANSITEX 8-79 Phase II: two ASW TACREAD’s from 30 May to 9 June 1979, import from 9 to 11 June 1979, Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 14 June and on 19 June 1979. Kitty Hawk conducted TRANSITEX 8-79 Phase III: ten ASW TSCWD’s and one ASLW TACREAD exorcises tested and developed Battle Croup AAW posture, enhanced ASW teamwork, and identified and rectified communications link shortcomings from 12 to 21 June 1979, in chopping COMSEVENFLT OPERA on the 21st. Commander Third Fleet considered this training exceptionally well executed. On both 19 and 20 June 1979, immediately prior to in chopping to COMSEVENFLT, Kitty Hawk and embarked Carrier Air Wing FIFTEEN detected and intercepted Soviet TU-95 Bear reconnaissance aircraft. This was the first of many overt reconnaissance events conducted by Soviet naval and air elements throughout the ship’s deployment. En route to Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines, Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 23 June and VQ-1 Det. B flew aboard Kitty Hawk on 24 June 1979. Between 25 and 23 June 1979, Kitty Hawk and Air Wing team expended a CUF, package in the Guam operating area while en route to Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines, dropping CRAE Package and ran GARF range (Guam) from 25 to 27 June 1979 and conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 27 June 1979. CTF SEVEN Commander Task Force SEVEN SEVEN (Commander Carrier Group FIVE) and staff embarked Kitty Hawk on 29 June 1979, conducting UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5), while en route to Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines and FORTRESS WARRIOR on 29 June; with NOTNOEX following on the 30th, BEAVER SNARE on 1 July 1979, encountered Typhoon Ellis on 3 July 1979, en route to the Philippines from 21 June to 4 July 1979, arriving Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines on the 5th, delayed by Typhoon Ellis, evading the storm from 3 to 4 July 1979. The Marine Detachment provided color guard during Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron One Three Five Change of Command ceremony on 5 July 1979. Kitty Hawk departed Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines on 17 July 1979, in port from 5 to 17 July 1979, for operations in the South China Sea, conducting UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) the day of departure. En route to Pattaya, Thailand, Kitty Hawk commenced Exercise COPE THUNDER 79-8 in the South China Sea on 17 July 1979, conducted MINEX ALFA in the Bananga Bay; TORPEX in the Subic OPAREA on 18 July and conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 19 July 1979. Kitty Hawk conducted Exercise Beaver Snare in the South China Sea on 20 July 1979, conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 22 July 1979, conducted READIEX LOADEX and UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 26 July 1979 in the South China Sea, followed by Search and assistance operations for Vietnamese "boat people" from 24 to 28 July 1979. This humanitarian search and assistance action was ordered by the Commander in Chief, President Jimmy Carter, for the express purpose of aiding Vietnamese refugee “boat people” who were escaping the tyranny and oppression of communism in the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. There was a great deal of sympathy among the crew of the Kitty Hawk for the plight of these courageous people. As a result, a high state of vigilance was maintained and a total of 114 people were ultimately rescued through the efforts of the ship and air wing. Kitty Hawk) was underway in the South China Sea en route to Pattaya, Thailand, conducting operations that included air wing/refresher operations, extended range AAWEX’s associated with Exercise COPE THUNDER 79-8 in the South China Sea from 17 to 28 July 1979, and Vietnamese refugee search and assistance operations. The Marine Detachment provided color guard during Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Eight Change of Command ceremony on 28 July 1979. Kitty Hawk (CV-63) pulled in for a port call at Pattaya, Thailand, dropping anchor in the port on 29 July 1979, conducting refugee search and assistance operations in the South China Sea while en route from 17 to 29 July 1979, raising anchor and departed Pattaya, Thailand on 1 August 1979, inport from 29 July to 1 August 1979. On the 29th, drug overdose death of ADAN Alfred Schuler occurred. Kitty Hawk will continue refugee search and assistance operations in the South China Sea while en route Hong Kong. Kitty Hawk hosted 65 Thai military personnel and family from 27 July to 1 August 1979. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 4 August and hosted Correspondents: Alice Villadolid, N.Y. Tines Joe Cantrell, Time; Hike Baltye, Reuters; Peter Yu, NBC; Eddie Martinez, NBC; Young Sang, NBC; Katoumi Yokobori, Asaki and Shimbun (Bangkok) from 2 to 6 August 1979. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 9 August, pulling in for a port call at Hong Kong, dropping anchor in the port on 10 August 1979, conducting refugee search and assistance operations in the South China Sea while en route from 1 to 10 August. Kitty Hawk raised anchor and departed Hong Kong on 10 August 1979, in port from 10 to 15 August 1979. American Consul General, Hong Kong visited on the 14th. The 14th ended with sadness with the loss of CWO2 Neil Peters as a result of cardiac arrest. Kitty Hawk hosted 25 Hong Kong businessmen and public officials from 10 to 15 August 1979 and commenced exercise Fortress Cale upon departure. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 16 August and Exercise MISSILEX Poro Pt. in the South China Sea on 17 August 1979, conducting three days later an UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 20 August. Kitty Hawk conducted Exercise BUZZARDEX 3-79 in the South China Sea the same day. Although the modified exercise provided the ship and air wing team’s first ASU training since the transit and included a well-executed anti-missile BUZZARDEX, no close air support training was accomplished during the exercise. Kitty Hawk commenced Exercise Fortress Cale, a large-scale amphibious exercise in the Okinawa area for which the Kitty Hawk battle Group was tasked to provide air support commencing on 23 August. Admiral Davis (CINCPACFLT) and Vice Admiral Foley (COMSEVENTHFLT) were aboard to present the coveted NEY Award to Kitty Hawk on 23 August 1979. This award was won for having the best food services among all aircraft carriers in the Pacific Fleet. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 26 August and held CTG SEVEN SEVEN/COMCARGRU FIVE Change of Command ceremony aboard on 27 August 1979. Evasion of Super-Typhoon Judy disrupted the first half of exercise Fortress Cale, a large-scale amphibious exercise in the Okinawa area for which the Kitty Hawk battle Group was tasked to provide air support from 23 to 29 August 1979. The Marine Detachment provided color guard during Commander Carrier Strike Force Seventh Fleet Change of Command ceremony on 27 August. On 28 and 29 August 1979, Kitty Hawk and Carrier Air Wing FIFTEEN participated in USN/ROKN MINEX/EODEX K4-79 before commencing a five day Pusan, Korea import periods. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 29 August, pulling in for a port call at Pusan, Korea, dropping anchor on 30 August. Kitty Hawk raised anchor and departed Pusan, Korea on 4 September 1979, in port from 30 August to 4 September 1979, Kitty Hawk will conduct operations in the East South China Sea and Philippine Sea, en route to the Philippines, conducted MMR-1 economizer fire on 4 September and MISSILEX Poro Pt. on 8 September 1979; encountering a transiting Soviet task group led by a Sverdlov-class cruiser from 4 to 8 September 1979. Old Nick 203 (NL-203), an F-14A Tomcat Jet Fighter (BuNo 160672), LT Lloyd A. Vermillion, and LT(JG) Richard W. Cummings, VF-111 attached to CVW-15, launched at 1933, 8 September 1979 for a night carrier qualifications, while Kitty Hawk steamed in the South China Sea. About 27 seconds into the flight, the “classic thump bang” and a series of flashes on the starboard side of the Tomcat indicated an engine fire. Unable to regain control, both men ejected, being recovered by a SAR helo. En route to Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines, Kitty Hawk conducted operations in the East China Sea and the Philippine Sea during the 4 to 8 September transit to Subic Bay included MMR-1 economizer fire on 4 September, tactical air support to U.S. Air Force B-52 mining operations during exercise BUSY STORM from 5 to 9 September 1979 and an ASW encounter which provided valuable free play and tactical planning opportunities. Ocean surveillance operations during this period obtained high-quality photography of a transiting Soviet Navy SVERDLOV cruiser Task Group. Kitty Hawk conducted MISSILEX Poro Pt. and VF-111 lost an F-14 203 at sea, while the crew was rescued on 8 September 1979; encountering a transiting Soviet task group led by a Sverdlov-class cruiser from 4 to 8 September 1979; arriving Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines on the 9th. Kitty Hawk Marine Detachment provided color guard during an official visit of the American Ambassador to the Republic of the Philippines on 15 September 1979. Kitty Hawk DACT Det. 3 TFW Clark AFB from 11 to 22 September and Marine Detachment provided color guard during Fighter Squadron One Hundred Eleven and Attack Squadron Twenty-Two Change of Command ceremony on 25 September and Kitty Hawk conducted Exercise NEWBOY 79-4 while at Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines on 26 September 1979. COMASWWINGPAC and COMFITAEWINGPAC visited Kitty Hawk while at Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines on from 26 to 27 September 1979. Kitty Hawk commenced CONRECEX 80-1 on 3 October 1979. Following an almost month long mid-deployment upkeep period in Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines, in port from 9 September to 4 October 1979, the ship departed on 4 October bound for Yokosuka, Japan for operations in the South China Sea and Philippine Sea en route to Yokosuka, conducting UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 7 October and CONRECEX 80-1, demonstrated the teamwork of the ship, Fleet Intelligence Support Center Western Pacific, Cubi Point, Republic of Philippines, and Fleet Air - Photo Lab, Cubi Point, operating in the Philippine Sea from 3 to 7 October, commencing AWEX80-1 in the South China Sea on 8 October and conducted BUZZAROEX 4-79 on 9 October and AWEX 80-1 in the South China Sea from 8 to 10 October 1979. During operations on 11 October 1979, an engineering casualty forced the temporary diversion of airborne Carrier Air Wing FIFTEEN aircraft to MCAS lwakuni, Japan. Kitty Hawk engineering casualty forced aircraft aloft to divert to MCAS Iwakuni, Japan on 11 October, pulling in for a port call at Yokosuka, Japan on 12 October 1979. Super Typhoon Tip slammed across the Northern Pacific, passing within 90 nautical miles of Yokosuka, Japan on 13 October 1979. At one point, Kitty Hawk endured winds as high as 45 knots (gusting to 65) belying earlier criticism of her construction by suffering no damage. The crew estimated that she could experience 20–25% higher winds with “no appreciable difficulties. The ship remained in port and no damage was suffered, so the crew dressed the ship up and welcomed more than 32,090 visitors during Japanese-U. S. “Friendship Day” while in port Yokosuka, Japan on 14 October 1979. Kitty Hawk Marine Detachment helped the Kitty Hawk host over 35,000 Japanese visitors on Naval Station Yokosuka, Japan Annual Friendship Day on 14 October 1979. Commander Naval Air Pacific (COMNAVAIRPAC), Vice Admiral Coogan visited Kitty Hawk to present the ship the “Blue H” on 19 October 1979. This award recognized the aircraft carrier made the greatest improvements in overhaul ship habitability during the competitive cycle. Kitty Hawk departed Yokosuka, Japan on 22 October 1979, in port from 12 to 22 October 1979, for operations in the Philippine Sea and East China Sea en route to Pusan Korea. Kitty Hawk hosted 50 officers, Japanese Self-Defense Forces. 30,003 Japanese and Americans visited the ship for "Friendship Day;" 30 members of the Japanese media and 25 members of Japanese basketball team 12 to 22 October 1979. Departing Yokosuka, Japan on 22 October 1979, Kitty Hawk Air Wing FIFTEEN provided area surveillance support to MISSILKEX 2-80, an exercise including live missile firing by surface combatants in the Philippine Sea en route to Pusan Korea. Kitty Hawk commenced MULTIPLEX 1-80 on 27 October 1979. The Korean contingency operations did force the cancellation of MULTIPLEX 1-80, scheduled for 27 to 31 October 1979, after only ten hours of Blue-Orange interaction. Before cancellation, however, significant long range AAW training was accomplished. The scheduled exercise events in the Philippine Sea were cut short the same day, because of the assassination of Republic of Korea President Park Chung Hee. Kitty Hawk was immediately directed to come about and steam at best speed to a contingency support station in the East China Sea off Cheju Do, southwest coast of the Korean Peninsula on 26 October 1979. During contingency operations in the wake of the assassination of South Korean President Park C. Lee, Kitty Hawk cancelled her participation of MultiPleEx 1-80 barely 10 hours into the exercise, coming about and steamed to a position in the East China Sea off Cheju Do, southwest coast of the Korean on 27 October. On 28 October 1979, Kitty Hawk and her escort ships began operations in the East China Sea off Cheju Do, southwest coast of the Korean in response to the assassination of South Korean President Park Chung Hee on 26 October. Upon arrival, Air Wing Fifteen aircraft initiated cyclic flight operations within the detection envelope of North Korean early warning radars, demonstrating to Pyŏngyang U.S. resolve to support the South Koreans, and helping to ease the crisis. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Passuipisic (TAO-107) on 28 October and USS Shasta (AE-33) and USS White Plains (AFS-4) on 29 October 1979. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 31 October, CASEX (Okinawa) on 1 November and USN/ROKIN MINEX “B”/EODEX K1-80 on 2 November 1979. Kitty Hawk remained in a contingency support station off the southwest coast of the Korean Peninsula from 27 October to 4 November 1979. This activity was designed to demonstrate U. S. resolve at insuring the territorial integrity of South Korea. It apparently worked. Upon arrival, Air Wing Fifteen aircraft initiated cyclic flight operations within the detection envelope of North Korean early warning radars. U. S. officials who visited the ship during these operations stated that in their opinion and the opinion of many South Koreans, the presence of the Kitty Hawk Battle Group was the single most important factor in thwarting North Korean military intervention in South Korea, an opportunity for which the North Koreans had been planning and awaiting for several decades. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 4 November 1979. AS the situation stabilized, Kitty Hawk was released from contingency station and commenced participation in a USN/ROKN MINEX/EODEX KI-80 before making a second port visit to Pusan on 5 November 1979. The Korean contingency operations did force the cancellation of MULTIPLEX 1-80, scheduled for 27 to 31 October 1979, after only ten hours of Blue-Orange interaction. Before cancellation, however, significant long range AAW training was accomplished. After Kitty Hawk was released from contingency support station off the southwest coast of the Korean Peninsula– MODLOC off Korea (27 October to 4 November 1979), Kitty Hawk commenced participation in a USN/ROKN MINEX/EODEX KI-80 before making a second port visit to Pusan, Korea, dropping anchor on 5 November 1979. Hawk hosted 40 Korean Amy officers, 2 ROKN Captains; 106 Sixth Graders and Mr. Bon Yonan; 12 Pusan Businessmen and Commodore Jeong (KOKN); 75 members of Korean Broadcasting Company; 15 Brigadier Generals (ROK Aroy); Bishop of Pusan and 8 priests; Mayor of Pusan and 8 other officials and 8 U.S. officers from UNC-Seoul from 5 to 7 November 1979. Kitty Hawk Marine Detachment provided color guard during Attack Squadron Fifty-Two Change of Command ceremony on 8 November 1979. Kitty Hawk raised anchor and departed Pusan, Korea on 10 November 1979, in port from 5 to 10 November 1979, en route to the Philippines. The Marine Detachment celebrated the Marine Corps Birthday, while at sea, with a formal dinner and traditional cake cutting ceremony on 10 November. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS White Plains (AFS-4) and USS Wabash (AOR-5) on the 10th as well. Kitty Hawk pulled in for a port call at Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines on 15 November 1979, conducting READIEX ALFA (Power Projection) UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) while en route on 14 November 1979. Kitty Hawk departed Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines on 21 November 1979, inport from 15 to 21 November 1979, for the northern Arabian Sea via the Diego Garcia vicinity, in response to Iranian Crisis, which would lengthen the ship’s scheduled deployment beyond Christmas and the New Year. Initially preparing for a 28 November departure for Naval Air Station, North Island, San Diego, California, Kitty Hawk was ordered to the Indian Ocean and Arabian Sea in response to the Ayatollah R. Khomeini tacit approval given to the extremists who continued to hold 52 Americans hostage at the U.S. Embassy in Teheran, beginning on 4 November 1979 when one of the more radical groups, “Students Following the Imam’s Line,” blamed the U.S. for the discord, and sought to mobilize support for their policies by seizing the U.S. Embassy in Teheran. Kitty Hawk and her escort ships was underway within 12 hours of receiving orders on the 21st to sail to the Indian Ocean to join USS Midway (CV-41) and her escort ships which were operating in the northern Arabian Sea. En route to station via Diego Garcia, the ship and air wing “Pollywogs” were initiated by Neptune Rex and his court into the ranks of “Shellbacks” as Kitty Hawk crossed the equator on 27 November 1979. The Marine Detachment has 58 shellbacks initiated in the Solem Order of the Deep as Kitty Hawk crossed the equator near Diego Garcia. During an exercise with the Pakistanis, an HS-8 assigned to SH-3H detected an “unidentified contact in international waters,” and prosecuted the contact to protect Kitty Hawk on 28 November 1979. The submarine surfaced, revealing a Pakistani Agosta-class boat. During the same evolution, a Daphne-class sub also tracked the carrier, but was herself tracked by HS-8. Also on the 28th, a EA-6B (NL 626) (BuNo 158541), piloted by CDR Peter T. Rodrick, squadron CO, LCDR William J. Coffey, LT James B. Bradley, Jr., and LT(JG) John R. Chorey, VAQ-135 attached to CVW-15, launched for a scheduled electronic support measures (ESM) mission, at 1324, on 28 November 1979 at 07º33’S, 073º19’E. Kitty Hawk was under EMCON A conditions, which prohibited electronic emissions from either the ship or the Prowler. Within two minutes the Prowler passed close abeam of guided missile cruiser Jouett (CG-29), about eight nautical miles ahead of the carrier. The EA-6B suddenly executed a “near vertical climbing turn,” partial cloud cover obscuring further observation of the aircraft, though it is surmised that the crew was practicing a “low level ingress tactic.” Though not verified, it is believed the Prowler impacted the water at approximately 13 miles off the port beam of Kitty Hawk, 63 nautical miles from Diego Garcia, at 1505. Despite determined efforts by two SH-3Hs from the carrier and a Lockheed P-3 Orion from Diego Garcia, none of the men were recovered. Kitty Hawk arrived in the vicinity of Diego Garcia, British Indian Ocean Territory to load special equipment and supplies on 28 November 1979. A KA-6D (NL 521) (BuNo 152632), piloted by CDR Walter D. Williams, Jr., and LCDR Bruce L. Miller, VA-52 attached to CVW-15, launched from No. 2 catapult on a scheduled tanker sortie, at 1415, 29 November 1979. Almost immediately, NL 521 settled off the bow of Kitty Hawk due probably to low airspeed resulting from catapult errors (129 knots was the required airspeed; the KA-6D had attained only 92). A plane guard helo (HS-8) ¼ mile aft of the ship, immediately initiated a SAR, supported by a helo from HC-1 Det 2, embarked in Midway, and by destroyer USS David R. Ray (DD-971). Those concerted efforts proved fruitless: neither of the men survived. Kitty Hawk Marine Detachment participated in a memorial service for four aviators lost at sea by providing a gun salute, color guard and bugler and Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 30 November 1979. Kitty Hawk deployment was extended two-and-a-half months to support contingency operations in the northern Arabian Sea as flagship, Task Force SEVEN ZERO and Task Group SEVEN ZERO PT TWO (Battle Group Bravo), arriving on station on 3 December 1979, and with Midway and ships in company comprised Task Croup SEVEN ZERO PT ONE (Battle Group ALFA) provided the U.S. with A-6 Intruder and A-7 Corsair II attack aircraft and F-4 Phantom II and the modern F-14 Tomcat fighter aircraft, which could respond to a variety of situations if called upon during the Iranian hostage crisis. This was the first time since World War II that the U.S. Navy had two carrier task forces in the Indian Ocean in response to a crisis situation. Omani JAGUAR reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty the same day. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USNS Navasota (TAO-106) on 3 December and USS Wabash (AOR-5) and an Iranian P3F and Omani JAGUAR reconnaissance reconnoitered the ship on 4 December 1979. A Soviet Navy IL-38 MAY, Iranian P3F, and Omani JAGUAR reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk on 5 December and conducted UNREP with USNS Navasota (TAO-106) on 6 December. Also on the same day Aircraft No. 505, an A-6A (BuNo 157011), LT (JG) Mark S. Gontkovic and LT(JG) Anthony J.R. Bilotti (VA-35) attached to CVW-8, crashed off Avgo Nisi, a small deserted Greek island north of Crete utilized as a bombing range on 6 December 1979. The third aircraft in a bombing run, 505 rolled in for its strike but suffered what appeared to be a “catastrophic wing failure,” possibly due to being struck accidentally by weapons released by the number two Intruder, impacting the water during its dive and killing both men. A Soviet Navy IL-38 MAY, Iranian P3F, and Omani JAGUAR reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk on 5 December and conducted UNREP with USNS Navasota (TAO-106) on 6 December. Also on the same day Aircraft No. 505, an A-6A (BuNo 157011), LT (JG) Mark S. Gontkovic and LT(JG) Anthony J.R. Bilotti (VA-35) attached to CVW-8, crashed off Avgo Nisi, a small deserted Greek island north of Crete utilized as a bombing range on 6 December 1979. The third aircraft in a bombing run, 505 rolled in for its strike but suffered what appeared to be a “catastrophic wing failure,” possibly due to being struck accidentally by weapons released by the number two Intruder, impacting the water during its dive and killing both men. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS San Jose (AFS-7) on 8 December and an Iranian P3F and a Omaai JAGUAR reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk on 9 December, conducted UNREP with USNS Navasota (TAO-106) and USS Passuipisic (TAO-107) and an Soviet Navy IL-38 MAY reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk on 10 December, conducted UNREP with USNS Navasota (TAO-106) on 12 December and a Soviet Navy IL-38 MAY reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk on 13 December. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5); a Omani JAGUAR reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk on 15 December and a Soviet Navy IL-38 MAY reconnaissance reconnoitered the ship on 16 December 1979. A Soviet Navy IL-38 MAY reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk on 17 December and Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USNS Navasota (TAO-106) on 18 December and a Soviet Navy IL-38 MAY reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk on 20 December. On 21 December 1979, the Defense Department announced a three-ship nuclear-powered carrier battle group from the Sixth Fleet would deploy to the Indian Ocean to relieve the Seventh Fleet carrier battle group led by Kitty Hawk and the ship conducted UNREP with USS San Jose (AFS-7) the same day. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USNS Navasota (TAO-106) on 22 December and a Omani JAGUAR reconnaissance reconnoitered the ship the same day on 23 December 1979. A Soviet Navy IL-38 MAY reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk on 24 December and the crew celebrated Christmas Day, December 25, 1979 in the northern Arabian Sea as flagship, Task Force SEVEN ZERO and Task Group SEVEN ZERO PT TWO (Battle Group Bravo) joining up with Midway and ships in company comprised Task Croup SEVEN ZERO PT ONE (Battle Group ALFA) on 3 December 1979. Continuous Soviet and other foreign surface surveillance; frequent Soviet and other foreign air surveillance. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 26 December and USNS Navasota (TAO-106) on 27 December 1979 and the same day, a Soviet-backed coup installed a new president in Afghanistan. Two carrier task forces centering around Kitty Hawk and Midway continued contingency operations in the Northern Arabian Sea. A Soviet Navy IL-38 MAY reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk the same day. On 29 December 1979, a VA-52 KA-6E 521 and its crew of CDR Walter D. Williams and LCDR Bruce L. Miller were lost at sea when the KA6E was launched off the ships forward port catapult number 2. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USNS Navasota (TAO-106) on 30 December 1979. From 3 December 1979 until the end of the year Kitty Hawk and Carrier Air Wing FIFTEEN stood ready to carry out U.S. policy in the Northern Arabian Sea vis-a-vis Iran. Throughout this period, the ship and air wing were under the constant surveillance of Soviet Navy units. Kitty Hawk, air wing aircraft also intercepted and escorted frequent Soviet, Iranian and Omani aircraft reconnoitering the Battle Group. The year ended with the American hostages remaining captive and the Kitty Hawk Battle Group on station. 140 shots had been fired and no bombs dropped in combat. No one knew what the New Year would bring, but every one knew the New Year would bring, but everyone knew the best aircraft carrier was on the scene ready to do whatever was necessary. Kitty Hawk’s Marine Detachment gave a total of 4,620.00 during the annual Combined Federal Campaign, an average of 75.00 per Marine a year” (Ref. 331B-1980).

 

     “The following major accomplishments highlight Kitty Hawk’s performance on “WestPac” and CY 1979:

 

     En route to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, Kitty Hawk conducted TRANSITEX 8-79 Phase I; TRANSITEX 8-79 II; MIDPAC operations and MISSILEX Barking Sands; followed by NSSMS shoot Barking Sands and SINEX of opportunity; TRANSITEX 8-79 Phase II: two ASW TACREAD’s; TRANSITEX 8-79 Phase III: ten ASW TSCWD’s and one ASLW TACREAD exorcises tested and developed Battle Croup AAW posture, enhanced ASW teamwork, and identified and rectified communications link shortcomings; FORTRESS WARRIOR; NOTNOEX, BEAVER SNARE, MINEX ALFA in the Bananga Bay; TORPEX in the Subic OPAREA; Beaver Snare in the South China Sea; READIEX LOADEX the South China Sea; air wing/refresher operations, extended range AAWEX’s associated with Exercise COPE THUNDER 79-8 in the South China Sea and Vietnamese refugee search and assistance operations; Exercise Fortress Cale; Exercise MISSILEX Poro Pt. in the South China Sea; Exercise BUZZARDEX 3-79 in the South China Sea on 20 August 1979 (Although the modified exercise provided the ship and air wing team’s first ASU training since the transit and included a well-executed anti-missile BUZZARDEX, no close air support training was accomplished during the exercise); Exercise Fortress Cale, a large-scale amphibious exercise in the Okinawa area for which the Kitty Hawk battle Group was tasked to provide air support; USN/ROKN MINEX/EODEX K4-79; operations in the East South China Sea and Philippine Sea, en route to the Philippines; MMR-1 economizer fire; MISSILEX Poro Pt.; Exercise BUSY STORM, an ASW encounter which provided valuable free play and tactical planning opportunities; MISSILEX Poro Pt.; Exercise NEWBOY 79-4 while at Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines; operations in the South China Sea and Philippine Sea en route to Yokosuka; CONRECEX 80-1, demonstrating the teamwork of the ship, Fleet Intelligence Support Center Western Pacific, Cubi Point, Republic of Philippines, and Fleet Air - Photo Lab, Cubi Point, operating in the Philippine Sea from 3 to 7 October, commencing AWEX80-1 in the South China Sea; BUZZAROEX 4-79 and AWEX 80-1 in the South China Sea; operations in the Philippine Sea and East China Sea; Air Wing FIFTEEN provided area surveillance support to MISSILKEX 2-80, an exercise including live missile firing by surface combatants in the Philippine Sea en route to Pusan Korea; MULTIPLEX 1-80 (The Korean contingency operations did force the cancellation of MULTIPLEX 1-80, scheduled for 27 to 31 October 1979, after only ten hours of Blue-Orange interaction. Before cancellation, however, significant long range AAW training was accomplished), canceling her participation of MultiPleEx 1-80 barely 10 hours into the exercise, coming about and steamed to a position in the East China Sea off Cheju Do, southwest coast of the Korean in response to the assassination of South Korean President Park Chung Hee; CASEX (Okinawa) and USN/ROKIN MINEX “B”/EODEX K1-80; released from contingency station and commenced participation in a USN/ROKN MINEX/EODEX KI-80; READIEX ALFA (Power Projection) ; celebrated Christmas Day, December 25, 1979 in the northern Arabian Sea as flagship, Task Force SEVEN ZERO and Task Group SEVEN ZERO PT TWO (Battle Group Bravo) joining up with USS Midway (CV-41) and ships in company comprised Task Croup SEVEN ZERO PT ONE (Battle Group ALFA) on 3 December 1979” (Ref. 331B-1980).

 

USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) 1980

THOUSANDTH CARRIER LANDINGS

DATES

TRAPS

WIRE

TIME

A/C

SIDE

PILOT

SQUAD/WING

02/02/79

175,000

3

1,658

A-7

416

Ltjg Dilugos

VA-122

14/02/79

176,000

4

1,444

F-4

147

Ltjg Bryant

VMFA-232

19/02/79

177,000

4

1,947

E-2

337

Ltjg Woumb

VAW-110

13/03/79

178,000

3

1,428

A-7

301

Cdr Palmer

VA-22

25/04/79

179,000

3

1,226

A-7

412

Ltjg Williams

VA-94

WESTPAC

08/06/79

180,000

3

2,040

E-2

603

Lcdr Weber

VAW-114

03/07/79

181,000

2

1,216

F-14

203

Ltjg Schilnker

VF-111

23/07/79

182,000

4

1,620

F-14

107

Lcdr Perkins

VF-51

21/08/79

183,000

3

1,622

A-7

314

Lcdr Harrell

VA-22

08/09/79

184,000

4

2,100

A-7

303

Ltjg Sanders

VA-22

24/10/79

185,000

3

1,414

A-7

412

Lt Hoewing

VA-94

04/11/79

186,000

3

1,315

F-14

105

Ltjg Oconner

VF-51

06/12/79

187,000

3

1,943

A-7

403

Lcdr Webster

VA-94

23/12/79

188,000

4

1,059

A-6

523

Lcdr Sledge

CVW-15

No combat or combat support sorties were flown from USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) during 1979.

 

     “The flying tempo was high throughout the entire year. V-4 Division pumped a total of 20,364,938 gallons of JP-5. Catapult and arresting gear statistics demonstrated the emphasis on flying” (Ref. 331B-1980).

 

CATAPULT STATISTICS

CAT NO.

1979

SHIPS/TOTAL

1979

SHIPS/TOTAL

1

4,135

66,709

728

28,035

2

1,609

57,091

2,944

58,141

3

2,974

44,287

4,241

65,412

4

1,675

37,377

0

0

Total

10,393

205,464

10,420

189,610

 

     Referee to Kitty Hawk Command History Report for additional ship board equipment history.

 

     “Kitty Hawk began 1980, its nineteenth year of service to the nation, on extended duty, steaming in the northern Arabian Sea on contingency operations related to the fifty-two American hostages being held in Iran. RADM R. E. Kirksey, Carrier Strike Force, 7th Fleet visited Kitty Hawk and Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Berkeley (DDG-15) on 1 January and USNS Navasota (TAO-106) on 2 January 1980. Kitty Hawk was underway in the Indian Ocean and South China Sea from 1 January to 3 February 1980, during which time a Soviet IL-38 MAY reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk on 2 January 1980. CAPT W. P. Allen, Destroyer Squadron 13 visited Kitty Hawk during  UNREP with USS White Plains (AFS-4) twice on 4 January, UNREP with USS White Plains (AFS-4) on 6 January and USNS Navasota (TAO-106) on 7 January 1980. A Soviet IL-38 MAY reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk on 8 January and on 9 January, conducting UNREP with USNS Passumpsic (TAO-107) on 10 January, USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 11 January, USNS Navasota (TAO-106) on 13 January and a IL-38 MAY reconnaissance reconnoitered the ship on 14 January 1980. Kitty Hawk recorded her 10,000th arrested landing during cruise and conducted UNREP with USNS Navasota (TAO-106) on 16 January 1980. A Soviet IL-38 MAY reconnaissance reconnoitered Kitty Hawk and the ship conducted UNREP with USS White Plains (AF'S-4) on 18 January and USNS Mispillion (TAO-105) on 19 January 1980. Kitty Hawk Battle Group had some provocative maneuvers close aboard by a Soviet Navy aircraft reconnaissance AGI No. 477 from 21 to 22 January 1980. Task Force 70 (15 ships, 3 Carrier Battle Groups) photograph on 22 January 1980 was reported but not made available to the public. USS Nimitz (CVN-65) and her escort ships joined Kitty Hawk and USS Midway (CV-41) and their escort ships on station in the Arabian Sea on 22 January 1980. Battle Group Bravo was centered upon three carriers: Kitty Hawk, Nimitz, and USS Midway (CV-43), together with 12 escort and support ships. Kitty Hawk conducted cross-deck and relief operations with USS Nimitz (CVN-68) and CVW-8 on 23 January 1980. The next day, Kitty Hawk came about from “Camel Station,” beginning her eastward transit to the U.S., having spent 64 days in operations connected with the Iranian crisis, conducting operations at “Camel Station,” in the Northwestern Arabian Sea as flagship, TF 70 and TG 70.2 (Battle Group Bravo) from 4 December 1979 to 23 January 1980. For their actions in the region, Kitty Hawk and CVW-15 sailors and officers were awarded the Navy Expeditionary conducted turnover operations with USS Nimitz (CVN-68) Battle Group from 22 to 23 January 198. Also on On the 23rd, the three U.S. Navy Aircraft Carrier Battle Groups (Kitty Hawk, Nimitz and USS Midway (CV-41), plus twelve escort/support ships) combined into a huge armada formation in a display of seapower. The aerial photographs of this formation were released to the press and the pictures were printed in newspapers and periodicals around the world. Rear Admiral Kirksey, CTF-77, hauled down his flag room Kitty Hawk and embarked on the Nimitz on 23 January 1980. Moments after is departure Kitty Hawk’s Commanding Officer, Captain Chatham, announced that the ship had taken up a course for Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines and eventually home to San Diego, California. Throughout the Iranian Hostage Crisis Kitty Hawk was under “constant surveillance” by Soviet ships and submarines, and CVW-15 aircraft “intercepted and escorted frequent” Soviet Ilyushin Il-38 Mays and Il-22 Cubs flying out of Aden, South Yemen, the Mays at three-day intervals; Iranian P-3Fs on three occasions; Omani SEPECAT Jaguars six times; an Iranian Lockheed C-130 Hercules and an Egyptian Hercules, reconnoitering the carrier. Despite strenuous efforts by logistics people in the supply chain, the exigencies of the extended deployment caused numerous problems for the crew due to shortages, especially of spare parts. Aircrew conducted small arms familiarization, and 10 leathernecks from Kitty Hawk marine detachment trained as door gunners on board HS-8’s Sea Kings in preparation for “air-sea rescue missions in case of hostilities during Iranian contingencies.” In addition, following a revolution in Afghanistan beginning on 27 April 1979, and the subsequent Soviet invasion on 24 December, the U.S. decided to maintain two carrier battle groups on station in the Indian Ocean. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Nimitz (CVN-68) and USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 22 January 1980, and USS San Jose (AFS-7) on 23 January 1980, departing northern Arabian Sea en route Subic Bay, Republic of the Philippines on 24 January and the following day, Kitty Hawk was reconnoitered by Soviet Il-38s MAY reconnaissance on 25 January, conducting UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) and USS San Jose (AFS-7) on 26 January 1980. CAPT W. P. Allen, Destroyer Squadron 13 visited Kitty Hawk during UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 29 January 1980. The Malacca Straits were transited as Kitty Hawk departed the Indian Ocean and entered the South China Sea en route to Subic Bay. USS Coral Sea (CV43) was in the OPAREA just east of Singapore where the ship crossed deck with the Kitty Hawk during which time RADM L. C. Chambers, Carrier Group THREE, CTG 70.3 and CAPT W. P. Allen, Destroyer Squadron 13 visited Kitty Hawk for Indian Ocean operations briefing on 30 January 1980. This was a major cross decking for loading of weapons, all variety of needed supplies, and mail.  Also on this same day, Coral Sea passed over the equator. The Shellback initiation was held off until the 2nd of February, due to the supplies from the cross decking on the flight deck. On January 31st, Coral Sea was heading through the Malacca Straits, and then on track to the Indian Ocean.  A Russian Tu-95 Bears shadowed Kitty Hawk on 1 February 1980, arriving in Subic Bay, Republic of Philipines on 3 February 1980, inport from 3 to 8 February 1980, resupplied, and got underway for Pearl Harbor. Personnel enjoyed a four day picnic in Subic Bay hosted by Special Services. The presentation of a Kitty Hawk ID Card entitled personnel to all Subic Bay special services activities. In February 1980, before the ship left Subic for CONUS, S-8 Division again showed its “Can Dow attitude by receiving and sorting thousands of line items and many tons of material in a short period of time and then stowed or turned over all of these material in only three weeks. The ship’s Commanding Officer and CAG (CVW-15) expressed appreciation for having completed this task so quickly. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 11 February and USS Pyro (AR-24) on 12 February and a Soviet Russian TU-95 Bear D reconnoitered Kitty Hawk on 13 February 1980. Kitty Hawk in-chopped to COMTHIRDFLT from COMSEVENTHFLT on 14 February and Backloaded “WestPac” ordnance allowance during UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 15 February and 16 February, conducting UNREP with USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 18 February 1980. Kitty Hawk pulled in for a port call at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii on 19 February 1980, to a tumultuous welcome, yet the ship stayed only one day, just long enough to embark 499 Tiger Cruise Guests (male friends and relatives of crewmembers) for the last leg of the voyage back to the continental U.S.; en route to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii from Subic Bay, Republic of the Philippines 8 to 19 February 1980. Kitty Hawk departed Pearl Harbor, Hawaii on 20 February 1980, import from 19 to 20 February 1980, embarking 499 Tiger Cruise Guests. A last minute visit by North Carolina State Senator George Marion prior to getting underway was arranged. Free Shuttle bus service was provided from Pearl Harbor to Hale Koa Hotel in Waikiki. The Honorable George Marion State Senator - North Carolina on 20 February 1980. Kitty Hawk conducted UNREP with USS Kiska (AE-35) on 21 and 22 February, Backloaded “WestPac” ordnance allowance and USS Wabash (AOR-5) on 22 February 1980. The operational status on all deck machinery and equipment was outstanding. During the January-February portion of the deployment, Deck Department conducted nineteen CONREP evolutions on 24 February 1980, one day before arriving in San Diego, all Air Wing FIFTEEN (CVW-15) aircraft flew off Kitty Hawk to their respective home bases on the West Coast. Not many of Kitty Hawk’s crew slept the evening of 24 February 1980, "Channel Fever was rampant. The 25th of February was a beautiful sunny day and a glorious day too, at sea en route San Diego, California from 20 to 25 February 1980.

 

USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) 1980

THOUSANDTH CARRIER LANDINGS

DATES

TRAPS

WIRE

TIME

A/C

SIDE

PILOT

SQUAD/WING

13/01/80

189,000

-

1745

A-7

401

Lt Whitford

VA-94

02/02/80

190,000

-

17-04

F-14

106

Lt Doerr

VF-51

No combat or combat support sorties were flown from USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) during 1980.

 

     While on extended deployment in the Indian Ocean, the Kitty Hawk /CVW-15 team conducted the intercept and escort of fourteen Soviet aircraft (CUBS/MAYS). The flying tempo was high throughout the extension and 2,246 launches were logged in the Indian Ocean and transit to the United States. Catapult and arresting gear statistics demonstrate the emphasis on flying.

 

CATAPULT STATISTICS

CAT NO.

CRUISE

WORK - UPS

TOTAL

SHIPS/TOTAL

1

947

4,189

5.136

71,421

2

389

2,130

2,519

59,557

3

575

843

1,407

45,392

4

335

724

1,059

38,362

 

ARRESTING GEAR STATISTICS

CAT NO.

CRUISE

WORK - UPS

TOTAL

SHIPS/TOTAL

1

95

467

562

28,571

2

433

1,933

2,366

60,216

3

1,050

3,064

4,115

68,966

4

480

1,732

2,218

39,951

To accomplish the statistics above Kitty Hawk received 12,295,270 gallons of JP-5

and issued 10,436,061 to the embarked airplanes along with 18,000 gallons of lube

oil for catapults.

 

During deployed operations in the Indian Ocean, AIMD monthly items processed peaked at 3500 items - an indicator of the level of effort required to support air wing Indian Ocean operations. The Communications Department supported the communications requirements of the ship, CVW-15 and CTE’ 77 while deployed to the Indian Ocean. Arrival in San Diego marked the end of the most successful Kitty Hawk deployment in recent memory wherein Kitty Hawk Communications handled over 295,000 incoming and outgoing General Service (GENSW) messages with a total distribution of over 8 million copies. Kitty Hawk steamed a total of 73,435 nautical miles, logging 11,276 catapult launches and 11,242 recoveries (8,115-day / 3,127-night). Port visits included: Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines; Pattaya, Thailand; Hong Kong Pusan, Korea; Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines; Yokosuka, Japan; Pusan, Korea; Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines; Subic Bay, Republic of Philipines and Pearl Harbor. Reclassified a CV-63 “Multi-Purpose Aircraft Carrier” on 29 April 1973, inaugurated her new role as CV on 1 July 1975. Her 13th Foreign Water Fleet Deployment (FWFD) since her commission on 29 April 1961 at Philadelphia Naval Shipyard, with Captain William F. Bringle in command and was the first of the Kitty Hawk class (the only other two being the USS Constellation (CVA-64) and USS America (CVA-66) (30 May 1979 to 25 February 1980)” (Ref. 1-Kitty Hawk, 72, 331A & 331B-1979/1980).

 

    “Upon arrival in San Diego, 5-8 Division personnel enjoyed only three days off as there were too many materials aboard USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) to be off loaded and onloaded. Never-out-items had to be onloaded and retrograde and AVCAL materials had to be offloaded, just to mention a few of the high priority jobs to be accomplished upon arrival” (Ref. 331A & 331B-1980).

 

USS Constellation (CV-64) departs for the Indian Ocean

 

    “USS Constellation (CV-64) (Connie) with CVW-9 embarked departed Naval Air Station, North Island (NASNI), San Diego, California 26 February 1980, with Captain Leon A. Edney, USN, as Commanding Officer, on her 12th “WestPac” deployment operating with the Pacific Fleet and tour of duty with the 7th Fleet in the far east, RIMPAC'80, on her second Indian Ocean deployment, her second Arabian Sea deployment during the Iranian Crisis on "GONZO" Station, on her second North Arabian Sea; reclassified to CV-64 on 1 July 1975; made seven Vietnam Combat Cruises in Vietnam, during the Vietnam Conflict/War, received a Presidential Unit Citation from President Nixon in 1973. She will under go her 14th Foreign Water Fleet Deployment (FWFD) since her commission at New York Naval Shipyard on 27 October 1961, with Captain T.J. Walker in command” (Ref. 1-Constellation, 72 & 76).

 

USS Constellation (CV-64) with CVW-9 (NG)

(26 February to 15 October 1980)

SQUADRON

SQUADRON NICK NAME & PRIMARY

ROLE

AIRCRAFT DESIGN

NICK NAME &

PRIMARY ROLE

TAIL

CODE

Modex

AIRCRAFT

DESIGNATION

VF-211

Checkmates -

Fighter Squadron

Grumman - Tomcat -   Jet Fighter

NG100

F-14A

VF-24

Fighting Renegades -         Fighter Squadron

Grumman - Tomcat -   Jet Fighter

NG200

F-14A

VA-146

Blue Diamonds -                Attack Squadron

Vought - Corsair II -

Jet attack aircraft

NG300

A-7E

VA-147

Argonauts -                Attack Squadron

Vought - Corsair II -

Jet attack aircraft

NG400

A-7E

VA-165

Boomers -

Attack Squadron

Grumman - Intruder -

Jet Attack Bomber - Tanker

NG500

A-6E / KA-6D

VAW-116

Sun Kings - Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron

Grumman - Hawkeye - Electronics

600

E-2C

VFP-63 Det. 3 (*1)

Eyes of the Fleet -

Light Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron

Vought - Crusader -

Jet Fighter - Reconnaissance

610

RF-8G

VS-38

Griffins - Air Anti-Submarine Squadron

Lockheed - Viking -

Anti-Submarine

700

S-3A

HS-6

Indians - Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron

Sikorsky - Sea King - Anti-submarine

720

SH-3H

VQ-1 Det.

World Watchers - Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron

Douglas - Skywarrior -

Jet Attack Fighter

 

(PR)

004

EA-3B

(*1) VFP-63 disestablished on Jun.30, 1982.

 

    “On 18 April 1980, USS Constellation (CV-64) and her battle group departed Subic Bay, the Republic of the Philippines, to relieve USS Coral Sea (CV-43), steaming westward to the Arabian Sea, where Gonzo Station had been established following the November 1979 takeover of the American Embassy in Tehran, Iran” (Ref. 1-Constellation & 72).

 

New CO arrives aboard USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63)

 

    Captain Foster S. Teague assumed command during a change of command ceremony aboard USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) on 29 February 1980, relieving Captain W. Lewis Chatham, 15th Commanding Officer, serving from 30 June 1978 to 29 February 1980. VADM R. F. Schoultz; Naval Air Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, COMNAVAIRPAC, also made formal presentation of the ship's Naval Expeditionary Medal award at the Change of Command. Other visitors included VADM G. E. R. Kinnear, Naval Air Force, U. S. Atlantic Fleet; Center, San Diego and RADM A. M. Sinclair, Cruiser - Destroyer Group FIVE; RADM R. A. Miller, Anti-Submarine Warfare Wing, U.S. Pacific Fleet and CAPT W. P. Allen, Destroyer Squadron 13” (Ref. 331A & 331B-1980).

 

    Irkutt (AOR)

 

Letter from USS Coral Sea (CV-43) to Senator Hatfield regarding Energy Quest

 

    A letter was drafted and signed by Captain Dunleavy that night, expressing all charges would be dropped upon liquidation of the amount owed the government.

 

                                                                                                                 CV-43:03:ti

                                                                                                                 5860

                                                                                                                 Ser 267

                                                                                                                 1 March 1980

 

The Honorable Mark O. Hatfield

United States Senator

Post Office fox 732

Salem, Oregon 97303

 

Dear Senator Hatfield:

 

    In response to your letter to Rear Admiral Kilcline of 3 January 1980, Seaman Bruce Wayne Henion reported aboard USS CORAL SEA on 13 December 1977. Qn 9 December 1979 an investigation was commenced into the wrongful appropriation of government property on the part of Seaman Henion. The government property appropriated by Seaman Henion were typewriter ribbons, savin paper (for copier machine), bond paper, envelopes, IBM Mag cards and manila envelopes used in the preparation of his booklet the “Energy Quest”. Qn 9 February 1980 Seaman Henion was charged with violation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, Article 121b, wrongful appropriation. Results of the Executive Officer’s inquiry on 17 February 1980 were dismissal of charges upon liquidation of the value of the government property appropriated in the amount of $191.88. Upon liquidation of this amount, the “Energy Quest” copies will be return to Seaman Henion. Enclosed please find a copy of the .rpc5rt and disposition of offense.

 

Sincerely,

 

R. M Dunleavy

Captain, U.S. NAVY

Commanding Officer

 

 

USS Hassayampa (TAO-145)

http://www.angelwind.com/hassayampa

 

    “The Honorable C. Patrick Callaham, Mayor of Coronado visits USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) on 7 March 1980” (Ref. 331B-1980).

 

 

A starboard view of the island structure and amidships section of USS Nimitz (CVN-68), underway in the Indian Ocean, March 15, 1980. Nimitz' 3rd deployment to the Mediterranean began September 10, 1979. As tension rose after Iranian "students" seized the US Embassy on November 4, the carrier was dispatched to strengthen the US naval presence in the Indian Ocean area. On April 24, 1980 eight RH-53D helicopters departed the ship to execute Operation Evening Light/Eagle Claw, an attempt to rescue the hostages, which had to be aborted when the number of operational helicopters fell below the minimum needed, through some mechanical problems and accidents. During this deployment, Nimitz operated 144 continuous days at sea, and her homecoming on May 26, 1980 was, at the time, the largest given to any carrier battle group returning to the US since the end of World War II. US Navy photo by PH1 David MacLean (DVIC id.: DNSC8405037). NS026851 69k. Defense Visual Information Center.

http://www.navsource.org/archives/02/026851.jpg

 

YNSN Henion frocked to Yeoman Third Class

 

   I was frocked to Yeoman Third Class on 16 March 1980. I was also awarded the Operations Department Sailor of the Month and Selected for Officers Candidate School (I turned it down as I didn’t want to make a career of the navy).

 

Indian Ocean Steel beach Picnic

 

   “Underway in the Indian Ocean and soon after the Olympic victory we finally get a stand down day. "Steel beach Picnic" is in full swing when a Russian destroyer starts to approach the ship. For whatever reason we didn't launch the Alert 5 aircraft. They soon were closing fast from the stern on the starboard side. Everyone on the Coral Sea crowded the starboard deck edge as the Russian ship slowed down and came along side. I guess they were trying to show us their stuff because a lot of their crew were in their dress blues manning the port rail. Well, it didn't take long before 4000+ proud American sailors started hurling every obscenity know to man at these guys. Then it progressed to flipping them the bird. And the grand finale was a mass "mooning". The noise from the hootin', hollerin' and belly laughing was amazing. Those Russians must of thought we were the most undisciplined crazy group of nuts on the planet. The old man never said a thing about it. Hell, he was probably on the bridge giving their skipper the single finger salute. Wish I had a picture from the Russian ship looking at the Coral Sea, what a site that must have been"” (Ref. Bob Dorais, 1979-80 WestPac). http://www.usscoralsea.net/pages/cstories.html

 

    “Mr. Otto Hirr, President, San Diego Chapter, U.S. Navy League visits USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) on 18 March 1980” (Ref. 331B-1980).

 

     “Commodore Gelke, DESRON Five relieved Commodore Treiber, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) Twenty Three assigned to USS Coral Sea (CV-43) in March 1980” (Ref. 1275W9).

 

 

One A-7E Vought Corsair II Jet attack aircraft flying while USS Coral Sea (CV-43) was on her 13th “WestPac”

 

Crew Confrontation over Race aboard USS Coral Sea (CV-43) while operating on "GONZO" Station in the North Arabian Sea

 

    Operating on "GONZO" Station in the North Arabian Sea, the crew of USS Coral Sea (CV-43) was restless. Recently frocked to YN3 on 16 March 1980, my first real test of leadership was introduced to me with out any preparation. I was in the Operations Department Office busy typing when Captain Taylor, Ops Boss received a phone call from the CO. Captain Taylor told me to meet the CO in the hangar bay at the CO’s ladder near the forward starboard elevator.

 

    Someone had printed derogatory pictures of African Americans and posted them on bulkheads throughout the ship. These pictures upset the crew and over 500 sailors assembled on the hangar bay. On one side were African Americans, Philippine Nationals/Americans, and Hispanic Americans and on the forward side, Department Heads, and Senior African American Officers were assembled.

 

    I met the Captain as he was climbing down the ladder and saluted him and the minute he stepped on the hangar bay, I called to the crew “attention on deck.” Captain Dunleavy and I walked over to the port forward side of the hangar bay looking aft at the sailors assembled, while standing behind us were Senior Officers, etc.

 

    As the CO and I walked he explained to me what had happened, handing me a hand written picture and ordered me to calm the crew. Onboard Coral Sea, RADM Lawrence Cleveland Chambers, USN, Carrier Group THREE, CTG 70.3 an African American Admiral, and CAPT W. P. Allen, was anxious to have the crew calmed and I think those protesting wanted the Admiral’s intervention. The up coming Operation Evening Light in support of the Top Secret Operation Eagle Claw mission during the Iranian crisis was the Admiral’s first priority, yet the Admiral was sympathetic to the out rage the crew emotionally embraced, yet the crew did not know of Operation Eagle Claw.

 

    Everyone was still at attention. I remember saluting the ranking Department Head, respectfully requesting he direct the Senior Officer party assembled to stand at parade rest and to remain at parade rest until I walked back over requesting that he direct the Senior Officer party to remain at ease. I then walked up to the Senior Officer assembled in front of the crew, a Lt j.g. African American and saluted him, requesting he direct the crew to stand at ease. He rendered a salute to my salute, and put the men at ease, while the Senior Officers remained at parade rest.

 

    I knew most Senior Officers, Chief Petty Officers, First Class Petty Officers and many enlisted men by name. I walked over to those in the front ranks and personally committed myself, Captain Dunleavy, Senior Officers, RADM Lawrence Cleveland Chambers, USN, etc., to finding and punishing those responsible. Within five to ten minutes the crew was calmed and returned to their stations. 

 

    I gave a calming speech that day to be sure; anyway it was from my heart. Anything I would write now would never be the same but it might have been similar to the way I feel now: Reconstruction of this moment in history was in 2003:

 

    The CO has informed me that there is an individual or individuals onboard that do not share the same since of values that we here assembled do.

 

    It saddens me to think that one of my shipmates or shipmates for that matter can take the oath of allegiance to the Constitution and the U.S. of America, without having a clue to what equality and justice really means. Waving the pictures at my shipmates, I expressed that the responsible party or parties who published these pictures, expressing their derogatory remarks, do not share the belief that equality is meant for all peoples regardless of race, sex, color or ethnic background.

 

    A minute into my speech I walked over to the Senior Officer next to Captain Dunleavy and saluted him, requesting he put the Senior Officers at ease. Returning to the men assembled, I continued my speech. Now as Americans were entitled to our individual opinions, but as U. S. Navy Sailors, it is our duty to protect the rights of every man and women in our nation, by supporting the living constitution and the goals of a free nation of people who believe all men and women are created equal and entitled to justice and fair play.

 

    No man on this ship because of his color or ethnic background is more special or endowed with exclusive rights over any other. We are all one, working for a common goal and no one has the exclusive right to disrupt the good order, morale and discipline of a U.S. navy command responsible to carry out the policies of our government, a government that is a servant to the people it represents.

 

    Equality, justice and fair play is not reserved for the rich or the elite but every citizen who truly believes in individual freedoms, freedoms presently denied our fellow Americans held captive by Iranians as I speak before you. We are Ambassadors of our faith and only by example will we change the minds of those who are discriminative toward another because they may be different from us.

 

    By your assembly here today, you have demonstrated your commitment to the goals of a nation of free people, bringing a new meaning to the words equality, justice and fair play. The individual or individuals responsible for this act will be dealt with in due time and if in some way they escape justice fairly dealt out by our CO, then I tell you, one day they shall surely meet their end, an end without honor and no sense of duty to thy fellow man.

 

    My fellow shipmates, we have a saboteur onboard and heaven forbid there be more then one. Our very lives are dependent upon each other. The way in which you perform your duties, the way you conduct yourselves, your very proficiency in the way you perform your tasks will decide the mission capability of our command. I don’t know about you, but your life, mine and the lives of my family and friends is dear to me.

 

    We stand firm against those who would destroy our way of life and the freedoms we are here to preserve for all Americans while being a shinning example to the world. It is the duty of each one of us to report to the chain-of-command any suspicious mischief and if you don’t, you jeopardize your very existence and the lives of every man aboard the Coral Sea.

 

    If there’s anyone who doesn’t believe the CO, RADM Lawrence Cleveland Chambers, USN, or any Senior Officer, Division Officer or Leading Petty Officer won’t make every effort to investigate this incident and act of sabotage come forward and speak out. When I was done with my speech I ordered the crew to attention and did an about face and walked over to the CO and informed him the crew awaits his orders. The CO dismissed the crew and we went back to work.

 

    USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) hosted ten members of the American Bar Association Committee on military lawyers on 21 March 1980” (Ref. 331B-1980).

 

 

Mayak AF “Neman”

 

 

Background: a Soviet Kashin-class DDG that was shadowing Nimitz while a practice airshow was being conducted in March 1980. Foreground: F-14 Tomcats assigned to the "Black Aces" of VF-41 (left) and the "Jolly Rogers" of VF-84. NS026820 40k. Photo by Michael Boyd, STG-2(SW), USS California, 1980. http://www.navsource.org/archives/02/026820.jpg

 

US Boycotts Moscow Olympics – 21 March 1980

 

    “By March 1980, ABC executives responded to the early success of this news special at eleven-thirty P.M. by creating a regular news program, Nightline, which focused on major news events, including the hostage crisis. On Day 74, CBS anchor Walter Chronkite concluded his nightly news broadcast by announcing the number of days the hostages had been held captive, and maintained that practice until the end of the crisis” (Ref. 4).

 

    “As if there wasn’t enough to worry about, tensions between the two super powers of the world resulted in the U.S. announcing it would boycott Moscow Olympics, March 21, 1980. “Citing the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, President Carter tells a group of American athletes that the U.S. won't be sending a team to the 1980 Olympics in Moscow. Later in the month, President Carter orders the U.S. secretary of commerce to ban all exports to the Soviet Union "of any goods or technology" related to the games, further encouraging other nations to join a U.S.-led boycott” (Ref. 5-CNN Interactive).

 

    “Both of the orders of 160 to 300 F-16A/Bs and seven Boeing E-3A AWACS aircraft were cancelled after the Islamic revolution in 1979. The sale of the Boeing AWACS to Iran created considerable controversy, because Iran was the first foreign customer for this system, and NATO countries had been unwilling to buy it, because the cost was so high” (Ref. 22).

 

    “Unfortunately, one immediate effect of the cancellation of the Iranian order was that the individual unit cost of the F-16 was driven sharply upward. However, many of the F-16s intended for Iran were eventually sold to Israel” (Ref. 18).

 

    “Based on Letters of Intent to Purchase, had the revolution not occurred, 177 to 208/9 to 223 to 225 F-4E Phantom fighter-bomber’s, depending on which source 223 operational Phantom’s of the IIAF could have been, with and additional 306 on order, 529 assorted Phantom’s and 160 F-16’s, totaling 689 jets” (Ref. 16, 19, 20, 21, 22 & 27).

 

    “Following the Islamic revolution, massive numbers of contracts with Western arms suppliers were cancelled by the new government, including an order for 400 AIM-54A Phoenix missiles” (Ref. 28).

 

Disrespect of a Commissioned Officer

 

    Under a lot of stress I over reacted one day on 23 March 1980. I had lost my ID card at sea and couldn’t cash my paycheck. I didn’t have time to go to the Personnel Office to get another ID because of my duties and standing in line would take an hour at least.

I didn’t want to stand in line twice so I made sure I found out what to do from the Disbursing Officer first. He told me to get my Leading Petty Officer to verify who I was to the Payroll Officer. We waited in line for an hour or so when we addressed an officer who wouldn’t cash my check because I had no ID card, even though my leading Petty Officer verified my name.

 

    The Engineering Department Office was next to the pay station on the mess deck so I went after the Engineering Department Head, a Commander who knew me. He agreed to help me and verified who I was but still the officer wouldn’t cash my check.

I thanked the Commander and headed for the Disbursing Officer. I was running late and frustrated to say the least. I entered the Disbursing Officer’s Office to find him on the phone. I stood to attention, saluted him and tore my paycheck up and dropped it on his desk. I walked out of his office and went back to work.

 

    He wrote me up for Disrespect of a Commissioned Officer. I went before the CO at Captains Mast on 25 March 1980. The Co said, “I see you don’t need any money” and asked me why I did what I had done. I told him it was a regrettable mistake and that I had tried to apologize to the Disbursing Officer, but he wouldn’t see me. The CO knew I was sincere and sorry. He also knew how much work I was doing for the command. I was fined $200.00. A few days later I took my clothes to the laundry and the word from the new Division Officer was that no one was to accept XO Division laundry.

 

    As it turned out, the new Division Officer of Laundry was the previous Disbursing Officer who would not accept my apology. I had to trade hundreds of naval photos of helicopters, ships and planes in order to bribe a sailor to wash my division’s clothes.  The Intelligence Division would give unclassified photos to me. I sure didn’t have time to go into the laundry business.

 

    “CAPT W. E. Aut, Naval Air Station, North Island visits USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) on 24 March and CAPT D. Martin, CO, USS Jouett (CG-29) visits on 25 March 1980” (Ref. 331B-1980).

 

USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) commenced Ship’s Restricted Availability (SRA) at Naval Air Station, North Island, San Diego, California

 

    “The beginning of 1980 found S-1 Division (Control Division) of USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) returning from a very successful WestPac/Indian Ocean extended cruise. After the standdown period, S-1 began preparations for SRA and for the 1981 “WestPac” deployment. In March the AVCAL conference was held at AS0 Philadelphia and tapes were run in S-7 for the AVCAL Storeroom offload. Open purchase was extremely busy ordering SRA material for ship’s rehabilitation projects. After SRA, S-1 began organizing and training for the shakedown cruises. Purchase cables, cross deck pendants, aircraft T-bars, and hundreds of other critical stock items had to be inventoried and ordered for support of the Air Wing, commencing Ship’s Restricted Availability (SRA) at Naval Air Station, North Island, San Diego, California on 27 March 1980” (Ref. 331A & 331B-1980).

 

Iran History & Air Arm - Iran hostage crisis Continues                                          (February to 31 March 1980)

 

     “Demands announced in February 1980 were the return of the shah to Iran for trial, the return of the shah's wealth to the Iranian people, an admission of guilt by the United States for its past actions in Iran, plus an apology and a promise not to interfere in Iran's affairs in the future. These were clearly unacceptable demands, especially the first one, as the shah had left the United States in December 1978 to take up residence in Panama. In response to the demands, diplomatic ties with Iran were severed followed by Carter threatening new sanctions against Iran unless some progress was forthcoming. Several hundred people gathered in front of the Iranian embassy in Washington D.C. shouting "Go Home" and "Let our people go!" Their rage, their very presence seemed to be saying, "We've had enough!" The D.C. police had roped off the sidewalk, ironically providing the Iranian building the very protection the embassy in Iran lacked. Sales of Iranian flags went up across the nation and Americans burned them in protest.

 

      Meanwhile, throughout the United States, Iranian students demonstrated in support of their country, denouncing the White House and demanding the shah's immediate extradition. These demonstrations prompted a violent backlash across the nation as anger and frustration had risen as the days passed and the hostages were not released. The crisis instilled a new sense of patriotism as Americans supported the President. Iranian-Americas faced problems that hadn't been seen since Japanese-Americans had been interned during World War II: some were booted out of their jobs; others had their property vandalized; and their children were taunted in school” (Ref. 4).

 

    “While the nation poised for action, the administration worked to soothe public passion, fearful the demonstrators might precipitate a riot, which would have been highly publicized in Iran, and might have caused Americans to be harmed in retaliation. News from Iran had already indicated Khomeini's intent to have the hostages tried as spies. The public was more supportive of Carter than it had been a few months earlier, but was becoming more impatient with each passing week because of the apparent impotence in dealing with international crises. Citizens of all ages who normally paid little attention to foreign affairs sat transfixed in front of their television sets, breathlessly following each new twist and turn of events -- even when not much was happening, which was usually the case. Television quickly domesticated the foreign scenes and characters by bringing them into the intimacy of our living rooms.

 

    “While the nation poised for action, the administration worked to soothe public passion, fearful the demonstrators might precipitate a riot, which would have been highly publicized in Iran, and might have caused Americans to be harmed in retaliation. News from Iran had already indicated Khomeini's intent to have the hostages tried as spies. The public was more supportive of Carter than it had been a few months earlier, but was becoming more impatient with each passing week because of the apparent impotence in dealing with international crises. Citizens of all ages who normally paid little attention to foreign affairs sat transfixed in front of their television sets, breathlessly following each new twist and turn of events -- even when not much was happening, which was usually the case. Television quickly domesticated the foreign scenes and characters by bringing them into the intimacy of our living rooms. President Carter repeatedly met with the families of the hostages; he confessed to reporters that virtually his every waking moment was spent worrying about the fate of the captives” (Ref. 4).

 

    “During the first few months of the siege, about one-third of the three networks weeknight newscast time was devoted to the hostage story. ABC even created a regular thirty-minute nightly program The Crisis in Iran: America Held Hostage, which premiered on Day 5 of the crisis and promised to broadcast as long as the crisis lasted. Both of the orders of 160 to 300 F-16A/Bs and seven Boeing E-3A AWACS aircraft were cancelled after the Islamic revolution in 1979. The sale of the Boeing AWACS to Iran created considerable controversy, because Iran was the first foreign customer for this system, and NATO countries had been unwilling to buy it, because the cost was so high” (Ref. 22).

 

    “Unfortunately, one immediate effect of the cancellation of the Iranian order was that the individual unit cost of the F-16 was driven sharply upward. However, many of the F-16s intended for Iran were eventually sold to Israel” (Ref. 18).

 

    “Based on Letters of Intent to Purchase, had the revolution not occurred, 177 to 208/9 to 223 to 225 F-4E Phantom fighter-bomber’s, depending on which source 223 operational Phantom’s of the IIAF could have been, with and additional 306 on order, 529 assorted Phantom’s and 160 F-16’s, totaling 689 jets” (Ref. 16, 19, 20, 21, 22 & 27).

 

    “Following the Islamic revolution, massive numbers of contracts with Western arms suppliers were cancelled by the new government, including an order for 400 AIM-54A Phoenix missiles” (Ref. 28).

 

    “The Honorable Harold Brown, Secretary of Defense; VADM R. F. Schoultz

Naval Air Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet and CAPT R. E. Box, USS Ranger (CV-61) visits USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) on 4 April 1980” (Ref. 331B-1980).

 

    “In April 1980, USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) enjoyed another picnic, but this time with family in San Diego. Two 200 lb. pulley machines were added to the gymnasium along with dumbbells and barbells with weights and rubber matting for the deck” (Ref. 331B-1980).

 

 

USS Coral Sea (CV-43) conducting flight operations with Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 14, and an Underway Replenishment (UNREP), in the Arabian Sea, 4 April 1980. Taken from USS Cook (FF-1083). NS024375c 226k. Carl T. Orbann.

http://www.navsource.org/archives/02/024375c.jpg

 

US Army Special Forces Operational Detachment-Delta (Airborne) was put on full alert

 

    As the U. S. Of America prepared to enter the fifth month of the crisis in Iran, President Carter's frustration level grew from the inactivity in the release of the hostages. On April 7, he announced the severing of diplomatic relations with Iran, the implementation of a complete economic embargo against Iran, an inventory of financial claims against Iran to be paid from Iranian assets in the United States, and told Iran's diplomats to leave the country within twenty-four hours. The US broke diplomatic relations with Iran on 8 April 1980” (Ref. 11).

 

    President Carter ordered the Pentagon to prepare a contingency plan for military action to rescue the hostages. The greatest problem was the inaccessibility of the American embassy compound - located more than 600 miles from the nearest operating aircraft carriers and deep within the heavily populated urban center of Tehran. Carter also gave the approval for a military attempt to rescue the hostages. The fact that a small plane had successfully penetrated Iranian airspace and had examined a potential rescue staging site without being detected, convinced Carter that such a mission was feasible” (Ref. 4).

 

    The newly certified US Army Special Forces Operational Detachment-Delta (Airborne) was put on full alert and plans were being drawn up for a rescue. As the U. S. Of America prepared to enter the fifth month of the crisis in Iran, President Carter's frustration level grew from the inactivity in the release of the hostages” (Ref. 11).

 

    USS Nimitz (CVN-68) passed her 100th day at sea. ADM Thomas B. Hayward, Chief of Naval Operations, authorized the crew to celebrate with a “two-beer ration,” the first time that alcoholic beverages were officially permitted on board a U.S. Navy man of war since the abolition of the wine mess during WWI on 12 April 1980. From the Indian Ocean, Nimitz helicopters and later planes, flew from either “Gonzo Station,” or the North Arabian Sea and into the Gulf of Oman to a staging area off the southeast Coast of Iran operating with the 7th Fleet, to strengthen the U.S. Naval presence in the crucial Indian Ocean area as tensions heightened over Iran's taking of 52 American diplomats hostage, in what would turn out to be Operation Eagle Claw (Operation Rice Bowl and Operation Evening Light), the attempt to rescue the US Embassy workers being held hostage in Tehran, Iran” (Ref. 372A & 1200).

 

USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69) with CVW-7 and Carrier

Group FOUR (COMCARGRU FOUR) departs Norfolk, Virginia for the

North Arabian Sea

 

    “Dispatched by President Carter in response to the Iran hostage crisis, holding of 52 American hostages since 4 November 1979 and the USSR's continued presence in Afghanistan, USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69) with CVW-7 and Carrier

Group FOUR (COMCARGRU FOUR), commanded by Rear Admiral Byron R. Fuller embarked departed Pier 12, Naval Station, Norfolk, Virginia 15 April 1980, with Captain James H. Mauldin in command and Captain G. D. O'Brien, USN as the XO, on her first Indian Ocean and North Arabian Sea deployment to relieve USS Nimitz (CVN-68) in light of tensions in the Persian Gulf area; including support of Exercise Beacon Compass, Exercise Gonzo 4-80/MultiplEx 1-80 and Exercise Gonzo 5-80, operating with the 7th Fleet, steaming to the Indian Ocean from the Southern Atlantic from the bottom of South Africa, operating with the United States Atlantic Command (Atlantic Fleet) under the direction of the 2nd Fleet traveling around Cape of Good Hope through the Mazambique Channel to the Indian Ocean, a 12,000 nautical mile transit to GONZO Station, located off the coast of Oman. Ike will return home from the bottom of South Africa in the Southern Atlantic, traveling around Cape of Good Hope through the Mazambique Channel from the 7th Fleet AOR within the Indian Ocean. She will under go her third Foreign Water Fleet Deployment (FWFD) since her commission on 18 October 1977, Captain William E. Ramsey in command (16 January to 13 July 1979)” (Ref. 44, 72, 76, 84A, 383 & 383B).

 

USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69) with CVW-7 (AG)

(15 April to 22 December 1980)

SQUADRON

SQUADRON NICK NAME & PRIMARY

ROLE

AIRCRAFT DESIGN

NICK NAME &

PRIMARY ROLE

TAIL

CODE

Modex

AIRCRAFT

DESIGNATION

VF-143

Pukin' Dogs -

Fighter Squadron

Grumman - Tomcat -   Jet Fighter

AG100

F-14A

VF-142

Ghostriders -

Fighter Squadron

Grumman - Tomcat -   Jet Fighter

AG200

F-14A

VA-66

Waldos -

Attack Squadron

Vought - Corsair II -

Jet attack aircraft

AG300

A-7E

VA-12

Flying Ubangis -                      Attack Squadron

Vought - Corsair II -

Jet attack aircraft

AG400

A-7E

VA-65

Tigers -

Attack Squadron

Grumman - Intruder -

Jet Attack Bomber - Tanker

AG500

A-6E / KA-6D

VAQ-132

Scorpions -

Tactical Electronics Warfare Squadron

Grumman - Prowler -

Jet Attack Bomber - Special electronic installation

610

EA-6B

VAW-121

Bluetails -

Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron

Grumman - Hawkeye - Electronics

010

E-2C

VS-31

Top Cats - Air

Anti-Submarine Squadron

Lockheed - Viking - Anti-Submarine

700

S-3A / US-3A

HS-5

Night Dippers - Helicopter

Anti-Submarine Squadron

Sikorsky - Sea King -

Anti-submarine

730

SH-3H

VQ-2 Det.

Batmen - Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron

Douglas - Skywarrior -

 Jet Attack Fighter

 

(JQ)         15, xx

EA-3B

F-14 Tomcat, EA-6B Prowler, S-3 Viking and E-2C Hawkeye

 

    USS South Carolina (CGN-37) and USS Virginia (CGN-38) joined USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69) as part of her task force” (Ref. 84A). 

 

 

USS White Plains (AFS-4)

http://www.navybuddies.com/afs/afs4.htm

 

USS Constellation (CV-64) and her battle group departs Subic Bay, the Republic of the Philippines

 

    “On 18 April 1980, USS Constellation (CV-64) and her battle group departed Subic Bay, the Republic of the Philippines, to relieve USS Coral Sea (CV-43), steaming westward to the Arabian Sea, where Gonzo Station had been established following the November 1979 takeover of the American Embassy in Tehran, Iran” (Ref. 1-Constellation & 72).

 

 

Thirteenth “WestPac” and first Indian Ocean and Arabian Sea deployment (Operation Evening Light and Eagle Claw during the Iranian revolution & Iran hostage crisis (Iran History, Air Arm) and Cheju-Do Islands in the Sea of Japan on the way home via Korea), operating with other Aircraft Carriers and upon completion conducted training operations and Carrier Qualifications (Iran History, Air Arm, Iranian revolution & Iran hostage crisis

(13 November 1979 to 30 June 1980)

CHAPTER XXXIV

Part 1 – (13 to 30 November 1979)

Part 2 – (1 to 31 December 1979)

Part 3 – (1 to 31 January 1980)

Part 4 – (1 to 24 February 1980)

Part 5 – (25 February to 20 April 1980)

Part 6 – (21 to 24 April 1980)

Part 7 – (25 April to 30 June 1980)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHAPTER XXXIV

Part 5 – (25 February to 20 April 1980)

 USS CORAL SEA (CV 43)

Operations Evening Light and Eagle Claw, A Sailors tale of his Tour of duty in the U.S. Navy (August 1977 to February 1983)

 

A Sailors tale of his Tour of duty in the U.S. Navy - Operation Evening Light And Eagle Claw -

 

Book - ISBN NO.

978-1-4276-0454-5

EBook - ISBN NO.

978-1-329-15473-5

 

Operations Evening Light and Eagle Claw (24 April 1980) Iran and Air Arm History (1941 to Present)

 

Operations Evening Light and Eagle Claw (24 April 1980) Iran and Air Arm History (1941 to Present)

 

Book ISBN NO.

xxxxxxxxxxxxx

EBook ISBN NO.

978-1-329-19945-3

 

USS CORAL SEA CV-42, CVB-43, CVA-43 & CV-43 HISTORY, AND THOSE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS OPERATING WITH CORAL SEA  Vol. I (10 July 1944 to 31 December 1975)

 

USS CORAL SEA CV-42, CVB-43, CVA-43 & CV-43 HISTORY, AND THOSE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS OPERATING WITH CORAL SEA Vol. I (10 July 1944 to 31 December 1975) -

 

Book ISBN NO.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

EBook ISBN NO.

978-1-329-54596-0

 

USS CORAL SEA CV-42, CVB-43, CVA-43 & CV-43 HISTORY, AND THOSE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS OPERATING WITH CORAL SEA DURING HER TOUR OF SERVICE Vol. II (1 January 1976 to 25 August 1981)

 

USS CORAL SEA CV-42, CVB-43, CVA-43 & CV-43 HISTORY, AND THOSE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS OPERATING WITH CORAL SEA DURING HER TOUR OF SERVICE Vol. II (1 January 1976 to 25 August 1981) -

 

Book ISBN NO.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

EBook ISBN NO.

978-1-329-54790-2

 

USS CORAL SEA CV-42, CVB-43, CVA-43 & CV-43 HISTORY, AND THOSE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS OPERATING WITH CORAL SEA DURING HER TOUR OF SERVICE Vol. III (20 August 1981 to 26 April 1990)

 

USS CORAL SEA CV-42, CVB-43, CVA-43 & CV-43 HISTORY, AND THOSE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS OPERATING WITH CORAL SEA DURING HER TOUR OF SERVICE Vol. III (20 August 1981 to 26 April 1990) -

 

Book ISBN NO.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

EBook ISBN NO.

978-1-329-55111-4