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Jacksonville, Florida

Satellite and aerial maps of NAS Jacksonville with nearby locations

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19.0264KVQQ Cecil Field, Florida
19.5 54KCRG Jacksonville Craig Executive, Florida
30.6 55KNRB NAS Mayport / McDonald Field, Florida
31.3 55 Mayport, Florida
45.0133KSGJ St Augustine Northeast Florida Regional, Florida
83.2223KGNV Gainesville Regional, Florida

1940 to present

30 14 9 secs N - 81 40 50 secs W
6 km S Jacksonville, Florida
Elevation: 22 feet

History of this Location

NAS Jacksonville
A few historical notes about Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Florida: In the mid-1980s I was a Naval Aviator assigned to Helicopter AntiSubmarine Squadron SEVEN (HS-7), flying the Sikorsky SH-3H Sea King. At the time, all the East Coast-based HS squadrons were based at NAS Jax, including all the odd numbered units: HS-1, HS-3, HS-5, HS-7, HS-9, HS-11, HS-15, and HS-17, all under the control of the shore-based HS Wing ONE. As a side note, despite the unlucky number 13, there was an HS-13 back in the early 1960s, although Im not sure where it was based. HS-13 the Sub Choppers - was only in existence for one year before being disestablished. Additionally in the 1980s, the Naval Reserve had HS-75, based at NAS Jax. HS-1 was the Readiness Air Group or RAG. As a new Naval Aviator you were awarded your wings at the end of flight school, and issued a set of orders to a fleet squadron, in my case HS-7. In between flight school and the fleet, everybody attended a training course at HS-1, where you would learn how to fly the SH-3H. Although still informally referred to as the RAG, these squadrons are now called Fleet Readiness Squadrons, FRS. If you expand the GoogleMaps image at the right, and zoom in on the southeast portion of the base, you can see the sea wall where all these HS squadrons were based. (Although in this image there is a vagrant Lockheed P-3 Orion parked south of the helicopters.) There are three helipads located next to the sea wall. Also visible are the old seaplane ramps, then disused, from the time Jax was a major seaplane station. Each of the big hangars could house four HS squadrons, one in each corner. Of course, at any one time, several of the Jax-based HS squadrons could be on deployment. Also based at NAS Jax were several Patrol (VP) Squadrons. Since both HS and VP at similar antisubmarine missions, there was quite a bit of rivalry between the communities. Cheers, Dave Powers
NAS Jacksonville has a very well maintained memorial airpark containing several vintage naval aircraft, including a Sikorsky SH-3G Sea King. Although the BuNo 149695 appears to be accurate, several sources are in disagreement about the actual squadron markings applied to this helicopter. There is a reason for this. For years various communities in the navy, both aviation and ships, have competed for what was called the Battle Efficiency Award, more familiarly known as the Battle E. It is a yearly award based on the squadron, or a ship doing its mission better that other squadrons or ships in its community. All east coast HS squadrons competed for the East Coast HS Battle E. As an indicator of the award, the winning squadron adorns its aircraft with a large letter E. When this Sea King was put on display at the airpark a tradition began that saw the airframe being painted in the squadron colors of the current Battle E winner. Therefore, this Sea King changed its appearance each year. When this photo was taken in May 2002, the Dragon Slayers of HS-11 held the Battle E. With the retirement of the SH-3, along with the 2005 change of mission from HS to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC), this tradition may have come to an end. By zooming in on the western edge of the Naval Air Station, one can find the memorial airpark. Cheers, Dave Powers

Before 1969 NS Mayport, NAS Cecil Field and NAS Jacksonville each had their own Search and Rescue (SAR) Helicopter Detachments in their Air Operations Departments. In early 1969 the Navy decided to consolidate these SAR assets at NAS Jacksonville. I had been assigned to Cecil Field SAR Det in October 1968 and was transferred over to NAS Jacksonville in late April 1969. At that time NAS JAX had many Lockheed P-2V Neptune patrol aircraft and were transitioning to Lockheed P-3 Orion Patrol aircraft. I believe there were about 100 patrol aircraft aboard the air station. There were many HS helicopter squadrons on the East ramp as well as a Reserve helicopter squadron on the South Ramp with a couple of Sikorsky H-3 helicopters. VW-4 weather squadron was based there with Lockheed WC-121N Super Constellation aircraft. The Navy's Atlantic Weather Office occupied the upper floor of the JAX Air Ops building. The JAX Naval Air Rework Facility (NARF) was a very active part of the base. Just across the highway to the West of the base was a Defense Resource Mobilization Office (DRMO) that disposed of military assets no longer required. Of course the storage warehouses in the SW portion of the base were extensive. There were about 4 clubs on base to include the officers Club, Chiefs Club, and 2 enlisted clubs. The BOQ and base housing were also integral to the base. The SAR Det at NAS JAX Air Ops had a support agreement with the Coast Guard to also support all civilian air rescue efforts within 100 nautical miles of NAS JAX with our 13 helicopters and 2 seaplanes. Anytime our SAR helos went more that 5 miles off the coast we had to be accompanied by one of our seaplanes. We weren't allowed to land our seaplanes in open seas so if a helicopter went down at sea they would drop life rafts and direct Navy sea craft to the accident scene. We utilized the Seaplane Base Landing Area in the St. Johns River adjacent to NAS JAX to practice water landings. Jacksonville Air Ops had quite a fleet of aircraft,about 24 in all. They were also utilized by pilots assigned to desk jobs at NAS Jacksonville to meet their monthly fight hour requirements which helped justify so many aircraft. In the fall of 1971 the SAR Det had 8 HS-34J Sikorsky helicopters, 1 H-19 Sikorsky helicopter and 4 Bell HH-1K helicopters. Other NAS JAX Air Ops aircraft included 1 Piper U-11 twin engine, 1 VC-131 Samaritan (VIP model Convair 240 for Admiral COMFAIRJAX), 1 C-117D Douglas Skytrain (R4D8Z), 1 Grumman US-2B, 2 Grumman US-2A, 2 Grumman HU-16 Albatross sea planes, 1 North American T-28 Trojan and 1 C-1A Grumman Carrier Onboard Delivery (COD) aircraft. I was fortunate enough to be checked out in most of these aircraft, an extremely rare priviledge for a LTJG and unprecedented at NAS JAX Air Ops. In the summer of 1970 I was assigned to the HA(L)-3 Seawolves Combat helicopter Squadron in Vietnam for one year. I returned to NAS JAX Air Ops in October of 1971 and left active duty on December 21,1971. I joined reserve helicopter unit HT-0874 and others at NAS JAX and drilled at Nas Jax until 1986 at which time my Reserve Unit was supporting Helicopter HS Wing One on the East Ramp at NAS JAX. At that time I made an inter-service transfer to the Missouri Army National Guard and flew for them for 18 more years when retired was credited with 19 years of active duty and 18 years of reserve duty. In 1998 the HA(L)-3 Seawolves had a reunion at NAS Jacksonville. In shelter in the park at JAX our door gunners from Vietnam were awarded Navy Combat Air Crew Wings which were pinned on then individually by Admiral Elmo Zumwalt. He had convinced the Navy to reinstate Combat Aircrew Wings since they had not been issued since the end of WWII. After the awards and presentations by various Navy dignitaries attendees adjourned to the NAS JAX Yacht Club where Admiral Zumwalt personally congratulated each awardee and commiserated with all of what he called "His Seawolves". To those of us that new him he was a remarkable man. I had served at NAS JAX from 1969 to 1986 and all of my memories of it are wonderful. I especially remember the sound of morning and evening colors (retreat) ringing across the base and the feeling of belonging it gave to a young man of 27 years old. I belonged to the Navy, but the Navy also belonged to me. Sincerely, Don C. Thomson

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List of units at NAS Jacksonville

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YearsRotary Wing Aircraft Unitbold : Current Model
normal: Unit no longer at this base
2016/    HSM-60S-70 H-60 2015/   
2013/14AU 725 SquadronMH-60R Seahawk 2013/   
2013/    HSM-72MQ-8A/B Fire Scout 2014/   
S-70 H-60 2013/   
2011/    HSM-74S-70 H-60 2011/   
2009/    HSM-70S-70 H-60 2009/   
2009/11HSL-44S-70 H-60 1986/11
1998/    Helicopter Interdiction Tactical SquadronHH-65 Dolphin 2008/   
MH-68A Stingray 2000/08
MD900 Explorer 1998/00
1995/07HS-75S-70 H-60 ??/07
1984/91HS-17S-61 H-3 1984/91
1976/93HS-9S-61 H-3 1976/93
1974/10HS-5S-70 H-60 1995/13
S-61 H-3 1964/95
1973/97HS-1S-70 H-60 1992/97
S-61 H-3 1961/97
1973/12HS-15S-70 H-60 1992/12
S-61 H-3 1971/93
1973/16HS-11S-70 H-60 1994/16
S-61 H-3 1962/95
1973/11HS-7S-70 H-60 1995/11
S-61 H-3 1969/95
1957/09HS-3S-70 H-60 1991/09
S-61 H-3 1962/91
S-58 H-34 1957/62
S-55 H-19 1954/57

NAS Jacksonville News

HSM-60 Jaguars Moves to NAS Jacksonville, 08-Jun-16 : US Navy Reserve ’ Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 60 moved from Naval Station Mayport, its home of 15 years, to NAS Jacksonville. Operates 7 MH-60R Seahawks

HSM-70 Spartans return from nine-month deployment, 12-Nov-14 : US Navy HSM-70 Squadron attached to Carrier Air Wing 8 George H W Bush Strike Group return to NAS Jacksonville after a nine-month combat deployment to the Arabian Gulf, Mediterranean and Black Sea

Australian 725 Sqn 1,000 Hours with Romeo, 08-Oct-14 : Royal Australian Navy s MH-60R Seahawk Romeo crews passed 1,000 flight hours whilst undergoing training in the United States

Royal Australian Navy MH-60R First Hellfire Test, 30-Jul-14 : Florida coast, USA by LEUT Lauren Rago - The Royal Australian Navy’s newest maritime combat helicopter, the MH-60R Seahawk ‘Romeo’, successfully fired its first Hellfire missile in the United States on 26 July 2014.

US Navy refurbishing 2 SH-60F for Spanish Navy, 29-May-14 : JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (NNS) -- Fleet Readiness Center Southeast (FRCSE) hosted representatives from Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) Program Manager Air (PMA) 299 and members of the Spanish navy for the annual SH-60B and SH-60F helicopter program management review (PMR) at the military depot May 13-15.

04-Apr-14 - MQ-8B Fire Scout overhauling at Jacksonville Florida

List of aircraft and events at NAS Jacksonville

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1970-dec-06 accidentUS NavyHSS-2 Sea King149007
1991-may-03 US NavyHSS-2 Sea King149903
2008-sep-01 Hurricane GustavUS NavyHH-60H Rescue Hawk165123
2011-nov US NavySH-3D Sea King156501
2011-nov-05 MQ-8B Fire Scout167786
2014-jan US NavySH-60B Seahawk166402
2014-oct-25 MH-60R SeahawkN48-005
2016 US NavyMH-60R Seahawk166558
2017-jul US NavyMH-60R Seahawk166590

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