MARINE CORPS AIR STATION CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. – Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron (HMM) 364 ( Purple Foxes) of Marine Air Group 16 (MAG), 3rd Marine Air Wing (MAW) conducted a commemorative flight from MCAS Camp Pendleton, Monday, March 31, 2014. The flight was called “Flying the Barn.”
The squadron was activated in 1961 and has been flying the Boeing Vertol CH-46 “Sea Knight” helicopter since 1967. After 47 years with the CH-46, HMM-364 will begin the transition to the Boeing MV-22B Osprey and may be completely finished with the transition by October of 2014. To mark this occasion, the squadron flew a mass formation of 11 aircraft from Camp Pendleton flying south along the Pacific Ocean’s coastline, down to near the U.S./Mexican border, and then headed north up San Diego Bay. They continued north over the city of San Diego, and then overflew MCAS Miramar, home of the 3rd MAW. Once this was done, the squadron headed back home to its home base at MCAS Camp Pendleton, where family and friends were waiting for them.
Pilots and crew chiefs will be sent back to MCAS New River, near Jacksonville, NC, where the pilots will spend anywhere from six to months of training in simulators and the real MV-22B Ospreys. Crew chief training can take up to nine months.