Kiowa pilots land on Navy deck

| December 18, 2013 | 0 Comments
A Sailor assigned to the guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Erie (CG 70) directs an Army OH-58D Kiowa Warrior from the 25th CAB, 25th ID, while conducting deck-landing training in the Pacific Ocean near the Hawaiian Islands, Dec. 9. Pilots and crew members from 2-6th Cav. Regt., 2-25th Avn. Regt., 25th CAB, 25th ID, conducted three days of day and night deck-landing training in order to become qualified in deck landing from a moving Navy vessel.

A Sailor assigned to the guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Erie (CG 70) directs an Army OH-58D Kiowa Warrior from the 25th CAB, 25th ID, while conducting deck-landing training in the Pacific Ocean near the Hawaiian Islands, Dec. 9. Pilots and crew members from 2-6th Cav. Regt., 2-25th Avn. Regt., 25th CAB, 25th ID, conducted three days of day and night deck-landing training in order to become qualified in deck landing from a moving Navy vessel.

Story and photos by Staff Sgt. Matthew Ryan
25th Infantry Division Public Affairs

WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD — Pilots and flight crews from the 25th Combat Aviation Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, became certified in landing and launching aircraft from moving Navy vessels by conducting day and night deck-landing qualifications aboard the guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Erie (CG 70), a Ticonderoga-class Navy vessel, Dec. 9-11.

Working closely with the Navy, UH-58D Kiowa Warrior pilots from the 2nd Squadron, 6th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Battalion, 25th Avn. Regt., 25th CAB, had to undergo academic classes, computer simulations and practice deck landing on the airfield, here, for preparation of landing aircraft on the Ticonderoga-class.

“We are adding more capabilities for our unit, the Army and the Navy,” said Chief Warrant Officer 4 Scott Bean, pilot, 2-6th Cav. Regt. “I have been flying for more than 14 years now, and I just recently became certified in deck landing.”

Soldier and Sailors prepare to move an Army OH-58D Kiowa Warrior into the storage bay of the guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Erie (CG-70) after placing the aircraft into storage configuration.

Soldier and Sailors prepare to move an Army OH-58D Kiowa Warrior into the storage bay of the guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Erie (CG-70) after placing the aircraft into storage configuration.

Bean said that not many pilots in the Army get the experience of training with the Navy, nor have the opportunity to become deck-landing qualified.

“It was a great experience working with the Navy, learning how to improve our communications and planning between the Army and Navy,” Bean said.

As the Army undergoes a transition with troop draw down and fewer combat deployments, the 25th ID is shifting its focus on security and stability of Pacific region.

“Our aircraft can help provide more mobility, security and faster recon missions for the Navy. They can link into our video feeds to see what we see, allowing them to coordinate with the Army during joint missions,” said Bean.

“One goal we have for the 25th CAB is to maintain the capability to conduct shipboard operations in order to give the joint commander more flexibility when conducting joint missions,” said Col. Kenneth Hawley, commander, 25th CAB.

Adm. Samuel Locklear III, commander, U.S. Pacific Command, said the strategy of the USPACOM is to rebalance the region with an end-state of a security and prosperously within the Asia-Pacific region. This can be done by working closely with partners to ensure that forces are ready to respond rapidly and effectively across the full range of military operations.

Sailors assigned to the guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Erie (CG 70) directs an Army OH-58D Kiowa Warrior from the 25th CAB, 25th ID, while conducting deck-landing training in the Pacific Ocean near the Hawaiian Islands, Dec. 9.

Sailors assigned to the guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Erie (CG 70) directs an Army OH-58D Kiowa Warrior from the 25th CAB, 25th ID, while conducting deck-landing training in the Pacific Ocean near the Hawaiian Islands, Dec. 9.

“By successfully executing deck-landing qualifications, we significantly expand Pacific Command’s maritime operational capabilities at a strategic level,” said Lt. Col. Hunter Marshall, commander, 3-25th Avn. Regt.

The USS Lake Erie has the capability of storing two Kiowa’s aboard. The helicopter can be configured for storage quickly to clear the landing deck for the next aircraft.

Previously, the 25th CAB held training for deck landing and launching of UH-60 Black Hawks and CH-47 Chinooks.

“This training allows for the Army to have more-rounded pilots, enabling them to perform a broader scope of missions,” said Bean. “This helps the Army and Navy have the enhanced ability to quickly recon an area that has no airfield or any place to land aircraft, or to respond to a country in need of humanitarian aid in the Pacific region. It helps ensure the security and stability of the Pacific region.”

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Category: News, Training

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