VFA-203

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A VFA-203 Hornet on the flight line at Andrews Air Force Base in 1990. (Click the photo to enlarge it)

VFA-203, nicknamed the Blue Dolphins, was a Strike Fighter Squadron of the U.S. Navy Reserve. It was established as Attack Squadron VA-203 at NAS Jacksonville on 1 July 1970, as a reserve squadron under a new concept in the reorganization of the Naval Air Reserve Force. The reorganization was intended to make the reserves more compatible with active duty units and to increase their combat readiness.[1] primary mission was to provide contributory support to the fleet, and to be ready to deploy to an aircraft carrier a crisis as a reserve fighter-attack squadron. A further mission was to act as adversaries to squadrons being trained for deployment.[2]

In May, 1972, the Blue Dolphins deployed to NAS Oceana to participate in exercise Exotic Dancer V, designed to test multiservice operations under a unified command organization. In February 1980, the squadron participated in a combined NATO forces exercise conducted at NAS Bermuda. On 1 December 1977 it moved to NAS Cecil Field.[1] In 1993, the squadron began training its pilots in the fleet adversary role. It moved to NAS Atlanta in October 1996, and was disestablished on 30 June 2004.[2]

Aircraft assigned[edit]

The squadron operated the following aircraft, with the years received as shown: Douglas A-4 Skyhawk (1971); variants of the LTV A-7 Corsair II: A-7A (1974), A-7B (1977), and A-7E (1983); McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet (1989).[1]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

This article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons.

  1. ^ a b c Grossnick, Roy A. (1995). Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons, Volume 1, Chapter 7, Section 5: Strike Fighter Squadron Histories for VFA-203 to VFA-305. Washington, D.C.: Naval Historical Center, Department of the Navy. Retrieved 2014-02-05. 
  2. ^ a b GlobalSecurity.org. "Fighter Attack Squadron VFA-203". Retrieved 2014-02-05.