Marine Corps Air Station New River

Coordinates: 34°42′26″N 077°26′43″W / 34.70722°N 77.44528°W / 34.70722; -77.44528
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Marine Corps Air Station New River
McCutcheon Field
Near Jacksonville, North Carolina in the United States
CH-53E Super Stallion and MV-22B Osprey aircraft on the flight-line at MCAS New River.
MCAS New River is located in the United States
MCAS New River
MCAS New River
Location in the United States
Coordinates34°42′26″N 077°26′43″W / 34.70722°N 77.44528°W / 34.70722; -77.44528
TypeMarine Corps Air Station
Site information
OwnerDepartment of Defense
OperatorUS Marine Corps
Controlled byMarine Corps Installations – East
ConditionOperational Edit this at Wikidata
Site history
Built1943 (1943)
In use1943 – present
Garrison information
Colonel Garth W. Burnett
Garrison2nd Marine Aircraft Wing
Airfield information
IdentifiersICAO: KNCA, FAA LID: NCA, WMO: 723096
Elevation7.9 metres (26 ft) AMSL
Direction Length and surface
5/23 1,562.7 metres (5,127 ft) Asphalt
1/19 1,459.6 metres (4,789 ft) Asphalt
Source: Federal Aviation Administration[1]

Marine Corps Air Station New River (ICAO: KNCA, FAA LID: NCA) is a United States Marine Corps helicopter and tilt-rotor base in Jacksonville, North Carolina, in the eastern part of the state. In 1972, the airfield was named McCutcheon Field for General Keith B. McCutcheon, one of the fathers of Marine Corps helicopter aviation.[2] Near Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, it shares some facilities with Camp Geiger.


The base was originally 29 parcels of land, a simple stretch of tobacco farm that was purchased for $64,502 in 1941. Officials at Camp Lejeune investigated the area in search of an existing airfield for hosting aircraft in support of amphibious operations. Capt. Barnett Robinson, a member of Marine Glider Group 71, concluded in his search that the farmland would suit the Marine Corps’ needs.

The location was placed under the command of Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune and received its first squadron, VMSB-331 from Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point on March 9, 1943. On June 1, VMSB-331 was divided in half to create VMSB-332. However, both squadrons were soon after relocated to Bogue Field. From mid-1943 through August 1944, Marine bombing squadrons VMB-433, VMB-443 and VMB-612 operating the land-based PBJ Mitchell bomber were stationed there. On April 26, 1944, the area of land around New River and Peterfield Point, named after the original owner of the farmland that was part of the government purchase, was commissioned Marine Corps Auxiliary Airfield Camp Lejeune. This delineated the airfield from Camp Lejeune, and marks its official birth as a separate Marine Corps installation. Over the next few years, paratrooper Marines, glider troops and air delivery personnel were trained in King Air hangar, the Stations’ first hangar, which was transported from Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, South Carolina.

As World War II came to an end, MCAAF Camp Lejeune was closed and reverted to caretaker status as an outlying airfield of MCAS Cherry Point. This did not last long, however, as in 1951 the installation was reactivated and became Marine Corps Air Facility Peterfield Point, Camp Lejeune. Only one year later the name was changed again, this time to Marine Corps Air Facility New River. July 1954 marked the arrival of the first operational Marine Aircraft Group, MAG-26, which was transferred from MCAS Cherry Point.

From right, a V-22 Osprey, a CH-53E Super Stallion, a CH-46 Sea Knight, a UH-1N Huey, and an AH-1 Cobra fly in formation over Marine Corps Air Station New River, North Carolina, March 18, 2008.

The area faced another major name change in 1968, where it was recommissioned as Marine Corps Air Station (Helicopter) New River, marking its growth from a small training area to a major operational airfield.

In 2015, MCAS New River hosted the Global Rallycross racing series on Independence Day weekend.[3] The race weekend was expanded to two rounds in 2016,[4] but did not return for the 2017 season.[5]

In January 2022, HMH-461 became the first operational unit in the Marine Corps to replace its CH-53E Super Stallion with the upgraded CH-53K King Stallion.[6]

MV-22 Osprey[edit]

The Air Station was the first Marine Corps base with the new MV-22 Osprey. It has the ability to fly like a plane, and take off and land like a helicopter. The MV-22 has replaced all of the CH-46E Sea Knights on the east coast with the exception of HMX-1 and HMM-774. Currently there are six operational Osprey squadrons, VMM-261, VMM-263, VMM-162, VMM-365, VMM-266, and VMMT-204.

Based units[edit]

Flying and notable non-flying units based at MCAS New River.[7][8]


Residents are zoned to schools of the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA).[9] Delalio Elementary School, the sole school on the property,[10] serves residents of the air station, while Brewster Middle School and Lejeune High School in Camp Lejeune serve the community for secondary school.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Airport Diagram – New River MCAS Mc Cutcheon Fld (KNCA)" (PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. 18 June 2020. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  2. ^ "Field Named For McCutcheon" (PDF). Naval Aviation News. Washington D.C.: Naval Historical Center. September 1972. p. 42. Retrieved 2021-08-01.
  3. ^ Jordan, Dave; Cardin, Rachael (July 3, 2016). "MCAS New River hosts Red Bull Global Rallycross". WITN-TV. Retrieved December 8, 2016.
  4. ^ "GRC race preview: MCAS New River". July 1, 2016. Retrieved December 8, 2016.
  5. ^ Wilde, Dominik (February 2, 2017). "Red Bull GRC announce 2017 schedule". The Checkered Flag. Retrieved August 9, 2017.
  6. ^ Jennings, Gareth (27 January 2022). "USMC stands up first operational CH-53K unit". Retrieved 27 January 2022.
  7. ^ Kaminski, Tom (2019). "Aircraft of the US Marine Corps". US Navy & Marine Corps Air Power Yearbook 2019. Key Publishing. pp. 88–99.
  8. ^ "MCAS New River Units". MCAS New River. US Marine Corps. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  9. ^ "2020 CENSUS - SCHOOL DISTRICT REFERENCE MAP: Onslow County, NC" (PDF). U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 2022-07-05. - Text list - "Camp Lejeune Schools" refers to the DoDEA schools.
  10. ^ "DeLalio ES: About Our School". Delalio Elementary School. Retrieved 2022-07-05.
  11. ^ "Camp Lejeune Community Schools Attendance Areas" (PDF). Department of Defense Education Activity. Retrieved 2022-07-05.


External links[edit]