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News: Apache Guardians perform first deck landing qualifications

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AH-64E landing qualifications on USS Peleliu, RIMPAC 2014 Chief Warrant Officer A. Mark Leung

A Task Force Lightning Horse AH-64E Apache Guardian from 1st Battalion, 25th Aviation Regiment, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade, conducts deck landing qualifications, a historical first for the E model of the Apache, on the flight deck of amphibious assault ship USS Peleliu (LHA 5) while underway for Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) Exercise 2014. Twenty-two nations, 49 ships and six submarines, more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel are participating in RIMPAC from June 26 to August 1, in and around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California. The world's largest international maritime exercise, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity that helps participants foster and sustain the cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and security on the world's oceans. RIMPAC 2014 is the 24th exercise in the series that began in 1971. (U.S. Army photo by Chief Warrant Officer 3 Mark Leung, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade/Released)

USS PELELIU, At Sea - AH-64E Apache Guardians from 1st Armed Reconnaissance Battalion, 25th Aviation Regiment, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, conducted deck landing qualifications aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Peleliu (LHA 5) off the coast of Hawaii, July 19, as part of the Navy’s Rim of the Pacific Exercise 2014.

The deck landing qualifications, a first for the E model of the Apache, are one of several maritime training events the Apache unit participated in to take advantage of terrain not available to them in their home station at Fort Carson, Colorado.

According to Chief Warrant Officer 3 Matthew Gottschling, a company instructor pilot with 1-25 ARB, before the deck landing qualifications and other maritime training could take place for the pilots, instructors were trained and certified through the U.S. Army Evaluations and Standards Department.

“With all the deck training, the reason it’s interesting and different is because the Apache is a land-based piece of equipment,” said Gottschling. “By training us how to do the ship landings on a larger ship, it enables us to forward project our force by doing the cross training with the Navy and the Marines.”

A primary goal of the joint training is to build greater maritime flexibility for the Pacific joint commander to utilize when determining capabilities during mission planning.

“It allows us to land on their ships, refuel, rearm and project power further forward as opposed to just being a land-based unit,” Gottschling explained. “It just gives us additional capabilities and additional experience. In the event of conflict, we would be able to deploy our aircraft via a ship to land and be able to operate in a maritime environment.”

This is the first time the E model of the Apache has conducted deck landing qualifications, and the event was even more historical as this is the first time any Apache model has deployed to Hawaii or participated in a Rim of the Pacific exercise.

“We came out here in support of RIMPAC, but also to see how we integrate with the rest of 25th CAB,” said Chief Warrant Officer 2 Ian Corbin-Deutsch, aviation life support equipment officer, 1-25 AVN. “With us being out at Fort Carson, away from our home unit, presented a bunch of challenges and it’s nice to finally be a part of the unit.”

The eight Apaches still have some training ahead of them before returning to Fort Carson. Four of the Apaches are scheduled to push further into the Pacific for the Pacific Pathways exercise. The other four aircraft are scheduled to conduct training at the Pohakuloa Training Area in Hawaii prior to returning to Fort Carson in mid August.


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Public Domain Mark
This work, Apache Guardians perform first deck landing qualifications, by SGT Jessica DuVernay, identified by DVIDS, is free of known copyright restrictions under U.S. copyright law.

Date Taken:07.25.2014

Date Posted:07.25.2014 19:15

Location:USS PELELIU, AT SEA

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