News: MV-22 Osprey billets now available in the Marine Corps Reserves
MARINE CORPS AIR STATION MIRAMAR, Calif.— The phase out of CH-46E Sea Knight helicopters to the MV-22B Ospreys marks the end of a proud era in Marine Corps aviation. Frequently referred to as a game-changer within Marine Corps aviation, the more capable MV-22B Osprey will make its debut at 4th Marine Aircraft Wing.
Early next year the 4th MAW Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron will transition to the first Reserve Component Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron making MV-22B billets available in the Marine Corps Reserve at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar.
It is the intent of the 4th MAW Commanding General Maj. Gen. Rex McMillian to recruit the “best and brightest of those MV-22 qualified Marine pilots and maintainers who are approaching the end of their active service. We want those hard chargers to stay Marine.” The billets these highly trained Marines can fill will become available as Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 764, located at Edwards Air Force Base, moves to Marine Corps Air Station Miramar at the end of the year. As part of the aviation transition plan, the squadron is scheduled to receive its first MV-22B in the spring of 2013.
According to McMillian the purpose of this is to augment and reinforce the active component with an operational aircraft wing under a Total Force construct. The co-location of VMM-764 at Miramar will allow 4th MAW to accomplish this via daily direct support to 1st Marine Expeditionary Force, 1st Division, 3rd MAW and 1st Marine Logistics Group. VMM-764 will be in a ideal position to build and maintain relationships with the active component and be a shock absorber for daily-near-mid and long-term aviation support operations.
“As an Osprey squadron, we (VMM-764) want to capitalize on growing Reserve component manpower at Miramar and we want to provide opportunity for continued service for MV-22 Osprey trained and qualified personnel, both officer and enlisted, transitioning from the active component to the Reserve component,” said Lt. Col. James P. Edmunds, commanding officer of 4th MAW Site Support Miramar who is also a MV-22 pilot.
Depending on their current military occupational specialty, the maintenance and aircrew Marines will go through Marine Medium Tiltrotor Training Squadron 204, the Fleet Replacement Squadron, for their required training.
“We’ll join anybody who wants to join the squadron and has the qualifications and the MOS,” said Edmunds. There are already a number of former F/A-18 and CH-46E maintainers through the training program and they are currently serving alongside their active duty contemporaries at VMMT-204 while waiting for VMM-764 and VMM-774 to stand up.
“The range of MOSs associated with the squadron varies from aviation ordinance and administrative positions to aircrew, maintenance crew, and pilots.” said Edmunds.
The 4th MAW is continuing to staff VMM-764 with qualified pilots. Marine Administrative Message 280/12, released May 22 announces the upcoming selection board on June 25 to select three primary candidates and three alternate candidates for the naval aviator openings within VMM-764. This is the second selection board and more will be announced via MARADMIN in the coming months. 4th MAW has already welcomed three Reserve pilots who currently serve at VMMT-204 as instructor pilots awaiting the VMM-764 stand up.
As the first of two Reserve squadrons converting to VMMs, there will be a limited number of highly competitive positions available in the immediate future. However, HMM-774 is slated to transition to a VMM in 2016 and more opportunities will become available to transition additional Marines over the next couple years.
See MARADMIN 280/12 for information on the criteria of the selection board. The application deadline is June 18.
For opportunities available within VMM-764, and other 4th MAW squadrons please contact the 4th MAW Recruiting and Retention Officer in Charge, Lt. Col. David Trombly at (401)323-7742 or Maj Alvin Bell at (504) 697-7788. Additional information is available at the 4th MAW website: http://www.marines.mil/unit/marforres/4thMAW/Pages/recruiting.aspx