AUGUST 08, 2012 PRESS RELEASE #: 2012-011
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Golden Falcons Return to Naval Air Station North Island
By Lt. j.g. Amanda McNally, HSC-12 Public Affairs
San Diego - The “Golden Falcons” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 12 will arrive at Naval Air Station North Island Thursday, 9 Aug, after a three day cross country flight culminating their return from an eight-month deployment aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72).
HSC-12’s deployment with CVN 72 took them around the world, departing Naval Air Station North Island on December 12 and returning to Naval Station Norfolk in August, with six months spent in the 5th Fleet Area of Responsibility (AOR) in support of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF).
“I’m exceedingly proud of what our team accomplished over the past 8 months. Almost 4,000 flight hours flown in a true around the world deployment,” said Cmdr. Christopher Bailey, HSC-12’s Commanding Officer. “We had the highest sortie completion rate in the entire air wing, a credit to the hard work and dedication of the finest squadron in the Navy. Most importantly, we took care of each other; everyone is coming home safely to their loved ones. In my eyes, that makes this a successful deployment.”
The hard work and diligence of every member of the Golden Falcon team ensured the helicopters of HSC-12 were the first airborne and the last to land each day. The Golden Falcons flew over 3,900 hours and 1,100 sorties, of which 2,500 hours were flown in support of OEF.
“I’m also extremely proud of the other side of the Golden Falcon family,” said Bailey. “All of our spouses, children, parents, and friends who kept things together at home while we were out here doing what we love. I’m very much looking forward to homecoming so I can say thank you in person.”
In addition to flying plane guard for every fixed wing sortie, HSC-12 provided Vertical Replenishment (VERTREP) in the 3rd, 5th, 6th, and 7th Fleet AORs. The squadron operated with a Combat Logistics Force detachment aboard the Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship USNS Charles Drew (T-AKE 10), which deployed in November, and had multiple training detachments as opportunities arose.
In March, HSC-12 celebrated their 60th anniversary, making them the oldest rotory-wing squadron in the Navy. The Golden Falcons continued to bring great pride upon the squadron when they received the Sikorsky Maintenance Excellence Award for 2011 and the Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 2 Golden Wrench Award for the first line period of 2012.
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