Marine Corps Merge Air And Ground Elements
New missions are being launched in the region by the Marine Corps. These new efforts merge the ground and air combat forces to deploy troops more swiftly. The troops are Aero Scouts that can immediately assess and search any area for suspicious activity, and report back their findings very quickly.
“These new missions allows us to keep an awareness of what is out there, and keep our eye on vast areas of ground,” said Captain William Boulware. Captain Boulware is a Marine Heavy Helicopter pilot with Squadron 361. “We are able to compliment and multiply the capability of our elements on the ground to stretch forces to new areas they cant normally reach to patrol,” said Captain Boulware.
Missions flown by Aero Scout Troops normally are done with both fixed wing and rotary aircraft. Fixed Wing F/A 18D Hornet Jet fighters fly above the scene, obtaining information and scouting out the conditions and situation awareness. Then the helicopters swing into action. A Huey UH-1N and Super Cobra AH-1W copters fly and provide reconnaissance and communications. Super Stallion CH- 53E swoop in, delivering troops and bringing up the rear of the flight formation.
“We are on our toes to watch for anything that is out of place, or out of the ordinary that we find,” said Major Keith Pierce. Major Pierce is one of the Huey UH-1N pilots. “The whole simplicity of the operation is part of the beauty of it all, ground forces and aviation elements develop a collective awareness and support each other,” said Major Pierce.