One of the job specialties in the United States Marine Corps that has one of the proudest histories and tradition is the Marine Corps Aviation Support enlisted specialist. Marine Corps Aviation Specialists work on a whole fleet of different aircraft, including AV-8B Harrier Jump Jets, AH-1W Attack Cobra Helicopters, F-18 Fighters, and KC-130 refueling tankers. The Marine Corps relies on its Aviation Support Marines to keep this fleet of aircraft in military readiness for its different military aviation missions.
The United States Marine Corps maintains its own aviation support specialists to keep its fleet in full operational readiness. Aviation Support is a professional rating that trains Marines in various jobs that are vital to combat and flight operations that the Marine Corps participates in. A Combat Aviation element may consist of an aircraft wing, more than one aircraft wing, or a helicopter squadron. The pride and the success of Marine Corps Aviation have been by gritty determination, hard work, and a willingness to revamp areas as new technology becomes available. The United States Marine Corps became the first service in the United States to use the AV-8A Harrier Jump Jet that is built by the United Kingdom.
The British licensed their aircraft for production in the USA by the McDonald Douglas Corporation. The Harrier is a VTOL aircraft, with vertical takeoff, and landing capability. It is a vertical take-off and landing aircraft, and it is used in support of troops on the front line and other types of enemy suppression. The Marine Corps is also on the cutting edge with the new aircraft, the MV-22 tilt-rotor Osprey Aircraft. This is intended to replace the aging but stalwart CH-53A Sea Stallion Helicopter for Marine Corps usage. The Marine Corps was aggressive and refurbished and re-designed its base at Twenty-Nine Palms, California in 1978. It is now designated as an air combat support and combat support training and Marine Corps Operations center.
These types of Aircraft and Marine Corps Personnel have been utilized in a wide variety of missions and launch from military bases and installations based around the world, as well as certain amphibious ships and aircraft carriers Marines involved in aviation and aviation support began to cycle through Twenty Nine Palms for training. This included both ground and air units.