hmm-161 greyhawks - seaforces online

HOME | US Navy - ships | US Navy - air units | USMC - air units | International Navies | Weapon Systems | Special Reports

 
 
US Marine Corps - Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 161
HMM-161 'Greyhawks'
former Marine Light Helicopter Transport Squadron 161 / HMR(L)-161
former Marine Helicopter Transport Squadron 161 / HMR-161
 
hmm-161 greyhawks insignia crest patch badge marine medium helicopter squadron usmc 02x hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46 sea knight usmc 02x
 01/20
STATUS:   established as Marine Helicopter Transport Squadron 161 (HMR-161) on January 15, 1951
HMR-161 redesignated HMR(L)-161 on December 31, 1956
HMR(L)-161 redesignated HMM-161 in February 1962
HMM-161 redesignated VMM-161 in December 2009
 
Motto:
EQUITATUS CAELI - cavalry from the sky
 AIRCRAFT:   Sikorsky HRS-1/2 (1951-60)
Sikorsky UH-34 (HUS-1) (1960-66)
Boeing Vertol CH-46A/D/E Sea Knight (1966-2009)
 DEPLOYMENTS:   June 1986 - December 1986 with 13th Marine Amphibious Unit (MAU) aboard USS Tarawa (LHA 1)
January 1989 - June 1989 with 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) aboard USS Belleau Wood (LHA 3)
May 1992 - November 1992 with 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) aboard USS Tarawa (LHA 1)
October 1994 - April 1995 with 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) aboard USS Essex (LHD 2)
March 1997 - September 1997 with 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) aboard USS Boxer (LHD 4)
August 2000 - February 2001 with 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU )aboard USS Tarawa (LHA 1)
January 2003 - July 2003 with 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) aboard USS Tarawa (LHA 1)
 
+ various shore based deployments (see history below)
 
images

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46e sea knight usmc 08 operation iraqi freedom
CH-46E Sea Knight (HMM-161) during Operation Iraqi Freedom - June 2004

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46e sea knight usmc 09 iraqi freedom
CH-46E Sea Knight (HMM-161) during Operation Iraqi Freedom - June 2004

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46e sea knight usmc 07 mcas miramar california
CH-46E Sea Knights (HMM-161) at MCAS Miramar, California - February 2001

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46e sea knight usmc 06 operation desert shield
CH-46E Sea Knight (HMM-161) during Operation Desert Shield - 1992

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46e sea knight usmc 02 jubail airport saudi arabia desert storm
CH-46E Sea Knight (HMM-161) at Jubail Airport, Saudi Arabia -  Operation Desert Storm - 1991

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46e sea knight usmc 04 operation desert storm iraq
CH-46E Sea Knight (HMM-161) during Operation Desert Storm - 1991

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46e sea knight usmc 05
CH-46E Sea Knight (HMM-161) at Jubail Airport, Saudi Arabia -  Operation Desert Storm - 1991

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46e sea knight usmc 03 uss belleau wood lha-3
CH-46E Sea Knight (HMM-161) aboard USS Belleau Wood (LHA 3) - 1989

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46e sea knight usmc 12
CH-46E Sea Knight (HMM-161) - 1988

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46e sea knight usmc 11
caliber .50 door gunner on a CH-46E Sea Knight (HMM-161) - 1988

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46d sea knight usmc 10
CH-46D Sea Knight (HMM-161) - 1981

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46a sea knight usmc 17 vietnam war
CH-46A Sea Knight (HMM-161) - Vietnam War

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46a sea knight usmc 16 vietnam war
CH-46A Sea Knight (HMM-161) - Vietnam War

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46a sea knight usmc 14 vietnam war
CH-46A Sea Knight (HMM-161) - Vietnam War

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron ch-46a sea knight usmc 15
CH-46 Sea Knight (HMM-161) - Vietnam War


hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron uh-34d usmc 18 vietnam war 1965
UH-34D (HMM-161) during Operation Starlight - Vietnam War - 1965

hmm-161 greyhawks marine medium helicopter squadron uh-34d hus-1 sikorsky usmc 13 vietnam war
UH-34D - formerly HUS-1 (HMM-161) on Oahu, Hawaii


HMR-161 (1951-56)
HMR(L)-161 (1957-62)

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-2 usmc 21 korean war
Sikorsky HRS-2 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - 1953

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 05
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - 1953

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 02 inchon beach korea
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) at Inchon Beach, South Korea - 1952

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 06 uss sicily cve-118
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) over USS Sicily (CVE 118) - off Inchon, South Korea - 1952

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 06a
excerpt

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 03 uss sicily cve-118
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) approaches USS Sicily (CVE 118) - Korean War - 1952

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 08 korean war
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 10
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - 1952

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 11 korean war
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - 1952

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 20
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - 1952

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 09
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - 1952

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 13
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - November 1951

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 16 operation bumblebee
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) during Operation Bumblebee - Korean War - October 1951

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 12 uss sitko bay cve-86
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) aboard USS Sitko Bay (CVL 86) - September 1951

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 15
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) during a medical evacuation (MEDEVAC) - 1951

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 07
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - 1951

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 23
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 32
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 25
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 usmc 31
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 29
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 26 korean war
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 24
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 27 korean war
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 34
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 28
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 33
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 18
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 04
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 19
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 30
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 22
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaw (HMR-161) - Korean War - undated

hmr-161 greyhawks marine helicopter transport squadron sikorsky hrs-1 chickasaw usmc 14a camp pendleton california
Sikorsky HRS-1 Chickasaws (HMR-161) over Camp Pendleton, California - 1951
     
 
history
Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 161 (HMM-161) was commissioned on 15 January 1951 at MCAS El Toro, California as Marine Helicopter Transport Squadron 161 (HMR-161), the Marine Corps’ FIRST tactical helicopter squadron. Moving to Santa Ana, California the following month, HMR-161 began to receive and train with their new aircraft, the Sikorsky HRS-1.

Deploying to Korea in August of 1951, HMR-161 operated on the west central and western fronts as the FIRST Marine helicopter squadron to deploy troops in combat. HMR-161 conducted the first tactical helicopter troop lift in history on 21 September 1951 and the first night troop lift on 28 September. In Korea, the FIRST was a leader in night and marginal weather operations, starting a legacy of support to Marines on the ground that has continued for over fifty five years.

Following the Korean War, the squadron was relocated to Kaneohe bay, Hawaii in March 1955 where it continued to develop and exercise the beginnings of our current air-ground concept.

On 31 December 1956, the squadron was re-designated Marine Transport Squadron (Light) 161 (HMR(L)-161). Beginning in May of 1960, the squadron received the new Sikorsky H-34 helicopter. In February of 1962, the squadron was re-designated as Helicopter as Helicopter Marine Medium 161 (HMM-161) and continued anti-guerilla training in prepration for contingency operations in Vietnam.

During May of 1965, HMM-161 deployed to Phu Bai in the Republic of Vietnam, participating in numerous combat operations until redeploying out of Vietnam to MCAS Futenma, Okinawa. The squadron remained there until January 1966 to receive its new and current aircraft type, the Boeing Vertol CH-46 “Sea Knight,” affectionately referred to as the “PHROG.”

From Futenma, HMM-161 returned to the Republic of Vietnam in 1966, operating from Da Nang and then Phu Bai until being relocated in December of 1966 to MCAS(H) New River, North Carolina. HMM-161 deployed a third time to Vietnam during May of 1968, operating first from Quang Tri and then from Phu Bai until September of 1970. The squadron then returned to its first home, Santa Ana, California.

On 29 August 1978, HMM-161 became the FIRST helicopter squadron to deploy to MCAS Futenma, Okinawa under the Unit Deployment Program (UDP). The squadron returned to MCAS(H) Tustin, California on 28 February 1979. HMM-161 made three more UDP deployments to Okinawa in the early 1980s: September 1980 to February 1981, September 1982 to February 1983, and August 1984 to February 1985.

In 1986, HMM-161 entered into the Marine Amphibious (later Expeditionary) Unit training and deployment cycle, making a first Western Pacific (WestPac) Deployment embarked aboard the USS TARAWA from 19 June 1986 to 19 December 1986. On 8 October 1987, HMM-161 embarked a detachment aboard the USS OKINAWA to the Arabian Gulf, returning on 6 April 1988. And, on 12 January 1989, HMM-161 embarked aboard the USS BELLEAU WOOD for another WestPac deployment, returning on 18 June 1989. In August 1989, HMM-161 deployed a detachment on the USS DULUTH to Prince William Sound, Alaska, in support of the Exxon Valdez oil spill clean up operations, returning on 18 June 1989. On 17 August 1990, HMM-161 deployed to Saudi Arabia for Operation DESERT SHIELD. The squadron flew numerous combat missions in support of U.S. and Allied Forces during Operations DESERT SHIELD and DESERT STORM, returning to Tustin on 14 March 1991.

After the Gulf War, HMM-161 returned to the MEU cycle, completing deployments aboard the USS TARAWA from March to November 1992 and aboard the USS ESSEX from October 1994 to April 1995. Additionally, from 29 January 1995 to 4 March 1995, HMM-161 participated in Operation UNITED SHIELD in Somalia.

On 24 March 1997, HMM-161 embarked aboard the USS BOXER for another MEU deployment, which included combat missions in support of Operation SOUTHERN WATCH, enforcing the “No Fly Zone” in Southern Iraq. The squadron returned to El Toro on 23 September 1997.

HMM-161 completed another MEU deployment embarked aboard the USS TARAWA from 14 August 2000 to 14 February 2001. During this deployment, the Greyhawks supported humanitarian assistance operations in East Timor and Operation DETERMINED RESPONSE in Yemen following the terrorist attack on the USS COLE. For its performance from 1 May 2000 to 30 April 2001, HMM-161 earned the Marine Corps Aviation Association’s Edward C. Dyer Award as the Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron of the Year for 2001.

HMM-161 embarked aboard the USS TARAWA for another MEU deployment on 6 January 2003, arriving in the Arabian Gulf to participate in Operation IRAQI FREEDOM I under the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force. As part of the 15th MEU, the Greyhawks conducted the assault on the port of Umm Qasr in the opening hours of the invasion of Iraq and remained in theater conducting various combat missions from March to June 2003, returning to Miramar on 12 July 2003.

Following an abbreviated work-up, HMM-161 returned to Iraq in February 2004 for Operation IRAQI FREEDOM II where the Greyhawks served as the primary Casualty Evacuation (CASEVAC) and VIP squadron for I MEF based at Al Taqqadum, Iraq. The Greyhawks returned to California on 6 September 2004. For its performance in OIF I and OIF II, HMM-161 was again recognized as the Marine Corps Aviation Association’s Edward C. Dyer Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron of the Year for 2004.

In August 2005, the squadron again deployed in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. The Greyhawks provided around the clock CASEVAC and helicopter Assault Support in the Al Anbar Province flying some 5,100 combat hours and maintaining a perfect mission and safety record. The squadron returned from Iraq on 4 March 2006 and was subsequently awarded the CNO Safety Award and the Marine Corps Association’s 2006 Commandant’s Aviation Award.

The Greyhawks were called upon yet again to deploy to Al Taqaddum, Iraq in February 2007; the fourth deployment in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. The squadron continued the 24-hour CASEVAC and Helicopter Assault Support mission for the Marines of II MEF. The “BELL” was silent during the 15 September 2007 Transfer of Authority as HMM-161 was the last Marine squadron to perform the dedicated CASEVAC mission in Al Anbar. The squadron had completed a flawless deployment flying over 5,100 combat flight hours, performing 945 CASEVAC missions, and executing every task without aircraft damage due to mishap or enemy action.

September 2008 saw the Greyhawks deployed in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM 08.2 in Al Taqaddum, Iraq and Al Asad Airbase. The squadron was again awarded the Marine Corps Aviation Association’s Edward C. Dyer Award as the Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron of the Year for 2009, the Pete Ross Aviation Safety Award and its seventh consecutive CNO Safety Award. The Greyhawk’s return to MCAS Miramar on 14 April 2009 marked the bittersweet end to HMM-161’s illustrious history as a Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron, and began the transition to the first West Coast Marine Medium Tilt-Rotor Squadron; VMM-161.

VMM-161 completed its transition to the MV-22 Osprey and became a fully functional tiltrotor squadron in April 2011.

source: USMC

- - - - -

another history:


Korean War:
The squadron was activated on January 15, 1951 at Marine Corps Air Station El Toro, California, as Marine Helicopter Transport Squadron 161 (HMR-161) Air Fleet Marine Force Pacific, the squadron moved a month later to Marine Corps Air Facility, Santa Ana, California to train on their new helicopter, the Sikorsky HRS-1. Except for the commanding officer, LtCol George Herring, most pilots in the squadron had flown fighters during World War II. In August 1951 the squadron deployed to Korea and attached to the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing (1 MAW), where it operated in the central and the western fronts.

After becoming the first helicopter squadron to deploy troops into combat, HMR-161 successfully flew from the USS Sicily (CVE-118) to test new concept of combining vertical envelopment with amphibious assault during Operation "Marlex-5" off the coast of Inchon on September 1, 1952. While not the first ever ship to shore helicopter flight with Marines aboard, that having been done by HMR-162 during Operation Lex Baker off the coast of Southern California in February, 1952, it was the first on foreign shores. During the course of the Korean War, HMR-161 flew 16,538 hours during 18,607 sorties eventually accounting for over 60,000 troop movements and moving 7.5 million pounds of cargo. The Greyhawks then participated in the defense of the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) from July 1953 to March 1955. The Squadron then relocated that month to Marine Corps Air Station Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii, and attached to Marine Aircraft Group 13 (MAG 13). While in Hawaii, HMR-161 was redesignated on December 31, 1956 as Marine Helicopter Transport Squadron (Light) 161 (HMR(L)-161), MAG 13, 1st MAW. In May 1960, the Squadron received the new Sikorsky H-34 Seahorse.

On February 1, 1962, the unit was once again re-designated as Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 161 (HMM-161), MAG 13, 1st Marine Brigade. On October 3, 1962 the Greyhawks assisted NASA by recovering astronaut Wally Schirra and his Mercury Capsule "Friendship Seven" out of the Pacific after a successful launch into space.

During 1963, Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 161 (HMM-161) assisted in several biological warfare tests conducted under Project SHAD at Pearl Harbor, Kaneohe Naval Air Station and in the Pacific Ocean, near Oahu, Hawaii.

The rest of the early 1960s were spent conducting anti-guerrilla training in preparation for deployment to Vietnam.

Vietnam War and the 1980s:
HMM-161 deployed in May 1965 to Phu Bai Combat Base, Republic of Vietnam and attached to MAG-16, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing. It then relocated in January 1966 to Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, Okinawa to receive its new Vertol CH-46 Sea Knight. By April 1966, the Greyhawks had redeployed to Da Nang, Republic of Vietnam with a move to Phu Bai that June. On September 25, 1966 a UH-34D HUS from HMM-161 was struck by a friendly artillery shell while conducting a medevac mission during Operation Prairie resulting in the death all five Marines on board. It is the only known case of friendly artillery fire shooting down an American helicopter during the war. The squadron relocated once again in November 1966 to Futenma, Okinawa, where it was attached to Marine Aircraft Group 15 (MAG-15), 9th Marine Amphibious Brigade. A month later the Greyhawks returned to CONUS, as they were attached to Marine Aircraft Group 26 (MAG-26), 2d MAW at Marine Corps Air Station New River, North Carolina. HMM-161 then redeployed in May 1968 to Quảng Trị Combat Base, Republic of Vietnam and attached to provisional Marine Aircraft Group 39 (MAG-39), 1st MAW. The Squadron finished its Vietnam years with its final deployment to Phu Bai in October 1969 while attached to MAG-16, 1st MAW.

HMM-161 came home in September 1970 and attached to MAG-56, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, Fleet Marine Force Pacific. It was reassigned in July 1971 to MAG-16, 3d MAW. Elements of the Squadron participated in the August 1989 cleanup of the Exxon Valdez oil spill in Prince William Sound, Alaska.

The Gulf War and the 1990s:
In 1990 they deployed on August 17 to Saudi Arabia as part of MAG-70, 7th Marine Expeditionary Brigade in support of Operation Desert Shield. The squadron would eventually participate in Operation Desert Storm in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. In 1995, they participated in Operation United Shield, the withdrawal of United Nations Forces from Somalia. By the end of the year, the unit had relocated to MCAS El Toro, California. In 1997, the Greyhawks deployed in March aboard the USS Boxer to the WESTPAC and Persian Gulf as the ACE for the 15th MEU(SOC), where they flew missions in support of Operation Southern Watch in Iraq. In February 1999, HMM-161 moved from MCAS El Toro to MCAS Miramar, California.

Global War on Terror (GWOT):
The new millennium began well for the Squadron, as it won the Edward C. Dyer Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron of the Year for 2001. This followed the 2000 WESTPAC Deployment, which saw the Greyhawks provide humanitarian assistance in East Timor. On January 6, 2003, HMM-161 (Rein) deployed as a part of the 15th MEU for a WESTPAC Float that would end up supporting Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. The Greyhawks were assigned the mission of Tactical Recovery of Aircraft and Personnel (TRAP). Although no TRAP missions were necessary during the OIF, the Squadron did fly Casevac and numerous other missions. The Squadron returned home to MCAS Miramar on July 12, 2003.

In November 2003, Marines of HMM-161 were told they would be redeploying to Iraq for Operation Iraqi Freedom II (OIF II). Immediate preparations were begun, and the Squadron used its December deployment to Indian Springs, Nevada to train for the conditions that would be faced during OIF II. While at Indian Springs, the Marines of HMM-161 made their mark in Squadron history by surpassing the 40,000 mishap-free flight hours plateau. This climb into the history books began back in August 1995 and culminated with a ground crew appreciation flight over the Hoover Dam and the Las Vegas Strip.

After receiving its cargo and aircraft at Ash Shu'aybah Port, Kuwait, the Squadron flew up to Al Taqaddum, Iraq during the first week of March to set up for the relief in place with the 82nd Airborne Brigade. The Squadron made 752 consecutive mission launches in support of I MEF operations during OIF II, logging 3072.8 hours of flight time. The Greyhawks were relieved on September 1, 2004 by HMM-268 with the main body arriving back at MCAS Miramar on September 6. Throughout their service during OIF II, the Greyhawks moved 116,480 pounds of cargo and 2,929 passengers, including 328 patients that needed urgent care.

In August 2005, the squadron redeployed to Iraq for its third OIF deployment. The Greyhawks provided around-the-clock casualty evacuation and assault support in Al Anbar Province. During this deployment, the squadron flew 5,199 combat flight hours, transported more than 2,100 wounded personnel and conducted 19 raids and assault support missions that led to the capture of numerous insurgents. The Greyhawks safely completing 2,999 assault support requests without mishap or damage from enemy action.

On February 8, 2006, HMM-161 marked their 50,000th flight hour without a Class "A" mishap during their latest deployment to Al Taqaddum, Iraq. During this time period, which began February 19, 1995, the squadron flew 9,100 combat hours during three combat deployments.

The squadron returned from its third OIF deployment on March 4, 2006. Following the deployment the squadron was awarded its fourth consecutive Chief of Naval Operations Safety Award and the Marine Corps Aviation Association's 2006 Commandant's Aviation Award in recognition as the year's best overall performance by a Marine squadron.

On February 3, 2007, HMM-161 embarked upon its fourth combat deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and the Global War on Terror by sending a small advance party back to Al Taqaddum, Iraq to prepare for the arrival of the Squadron's Main Body on March 1. The Greyhawks officially resumed their role in Casualty Evacuations and General Support on March 9, 2007.

On September 24, HMM-161 returned from Al Taqaddum, Iraq, with their CASEVAC bell, the symbol of their mission in the area. They took the bell with them instead of leaving it for the next squadron because the mission of CASEVAC had been temporarily turned over to the soldiers of an Army Blackhawk detachment on the same base.

As of the end of the deployment, the squadron is at a record of over 58,000 class A mishap free flight hours total. This achievement is unable to be surpassed by any other CH-46E squadron due to the fact the new MV-22 Osprey will be replacing the CH-46E, and no other squadron has a record close enough to the Greyhawks' that they would be able to beat it.

In December 2009, HMM-161 became the first of ten west coast squadrons to transition to the MV-22 Osprey and changed their name to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 161 during the change of command.

source: wikipedia
 
 
 
patches + more

hmm-161 greyhawks insignia crest patch badge marine medium helicopter squadron usmc 02c

 hmm-161 greyhawks insignia crest patch badge marine medium helicopter squadron usmc 03c
hmm-161 greyhawks insignia crest patch badge marine medium helicopter squadron usmc 02p  hmm-161 greyhawks insignia crest patch badge marine medium helicopter squadron usmc 03p

hmm-161 greyhawks insignia crest patch badge marine medium helicopter squadron usmc 04c  hmm-161 greyhawks insignia crest patch badge marine medium helicopter squadron usmc 05c
 
 
| seaforces.org | US Marine Corps Air units start page |