Fly off the USS Independence again in this RA-5c model of the RVAH-9 Hoot Owls. Each model is carefully carved from wood and painted to provide a unique piece of art you’ll be proud to show off. 18 inches
RVAH-9 was a Reconnaissance Attack (Heavy) Squadron of the U.S. Navy. Originally established as Composite Squadron Nine (VC-9) on 15 January 1953, it was redesignated as Heavy Attack Squadron Nine (VAH-9) on 1 November 1955 and was redesignated as Reconnaissance Attack (Heavy) Squadron Nine (RVAH-9) on 3 June 1964. The squadron was disestablished on 30 September 1977.
RVAH-9 was originally commissioned as VC-9 on 15 January
1953. At this time, Squadron aircraft consisted of two TEN
Avengers and a P2V Neptune. The total personnel complement was
60. 0- 0 ^VC-9 was responsible for the Navy’s first aerial refueling
operation, tanking F-2H Banshees from the USS MIDWAY. Refueling
was accomplished utilizing the new AJ Savage received in
April 1953. Although doubling as a tanker squadron, VC – 9’s
primary mission consisted of high altitude bombing. The Squadron,
homeported in Sanford, Florida, deployed aboard the
aircraft carriers HORNET, CORAL SEA, and RANDOLPH.
In November 1955 the official designation of Composite
Squadron NINE (VC-9) was changed to Heavy Attack Squadron NINE
(VAH-9). During December – May 1955 VAH-9 made her maiden Med
cruise aboard the USS TICONDEROGA.
In January 1957 VAH-9 received its first A3D “SKYWARRIOR.!
Flying the “Whale” off the USS SARATOGA, VAH-9 assisted the
SIXTH Fleet in logging a record 710 hours during the 1958
Lebanon Crisis. In a subsequent cruise with the SARATOGA,
Heavy NINE flew a total of 2700 hours, averaging 33 hours per
• After five Med cruises with the SARATOGA, VAH-9 transitioned
from the A3D to the A-5. In April 1964, the first RA-5C
was received and the next month the Squadron was redesignated
to RVAH-9. The Squadron deployed aboard SARATOGA.in December
1964 for another Med cruise.
In October 1965 RVAH-9 deployed aboard USS RANGER for a
WESTPAC combat cruise. The Squadron flew 480 missions from
16 January to 6 August, including pre-strike reconnaissance and
bomb damage assessment in South and North Vietnam. The 1967
Med cruise aboard the SARATOGA was highlighted by one of the
first RA-5C translant operations as four of the Squadron’s
aircraft flew from Rota, Spain to Sanford, Florida.
In 1968 RVAH-9 changed homeport to Albany, Georgia, and made
another WESTPAC cruise aboard the RANGER. Encountering severe
winter weather, this cruise was, nonetheless, a resounding success.
After accomplishing all assigned tasks, the “HOOTERS”
returned home to NAS Albany in May 1969.
The Squadron then joined USS SARATOGA/CVW-3 for Mediterranean
cruises in 1970 and 1971 including an initial CV deployment.
Inherent in this concept was the shore basing of RVAH-9 at Naval
Station Rota, Spain. The split ship/shore basing at Rota was
duplicated on the next deployment while RVAH-9 was assigned to
‘,.nuary 197 4 , the .,gain changed homeport to
Key West, Florida. During the same year, RVAH-9 operated in
the Mediterranean with the USS INDEPENDENCE/CVW-7.
In May 1975, RECONATRON NINE participated in Operation
Solid Shield aboard the SARATOGA with CVW-3. In June, the
Hooters deployed with the USS NIMITZ for initial ship training
and a North Atlantic cruise.
January 1976 found the Squadron again aboard USS NIMITZ
for carrier qualifications, type training, and ORE. In May,
RVAH-9 participated in Operation Solid Shield, and in July,
the Squadron joined the USS NIMITZ for her maiden cruise to
the Mediterranean. The Hooters returned seven months later
with six crewmembers designated as “NIMITZ Centurions.”
During the period 7 . February 1977 – 30 September 1977,
RVAH-9 was shorebased at NAS Key West, Florida. The Squadron
flew a variety of operational and training missions accounting
for more than 500 flight hours. These missions included: a
photographic correlation mission over Panama City, Florida,
for the Environmental Resources Institute, photography of
training routes in Virginia for MATWING 1, and tasked training
missions for TRAEX-77. RVAH-9 was disestablished on 30
September 1977 in accordance with CNO message 1215302 JUL 77.
RECONNAISSANCE ATTACK SQUADRON NINE
Commander F. G. GOODING Jan 53 – Sep 54
Commander W. 2. LEMOS Sep 54 – Sep 56
Commander J. M. MILLER Sep 56 – Jul 57
Commander W. R. HAZLET Jul 57 – Oct 58
Commander F. L. HARRIS Oct 58 – Oct 59
Commander E. P. YATES Oct 59 – Jul 60
Commander S. R. JOHNSON Jul 60 – Jun 61
Commander T. A. WAGNER Jun 61 – Jul 62
Commander George W. KIMMONS Jul 62 – May 63
Commander J. L. SHIPMAN May 63 – Jun 64
Commander J. A. deGANAHL Jun 64 – Jun 65
Commander Charles J. YOUNGBLADE Jun 65 – Jun 66
Commander Don M. SULLIVAN Jun 66 Jun 67
Commander Richard S. HOPPER Jun 67 – Jun 68
Commander Clifford E. THOMPSON Jun 68 – Jul 69
Commander Courtland D. BALL III Jul 69 – Jul 70
Commander William F. MEYER Jul 70 – Jul 71
Commander Gunnar F. WILSTER Jul 71 – Mar 72
Commander Joseph W. HOOD Mar 72 – Apr 73
Commander Murl E. RUSTED, Jr. Apr 73 – May 74
Commander Albert J. PERRELLA, Jr. May 74 – Apr 75
Commander James L. HARRE Apr 75 – Apr 76
Commander Michael H. MADDEN Apr 76 Jul 77
Commander Thomas A. MYERS Jul 77 – Sep 79