VA-125 Rough Raiders A-7 Tailflash
A hand crafted 20 inch Tailflash plaque of the VA-125 Rough Raiders A-7.
Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Volume 1:
Established as Attack Squadron TWENTY SIX (VA-26) on 30 June 1956. Redesignated Attack Squadron ONE HUNDRED TWENTY FIVE (VA-125) on 11 April 1958. Disestablished on 1 October 1977. The second
squadron to be assigned the designation VA-125.
The squadron’s first insignia was approved by CNO on 18 December 1956. Colors for the cougar insignia were: a dark blue background outlined in black; white scroll outlined in black with black lettering; white stars; the cougar’s face was brown and white with black markings; the lightning bolt whiskers were yellow and outlined in black; the tongue and inside of the
mouth were red. When the squadron’s mission was changed, a new insignia was approved by CNO on 13 May 1959. Colors for the torch of learning insignia are unknown.
Nickname: Skylanchers, 1956–1958
Rough Raiders, 1958–1977.
11 Apr 1958: The squadron’s mission was changed
from air-to-ground/surface attack to the indoctrination
and training of pilots and enlisted personnel in attack
aircraft for assignment to combat carrier squadrons.
11 Dec 1958: The squadron’s commanding officer,
Commander J. E. Thomas, was killed in an aircraft
Mar 1960: With the addition of the A4D-2N
Skyhawk, the squadron added radar and inflight refueling
training to its flight syllabus.
19 May 1966: VA-125 was the first squadron in the
Navy to receive the TA-4F Skyhawk.
Jun 1966: The first of several groups of Australians
arrived for training by the squadron on the A-4
Skyhawk. The pilots were to form the nucleus of
Australia’s first A-4 squadron scheduled for assignment
to HMAS Melborne (R-21).
13 Mar 1967: The squadron’s commanding officer,
Commander J. D. Shaw, was killed in an aircraft accident
during a routine carrier qualification exercise on
the Kearsarge (CVS 33).
31 Mar 1969: The last A-4 Fleet Replacement Pilot
30 Jun 1969: The last A-4 Fleet Replacement
Enlisted Maintenance training program was completed.
Nov 1969: The squadron began to develop the
required training program for the Light Attack
Weapons School. In December 1969 the squadron, in
conjunction with VA-122, inaugurated a graduate level
course for the Light Attack Weapons School that
involved all phases of attack aviation.
Jan 1970: The first A-7 Fleet Replacement Enlisted
Maintenance and Fleet Replacement Pilot classes began
Type of Aircraft Date Type First Received
F9F-8B Jul 1956
F9F-8 Oct 1956
A4D-1 10 Jun 1958
A4D-2/A-4B* Aug 1958
A4D-2N/A-4C* 03 Mar 1960
AD-5/A-1E* Sep 1960
A-4E Dec 1962
TA-4F 19 May 1966
A-4F Feb 1968
A-7B 25 Sep 1969
A-7A Oct 1969
A-7C Aug 1975