VAQ-136 Gauntlets EA-6b (1970s) Model
Fly off the USS Kitty Hawk with the EA-6b with this wooden model of the VAQ-136 Gauntlets. Each plane is carved from wood and meticulously painted to give you a genuine piece of art that you will be proud to display. Length measures ~18 inches.
Electronic Attack Squadron ONE THREE SIX was established at Naval Air Station, Whidbey Island, Oak Harbor, Washington on April 6, 1973. In 1978, the Gauntlets flew to their new home in Japan with the USS MIDWAY (CV41) and Carrier Air Wing FIVE. The culmination of a decade of hard work was evident with the Gauntlets being awarded the COMNAVAIRPAC Battle Efficiency Award (the “E”), and the Safety “S” in 1989.
On January 16,1991 the Gauntlets were the first Prowler squadron to fly a strike against Iraq in support of Operation DESERT STORM. During the 43-day war against Iraq, the Gauntlets flew 466.9 hours in combat and fired 28 High- speed Anti- Radiation Missiles. The Gauntlets successfully suppressed the enemy’s air defenses ensuring that CVW-5 did not lose a single aircraft to enemy fire.
In the spring of 1992, the Gauntlets became the first Prowler squadron to fly support of Operation SOUTHERN WATCH. For their role in setting up Operation SOUTHERN WATCH, the Gauntlets received the Pacific Fleet Battle “E” award for 1992. In addition, the Gauntlets received the Radford Award for being the best EA-6B squadron in the Navy, the association of Old Crows Outstanding Unit Award, and a Meritorious Unit Commendation. In 1994, Gauntlet proficiency resulted in VAQ-136 being named the “Prowler Squadron of the Year for Tactical Excellence”. In January 1998, they received an emergency no-notice deployment order to the Arabian Gulf and just fifteen days after receiving the order, the Gauntlets went from holiday routine to fully carrier- qualified and underway in support of operation SOUTHERN WATCH. Returning to Japan in August 1998, the Gauntlets received the news that they had won the Safety “s” for the first half of 1998, followed six months later by receipt of the 1998 COMNAVAIRPAC Battle “E”.
In 1999, the KITTY HAWK (CV63) WAS ORDERE TO THE Arabia Gulf in support of Operation SOUTHERN WATCH. Following 9/11/01, the Gauntlet mission shifted, with the squadron mobilizing the engage the Global War on Terror. Returning to the Arabian Gulf in 2003, VAQ-136 was among the first to fly in Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. Gauntlet aircrew flew over 500 hours in 117 combat missions, supporting strike packages, SOF infiltration, and “Kill Box” operations. Gauntlet jamming coupled with 6 HARM ensured no CVW-5 aircraft were lost to enemy fire.
In 2008, VAQ-136 left the Western Pacific with USS KITTY HAWK to cross-deck to the USS GEORGE WASHINGTON (CVN73) in San Diego, CA. They returned to Japan on board GEORGE WASHINGTON, which became the first forward-deployed, nuclear- powered aircraft carrier, In 2009, the Gauntlets’ two deployments included operations off the Korean peninsula, Exercise TALISMAN SABRE, and ANNUALEX. During this time VAQ-136 was selected for the 2009 Admiral Arthur W. Radford Award, 2009 Battle “E” award, 2009 COMVAQWINPAC Maintenance Squadron of the Year award and received two CVW-5 quarterly Golden Wrench Maintenance Award.
Beginning in May of 2010, the Gauntlets conducted two cruises, conducting operations again along the Korean Peninsula, and participating in Exercises INVINCIBLE SPIRIT, VALIANT SHIELD, and KEEN SWORD. In February of 2011, the Gauntlets participated in Exercise COPE NORTH.
Shortly afterwards in March, the squadron conducted a no-notice deployment to Anderson AFB, Guam during Operation TOMODACHI following the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake and subsequent tsunami. The squadron then deployed onboard USS GEORGE WASHINGTON (CVN73) from June through November of 2011.
In January of 2012 the Gauntlets began executing a Home Port Change from Atsugi, Japan to Whidbey Island, Washington with the first move of dependents. The jets , aircrew, and a majority of personnel and equipment followed in February making stops in Wake Island and Hawaii before landing at NAS Whidbey Island. Once safely in the States it was back to work as usual as aircraft needed to be prepared to be released to other squadrons, enlisted sailors started various schools around the country and finally the aircrew started the Growler transition in April. The Gauntlets received “Safe for Flight” Certification on the EA-18G Growler on February 1, 2013.
Throughout its thirty-eight year history, VAQ-136 has been committed to excellence in every way, maintaining a prominent position in the Electronic Attack Community. The Gauntlets are proud to continue that commitment serving to support and defend the United States of America at the “Tip of the Sword”.