HCS-4 Returns From Iraq

Story Number: NNS041008-03Release Date: 10/8/2004 9:56:00 AM
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By Journalist 3rd Class Melissa Pinsonneault, Naval Air Reserve Norfolk Public Affairs

NAVAL AIR RESERVE NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) -- Helicopter Combat Support Special Squadron (HCS) 4 Det. 2, returned to Norfolk Oct. 6, after a three-month deployment to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

A total of 41 Sailors arrived through the Air Mobility Command (AMC) Terminal at Naval Station Norfolk. Welcoming them were several friends and family members. Among the crowd was Cmdr. David Tyler, commanding officer of HCS-4.

"These folks have done a superb job," Tyler said. "For most returning today, this is their second or third homecoming in two years. They have experienced many hardships and hazards but excelled at every opportunity. They are a tribute to our country and Navy's Reserve."

This was not the first mobilization for some of the squadron members. Last year, HCS-4 deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Noble Eagle and then again in February in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

"We had some difficult times, but most of all, we had a tight-knit community and teamwork, and it all worked out," said Aviation Maintenance Administrationman 1st Class Stacey Blankenship.

The Reserve squadron is made up of 250 full-time support Reservists with a wide variety of job capabilities - including pilots, air crewmen and administrative personnel - with one-third of the total unit deployed at a time.

HCS-4's primary mission is to provide special warfare support and combat search and rescue. The squadron flies the HH-60H Seahawk helicopter.

For more news from around the fleet, visit the Navy NewsStand at www.news.navy.mil.

The blades of an HH-60H Seahawk helicopter makes swirls in the air as is prepares to land on the command ship USS La Salle (AGF 3).
Official U.S. Navy file photo of an HH-60H Seahawk helicopter assigned to Helicopter Combat Support Special Squadron (HCS) 4 preparing to land aboard the command ship USS La Salle (AGF 3). Members from HCS-4 recently returned to Naval Station Norfolk from a three-month deployment in Iraq in support of Operation Iraq Freedom.
April 16, 2004
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