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2nd Marine Aircraft Wing completes its 80th year of aviation excellence

2nd Marine Aircraft Wing completes its 80th year of aviation excellence
A UH-1Y Venom helicopter assigned to Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron (HMLA) 269 takes off at Fort Carson, Colorado, Nov. 10, 2021.
Marines with HMLA-269 trained in a cold-weather, high-altitude environment to increase proficiency in expeditionary advanced basing operations (EABO).
HMLA-269 is a subordinate unit of 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, the aviation combat element of II Marine Expeditionary Force.
U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Elias E. Pimentel III.

Story by 1st Lt. Sarah Eason, 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing

MARINE CORPS AIR STATION CHERRY POINT, N.C. – The 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing (MAW) completed a successful year of aviation excellence as it celebrated its 80th anniversary in 2021.

The Marines and Sailors of 2nd MAW call the Carolinas home, but their impact is felt around the world. The MAW prepared and trained around the clock to be ready, capable and successful as the aviation combat element for II Marine Expeditionary Force.

This year, the MAW accomplished significant and ground-breaking tasks, training events and deployments. The MAW provided humanitarian assistance and disaster relief to the people and government of Haiti after a tragic earthquake, and did so within 96 hours of notification to deploy. It strengthened relationships with allies and partners, flying and operating in places like Japan, Canada, Finland, Spain, Italy and Peru. The MAW also supported multiple Marine Expeditionary Units’ global deployments.

“Sgt. Maj. Reiff and I want to thank our Marines, Sailors and families for an incredible performance this year. We are proud of the 2nd MAW team and all it’s accomplished,” said Maj. Gen. Michael Cederholm, commanding general of 2nd MAW.

2nd Marine Aircraft Wing completes its 80th year of aviation excellence
Marine pilots in a CH-53E Super Stallion with Marine Heavy Helicopter Training Squadron 302, carry away an 8,500-pound high beam during an external lift exercise aboard Camp Lejeune, N.C., Aug. 25, 2015.
The CH-53E completed a short circle pass, then slowly descended to allow Marines on the ground to disconnect the beam.
U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Paul S. Martinez.

Collectively, the MAW achieved more than 80,000 flight hours, exceeding its fiscal year requirement and an increase of 25 percent in flight hours from fiscal year 2020. It reduced its overall aviation mishap rate by 16 percent, and reduced the overall ground mishap rate by 41 percent.

Additionally, the MAW saw a reduction in substantiated sexual misconduct cases, alcohol related incidents, and prohibited activities and conduct cases, while still fostering a safe environment to encourage service members to report allegations of misconduct. These accomplishments speak to the leadership, competency, readiness, safety and diligence of the Marines, Sailors, civilians and contractors who make up the MAW.

“2nd MAW is the most combat-ready air wing, and we are ready to fight and win, right now. We are America’s air wing and have accomplished great things this year. It is truly a testament to the leadership, hard work, dedication, and commitment of the Marines, Sailors and civilians of 2nd MAW,” said Cederholm.

2nd MAW will continue to focus on operational excellence, enhancing Marine Corps aviation, and taking care of its people that contribute to its success.

“We pushed the limits in training to prepare for the next challenge and the future fight, carrying our Commandant’s vision, all the while focusing on operational excellence in warfighting as we have for the 80 years of our MAW’s existence,” said Sgt. Maj. Jacob Reiff, sergeant major of 2nd MAW.

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