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MCARA Units >VMFP-3 (1975-1990)

VMFP-3 "Eyes of the Corp" History

Marine Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron THREE (VMFP-3) was activated on 1 July 1975, aboard Marine Corps Air Station, El Toro, California, as part of the Third Marine Aircraft Wing. The formation of VMFP-3 saw a concurrent deactivation of the three Marine Composite Reconnaissance Squadrons in order to consolidate into two specialized squadrons: VMFP-3 at MCAS El Toro, and VMAQ-2 located at MCAS Cherry Point, North Carolina. All Marine Corps Aviation Reconnaissance mission responsibilities were then tasked to VMFP-3, and all RF-4B assets were brought together at El Toro.

Marine Composite Squadron THREE (VMCJ-3), decommissioned on 1 July 1975, was the nucleus of the new tactical reconnaissance squadron. Early in 1975, the physical reorganization of the VMCJ began with the transfer of all EA-6A aircraft, personnel, and support equipment from VMCJ-3 to the 2nd MAW. Simultaneously, RF-4B assets began to arrive at MCAS El Toro from both the 1st and 2nd MAW's. During March, 1975, the initial designation of personnel of VMFP-3 Detachment ONE was made and the carrier evolution commenced. Detachment ONE arrived at MCAS Iwakuni, Japan on 5 August 1975, to provide tactical reconnaissance for the 1st MAW, and the 7th Fleet when deployed aboard the USS Midway. VMFP-3 provided continuous reconnaissance support aboard the Midway and in the Western Pacific, to include three Indian Ocean deployments during the Iranian hostage crisis.

This history to be rewritten to include the entire 15 years of the squadron’s history.

VMFP-3 was decommissioned in Sept, 1990