Gulf of Tonkin Incident Reunion

Fist of the Fleet Association was proud to sponsor the reunion of three former VA-144 naval aviators who last flew together on August 4 & 5, 1964 from USS Constellation, CV-64 in the Gulf of Tonkin. The event took place at NAS Lemoore, CA on September 16 & 17, 2019 and was hosted by the Commanding Officer, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific and NAS Lemoore. The reunion was very memorable for all who attended and especially for the three honorees Capt John “Nick” Nicholson, CDR Everett Alvarez, Jr. and CDR Ron Boch.

LT Ron Boch, LTJG Everett Alvarez, Jr. and LCDR John “Nick” Nicholson 8/4/1964

Everett, “Nick” and Ron 9/16/2019 NASL


Latest Edition: Summer 2021

Jay Stone, Air Intel Officer for VA-25 during the 1968 Battle of Lang Vei had an interesting idea for a new series called “Sea Stories”. Per Jay “Lots of funny and interesting things happen in a squadron, especially in combat, that would be great to read.” Such a series would be open to former and current members of VA/VFA-25, both enlisted and officer. They can run the gamut from funny, exciting and mundane to the down-right dangerous, and can be up to 200 words or so. So to lead this off I’m going to set the Wayback machine to 1970’s.

On Feb 10, 1976 Ranger (CV-61) pulled out of Pearl to begin the long Pacific transit to Subic Bay. I had nothing to do that day (there were a lot of days like that in AIMD) so I wandered up to Vulture’s Row. About noon or so
a helo from Pearl was cleared to land. I don’t remember if it was one of the HS-4 birds or not. Various people came out; mostly Sand Crabs (Civvie techs) and the last person who hit the deck was, if I remember correctly, a
Photo-journalist. What happened next I will never forget. The Skipper came on the 5MC and shouted “Get that woman off my ship!” She was unceremoniously hustled back aboard the helo and sent on her merry way. That’s just how it was in 1976: NO women on combat ships underway.

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