CAMP LEATHERNECK, Afghanistan – First deployed during the Vietnam War, the CH-53D helicopter made its final flight in Helmand province, Afghanistan, Aug. 16.
For the “Ugly Angels” of Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 362, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing (Forward), being a part of the final flight that ended a legacy in Marine aviation came with mixed emotions.
“It’s bittersweet, but it’s a step forward,” said Lt. Col. Christopher “Ollie” Oliver, the commanding officer of HMH-362 and a pilot for the final mission. “We sent this aircraft out on a high note and if it had to go out, it might as well have gone out in a combat zone.”
The squadron first started using the CH-53D Sea Stallion during 1969 and has since participated in combat and humanitarian operations around the world.
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