#1514 AV-8B Harrier II+

AV-8B Harrier II+
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£10.00 €11.71 $12.48
43.8 cm x 29.2 cm
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AV-8B Harrier-II
165001 '01'
MCAS Yuma, Arizona
US - Marine Corps
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Squadron Prints Lithograph No. 1514 - 165001 '01', AV-8B Harrier II+, Marine Attack Squadron 214, MCAS Yuma, Arizona. Marine Fighter Squadron 214, commissioned on 1 July 1942 at Ewa, Hawaii, was originally nicknamed the “Swashbucklers”. With its F4F-4 Hellcats, and later F4U-1 Corsairs, the Squadron completed two short, but successful, combat tours in the war against the Japanese. With replacement pilots, unassigned combat veterans, and some Corsair aircraft, Major "Pappy" Boyington reorganized VMF-214 as the "Black Sheep" at Espiritu Santo, New Hebrides, on 7 September 1943. These original "Black Sheep" chose the black shield of illegitimacy, the bar sinister, a "Black Sheep", a circle of stars and an image of the Corsair for their emblem. During World War II the "Black Sheep" became famous, producing eight aces, destroying or damaging 203 enemy aircraft, and achieving 97 confirmed kills; the rewards were a Presidential Unit Citation for "Extraordinary Heroism" and for Boyington, with 26 confirmed kills, the Medal of Honor. On 2 August 1950, following a quiet post-war period, VMF-214 landed in Pusan, Korea, for its sixth combat tour and became the first Marine Corps Squadron to see action there. The "Black Sheep" supported the Inchon landings and the Chosin Reservoir withdrawal. After Korea the "Black Sheep" trained from various ships and bases in their F9F Panther and the F2H-4 Banshee aircraft. The Squadron was re-designated Marine Attack Squadron 214 (VMA-214) on 9 July 1957; later it swapped its Banshees for the FJ-4B Fury, and then the A-4 Skyhawk aircraft, which served the Squadron for 27 years. The "Black Sheep" arrived in Vietnam on 21 June 1965. There they flew 13,200 combat sorties, dropping over 10,000 tons of ordnance in 14,000 flight hours. From Vietnam the "Black Sheep" moved to El Toro, California, then to Yuma, Arizona, in September 1987. In June 1989, VMA-214 became the first Marine Corps Night Attack Squadron when it was equipped with the Night Attack AV-8B Harrier II. In February of 2002, VMA-214 deployed to Kuwait in support of Operations Southern Watch and Iraqi Freedom. During six months over Iraq, the "Black Sheep" flew over 1900 combat sorties and dropped over 100 tons of precision-guided ordnance. During 2003, the "Black Sheep" deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF I) from February to July. In May of 2004, the "Black Sheep" supported simultaneous deployments, VMA-214 Det "A" deployed a six-plane detachment in support of the 11th MEU, and the remainder of the squadron deployed 10 jets in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF II). In 2005-2006 the "Black Sheep," once again, supported simultaneous deployments with two six-plane detachments. VMA-214 Det "A" deployed in support of the 13th MEU from December 2005 to July 2006 while VMA-214 Det "B" deployed in support of the 11th MEU from February to August 2006. The squadron conducted a year-long deployment from January 2007 to December 2007 aboard the USS ESSEX (LHD-2) in support of the 31st MEU. After returning to Yuma, the squadron trained for the following year and VMA-214 Det "A" deployed six jets from January to July 2009 in support of the 13th MEU, while the "Black Sheep" simultaneously deployed 10 jets to Kandahar, Afghanistan from May to November, 2009. During this time, the squadron flew 1,350 combat sorties, dropped over 20,000 pounds of ordnance in support of 2nd MEB and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF), and received a Presidential Unit Citation for their highly successful deployment. In June 2011, the "Black Sheep" deployed as a squadron (-) in support of the 31st MEU aboard the USS ESSEX (LHD-2) and returned successfully in December 2011. From November of 2011 to June 2012, the "Black Sheep" deployed a six-plane detachment in support of the 11th MEU aboard the USS MAKIN ISLAND (LHD-8). During 2012, the "Black Sheep" became the first operational US Harrier squadron to fire the Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM) in Marine Corps history during a training exercise at Tyndall AFB, FL. In 2013, VMA-214 Det "A" deployed six jets aboard the USS BOXER (LHD-4) in support of the 13th MEU. 2015 brought about simultaneous deployments. DET "A" deployed six jets aboard the USS BOXER (LHD-4) in support of the 13th MEU and VMA-214 (-) deployed eight jets to Japan in support of both Unit Deployment Program (UDP) and the 31st MEU. DET "A" left the USS BOXER (LHD-4) to conduct combat operations from Al Udeid, Qatar for over thirty days, providing over 600 combat flight hours to CENTCOM. In 2016, VMA-214 Det "A" prepared for the 15th MEU and deployed eight fully mission capable jets aboard the USS AMERICA (LHA-6) in July 2017; a first for USMC Harrier operations. Det "A" flew a milestone 633.1 combat hours in support of Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR). With the return of the 15th MEU Det "A" in 2018, the squadron focused on training and preparing for the 11th MEU, set to deploy in May 2019.