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Where Crazy Dave Used to Work !!!

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Welcome to my work.

Well,I was the Chief Engineer and then the Assistant Officer in Charge (AOIC) onboard the Helicopter Landing Trainer (IX-514) homeported at Pensacola Naval Air Station,Pensacola,Florida "The Cradle Of Naval Aviation" until we were "outsourced" to a civilian Merchant Marine Crew.

and this "was" callsign "Baylander"

"I should like to emphasize the confidence that our citizens have in their first line of defense. It is a faith of free men in the defenders of the democratic tradition; it is a trust that our citizens repose in a Navy that has NEVER failed its country."
-Franklin D. Roosevelt-

And this was me at work:

And this is what I used to do for a living:

HLT History:

Originally built in the 1960s as a Riverine Patrol and Supply Vessel to support amphibious assault operations and ground operations in the Southeast Asian Theater, U.S.Army Vessel YFU-79 (Skilak Class) saw action during the Vietnam War. After the war, she was layed up on the island of Guam.

During the early 1980s, the U.S. Navy realized the need for a small mobile helicopter landing platform to simulate the flight deck of a warship. The Navy obtained YFU-79 from the Army and had her towed to Bender Shipyard located in Mobile, Alabama for overhaul and re-fitting.

After overhaul, YFU-79 was designated as U.S. Navy un-named Experimental Craft "IX-514" and in 1986 was assigned to NAS Pensacola, Fl. to support the training of student pilots of TRAWING FIVE. Since then, Baylander trained pilots from all U.S. Services, Foreign Militarys and civilian pilots from many government agencies and several major corporations.

During 1998, "Baylander" passed a major milestone: 60,000 incident free deck landings.

At the time of IX-514s disestablishment, she logged over 74,000 incident free landings!!!!!!

HLT Info:

Length: 125Ft. 0In.
Beam: 36Ft. 0In.
Displacement: 497.8 Long Tons
Draft: 4.66 Ft.
Propulsion: 2 Detroit Diesel 12V71 LC Series
Electrical Power: 2 Detroit Diesel 471 Series/ 115Kw 185A Generators
Max Speed: 9 Kts.
Armament: 2 7.62mm M-14 Rifle
Crew: 1 Officer, 22 Enlisted

Although I wasn't but a gleam in my Daddy's eyes when members of the MRFA were "In Country",
as the last enlisted member to serve on YFU-79/IX-514, they were kind enough to allow me to join.
After seeing their pictures and hearing their stories, they truly are my heros!


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