|CDR. Asra "Cougar" Kron, profile photo 2016/2017.|
Wings of Gold
Seychelles Isles Coast Guard, 2013 - 2014 serving as S.A.R. and RECON pilot, rotary and fixed wing; United States Navy SL, 2014 to present serving as carrier squadron pilot with VF-101, CVN-68, CSG 11, with VF-84 as squadron commander and other V squadrons at N.A.S. Miramar, and C.S.A.R. pilot with HSC-4 and other H squadrons at N.A.S. Miramar and instructor with VT-10, HT-28 at N.A.S. Miramar; having served under the command of Captain Jericho Napoli, S.I.C.G., Captain Alec Juventa, C.A.G. CVN-68, CSG 11, and Rear Admiral Isaac L. Harcassle, U.S.N.S.L. 3rd Fleet.
In a very small nutshell, I decided to introduce myself to the new members of the USNSL, in particular Third Fleet's, and refresh some of the older ones' memories. It is an example among others of what service is and how I see it. In a time where in real life we witness the attempt of some to rewrite History, let this be a reminder that facts matter and there are never two versions of a verified fact. If there seem to be, one is true and the other is false.
Here is to Miramar and over a year of History.
January 01, 2016
Miramar is built on a private island region, to serve as a full scale, fully operational naval air station. Its purpose: to revitalize the USNSL and serve as a platform for carrier based squadrons ashore and ultimately be the center of Intermediate and Advanced Flight Training.
January 08, 2016
Being a LTJG at the time when CSG 11 and in fact the USNSL both went dormant I stayed one even when flying alone with USNSL colors. As I decided to make Miramar come true I took the rank of Commander that was as meaningless as Miramar was sitting on an isolated private island with nowhere to go. And as meaningless as the Miramar operational group without operations.
On January 8, 2016, the station was introduced to then Captain Isaac Harcassle. Its purpose and mission was explained as was my role and position should Miramar be accepted into the USNSL and Third Fleet. It was. In fact, by then it was the only fully operational naval air station the USNSL had.
Captain Alec Juventa was present on the occasion. By being accepted, Miramar became an official USNSL station and my new rank confirmed in the presence of both my former and future commanding officers. Not many can claim that feat.
Then began the transformation of the USNSL from a group of many tendencies and time lines that mixed operations and mere information into a real "mother group" where the true operational groups are aggregated.
I spent the first half of 2016 trying to separate Third Fleet form the USNSL group, so it could achieve the same operational level that NAS Miramar had from the start. Finally, I decided to go public with the idea and it then became a reality. ("All things considered" - June 23, 2016)
Soon after that open letter to the Fleet the Third Fleet group was created and I structured it, naturally with RADM Harcassle in the owner role, shared with me, as founder, and CAPT. Alec Juventa as senior most senior officer. I am to this date the senior most fully active officer in Third Fleet after RADM. Harcassle in both time and rank.
|NAS Miramar at its largest area: The Naval Air Station on Du Sud and NASM East on Deder, 2016.|
January 8, 2017, NAS Miramar completed one year of operations and RADM. Isaac L. Harcassle, Jr. presided the related ceremony at the station on January 13, unveiling the commemorative plaque. At that time RADM. Harcassle said the following:
"When I first set foot onto Miramar, I knew it was special. I had just returned from a personal hiatus, and Commander Kron kept the ship together in my absence. Miramar was our one and only foothold on the grid, the only reminder that there even WAS a United States Navy Second Life.
So one year later, here we are. The station is as magnificent to visit and look upon from the sky as ever.
So Commander Kron, thank you for laying down the keel of the ship; the foundation for our triumphant return, expansion, and success. Congratulations to one year of exemplary service for Naval Air Station Miramar, and here's to many more."
Here is a concise list of major accomplishments between January 1st, 2016, to this day.
See footnotes for more details about each item on the list.
- Creation of NAS Miramar. (1)
- Establishment of NAS Miramar in the five continents area, Nautilus, Tuarua Fiji, Du Sud Isle. (2)
- Creation of NAS Miramar East naval base on Deder Isle, East border with Du Sud Isle. (3)
- Creation of NAS Miramar's weblog, still the reference USNSL website, with over 50,000 page views. (4)
- Implementation of the Landmaster and Cat's Runway Logger systems at NAS Miramar. (5)
- Implementation of the official communication protocols in Third Fleet (paper trails). (6)
- Implementation of Station Command Memos and NASMCO Office notes (official). (7)
- Re-establishment of the Tuarua Fiji patrol routes (PATROUS). (8)
- Creation and implementation of the WOC/T2 Intermediate Flight Training (IFTR) exam. (9)
- Implementation of the GT global communications system and protocol across Third fleet. (10)
- Triggering the institution of a true JAG Office in USNSL Third Fleet. (11)
- Implementation of retro and current Naval Aviator and Naval Flight Officer certificates. (12)
- Creation and Implementation of Air Traffic Control and Radio Communication classes. (13)
- Creation of an Introduction to Naval Aviation class. (14)
- Point in the endorsement of CAPT. Isaac Harcassle to the rank of Rear Admiral Upper Half. (15)
- Integration of the Navy Flight Demonstration Team "Blue Angels" in USNSL Third Fleet. (16)
- Separation of Third Fleet from USNSL as an operational group. (17)
- Institution of true to life bureau number listings at NAS Miramar and NAF Eagles Nest. (18)
- Broadening the bureau number listings to all of Third Fleet, creating a true to life standard. (19)
- Request for the GRID ATC channel to Gridtalkie maker Rez Gray, now the standard in the grid. (20)
- Cooperation with 7th Fleet in the creation of a common core Basic Flight Certification (BFC). (21)
- Cooperation with 7th Fleet in the creation of similar standards for Intermediate Flight Training (IFTR) and Advanced Flight Training (AFTR) protocols. (22)
- Creation of a concise and complete visual guide to all the squadrons in Third Fleet. (23)
- Establishment of the Third Fleet Christmas Run as normal practice. (24)
- Creation of the USNSL Acronyms guide for quick reference. (25)
- Creation and Implementation of Navy Aviation Aircraft Recognition classes. (26)
- Creation of the US Naval Test Pilot School. (27)
- Over 300 operational missions of various types, 1,550 plus hours of operational flight time. (28)
- Thirty three commissioned and enlisted officers went by NAS Miramar so far (April 2017). (29)
- Design and application of over 20 different types of USN liveries in dozens of unique editions exclusive to Third Fleet aircraft. (30)
- Design, supply and application of hundreds of device, rank, insignia and other accessories to all NAS Miramar officers, free of charge. (31)
- Research and development of 10 new aircraft from different SL manufacturers, 90% with USNSL applications. (32)
- Two deployments with the NFDT Blue Angels, with eight Air Shows and Demos completed. (33)
- Creation and application of multiple Naval Flight Demonstration Team Blue Angels accessories, apparel items and promotion materials. (34)
- Execution and publication of the "Miramar Action Shots 2016" book. (35)
- Continued development of the NFWS TOPGUN program, now finalized. (36)
- Proposal and implementation of several key protocols in Third Fleet, most with USNSL wide application like the Third Fleet Central Record (TFREC). (37)
- Promotion to Captain, O-6, on May 14, 2017. (38)
(1) First live entry on Miramar's weblog: "Intro".
(2) "The First Gold and Blue Day".
(3) NASM East had a naval base supporting fast boat patrols in the Tuarua Fiji regions, the Map Room and the Miramar Officers House, a club house open to all USNSL naval officers. It was closed in the first quarter of 2017 due to changes in my real life situation that forced me to downsize USNSL and private properties substantially. The Map Room was preserved and transferred to Du Sud Isle, where it is today.
(4) Our weblog: "NAS Miramar".
(5) Together with the Landmaster system that helps prepare pilots for carrier landings and fine tunes landing on a conventional strip, NAS Miramar has since February 2, 2016, a flight data base concerning the usage of every runway, this shows the efficiency of the station and the validity of its concept - "NAS Miramar Flight Records".
(6) SCMs (Station Command Memos) and NASMCO Office notes set the standard for verifiable and accurate records of activity. These records are available to Miramar officers on site together with personal records and classified documents that can be obtained through various degrees of security clearance access.
(7) Example of a SCM: "SCM013/16 Discharges and Code of Conduct". A total of 55 SCMs and 49 NASMCO Office notes were dispatched to this date (April 2017). These do not include everyday official "group notices" that usually do not require a record.
(8) "Tuarua Fiji PATROUs Procedure".
(9) "WOC/T2 Assessment".
(10) "GridTalkie Protocols", "Third Fleet GridTalkie Guidelines".
(11) In March 2016 there were a series of incidents involving NASM officers and the existing USNSL JAG Office that lead to the separation of Third Fleet from that office and the persons responsible for it, leading to the formation of a more professional and procedure/protocol aware JAG Office inside Third Fleet's structure. The SCM referred on (7) and the entry "Complaints of Wrongs" triggered that event.
(12) "Wings of Gold".
(13) "ATC Basic Class at Miramar", GT classes at Miramar follow the protocols mentioned on (10).
(14) "Introduction to Naval Aviation".
(15) As the, at the time, Board of Seniors eldest active officer, it was my privilege to start and finish the process of endorsement of Isaac L. Harcassle, Jr. to the rank of Rear Admiral Upper Half. "SCM019/16 USNSL 3rd Fleet Command"
(16) "NFDT Blue Angels Procedures".
(17) "All Things Considered".
(18) "BuNo Listings NASM".
(19) "3RD FLEET Inventory - Aircraft - By BuNo" - The implementation of the bureau number record system similar to the one in use by the United States Navy (which was standard at NAS Miramar (18) from day one) was extended as the standard for Third Fleet by my recommendation in "Directive 01/12/2017".
(20) Resulting from the need of a global ATC frequency that anyone can use regardless of groups, and unlike the regional global channels like "Marine" or "Blake" that are used for emergencies only and were becoming more and more "spammed" by ATC comms, I asked GridTalkie creator Rez Gray to add a dedicated global ATC channel to all GT packs. The idea was implemented soon after and it is now the standard global ATC channel on GridTalkie.
(21) Basic Flight Certification (BFC) was already in place in 7th Fleet and through cooperation with NAS Miramar a common core of practical and theory BFC classes was put in place. Several Miramar instructors regularly cooperate with 7th Fleet instructors to streamline new NA candidates ready for Intermediate Flight Training on their progression towards the Wings of Gold. "BFC Class at NAS Miramar".
(22) "IFTR Intermediate Flight Training". AFTR is achieved by participating in front line squadrons advanced missions and special deployments with the NFDT, the NFWS and the USNTPS.
(23) "Squadrons of Third Fleet".
(24) "Miramar 3rd Fleet Christmas Run".
(25) "USNSL Acronyms".
(26) This service was free for NASM Officers from January to December 2016. It is now available to all Third Fleet and USNSL naval aviators for around a third of the market price. "III Fleet Special Price List".
(27) USNTPS "Lightning evaluation? Not so fast..."
(28) According to Cat's Runway Logger system flight records, from a total of 17,000 recorded flights at NAS Miramar, I claim 1.946 flights. In the "Top 20 Aviators All Time" record, 12 are NAS Miramar officers, 6 of them still stationed there, with a total of 7,916 flights. (April 2017)
(29) Miramar has seen officers come and go, and we have been fortunate with the level of commitment of those who stay and also with the achievements of some of those who transfer to other USNSL locations. Of the 33 officers that Miramar welcomed at the start of their career in Third Fleet, 13 are residents at this time (April 2017), 8 of which in full active duty. With a success ratio of 25/100, Miramar is one of the most demanding Naval Aviation deployments, requiring a combination of commitment, dedication, work, ethics and skill uncommon to the average NA, NFO or AWO. "SCM009/16 Navy Procedure".
(30) A few examples: "TA-4J Skyhawk"; "EMB-120 Brasilia"; "F-14A Tomcat"; "NH-90"
(31) "NAS Miramar - Uniforms".
(32) "The Super Hornet Saga Continues"; "Old 66 Underway"; "Blue Angels 7 and 8 get new Cougar '2 Up'"; among many others. The consistent work on the research and development field with concrete Navy asset assessment and applications led to the institution of the USNTPS (27).
(33) Among them: "ID4 Airshow"; "A New Season Begins".
(34) See (16).
(35) "Miramar Action Shots 2016".
(36) "NFWS TOPGUN Program".
(37) The BuNo records (18), (19); GT institution and protocols (10), (13); the continental command areas ("COMNAVAIR Regions Approved"); the "3rd Fleet Surface Vessels Registry"; are among the many protocols and procedures implemented in USNSL Third Fleet as standards.
(38) "When oak leaves fall..."
And that is who I am and what my 16 months in USNSL Third Fleet look like.
Nice meeting you too.
CAPT. Asra Kron
April 29, 2017