Navy’s first East Coast-based Osprey arrives at Norfolk

by Tommy Grant

The first Navy CMV-22B Osprey aircraft assigned to the East Coast arrived at Naval Station Norfolk, Virginia, on Friday, following a months-long, military-wide safety stand down.

The Osprey, which lifts off like a helicopter and flies like an airplane, is assigned to Fleet Logistics Multi-Mission Squadron 40.

It will provide long-range logistics support for aircraft carriers, and are slated to replace the aging C-2A Greyhound fleet in the coming years.

“This first aircraft’s arrival symbolizes an evolution and change in Naval Aviation as we look toward the future,” Rear Adm. Doug Verissimo, the commander of Naval Air Force Atlantic, said in a statement.

The move follows last month’s announcement that the services would resume Osprey flights after a military-wide grounding late last year, which came in the wake of a fatal Air Force Osprey crash off Japan.

For the Navy, standing down the Ospreys did amount to some limited operational impacts, including the utilization of other aircraft to support sailors in the Pacific, Navy Times previously reported.

Most West Coast-based carriers have already folded the Osprey into their respective carrier air wings, officials said.

Each of the services have different processes for returning the Ospreys to the sky. Some assigned to the Marine Corps are already performing operations in the Atlantic with Navy assets.

All of the Navy’s “Mighty Bison” personnel with Fleet Logistics Multi-Mission Squadron 40 arrived in Norfolk in February, the release said, adding that the remaining squadron aircraft will start to arrive to Hampton Roads in the summer.

“Our focus is safely maintaining and flying these airplanes,” Cmdr. Mason Fox, the executive officer of the squadron, said in a statement.

Jonathan is a staff writer and editor of the Early Bird Brief newsletter for Military Times. Follow him on Twitter @lehrfeld_media

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