(1968: The Defining Year)
The Marine Aircraft Wing
There was no standard organization for any Marine Corps aviation unit above the squadron level. This section contains the official tables of organization for some of the more common Marine aviation squadrons present in Vietnam in 1968. It must be remembered that the actual number of Marines and aircraft assigned to a given squadron almost certainly varied from these tables. Squadrons of the same type, but flying different types of aircraft, had different T/Os. Also, the Marine Corps had multiple T/Os for certain types of squadrons flying the same aircraft. For example, some Marine Observation Squadron (VMO) were organized to fly 24 UH-1E Iroquois helicopters, some 30 UH-1E helicopters, while others flew a mix of helicopters and 0-1B Bird Dog Cessna fixed wing light observation aircraft. In 1968 the Marine Corps introduced the OV-10A Bronco fixed wing observation aircraft to Vietnam, further complicating the picture.
Most squadron T/Os included an intermediate maintenance section. The Marines in these sections were not actually assigned to the squadron, but were instead an integral part of the parent group's headquarters and maintenance squadron. Still, these sections represented a manpower requirement associated with a specific squadron, and therefore these sections are included here.
The tables shown here are for squadrons at wartime strength. During the war, however, Marine aviation units remained on the reduced peacetime manning level, making their actual strength considerably less than shown in this appendix.
The exact units making up the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing
can be found in Appendix A, Marine Command and Staff List, January-December
1968. Note: Numbers in parentheses show billets filled by pilots, and are not
included in the totals. Tables of Organization for Selected Squadrons Marine
Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 15 F-4J Phantom Jet Interceptor/Attack Aircraft
T/O M-8848, 23 July 1968