NAVAL AVIATION WARFIGHTING DEVELOPMENT CENTER
The Naval Aviation Warfighting Development Center at NAS Fallon is the center of excellence for naval aviation training and tactics development. NAWDC provides service to aircrews, squadrons and air wings throughout the U.S. Navy through flight training, academic instructional classes and direct operational and intelligence support. The command of more than 120 officers, 140 enlisted personnel and 50 contract personnel maintains and flies F/A-18C/D Hornets, F/A-18E/F Super Hornets, E/A-18G Growlers, F-16 Fighting Falcons and MH-60S Seahawk helicopters.
NAWDC is the primary authority on training and tactics development. It provides training, assessment, aviation requirements recommendations, research and development priorities for integrated strike warfare, maritime and overland air superiority, strike fighter employment, airborne battle management, combat search and rescue, close air support and associated planning support systems. The command is also responsible for the development, implementation and administration of several courses of instruction while functioning as the Navy point of contact for all matters relating to the Air Combat Training Continuum. Additionally, NAWDC is the Navy point of contact for all issues involving the Fallon Range Training Complex.
FIGHTER SQUADRON COMPOSITE 13
The Fighting Saints of VFC-13 can trace their origins to 1946 when VF-753 was commissioned, flying F6F-5 Hellcats. Today’s squadron was formed Sept. 1, 1973, at NAS New Orleans during the reorganization of the U.S. Naval Reserve.
Initially, the squadron operated the Chance Vought F-8H Crusader with a complement of 17 officers and 127 enlisted men, former members of VSF-76 and VSF-86. In April 1974, the Saints made the transition to the single-seat Douglas A-4L Skyhawk.
As the demand for West Coast adversary services and other fleet support missions increased, the squadron was permanently transferred to NAS Miramar, arriving in February 1976. That summer, a transition was made from the A-4L to the more reliable two-seat TA-4J Skyhawk. The year 1983 marked the return of the single-seat aircraft to VFC-13 and the arrival of the A-4E.
October 1993 ended an era when VFC-13 made the transition to the single-seat, two-engine F/A-18 Hornet. This change further enhanced the squadron’s ability to perform its adversary mission with an even more capable and realistic threat aircraft. In April 1996, the command relocated to NAS Fallon and made the transition to the F-5E/F Tiger II, supported by McDonnell Douglas contract maintenance.
The Fighting Saints provide a formidable dissimilar adversary threat. In recognition of that primary mission, VC-13 was proudly redesignated as Fighter Squadron Composite 13 (VFC-13) on April 22, 1988.
VFC-13 provides the highest quality adversary training for regular Navy fleet and replacement squadrons and air wings, reserve fighter and attack squadrons, Air Force and Marine Corps units, and Canadian forces. The Fighting Saints have received three consecutive CNO Safety Awards, three Wing Golden Wrench Maintenance Awards, and in 1994 and 2011, the Battle “E” Efficiency Award.