Story by PO2 Joshua Walters on 10/17/2016
OKINAWA, Japan (NNS) The Golden Swordsmen of Patrol Squadron (VP) 47 concluded a bilateral training event in the Republic of Korea (ROK) Oct. 915 in support of Invincible Spirit 2016.
VP-47 conducted anti-submarine drills with the ROK navy in support of Invincible Spirit 2016 to strengthen maritime tactics, techniques and procedures.
During the combined U.S. and ROK training events, flight crew members with VP-47 operated with P-3C Orion maritime patrol crews from the ROK navy. The exercise gave the pilots, mission planners and crewmembers from both the U.S. and ROK navies the opportunity to train together and exchange ideas and concepts.
"We were able to integrate with the ROK Tactical Support Center and Squadron personnel," said Lt. Rick Shreffler, "Common procedures and terminology allowed us to operate effectively, much as we do at home."
Not only was this exercise an important training event between the U.S. and the ROK navies, it was a huge opportunity to strengthen and build onto the relationship both countries have with each other.
"This exercise was an all-around good opportunity to build and strengthen the relationship between us and the South Koreans," said Chief Donald Payne. "We worked alongside of them and later played soccer together. Overall they were amazing hosts."
The exercises conducted consisted of a routine dual-coast bilateral maritime counter-Special Operating Force exercise (MCSOFEX), subject matter expert exchanges, anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare drills, communication drills, air defense exercises, medical evacuation exercises, counter-mine planning and distinguished visitor embarkations.
This is the Golden Swordsmen's last deployment with the P-3C aircraft. VP-47 is the second of three Hawaii-based squadrons to make the move to Whidbey Island and transition to the P-8A.
VP-47 is currently deployed to the U.S. 7th Fleet Area of Responsibility (AOR) at Kadena Air Base, Okinawa, Japan, and to the U.S. 4th Fleet AOR at Comalapa, El Salvador.
For more news from Commander, Naval Air Forces, visit http://www.navy.mil/local/airpac/.