Attention All Hands,
Since 2014, when the last CH-46 flew in the USMC and this unit, we have been operating the MV-22 Osprey. It is the central mode of long-range transport for the USMC. For us it has been a pillar... if a shaky one. The unit has always had a love-hate relationship with the bird, and its pilots. Today we end that relationship. The MV-22 is, as stated, intended for rapid, long-range deployment. For us this simply doesn't happen, leading to poor optimal use of the bird itself. That, mixed with limited use of the section, as well as shaky mod grounds, has led us to this decision.
Effective 17JUL17 the MV-22 Osprey will no longer be an operational aircraft of this unit. All members of the detachment will be transferred, and staffed in to, the HMM-466 "Wolfpack" CH-53E Detachment. This will probably result in one extra aircraft for the detachment temporarily. The CH-53 detachment will be officially expanded to four operational aircraft.
Since the Aviation Combat Element of the MEU revolves around the medium helicopter squadron, reinforced by other detachments, the name VMM-164 will remain. ACE will continue to be known as VMM-164 (REIN), and the ACE HQ staffed under that name, but there will no longer be an operational detachment of VMM-164.
There will be an additional change to ACE, in efforts to increase productivity/opportunity within the section. Effective immediately, the numerical limits of those allowed to hold the MOS 7513 (UH-1Y/AH-1Z Qualified) will be removed. Those looking to be qualified under the 7513 MOS will still need approval by ACE HQ prior to entering the qualification process, but there will no longer be any limits to how many people may hold that MOS.