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VFA-131 Receives Captain Michael J. Estocin Award

by COMNAVAIRLANT Public Affairs
03 November 2022 The “Wildcats” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 131 were presented with the Captain Michael J. Estocin Award during a ceremony in the squadron’s hangar at Naval Air Station (NAS) Oceana, Nov. 3.
SLIDESHOW | 1 images | 221103-N-RQ186-1001 221103-N-RQ186-1001

The Wildcats Commanding Officer, Cmdr. Erin Flint, a native of Gloversville, New York, received the award on behalf of the squadron.

“This award is a testament to the professionalism and excellence exhibited each day by our team,” said Flint. “From our pilots to our aircraft maintainers, we all share in this success and it demonstrates that we remain ready to support any mission in defense of our nation.”

The award is presented annually to the best strike fighter squadron in recognition of outstanding achievements to naval aviation. It is named after Capt. Michael J. Estocin, a naval aviator who received the Medal of Honor for his actions during the Vietnam War.

The Wildcats were selected from a highly competitive field that includes all F-18E/F and F-35C squadrons within the Navy following sustained superior performance throughout fiscal year (FY) 2021.

While deployed during a six month combat deployment aboard USS DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER (CVN 69) in 2021, the squadron operated from the North Atlantic to the Gulf of Oman. They demonstrated maintenance and operational excellence by flying 3,475 flight hours and achieving a 100 percent combat sortie completion rate in support of Operation FREEDOM'S SENTINEL.

The squadron was also awarded the FY20 Chief of Naval Operations Safety "S" Award at the-start of 2021 and they were the East Coast strike fighter squadron FY21 Battle ‘E’ award recipient.

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