NORFOLK, Virginia –
Over the years, the Defense Logistics Agency Distribution Norfolk, Va., Traffic Management team has shipped some unusual items to places around the world. Recently, the team shipped large components of a United States Marine Corps AV-8B Harrier jet for repair.
The jet was deployed to the 5th Fleet Area of Operations with the 22 Marine Expeditionary Unit, onboard the USS Kearsarge (LHD 3). After a routine landing, the aircraft caught fire. The fire was quickly extinguished, but the aircraft was no longer operable. The decision was made to keep the aircraft on board until the Kearsarge returned to Norfolk so that the jet could be repaired and returned to service.
Upon the ship's arrival in Norfolk, the DLA Distribution team sprang into action. Stevedores conducted crane operations to safely lift the damaged jet from the flight deck to the pier. The plane was disassembled for transportation to the Naval Air Systems Command Fleet Readiness Center Cherry Point for repair.
Led by Diane Hobbs, the team shipped the fuselage and wing section to be repaired and return to the fight. "Our transportation team is critical to everything we do here, and to the warfighter deployed worldwide,” said Navy Capt. Harry Thetford, DLA Distribution Norfolk commander. “In this case, they directly supported Marine Corps aviation and helped enable a critically required aircraft to be repaired in a timely manner."