Robert W. Womble

CDR. Womble was given command of HAL-5 when it was established in 1978 and lead the Squadron in it's formative stage. He was promoted to Capt. to complete his service, subsequently retiring with his wife in Texas. Capt Womble passed away there from Cancer.
 

Clyde R. Kizer

Born in Pontiac, Michigan on 19 July 1938 (am I really that old?). Shortly after birth, his father went to Canada to join the (then) Royal Canadian Air Force (I don’t believe there is a cause and effect relationship attendant to my birth and this action!). He was one of many U.S. citizens who were too impatient to wait for the U.S. to get into the war. After returning from service, he flew commercially for a small plastic company and often took me flying with him (that is when aviation became a passion in his life).

A small village, Clarkston, Michigan (population 1100) about 10 miles north of Pontiac, is where he grew up and met the greatest lady in the world, his wife of 44 years, Hazel Lee. The school was small enough to allow me to participate in all four major sports (at that time---football, basketball, baseball and track). Hazel Lee was a cheerleader, but she was 2 years younger (a mere child), so we didn’t date until his sophomore year in college. Our first date occurred when a friend fixed us up on a “blind date” (in a town of 1100 people where everyone knew everything there was to know about everyone else)!

His parents couldn’t afford to pay for college, so he worked 3 jobs and earned 3 scholarships (two academic and one athletic) to earn his Bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry. One of his jobs was to serve as “Dorm Monitor” (at 18 years of age) for a dormitory full of returning Korean War vets who had become “professional students” until their VA loans ran out (now that was a challenge!).

Hazel Lee believed that he was going to be a teacher, but one day he took a friend down to NAS Gross Isle so that he could apply for the Navy Air Intelligence Officer program. The recruiter was a savvy gent and told me that, since he didn’t have anything to do but wait for his friend, he should take the test and physical as well.  he passed the test for Air Intelligence Officer (which was mostly geo-political and well outside of his area of expertise) as well as the physical (and that surprised me since he knew that he had a color deficiency in the green/brown spectrum, the Farnsworth lantern saved his life).  When the recruiter told me that the physical was good for all officer programs, including aviation, he asked to take the aviation aptitude test and got the highest grade ever (at that time) at Gross Isle.  As an aside, his friend failed the written test, as well as the physical, and never served in the military! Hazel Lee was surprised (to say the least) when he came home to tell her that we would be in the Navy for the next 5 years.

Fifteen years later he left active duty after 4000 hours flight time, one tour in HS-6 flying SH-3A and UH-34G/J aircraft (2 astronaut recoveries, first helo squadron to conduct SAR and patrol work on Yankee Station, 1 day after the “Gulf of Tonkin Incident”), a short tour as a RAG instructor in HS-10 (where we trained VH-3A pilots for President Johnson), completion of the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School, a tour in the Flight Test Division at the U.S. Naval Air Test Center, NAS Pawtuxent River, MD (best test pilots in the world), a tour in HAL-3 (the greatest combat squadron in Vietnam) and another tour as the VSTOL Flying Qualities Flight Instructor at the Naval Test Pilot School (flying 18 different aircraft when he left. You can’t do that anymore). he had been deep-selected for command under ADM Zumwalt’s “Bobby-Sox” program and the squadron that he was to command was headed for Vietnam.  Since the U.S. had given in to the media, the war was winding down, and odds were getting shorter, and he had seen all that he wanted to see in SE Asia, he reluctantly left the Navy to become an Engineering Test Pilot for United Airlines in San Francisco.

While flying for UAL, he was selected to be the Director, and then the Vice President, of Engineering and Quality Assurance.  he was the UAL representative for the engineering development team for the Boeing 767 and the first airline pilot to receive an Airline Transport Pilot rating in that aircraft.

The Navy gave me everything that he could ask for, including the opportunity to associate with some of the finest people in the world.  he requested, and received, a commission in the Naval Reserve upon leaving active duty. While flying in the Reserves, he served as Maintenance Officer for HS-85 (which was a better choice than the A3D squadron he was originally slated for) and then became a plank-owner in HAL-5 as XO under Commander Bob Womble and then Commanding Officer on 18 November 1978. At that time HAL-5 had the finest officers, chiefs and enlisted men in the Reserves and he was proud to have had the privilege to serve with such an elite group of men. Every man in the squadron was exceptional and his tour with HAL-5 was one of the greatest experiences in his life. Everyone worked hard and played hard (some did play harder than others!). We carried on the tradition of our birthright with Navy Special Warfare, SEAL, UDT and PBR units, while surviving floods, near-activation for the Iranian hostage crisis and the challenge of getting our people back across the Mexican border during ACDUTRA liberty.  "My only failing rests with the lack of discipline in that group typified by the squadron “moon” that he was subjected to, and my “baptism” during a “staged” re-enlistment while hanging from a “Chicago-grip”". he retired an 0-6 with 23 years of service after many memorable and happy times and the sorrow of losing over 80 of his best friends at their stations in aircraft.

In 1988 he left United to be the Vice President Engineering and Maintenance for the Air Transport Association in Washington, DC.  The day that he arrived at ATA, he started the industry activity to assure the airworthiness of aging aircraft (following the Aloha 737 “convertible” incident). That activity consumed 198 meetings in the first year and involved participants from 17 airlines, 5 airframe manufacturers, 3 regulatory authorities, 7 nations, DOD, NASA, academia, and nuclear power plant operators. It was the finest collection of aerospace technical personnel to assemble prior to the Challenger incident.

He left ATA to be the Senior Vice President/Operations for Midway Airlines, under David Hinson (former F3H driver and future FAA Administrator). Following the demise of Midway he joined Airbus as President/COO Airbus Service Company, a position that he have held since 1992. His responsibilities included all aspects of customer services (flight and maintenance training, engineering, field service, maintenance services and material) for North America, and the majority of the customer service responsibilities for South and Central America as well as the Caribbean.

"Hazel Lee and I have 3 children, 3 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren. We have had a great life together and have enjoyed manifold blessings from a wonderful family and superb friends. The Navy and HAL-5 will always hold a very special place in our lives and our hearts." 

God bless you all and God bless America.  Back to CO Page

Wallace D Tweden

Born on January 13, 1940, in Spokane, Washington. Grew up in Tacoma, Washington, an honors graduate from Lincoln High School in 1957.

Introduction to the Navy came as a Midshipman in the NROTC program at the University of Washington, where he graduated in 1961 with a degree in mathematics. Upon receiving his regular commission as an ensign, he attended Navy pilot training in Pensacola, Florida. He received his Naval Aviator wings in January 1963, and attended the Naval Justice School in Newport, Rhode Island, prior to reporting for duty at Helicopter Anti-submarine Squadron TWO (HS-2) at NAS Ream Field in Imperial Beach, California, where he became an aircraft commander in the Sikorsky Sea King H-3. He made one deployment to the Western Pacific aboard the USS Homer during this short tour. He served as the squadron legal officer and public affairs officer.

This sea-duty tour was split with an assignment to return to the Naval Basic Training Command as a flight instructor at VT-3, flying the T-28 at NAAS Whiting Field, Milton, Florida. He also served as legal officer for VT-3. He was released from active duty in September 1966.

 While attending graduate school at the University of Washington, he accepted a reserve commission and began flying with HS-892 at NAS Sand Point, Seattle, flying the H-34. The naval air reserve organization was changing during this period and squadrons were being given new identities and being relocated; Captain Tweden served in several different entities. Upon the transition which finally made the naval reserve a part of the ready force in direct support of the active force, he was assigned to HS-85 at NAS Alameda. He served as Standardization (NATOPS) Officer and Safety Department Head at HS-85. After being promoted to Commander, he was selected as commanding officer of the training squadron in support of HS-85.

In 1978 he became executive officer of HAL-5 at NAS Point Mugu, and succeeded to command as the third commanding officer of the squadron. During his tenure as commanding officer, the squadron demonstrated its readiness by successfully performing a rapid deployment via Air Force C-5 to a remote sight.

Captain Tweden transferred to the Retired Reserve in 1984 after 23 years of service. In civilian life he was a flight officer with United Airlines, where he had assignments as a supervisory check pilot and as a flight manager. He has two children and three grandchildren.
(Editors note: On the Discovery Channel, Capt Tweden was featured in a TV documentary on the planning and construction of the Boeing 777. He was shown in the cockpit during testing and was interviewed by the announcer).  Back to CO Page

 

Robert O. Brockmeier    

I was born on April 22, 1941 in Los Angeles, California. After graduating from Cathedral High School in 1959 I attended the University of Southern California on an NROTC Scholarship, graduating with a degree in Civil Engineering in 1963.

I completed Naval Flight Training in August, 1964. The first duty station after the RAG (Replacement Air Group) training in HS-10 was HS-2 where I was stationed from February 1965 until February 1968. The squadron deployed to the Western Pacific twice and was involved in numerous short cruises. The next duty station was NAS Whidbey Island, Washington where my billet was Station Helicopter Pilot.

After leaving active duty in February 1969 I affiliated with the Naval Reserves at NAS Seattle, flying the SH-3A Sea King, the same aircraft I flew in HS-2. Upon transfer to NAS Los Alamitos in mid 1969 I affiliated with HS-80L2 which became HS-84. HS-84 transferred to NAS Imperial Beach in mid 1970 and later to NAS North Island. During my time in HS-84 I moved from a division officer to Safety Officer and eventually Operations Officer. The augment squadron HS-694 was my next assignment in 1979 as Commanding Officer until late 1980.

In late 1980 I transferred to HAL-5 and became Executive Officer in early 1981. On June 12, 1982 I became Commanding Officer of HAL-5. In early 1984 I transferred to VTU 9494 at Point Mugu, and later moved to VTU 7676 at NAS North Island, where I completed my Naval Career in 1990.

Upon release from active duty I was hired by United Airlines in April 1969 retiring in April 2001. Flying experience included the B-727, DC-8, DC-10, A-320, and B-747-400 aircraft.

Barbara and I were married in December 1963, and raised four sons, Stuart, Chris, Neal, and Paul. All are married and have given us 4 grandchildren as of 2008. Our residence for the past 35 years is in Villa Park, California. We enjoy traveling, primarily by sea. Military history occupies much of my retirement time. I enjoy touring battlefields and visits to military and naval museums. In retirement I keep busy when not on cruises doing home repair work. Our health is good, and we look forward to many more years of interesting challenges.  Back to CO Page

 

Thomas V. Weckworth  

Commander Weckworth was born 25 Sept. 1944 in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin. He graduated from Beaver Dam High School in 1963. He graduated in 1967 with a Bachelor of Science degree from Stout State University in Menomonie, WI.

Entering Aviation Officer Candidate School in Oct. of 1967, he received his commission in Jan. of 1968. He was designated a Naval Aviator in Mar. of 1969 and was assigned to HAL-3 in Vietnam from June 1969 to Jun of 1970. He reported to HC-1 Detachment Two at the Naval Air Station, Imperial Beach, CA. in Sept. 1970. Flying the HH-2C, he deployed to the Western pacific aboard the USS Kitty Hawk. He was released from Active duty in Jan. 1972.

Commander. Weckworth affiliated with the Naval Reserve at Naval Air Station, Imperial Beach, CA. in June of 1972, while attending the Los Angeles School of Chiropractic. As a Select4ed Air reservist, he was a member of RTU-84 and was a Plank Owner of HC-9 and HAL-5. He assumed the duties of Executive Officer in June of 1982.

Commander Weckworth's decorations include thirty (30) Air Medals, Single Action Air Medal, Purple Heart, National Defense Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, and Expert Pistol Medal.

Commander Weckworth resides in Ventura, CA. with his wife, the former Rauleen Gonzalez of San Diego, CA. and his two children, John and Kelly. He is a practicing Doctor of Chiropractic in Ventura.  Back to CO Page

 

Edward G Marsyla

Commander Marsyla attended the University of Minnesota, Duluth Branch, prior to entering aviation flight training as a Naval Aviation Cadet in Apr. 1964. He was commissioned an Ensign and designated a Naval Aviator in Nov. 1965.

His first tour was with HELANTISUBRON SIX at Naval Air Station, Imperial Beach, CA. He completed 2 WESTPAC deployments to Vietnam aboard the USS Kearsarge, where the squadron assumed the Combat Search and Rescue mission. In 1968 he changed to the TAR Officer Designator and subsequent duty assignments included Naval Air Station, Sand Point, Seattle, WA.; Naval Post Graduate School, Monterey, CA., where he received his under-graduate degree in Engineering Science: Naval Air Reserve Detachment, Quonset Point, Rhode Island; and HELANTISUBRON NINE at Naval Air Station, North Island, San Diego, Ca.

He was then assigned to the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations, Washington DC., in the Current Capabilities and Mobilization Plans Section (OP-650E). Following that assignment, he was the Chief staff Officer on Helicopter Wing Reserve Staff at Naval station, North Island, San Diego, CA. In May 1984 he reported to Helicopter Attack Squadron Light FIVE, Naval Air station, Point Mugu, CA. and assumed the duties as executive Officer.

Commander Marsyla's decorations include the Silver Star Medal, Meritorious service Medal, Ait Medal with Star and Number 4, Navy Commendation Medal, and Purple Heat.

Commander Marsyla is married to the former Toni Bonwell of Arlington, VA.  Back to CO Page

 

Eric Robert Haupt

Captain Eric Robert Haupt was born in New Britain, Connecticut, October 2, 1942. He graduated from San Fernando Valley State College with a BA in Business Administration in June, 1967. He immediately entered the Navy as an Aviation Officer Candidate, was commissioned an Ensign in October 1967, and earned his "Wings of Gold" in 1968.

Captain Haupt was initially assigned to NAS Pawtuxet River, Maryland, where he flew both helicopters and multi-engine fixed-wing aircraft. He was later assigned to NAS Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, as a SAR pilot flying the HH-1K, HU-16, C-117, and S-2 aircraft. He left the Navy in 1971 to establish a private university and a State Bar-approved law school in Los Angeles, California. In August of 1976, he affiliated with the Naval Air Reserve Unit at NAS Point Mugu and participated in the feasibility study for a proposed helicopter attack squadron.

In March, 1977, Commander Haupt became a plank owner of that very same squadron: Helicopter Attack Squadron (Light) FIVE (HAL-5) and served continuously in various capacities until May 18, 1986, when he became the seventh Commanding Officer of the squadron. He capably led the squadron through a series of successful operational detachments.

In February 1988 was selected to the rank of Captain.  Captain Haupt retired in November of 1992 after 28 years of service.

Captain  Haupt is a Managing Director of ING. managing over 200 independent office for Life, ING Financial Partners and the  INGDirect Financial Advisors Service.  Extremely active in church and civic organizations. Former member of the Board of Directors,  “Los Angeles County Library Foundation”.  Former President and is currently Treasurer of “Friends of the Agoura Hills Library”.  He is married to the former Diane Damm of Woodland Hills, California. They have three children: David, Erica and Darren.  Four Grandchildren: Ashton, Sophia. Elijah and Giselle.  Back to CO Page

 

David Patrick Johnson

Commander David Patrick Johnson was born in Los Angeles, California, June 30, 1947, and graduated from UCLA in 1969 with a BS in Physics. He was commissioned an Ensign at the Aviation Officer Candidate School in Pensacola, Florida, on September 18, 1970, and was designated a Naval Aviator in October, 1971.

Reporting to HSL-31, NAS Imperial Beach, California, Commander Johnson deployed to the Gulf of Tonkin (Republic of Vietnam) in 1972 with the Seventh West-Coast LAMPS detachment aboard the USS O'CALLAHAN. For nine months, he performed numerous utility, SAR, ASW, MEDEVAC, and gunfire spotting missions in support of the war effort, ultimately participating with CTF-78 in minesweeping Haiphong Harbor, North Vietnam. He later served as assistant OIC of helicopter support detachments aboard the USNS CHAUVENET in 1974 and the USS OKLAHOMA CITY in 1975, ultimately reporting to HT-18, NAS Whiting, Florida, as a flight instructor in Advanced Helicopter Training.

In 1977, Commander Johnson left the active-duty Navy, accepted a commission in the Naval Reserves, and joined the newly commissioned HAL-5 at NAS Point Mugu, CA. During his time with HAL-5 he served as NATOPS Officer, Safety Officer, and Operations Officer, participating with the squadron in BRIGHT STAR 83 (Cairo, Egypt), GALLANT KNIGHT 84 (Fort Bragg, NC), TEAM SPIRIT (Republic of Korea 1985, 1986, 1987), FOAL EAGLE 86 (Republic of Korea), and numerous detachments to San Clemente Island.

Commander Johnson is currently consulting with manufacturing concerns around the Los Angeles area.

He resides in Big Tujunga Canyon with his wife, Margaret, and a pack of Chinese Shar-pei dogs.  Back to CO Page

 

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