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NEWS | Feb. 9, 2021

Five Countries in Five Days: VR-56 Globemasters Demonstrate Logistic Capability

By MC1 Chelsea Milburn, Commander, Naval Air Force Reserve

VR-56 Globemasters Five Countries in Five Days (MCC Stephen Hickok)
SLIDESHOW | 1 images | VR-56 Globemasters Five Countries in Five Days In a snapshot of five days of operational support, Navy Reserve Sailors assigned to the “Globemasters” of Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VR) 56 demonstrated their logistic capability to the Navy. (U.S. Navy photo illustration by Chief Mass Communication Specialist Stephen Hickok.)

A common response given by Sailors when asked why they joined the Navy is, “I joined to see the world.” Sailors see distant shores during port calls, while aboard ships, and throughout a variety of missions across the fleet. For Sailors assigned to the “Globemasters” of Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VR) 56 and the other squadrons of Fleet Logistics Support Wing (FLSW), they not only see more of the world faster than most, but are able to see the direct impact of their work supporting the Navy around the globe. 

A snapshot in the life of the Globemasters illustrated the point. Late last year, in a single week, VR-56’s mission took them to four states and five countries in five days. 

Departing Oceana, Virginia, Nov. 10, the squadron flew to Wales, United Kingdom for an overnight stop before proceeding to Sigonella, Italy to deliver a part to a deployed detachment of their sister squadron, the “Revelers” of VR-54. 
From Italy, they traveled to Iceland where they picked up Sailors from a detachment of the “Grey Knights” of Patrol Squadron (VP) 46 to bring them home from deployment. 
After a quick stop in Goose Bay, Canada they returned to the U.S. transporting passengers to Whidbey Island, Washington, and to Naval Air Stations North Island and Lemoore in California. Finally, they picked up more than 70 Sailors assigned to Carrier Strike Wing 3 from Fallon, Nevada for their return flight to Oceana, Nov. 14. 
While the schedule of this type of mission can at times be demanding, the accomplishments and experiences are rewarding for many members of the crew. 
“The thing that makes me the most proud to be assigned to VR-56 is the overall impact we have on the fleet,” said Full Time Support Aircrewman (Mechanical) 2nd Class Daniel Dougherty. “It feels great that I can immediately see the results of my own part in the process.” 
The hard work of crew members like Dougherty are what make these missions and the units they support possible. 
“I am continually amazed at the ingenuity and resilience of our Globemaster team,” said VR-56 Commanding Officer Cmdr. Beau Hufstetler. “This mission highlights the dynamic environment inherent in providing first-class, around-the-clock logistics support to Navy units worldwide. This crew, with support from the Globemaster team at home, exhausted all resources to execute these critical movements with excellence and professionalism, exemplifying what it takes to be the Navy’s finest air logistics support squadron.” 

The Navy works worldwide supporting the United States and allies, protecting sea lanes, and providing humanitarian aid and disaster relief when needed. In the often fast-paced work supporting Navy missions around the globe, VR-56 and their sister FLSW squadrons both get to see the world and help make it a better place. 

VR-56 is a Navy Reserve squadron assigned to Commander, Naval Air Force Reserve (CNAFR). CNAFR mans, trains and equips the Naval Air Force Reserve in order to provide enduring operational support and strategic depth to Naval forces that win in combat.