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Sidearms for Naval Aviators

Treetop Flyer

Well-Known Member
I'd rather have something and not need it then try to find excuses not to bring a weapon with me on a combat sortie. Having it and not needing it is better than needing it and not having it. Maybe don't load expendables either since "what are the odds, right?" They don't weigh much at all or take up much space. At the very least, they will be more comfortable and proficient with their assigned firearms.

Perhaps this can get merged into the newest "differences between Navy and Marines" thread.


Did I miss a step?
I guess "overwater" wasn't strong enough. If theres a chance you could crash on land then having an M11 and and M4 is a good idea.

You still haven't said why you'd want a weapon if blue water. What do you imagine someone using this weapon for when floating in the middle of the ocean?
Shooting a shark. But I guess you're right, I'm such a badass that I could just punch the shark. :cool:


- hawk Pilot
....... At the very least, they will be more comfortable and proficient with their assigned firearms.

At first I was going to give a thumbs up to this because we experience a steep learning curve for new guys transitioning from CONUS to carry-a-weapon-everywhere-you-go land. Then I suddenly decided what a stupid idea that is for those of us who have done this several times before. I do NOT want to check out weapons and ammo, clean weapons, inventory weapons, etc..now just so newbs have an easier transition.

Unlike my previous one, this past deployment I spent most of my time without a weapon. On the few occasions I had to kit up to fly, my newb copilot was like Francis on the movie Stripes.

PI with a grin on his face: "All I know now is I get to kill someone."
Me: "Lighten up Francis."

Nothing says SUCK like 120+ temp with full body armor, M9, M4, flight gear with survival equipment and ammo, and no AC in the aircraft. FWIW, we did not carry when we went out over the water.


Social Justice Warlord
In my experience, CVWs dread allowing their tactical aircrew to carry sidearms. We had to have our mags bagged and it was forbidden to kid the weapon prior to putting it in the pouch.

Real fucking tactical. Let me rip my duct-taped magazine open and try to load my weapon with a broken arm in the desert.


- hawk Pilot
Just to show that the Navy isn't the only service with issues:

On a previous deployment we had a VBIED set off at the gate to our FOB. The IDF alarm went off and we all scrambled to the bunkers. Also hearing small arms fire near the gate, those who didn't have their weapons cautiously rotated back to get their body armor and weapons. Ninety minutes into the "event", somewhere around 2300, I look over at the PI next to me. He was resting his chin on the barrel of his M4 with a full mag inserted. Thank God he had his kevlar and body armor on! LOL