Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Three
The mission of Helicopter Antisubmarine Squadron THREE (HS-3) Tridents is to detect, localize, track, and in the event of war, destroy enemy submarines. Using the HH-60H variant, the squadron also performs special operations and combat search and rescue, the extraction of friendly forces from behind enemy lines. HS-3 is one of five east coast operational squadrons tasked with antisubmarine warfare, search and rescue (SAR), combat search and rescue, and logistics services. HS-3, established 18 June 1952, at Naval Air Facility, Elizabeth City, N.C., was first commissioned to fly the Piaseki UH-25B helicopter. The squadron later transitioned to the H-19 and the SH-34 helicopters. In more recent decades, the Tridents operated the SH-3 Sea King.
HS-3 flies Sikorsky SH-60F and HH-60H Seahawk helicopters, all weather aircraft designed for shore based and shipboard operations. The SH-60-F is capable of detecting, localizing, tracking, and destroying enemy submarines. The HH-60H is configured for overland combat search and rescue. The helicopter39;s crew consists of two pilots and two sensor operators, one of whom is a fully qualified SAR swimmer.
HS-339;s active role in the U.S. Space program began on 24 August 1962 when the squadron39;s commanding officer, Commander J. M. Wondergrem, picked up Lieutenant Commander M. Scott Carpenter from his Aurora 7 spacecraft and delivered him to the U.S.S. Intrepid (CVS 11). Astronauts Carpenter, Grissom, Young, Collins, Gordon, Conrad, McDevitt, Scott and Schweikart all ended their space journeys in Trident helicopters.