US Coast Guard helos turn yellow

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Image: A US Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter with a yellow paint scheme lands at Coast Guard Air Station Astoria, Oregon, US (USCG / Petty Officer 3rd Class Jonathan Klingenberg)

The US Coast Guard’s Air Station Astoria received a yellow-painted MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter at its base in Warrenton on 15 January, in celebration of 100 years of Coast Guard aviation.

The Jayhawk helicopter, the first of all this year’s specially painted aircraft delivered by the Coast Guard to an operational unit, arrived from Coast Guard Aviation Logistics Center in Elizabeth City, North Carolina, and will operate out of the Warrenton base for the next four years.

“We are honoured to receive the first Jayhawk with a historic paint scheme and look forward to using it to continue the watch that our aviators so valiantly stand,” said Capt. Daniel Travers, commander, Coast Guard Sector Columbia River. “This Jayhawk may look different than our orange and white ones, but its mission remains the same: to protect the mariners that call the Pacific Northwest home.”

The Jayhawk helicopter is painted yellow to represent the chrome yellow paint scheme that US Coast Guard and US Navy helicopters used in the late 1940s and early 1950s, the Coast Guard explained. Examples include the Sikorsky HO3S-1G and the Sikorsky HO4S.

Altogether, 16 Coast Guard aircraft are receiving historic paint schemes representing various eras of Coast Guard aviation, including Jayhawk and Dolphin helicopters, as well as HC-144 Ocean Sentry fixed-wing aircraft.

US Coast Guard aviation officially began on 1 April 1916 when 3rd Lt Elmer Stone reported to flight training in Pensacola, Florida.

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