VA-185 Squadron Patch
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VA-185, nicknamed the Nighthawks, was an Attack Squadron of the U.S. Navy. It was established on 1 December 1986 and disestablished on 30 August 1991. The squadron was forward deployed to NAS Atsugi, Japan, and assigned to USS Midway, home ported at Naval Station Yokosuka, Japan. The squadron flew support for Operation Earnest Will, escort operations for reflagged Kuawiti oil tankers during the Iran–Iraq War in the Persian Gulf. VA-185, embarked on USS Midway, operated in the Sea of Japan during the 1988 Summer Olympics being held in Seoul, Korea, to demonstrate U.S. support for a peaceful Olympics. Midway, with VA-185 embarked, maintained station off the coast of the Philippines during an attempted coup in that country. The squadron flew missions in support of Operation Desert Shield, the build-up of American and Allied forces to counter a threatened invasion of Saudi Arabia by Iraq and were part of an economic blockade of Iraq to force its withdrawal from Kuwait. The squadron participated in Operation Desert Storm. VA-185 led the first air strikes from naval elements operating in the Persian Gulf. During the Gulf War, squadron aircraft struck Iraqi naval targets and bases, airfields and bridges, and provided close air support for Allied ground forces. The squadron flew a total of 457 combat missions, comprising 940 combat flight hours and delivered 720,000 pounds of ordnance on enemy targets. The squadron held a disestablishment ceremony at NAF Atsugi, Japan. It was officially disestablished on 30 August 1991.