2nd Marine Air Wing
U.S. Marine Corps
2nd Marine Air Wing
This brass coin salutes the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing of the U.S.M.C. Struck in a brass alloy, this coin has an attractive use of enamel, making a striking impression. The reverse contains the logo of the Marines set in a semitransparent red enamel that allows the look of radiance. The coin comes packaged in a polybag with a header card.
The 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing (2nd MAW) is the major east coast aviation unit of the United States Marine Corps and is based at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, North Carolina. This unit provides the aviation combat element for the II Marine Expeditionary Force.
The mission of the 2nd MAW is to conduct air operations in support of the Marine Forces, including offensive air support, anti air warfare, assault support, aerial reconnaissance, electronic warfare, and control of aircraft and missiles. The MAW may also participate in naval aviation in the execution of such other Navy functions as the Fleet Commander may direct.
In late 1940, Congress authorized a naval air fleet and the Marine Corps was allotted a percentage of these planes to be formed into 2 air wings. On the advice of Navy and Marine advisors returning from observing the war in Europe these numbers were doubled. Under this expansion program the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing was activated in San Diego, California on July 10, 1941. Its first component was Marine Air Group Two, based at Marine Corps Air Station Ewa, Hawaii.
The 2nd MAW contributed to 83 South Pacific combat operations. Marines and aircraft from 2nd MAW participated in major battles or campaigns at Wake Island, Guadalcanal, Midway, Saipan, Tinian, Guam and Okinawa. In April 1946, 2nd MAW relocated to its present home at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, North Carolina.
During the Vietnam War, 2nd MAW supplied combat-ready units and personnel to operations in the Asian Theater. In the 1980’s, 2nd MAW units were active participants in exercises and operations around the globe, to include those in Lebanon, Cuba, Grenada, Panama, and the Dominican Republic. In the 1990’s Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm had 2nd MAW participation, and 2nd MAW squadrons prosecuted and supported NATO air strikes in Kosovo and Serbia during Operation Allied Force, and flying support during Operation Northern Watch from Incirlik, Turkey.
2nd MAW has deployed many thousands of Marines and Sailors in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Enduring Freedom, and Joint Task Force Horn of Africa. They supported combat and contingency operations around the globe, with greater than 70 percent of the command and control, support group, and aircraft deployed simultaneously. During Operation Iraqi Freedom, 2nd MAW units flew over 7,800 combat sorties, expended over 3.9 million pounds of ordnance, carried over 10,000 troops and 6.2 million pounds of cargo, built five base camps, two Expeditionary Airfields (EAFs), ten Forward Area Arming and Refueling Points (FARPS) and three Forward Operating Bases (FOBs).
2nd MAW continues to support the War on Terrorism today.