3rd MAW Coin
This brass coin salutes the 3rd 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 Eagle, Globe & Anchor set in a semitransparent red enamel that allows the look of radiance.
The 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing is the major West Coast aviation unit of the United States Marine Corps. It is headquartered at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, California and provides the aviation combat element for the I Marine Expeditionary Force.
The unit's mission is to provide combat ready expeditionary aviation forces capable of short notice world wide deployment to Marine Air-Ground Task Force, fleet and unified commanders.
The 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing was commissioned on November 10, 1942, at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, North Carolina. The Wing's combat history began with World War II deployment of a bomber squadron on December 3, 1943. A year later, the Wing deployed a night fighter squadron in support of the war effort. In early April 1944, the wing turned over its training duties and assigned units to the 9th Marine Aircraft Wing and on April 21, 1944 and subsequently assumed the functions of Marine Air, Hawaii Area. When the Japanese surrendered, 3rd MAW was decommissioned and its personnel were assigned to other units. The Wing also played an important, but behind-the-scenes, role during the war by training Marine pilots and support personnel for combat duty overseas.
In 1952, the 3rd MAW was reactivated for the Korean War. Wing squadrons were detached and deployed to Vietnam as combat action in Southeast Asia flared. At the end of the Vietnam War several units were brought back to the United States and deactivated or redesignated, creating the 3d Marine Aircraft Wing as it is today.
During Operation Desert Storm, the Wing saw action as part of the I Marine Expeditionary Force (I MEF), conducting operations in Iraq and Kuwait . It deployed over 40 squadrons of aircraft, flew over 18,000 sorties while operating from 6 airfields. After the end of hostilities, 3d MAW aircraft provided support in Operation Provide Comfort and Operation Southern Watch over Iraq. The wing was once more called into service in Somalia for Operation Restore Hope.
The fall of 2001 saw the beginning of the War on Terrorism, and 3rd MAW since deployed several detachments in support of the ongoing Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. In the fall of 2002, the Wing deployed to Kuwait to prepare for combat operations in Iraq in the largest deployment since the Vietnam War.
- Brass alloy with enamel finish
- 1 3/4" diameter