Reconnaissance veterans celebrate Intruder's 50th anniversary

mcara reunion

Members of the Marine Corps Aviation Reconnaissance Association pose for a picture last week in front of the EA-6A Intruder on display at Cherry Point. The group had a reunion to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the Intruder’s first flight.

Drew C. Wilson/Havelock News
Published: Wednesday, May 1, 2013 at 02:05 PM.

Whether maintaining it, flying it or dropping electrons from it, members of the Marine Corps Aviation Reconnaissance Association revere the original Grumman EA-6A Intruder electronic warfare airplane.

About 60 members gathered last week at Cherry Point for a reunion to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the EA-6A Electric Intruder’s first flight on April 26, 1963.

The group gathered at the corner of C Street and 6th Avenue where bureau number 147865, more commonly referred to as Methuselah, has come to rest on display.

"We all have fond memories of Methuselah," said John Suhy, 69, of Alexandria, Va., who flew in the plane. "Although the systems in it were sometime sketchy, it was a hand-built airplane. It was the number two A-6 that had ever been built and ever delivered to the fleet, so when that airplane was trimmed, it flew just perfectly. It was the one to take to the carrier when you were practicing landings."

Suhy said he enjoyed the opportunity to see old friends during the reunion.

"It’s great to get together with the people that we served with in Vietnam," he said. "These guys have all served in harm’s way with different conflicts over the years. It’s a community that has stuck together over all these years. We have a lot of heroes that we recognize, older fellows that may or may not be around anymore, but there are a lot of strong memories. If you were in (electronic warfare), you were in a VMCJ of one type of another or a VMAQ or a VMFP, so that’s our legacy."

K.D. Stuart, 78, came from Cleveland for the reunion.

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