Commander Shawn Bailey is a native of San Antonio, Texas and a 1995 graduate of Texas A&M University at Galveston where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology. He was commissioned through the Navy Reserve Officer Training Corps and designated a Naval Aviator in June 1997. He subsequently reported to Helicopter Combat Support Squadron THREE (HC-3) in San Diego, CA as a fleet replacement pilot, training in the H-46D Sea Knight.
Commander Bailey’s first Fleet assignment was with Helicopter Combat Support Squadron FIVE (HC-5) on the island of Guam from 1998 to 2002. While there he deployed aboard USNS NIAGARA FALLS (T-AFS 3), USNS FLINT (T-AE 32), and twice aboard USS BELLEAU WOOD (LHA 3) in support of Operations SOUTHERN WATCH, DESERT FOX, WARDEN and STABILIZE. He also served as the squadron Assistant Operations Officer and Tactics Officer.
Following his first tour at HC-5 Commander Bailey attended fleet replacement pilot training at HC-3 for qualification in the MH-60S Knighthawk. He then returned to HC-5 from 2002 to 2004 deploying again aboard USNS NIAGARA FALLS (T-AFS 3) in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. He also served as the squadron Quality Assurance Officer. In the spring of 2004 Commander Bailey reported to the Naval Strike and Air Warfare Center in Fallon, NV where he qualified as a Seahawk Weapons and Tactics Instructor (SWTI) flying the SH-60F and HH-60H. He served as SWTI Program Manager providing graduate level flight training for all Navy H-60 communities.
In the summer of 2006 Commander Bailey reported to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron TWO THREE (HSC-23) in San Diego, CA becoming a plank owner upon the squadron’s establishment in September of 2006. While there he served as squadron Training Officer, Operations Officer and Officer-in-Charge of Detachment THREE aboard USS BONHOMME RICHARD (LHD 6) deploying in support of Operations IRAQI FREEDOM, ENDURING FREEDOM and SEA DRAGON. Commander Bailey then attended the United States Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island from 2009 to 2010, earning a Master of Arts degree in National Security and Strategic Studies.
In November 2010 Commander Bailey reported as Executive Officer of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron TWO EIGHT (HSC-28) in Norfolk, Virginia. In February 2012 he assumed command of HSC-28, leading five detachments deployed around the world in support of SECOND, FOURTH, FIFTH and SIXTH Fleet operations. He led the DRAGON WHALES until May of 2013. Following his command tour Commander Bailey reported to USS BOXER (LHD 4) in June 2013, serving as Air Boss deployed in support of THIRD, FIFTH and SEVENTH Fleet Operations and National Tasking in the PACOM and CENTCOM AORs.
Commander Bailey has accumulated more than 3300 flight hours in the H-46D, MH-60S, SF-60F, and HH-60H helicopters. His decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal (second award), Air Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (third award), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (second award), various unit and theater awards and citations.