Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron SEVEN ONE (HSM 71) was established
on 4 October 2007 and is the Navy's premier operational Helicopter Maritime
Strike Squadron. The Raptors truly
embody the phrase: "FIRST AND FINEST."
This establishment signifies the beginning of a new chapter in military
history. The Raptors have been given the
newest, most technologically advanced helicopter in the United States Navy's
inventory, the MH-60R or “Romeo.” HSM 71 is the first squadron to employ this
new airframe and begin a new community. The Raptors took the HSM community lead
for the testing and implementation of the Advanced Precision Kill Weapons
System. The Raptors continue to push forward and will be the first operational
squadron to fire the VX-1 missiles.
The Raptors have been awarded the Admiral Thach
Award for outstanding achievement and contributions to naval aviation, the
Commander Naval Air Forces Blue “M” for medical readiness, and have surpassed
34,000 mishap free flight hours.
Our commitment to operational performance, by
the book maintenance, operational readiness, innovation in tactics and weapons
system development, and community leadership has combined to produce a truly
capable team. The Raptors continue to
set the standard for professional development, superior readiness and safety in
an operational environment and have clearly established themselves as the
“First and Finest” in the HSM community.