Take Charge and Move Out: The Founding Fathers of TACAMO

True Believers and the Rise of Navy Strategic Communications

Lewis McIntyre

Date Published :
May 2022
Publisher :
Contributor(s) :
VADM Nora Tyson USN (Ret)
Illustration :
20 photographs
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding. : Hardback
ISBN : 9781636241548
Pages : 248
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
Stock Status : In stock
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The birth of the US Navy's "Take Charge and Move Out” (TACAMO) mission which provides essential airborne communications to the US nuclear deterrence forces.

The US Navy’s “Take Charge and Move Out” (TACAMO) mission provides essential airborne communications to the US nuclear deterrence forces. Today it is a thriving community, respected by the Navy and the US strategic defense forces.

But it wasn’t always so. Despite the enormous importance of the mission, for the first decade of their existence, the TACAMO squadrons did not provide a viable career path for officers, instead being a “one and done” tour for the junior officers who found themselves unluckily so assigned. A second tour in the squadrons was considered to be professional suicide. But in 1975, inspired by a significant commanding officer, a handful of lieutenants put their faith in a community that did not yet exist, betting their careers on that second tour. From their faith and courage was born the TACAMO community.

This is the story of the birth of TACAMO, in the words of those who built the community from scratch.

About The Author

Lewis F. McIntyre graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1970, earning his wings as a Naval Flight Officer. He was assigned to TACAMO Squadron VQ-4 in 1972 flying EC-130 Hercules aircraft. He requested a second tour in VQ-3 in Guam after completing the Naval Postgraduate School in 1977. Throughout his naval career, he held various positions in test and evaluation, tactical and strategic command and control, retiring in 1990. Following his Naval retirement, he pursued a second career as an engineer in support of the TACAMO mission, finally putting that aside to start a third career as a writer. He has published two novels.



Part One: The Beginning, 1968–1975
An Island Paradise on the Edge of the War
The Seed is Planted

Part Two: TACAMO in Transition, 1975–1980
The First Retreads
A New Professionalism

Part Three: The ECX Comes to Life, 1980–1983
Starting the Program
A Rapid Acquisition

Part Four: TACAMO Comes of Age, 1980–1985
TACAMO Joins the Navy
From One Island Paradise to Another
Continuing One Hundred Percent
“True Believers” Take Command
Preparing for the E-6
The E-6A Arrives … But Not on Time!

Part Five: The Wing Stands Up, 1990–2000
The Inception
Strategic Communications Wing One

List of Acronyms

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