Patrol Squadron Thirty, VP-30, was commissioned at Jacksonville Naval Air Station, Fla. Its mission: train aircrews for P-5 Marlin and P-2 Neptune aircraft. In June 1963, the squadron formed detachment Alfa to train crews for the P-3 Orion. After outgrowing its space in 1966, the Orion detachment moved to Patuxent Naval Air Station, Md., while P-2 flight operations continued at NAS Jacksonville.
In December 1968, P-2 aircraft were phased out of service. The Orion detachment returned to NAS Jacksonville, where it remains today. In June 1969, the squadron began training crews for the P-3C?s new digital processing equipment. In August 1991 the command, now the maritime patrol community?s fleet replacement squadron, was designated a major shore command.
Today, VP-30 is the Navy's largest aviation squadron, and the only maritime patrol fleet replacement squadron. The dedicated men and women of the ?Pro?s Nest? support all of the Navy?s 12 VP fleet squadrons. VP-30 has received three Navy Meritorious Unit Commendations: one for training Norwegian naval personnel on the P-3B and P-3C; one from training Japanese and Royal Netherlands naval personnel on the P-3C Update II; and for the consolidation of all P-3 training into a single-site fleet replacement squadron. Additionally, the unit has received the United States Coast Guard Meritorious Unit Commendation with Operational Distinguishing Device and the 1995 CINCLANTFLT Golden Anchor Award for retention. In June 1998, the squadron marked 34 years and 338,000 without an accident, a naval aviation record.