Naval Station Mayport is home to a new helicopter squadron.

Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 50 “Valkyries” was established Oct. 1, and is outfitted with MH-60R Seahawks to support littoral combat ships and expeditionary independent deployers. The MH-60 is capable participating in a range of missions, including anti-submarine warfare, electronic warfare, surface warfare, among other things.

“I’m honored and humbled to have the opportunity to serve as HSM-50′s first commanding officer,” Cmdr. Carolyn Peterson said in a Navy news release.

“Every member of Valkyries will have a major impact as we establish this squadron from the ground floor and create a strong, resilient, combat-ready unit prepared to deploy MH-60R Detachments to Fight and Win at sea,” Peterson said. “I am excited and encouraged as we move forward as a team, face challenges head-on, and continue to serve in the defense of our nation.”

Peterson’s previous tours include serving as an instructor pilot, a helicopter initial shore assignments officer, and a Carrier Air Wing MH-60R operational squadron department head.

A formal ceremony establishing the new squadron is slated for summer 2022, the Navy said.

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