Patrol Squadron 26 returns to NAS Jacksonville after 6-month deployment

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Twenty-one sailors, known as the Tridents, returned to NAS Jacksonville and reunited with their families Sunday after spending six months overseas.

Lieutenant Jonathan Waddell finally got to hold his daughter Julianna. He was one of seven parents meeting a child for the first time.

Waddell got back just in time for his son’s third birthday.

Petty Officer Bret Cospy couldn’t wait to see his daughter and was thrilled to see his family members.

“It’s just a great moment, especially with my little mini right here. I love her so much, ”Cospy said.

He also got to see his older brother.

“We are six years apart and we’ve been really close for a long time,” Cospy said. “I moved from Georgia to be down here closer to him.”

Primarily based in Japan, the Tridents spent a lot of time doing maritime patrols in the Pacific Ocean, providing intelligence to keep the area safe.

Commander Michael Wolfe said that a highlight of their mission was rescuing seven mariners from Micronesia, who were lost at sea.


“It was a five-day operation,” Wolfe said. “The guys were flying long hours. They were short turns getting back out there. They were dedicated to finding them and their efforts resulted in that. They were pushing really hard for that. ”

It’s the second homecoming at NAS Jacksonville over the weekend. On Saturday, 21 sailors with Patrol Squadron 16, known as the War Eagles, returned from a six-month deployment.

The War Eagles’ mission took them to Bahrain and Israel in the Middle East and to Europe where they were in countries including Scotland and Iceland.

Copyright 2022 by WJXT News4Jax – All rights reserved.


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