Of Heritage and Advanced Hawkeyes

 

“Hawkeye, Ball…”

Since the E-2A went to sea in the early 1960’s, “Hawkeye” was the name used for the ball call to the LSOs.  Later iterations of the E-2C continued that practice but distinguished the a/c type by markings on the nose (a white “II” for Group 2 E-2s, or a “+” for H2Ks today).  The Advanced Hawkeye, however being heavier than the E-2C  required something more than just “Hawkeye” but kept to a single word.  In doing so, VAW heritage was called upon and just as “Steeljaw” is being used by VX-1’s AEW Det, the E-2’s predecessor, the E-1B Tracer (or WF – ‘Willie Fudd’) was called upon.  Now, with an E-2D on the ball, you’ll hear “Tracer, ball…”