NSGA Keflavik was decommissioned and closed on June 30, 1994, 26 years ago today.

The NSGA was located approximately 8 miles from NAS Keflavik, one mile from the U.S. Air Force 932nd Air Defense Squadron facility, and adjacent to the Naval Computer and Telecommunications Station Keflavik, Rockville Receiver Site. The Rockville Receiver Site was fully remoted on March 14, 1997 and was closed in October, 1999.

06.30.1994 NSGA KeflavikE

In March of 1959, an advance party arrived at Hafnir, Iceland to prepare for the establishment of United States Naval Security Group Activity (NSGA), Keflavik.  The advance part team was led by the assistant Officer-in-Charge, CWO2 Earl W. Stewart, and consisted of CTAC Bill Tait, CTMC Nellie Nelson, CTM1 Helphrey, one CTM2, two CTM3s and one “logistics” seaman.  The following month on April 25, 1959, the NSGA Keflavik was formally established in the village of Hafnir, approximately five miles from the main base at Keflavik International Airport.  At that time, the U.S. Air Force was the host of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Base and the Naval Air Facility was charged with providing administrative and logistic support to the command.  In May, 1959 the NSGA officially joined the Atlantic High Frequency Direction Finding (HFDF) net, earning the dubious distinction of being the norther most Naval Security Group site in the world.  The tour length for all personnel was one year, which compensated for the remoteness of the duty assignment.

In November 1967, the command assumed an additional function as a CRITIC Communications (CRITICOM) relay station and personnel tasked with this work were assigned to Hanger 831 aboard Naval Air Station.  By this time the Navy had assumed host responsibility for the air station and the position of the senior officer at the NSGA was upgraded from Officer in Charge to Commanding Officer.  In April, 1970, a special operations building was completed at Rockville, which was home to the 932nd Air Control Squadron.  In 1973, talks began on the feasibility of consolidating the three separate sites that made up the NSGA into one central location.  On June 7, 1977, ground was broken for a new consolidated operations building, which was completed and occupied on August 1, 1979.  By the summer of 1979, all of the operational, administrative, communications and facilities functions were consolidated in building 2586 on the Rockville site.

The mission assigned to NSGA Keflavik by the Commander, Naval Security Group Command was as follow:  “To operate an HFDF Facility in support of Navigational Aid and Search and Rescue (SAR) functions.  It is also to provide communications and related support, including communications relay, communication security, and communications manpower assistance to the Navy and other Department of Defense elements within the area.”

Since its establishment, the amount of personnel stationed at the NSGA has fluctuated.  The original complement was 30, which rose within one year to 59.  At times the command was manned by more than 150 personnel.

In 1994 it was announced that due to technological advances and military drawdowns, NSGA Keflavik would cease operation in March and officially close as a command on June 30 of the same year.  The Commanding Officer will be the last command member to depart on 24 July 1994.  NSGA Keflavik has served the United States and the NATO for over 35 years.

The Last Command Members of NSGA Keflavik:

Commanding Officer: LCDR R. R. Lynch
Executive Officer: LT C. B. Tharrington
Command Master Chief: CTRCM(NAC) C. D. Blalock

CE1 (SCW) Rowton          CTM1 Crabtree                  CTA3 Keller
CTA1 Davis                        CTM2 Knief                        CTMCS Easton
CTR3 Lehman                   CTR3 Bowens                    CTOCS Gilligan
BU2 Letterman                 CTR2 Brown                      CTM2 Goewey
CTM3 McGill                     CTR3 Burton                      CTA3 McILwain
CTM1 Gregory                  CTRC(AW) Hanich            CTA3 Meeke
CTM1 Hittle                       CTM3 Michael                   CTM2 Hofman
CTM2 Holt                         CTR1 Pagano                      SK1  Ihle
CTMC Paterson                CTO3 Johnson                    CTM3 Kaunitz
CTR3 Rhodes                    CTM2 Richerson                CTOSN Ruchert
LTJG Smoak                      CTOSN Thomas                 CTM3 T. Waugh
CTA3 Williams                 CTO1 Williams                   MS1(SW) Gonzales
CTM3 Barker                    CTM3 L. Waugh

Officers in Charge:

LT N. E. Berthier               Aug 1958             Aug 1959
LT G. W. Cox                      Aug 1959             Aug 1960
LT R.J. Hume                     Aug 1960             Aug 1961
LCDR J. L. Morse              Aug 1961             Aug 1962
LT T. L. Kennedy              Aug 1962             Aug 1963
LT O. Unterberger           Aug 1963             Aug 1964
LT P. P. Kennedy              Aug 1964             Nov 1966
LCDR W. L. Luna             Nov 1967             Dec 1969

Commanding Officers:

CDR W.L. Luna                 Nov 1967            Dec 1969
LCDR K. B. Kampen         Dec 1969             Jul 1972
LCDR G. R. Johnson         Jul 1972               Jul 1975
CDR G. L. Preston             Jul 1975              Jul 1977
CDR D. E. Olson                Jul 1977               Jul 1979
CDR J. P. Collins                Jul 1979               Jul 1981
LCDR D. G. Vaurio           Jul 1981               May 1983
LCDR P. A. Mast               Jun 1983              Jun 1985
LCDR J. A. Gallina           Jun 1985              Jun 1987
CDR J. P. O’Neill               Jun 1987              Sep 1989
CDR J. R. Wojdyla            Sep 1989             Jun 1992
LCDR R. R. Lynch            Jun 1992             Jun 1994

Source: navycthistory