MCAS(H) Tustin, California

A few pics I took last weekend (3/20/2010) of the hangars at the now-deserted Marine Corps Air Station in Tustin, CA.  I was stationed here from 1983 to 1985.  I remember the skies buzzing with CH-46’s and CH-53’s.  Good times!

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  • SGT Steve

    I was stationed there from 74-76. Worked in both the Air Traffic Control Tower and in the GCA building on the west side of the base. I remember when the E club first opened. Lot’s of good memories. Sad to see it gone….

  • Terry Garner

    My dad was stationed there from about 1962-1970, H-34’s and CH 53’s, I remember going out there with him, those hangers are HUGE, I remember the men who worked on them, some of them came over to our house for party’s on the weekends. I Remember stepping onto the new CH53A, and the smell of the bird. I crawled around on a few H34’s too. My dad is “Rocky” Garner, GySgt, USMC, (Ret) He passed away this year (May 2016) RIP Dad.

  • Sgt. Mike Morgan

    I served at LTA from Jan 74-May 77. HMH-363, HMH-361 and H&MS-16. Never though I’d see it abandoned. Like some of you I saw the filming of the Hindenburg while here. Semper Fi gang.

  • Dave Herrington

    @Albert  I as MATCS-38 radar tech. Sgt. Dave Herrington around that time also.

    • Rodney Arnold

      What years were you with matcs 38. I was there from 87-89. Trying to find some old buddies. I worked in supply. You can look me up on facebook Rodney Arnold from fort wayne indiana or email me @

  • Sgt M Hunter

    Stationed ther from 78-81, GrpSup.  Definitely a great base.  Sad to see it closed.  Can the hangers still be visited? What happened to all the other bldgs. (bks, whse, hngrs)?  Also stationed at NAS New Orleans (MARTD MARTC) 74-76 and 77 at MCAS(H) Futenma – GrpSup.  Thanks to all my brothers, past, present and you future jarheads.  A choice I’ll never regret or forget.

  • GaryBlake

    @Sgt Mike Faulk After all these years I have finally found someone I knew that served in the MP’s there. I reported in October 1975 and remember you were assigned to AID with SSGT Swainston. Hope life has been good to you. Regards, Sgt. Gary Blake.

  • usmc81

    @Albert  We were there for a year or so at the same time. Semper Fi!

  • Albert

    I was stationed there 84-86.
    Supply/S4, MATCS-38, MACG-38.
    Thanks for posting these pics!

  • mark zelinskas

    great duty station-1973..After Okinawa tour back to El Toro 1975-76

  • Served in 78-79 as a bubble chaser. Drew the big sign of the net holding the globe for our CH 46 Squadren. Had a lot of fun with some Marines. It was a great duty station. Get a little sick and sad when I see it in such dissrepair. Would sure love to have some of those big wooden beams its made of when they take it down. Also remember a lot of SARS up and down the coast. The locals would rat us in when we hovered too long over nude sunbathers.

  • Was stationed at H&MS-16 from 79-83 and rotated twice to Futenma, Okinawa with HMM-161. It was a nice base because you could go out the front gate and be out in town. El Toro was still surrounded by orange groves back in ’79 but both bases were steadily encroached upon by residential areas that sprouted up. That’s right, they built next to military air bases and then demanded that the planes make less noise. ??? Eventually politics won out of common sense and the Marines were sent packing to the desert. It’s shameful that our country works that way and has such high regard for our men and women in uniform. WAS a great duty station. Many fond memories there.

    • *won out OVER common sense…

      • Dawn Barlow

        Jeff- there is a FB group for HMM-161 Marines. I’m sure some old friends would love to hear from you.

  • Anonymous

    SGT Richard E. Schenck I was station at MCAS(H)Tustin from 1975 1977 at the MARS Station as Chief Operator., I checked the site towers being scrapped, 1 saved being trucked out, building transmitter site, old battery phone center and message for Blimps with Pingeons in the 1940’s they saved the 60K Diesel Generator. Sorry to see it go, it was a great building, in the 70’s, Base Maintenance made a lot of improvements, such as a new roof, ect.

  • Anonymous

    I was stationed MCAS Tustin 1991-1993 HMH-466 Wolfpack “The strength of the pack is in the wolf, the strength of the wolf is in the pack” Great memories, Best duty station. We knew they were closing it and everyone of us hated it. Balboa, Costa Mesa, Santa Ana, Newport beach I miss you, but you were too expensive to live out there! Semper Fi Devil Dogs

  • Thomas Boyle

    I was stationed at MCAF, Tustin, with Marine Air Control Squadron 9 (MACS-9) in 1963-1964 and then with MACS-3, 1965-1966, upon return from Vietnam. Best duty station in the Corps. Many fond memories. Served with many outstanding Marines.

    • Barry

      I couldn’t agree with you more, … and not too tough to take being in such close proximity to Disneyland; Angels Stadium; and Huntington, Newport & Laguna Beaches!


    Huell Howser, born in 1945, died January 2013

  • I saw them filming “HINDENBURG” outside of Hangar #1 in 1974. I was so odd to see Nazi SS and their German Shepherd dogs milling around while George C. Scott & Anne Bancroft were filming.

  • Was S-2 NCOIC of MAG-16 Sep ’72-Oct ’72. VERY fond memories of what I considered to be the best duty station in the Corps!

  • Throe

    HMH-363 86-90 – if you watch carefully, usually in car commercials, they’re shot in one of the hangars!

  • Sgt Mike Faulk

    Stationed MCAS(H) 1974-1976, Military Police.

  • Sgt. Mike

    Was stationed at LTA from 1974-77, HMH-363 Lucky Red Lions and H&MS-16. Would never have believed it would be shut down. Lots of neat memories there. “Semper Fi” Marines.

  • Sgt Brieske H&MS-16 80-85

    >I drove by LTA last year. It is a very sad sight to see the place in the condition it is in.

  • LavaDog

    >If you ever get a chance, check out a video made by Huell Howser. I don't know if you are aware of him. He visits California locations that are unique and does a story on them. His show appears on PBS, free tv out here in CA.

    He has an episode on the Tustin base. He takes a tour of the hangar and he talks about the development that is soon to come. It is a very freaky looking hangar, and the empty base looks eery to me.

    And then you have the MCAS just down the road also soon to be built on, El Toro

  • PhilnCheryl

    >As I remember it. MCAS El Toro 1967-70. In 1993, MCAS El Toro was designated for closing by the Base Realignment and Closure Commission and all of its activities were to be transferred to Marine Corps Air Station Miramar. The station officially closed on July 2, 1999

  • PhilnCheryl

    >MCAS El Toro. 1969-1970 the roar of the F4 Phantoms.

  • Coffeypot

    >Sad and nostalgic! For me:
    San Diego Naval Training Center – Gone.
    Home Port, Long Beach Naval Base – Gone.
    My Ship, USS Frank E. Evans DD754 – Gone (taking 74 souls with her).

    My college – Gone.

    My Grad School – Still Here.

    My High School – Gone.

    My Elementary School – Gone.

    My Parents and most of my sibs – Gone.

    Seems life is wiping out all remnants of me.

    • cpl rodney w myers

      i was station at mcas h tustin from 1970 1973 my wifes father help build the hangers at lta and eltoro have manny good memories.was in motortransport next to hanger 2.