Captain Gordon A. Cross, a native of
Lancaster, Pennsylvania, was commissioned through the
Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (NROTC) upon his
graduation from the University of Michigan in 1990. He
earned his wings in 1994 upon completion of advanced jet
training at NAS Kingsville, Texas.
Upon completion of Fleet Replacement training with the "Rough Riders" of VFA-125 at NAS
Lemoore, California, Captain Cross reported to the
"Warhawks" of VFA-97 in August, 1994. From August 1994 to
February 1998, he completed two workups and one Arabian
Gulf deployment onboard the USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) in
support of Operation Southern Watch. He served as Landing
Signal Officer, Line Division Officer, Training Officer,
and Quality Assurance Officer, and was selected as
VFA-97's 1997 Pilot of the Year.
Captain Cross was selected for the U.S. Naval Test
Pilot School (USNTPS) Cooperative Program earning one and
a half years of advanced study at the Naval Postgraduate
School in Monterey, California, before reporting to NAS
Patuxent River, Maryland, for USNTPS. He graduated with
Class 118 in December 2000 as the Distinguished Graduate
and earned a Master of Aeronautics degree. He was
assigned to Test and Evaluation Squadron TWO THREE
(VX-23) where he participated in developmental testing of
F/A-18 E/F Flight Control Computer Software, high AOA
handling qualities, departure/spin software development,
external loads certification, and carrier suitability.
Captain Cross reported to the "Sidewinders" of VFA-86
in November 2002 as a Department Head. While stationed at
MCAS Beaufort, South Carolina, he deployed onboard the
USS Enterprise (CVN 65) and flew combat missions in
support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
Captain Cross served as the Safety, Maintenance, and
Operations Department Head.
In February 2005, Captain Cross reported to the staff
of the United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM)
in Tampa, Florida, and served as the Chief of
Experimentation and Wargaming. In this capacity, Captain
Cross was responsible for identifying and developing
advanced technologies to support the Global War on
Terrorism and evaluate strategic and operational strategy
Captain Cross joined Forward Deployed Naval Forces
stationed in Atsugi, Japan when he reported to the "Royal
Maces" of VFA-27 as the Executive Officer in August 2007
and assumed command in September 2008. During his tour,
the squadron made multiple Western Pacific deployments
onboard the USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) and the USS George
Washington (CVN 73).
relinquished Command in December 2009 and reported to the
Navy Staff as the Head Aviation Analyst, Programming
Division (N80), serving in this capacity until July 2012.
Captain Cross reported as the COTD
at VX-9, NAWS China Lake in March 2013.
Captain Cross' decorations include Defense Meritorious
Service Medal, the Air Medal with Strike/Flight device,
the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (three
awards), the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal
(three awards), and numerous other unit and campaign