VT-31 Patch VT-31 Wise Owls  
executive officer
Samuel D. Gage

Commander Gage is a native of Appleton, Wisconsin. He graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1997 with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering. After completing flight training at VT-31 at NAS Corpus Christi in September 1999, Commander Gage was designated a Naval Aviator.

Upon completion of the P-3 Fleet Replacement Squadron (FRS) training, Commander Gage joined the Fighting Tigers of VP-8 at NAS Brunswick, Maine where he completed a deployment to NAS Keflavik, Iceland, NAS Roosevelt Roads, Puerto Rico and Manta, Ecuador as well as a Mediterranean deployment in support of OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM. He qualified as Plane Commander, Instructor Pilot, Mission Commander and CNO Special Projects Pilot. His ground assignments included Public Affairs, Plans, Schedules, Quality Assurance and Pilot NATOPS Officer.

In February of 2004, Commander Gage reported for FRS Instructor duty at Patrol Squadron THIRTY (VP-30) in Jacksonville, Florida. He qualified as FRS Instructor Pilot, Fleet Instructor Under Training (FIUT) Instructor Pilot and Orion Weapons and Tactics Instructor (WTI). As a member of the Weapons and Tactics Unit, he served on the Fleet Introduction Training Team and also as the Fleet IUT Lead.

In August of 2006, Commander Gage reported aboard the USS GEORGE WASHINGTON (CVN-73) in Norfolk, Virginia as a Catapult and Arresting Gear Officer (Shooter). While serving as the Aircraft Launch and Recovery Equipment (V-2) Division Officer Commander Gage qualified as Assistant Air Officer, Command Duty Officer (CDO) and completed Joint Professional Military Education (JPME) from the Air Command and Staff College.

Commander Gage reported to the Tridents of VP-26 located at NAS Brunswick, Maine in February of 2009 and conducted a homeport change to NAS Jacksonville, Florida. While there he served as Mission Commander of Combat Aircrew SIX, Officer in Charge of squadron’s detachment to Forward Operating Location Comalapa, El Salvador and squadron Administrative Officer, Safety/NATOPS Officer, Maintenance Officer and Senior Pilot.

From August 2011 to January 2013, Commander Gage served on the staff of the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff in the Operations Directorate, Deputy Director for Special Actions and Operations (J-38). He served as the Current Operations Officer for EUCOM, AFRICOM and SOUTHCOM areas of responsibility, providing support to the President of the United States, Secretary of Defense and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

His personal awards include the Joint Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal, Navy Commendation Medal (3 awards), Navy Achievement Medal, as well as various unit, campaign and service awards.