Military Branches in Hampton Roads
Department of Defense
Camp Peary is a military reservation located primarily in York County that also occupies a small portion of James City County. Rumored to be a training facility for spies, it is officially called the Armed Forces Experimental Training Activity (AFETA). Also known as “the farm,” this reservation covers close to 10,000 acres.
Naval Station Norfolk is the world's largest Navy base and is considered by many to be the crown jewel of military bases in southeastern Virginia. Now occupying over 4,200 acres along a northern peninsula in Norfolk, personnel at NOB plan and implement procedures that keep the U.S. Atlantic Fleet prepared and ready. Close to 80 ships and more than 130 aircraft make a dozen plus piers and 11 aircraft hangars their home base here. Since its founding in 1917, this base has become a powerhouse of the U.S. military.
Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story is the result of combining Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek together with Fort Story in 2009. Located on more than 2,100 acres in Virginia Beach, this base retains a Norfolk address. Joint Expeditionary Base West is the largest base in the world to specialize in amphibious assault techniques.
Naval Medical Center Portsmouth was first known as Naval Hospital Portsmouth. Founded in 1827, this building is the U.S. Navy's oldest medical facility offering continuous service throughout the years.
Naval Air Station Oceana, sometimes called NAS Oceana, was created in the 1940s and remains the East Coast's only Master Jet Base. Comprising close to 7,000 acres in Virginia Beach, this base is known throughout the world as a major military air station. Strike fighter squadrons as well as numerous other commands make Oceana their home.
Naval Support Activity Northwest Annex is the southernmost military-designated area in Hampton Roads. Located in Chesapeake, Northwest Annex shares some of its border with North Carolina. This annex of Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads supports services for 10-plus tenant commands for the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps.
Naval Weapons Station Yorktown lies mostly within York County although a small portion rests in James City County. This base is the primary ammunition loading and storage facility for the U.S. Atlantic Fleet.
Norfolk Naval Shipyard has been in use since 1767 making it the oldest industrial site belonging to the U.S. Navy. Personnel here repair, refurbish and build Navy ships at this base that is situated on the Elizabeth River in Portsmouth.
Dam Neck Annex at Naval Air Station Oceana is located in Virginia Beach. Sometimes still referred to as “FTC Dam Neck,” this base helps the U.S. Navy in a variety of ways. Combat systems and fleet training is conducted here and is supported with massive amounts of highly skilled service members for the Combat Direction System Activity (CDSA). Several other tenant commands are housed here as well including the United States Naval Special Warfare Development Group (DEVGRU) and Navy Marine Corps Intelligence Training Center (NMITC).
Formerly Fort Eustis, Joint Base Langley-Eustis houses the U.S. Army Transportation Corps. Officially designated a permanent military installation in 1923, Fort Eustis was named for the first commander of Fort Monroe, Brevet Brig. Gen. Abraham Eustis. This Newport News location is headquarters of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC), which trains Army members and develops new weapons. The U.S. Army Transportation Museum is also located in this installation now controlled by the U.S. Air Force.
What was once Fort Story is now Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story or Joint Expeditionary Base East. The U.S. Army Reserve Center and the U.S. Army School of Music still remain in this Virginia Beach base now controlled by the U.S. Navy.
U.S. Air Force
Formerly Langley Air Force Base, Joint Base Langley-Eustis is the result of merging with Fort Eustis due to the Base Realignment and Closure Commission (BRAC). First declared a base in 1916, this Hampton base remains one of the oldest bases to provide uninterrupted air service. Units include the 119th Wing, 192nd Fighter Wing, 1st Fighter Wing, Air Combat Command and the U.S. Air Force Heritage of America Band.
U.S. Marine Corps
Camp Allen is a U.S. Marine Corps satellite base for Naval Station Norfolk in Norfolk. Once called Camp Elmore, this base houses the Fleet Antiterrorism Security Team (FAST) companies and the Marine Corps Community Services (MCCS). FAST protects convoys and at-risk sites around the world. All of the U.S. Marine Corps commands in Hampton Roads are served by the MCCS.
U.S. Coast Guard
U.S. Coast Guard Base Portsmouth is home to several commands for this branch of the military. Coast Guard Sector Hampton Roads helps maintain order and safety in the lower half of the Chesapeake Bay and 200 miles out into the Atlantic Ocean. Other commands like the Base Support Unit (BSU) ensure grounds are secure.
U.S. Coast Guard Training Center Yorktown is where Coast Guard A Schools are housed. Thousands of recruits, active duty, reservists and international military members have come through these schools since the base's inception in 1957. Courses of study include those for Machinery Technicians, Port Operators, Gunner's Mates, Electrician's Mates, Boatswain's Mates and Marine Science Technicians.
The U.S. Coast Guard Finance Center is located in the Greenbrier area of Chesapeake. Personnel here review financial needs of Coast Guard units and distribute government funds based on their findings. Since its inception in August of 1989, this place remains the only financial center of its kind for the U.S. Coast Guard.