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The squadron was originally known as the Shooting Stars. The original “Felix Cat Squadron” was VF-3. When the two squadrons swapped designations, both squadrons claimed the “Felix” mascot and call sign, which caused controversy for the coming three years. Finally in November 1946, VF-6 was decommissioned and the Chief of Naval Operations approved the adoption of the Felix the Cat name and call sign for VF-3A’s exclusive use.
The emblem and mascot is the famous cartoon character Felix the Cat, running with a large spherical bomb with a lighted fuse. The yellow field and outline were omitted from the aircraft and four stars at the end of a pair of sweeps were added. This emblem can be seen on the fuselage of the aircraft above the wing.
Several well-known aviators have flown with Felix on their shoulders, including Charles Lindbergh and Butch O’Hare.
The nickname Tomcatters was adopted in 1948.
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