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1973 aerial view of Brown Field Municipal Airport, located in the Otay Mesa neighborhood of San Diego 13 miles southeast of downtown, named in honor of Commander Melville S. Brown, USN, who was killed in an airplane crash in 1936. The airport, originally named East Field in honor of Army Major Whitten J. East, opened in 1918. On September 1, 1962, the Navy transferred ownership of Brown Field to the City of San Diego.