Wednesday, June 26, 2019

USS Hornet departs San Francisco carrying Doolittle raiders

Via  DaSOB
"I had never seen this photo before now. It really gives you some serious perspective on the immense difficulty of launching 16 medium bombers off a carrier deck. Col. Doolittle's aircraft was the first off, and it had less than 500 feet to get airborne. The takeoff had to be exquisitely timed so that when the aircraft reached the end of the takeoff distance, the deck was pitching up from the heavy seas, giving the B-25 an extra "heave-ho" into the air. Talk about brass balls!"

 

20 comments:

  1. How it must've felt to be in the first and second aircraft taking off.
    Not much take-off distance!

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  2. Hi Brock,
    GO NAVY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
    skybill, aka,
    PR-2 DELI, USN, 05DEC1966-23NOV1970, PR-"A" School class 714 July 1967, USS PRINCETON LPH-5 AUG 1967-NOV 1969, Vietnam 1968, Apollo X (10) Pick up MAY 1969, USS OKINAWA LPH-3 NOV 1969-NOV 1970 .....I'll tell ya' about it at "PATCOM!!"
    skybill

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  3. That's a painting. I've seen it before but I'll be damned if I can remember where.

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    Replies
    1. Looking closely, it appears you are correct. Can't find anything definitive though Thanks.

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    2. There are many hits when you search.
      https://www.flightjournal.com/april-2-day-aviation-history-2/

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  4. I first saw this photo a couple of months ago. What amazes me is that the ship sailed in broad daylight. I would have thought a spy in San Francisco, and I'm sure there were many, would have reported it. An aircraft carrier carrying bombers was unheard of and surely would have attracted attention.

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  5. My uncle was the port side gunners mate on the Hornet and was tasked by the Captain the clean and function test all of Dolittle's men's 1911's. Prophetically saying "I think they're going to need them". Thanks for the pic!

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  6. I would question this as absolute secrecy shrouded the operation and fears of the small convoy being intercepted were high. Add to this Japanese spies on the Left Coast who would report such a glorious departure for Nippon.

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    Replies
    1. Yes, it appears to be a a painting as commented above.

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  7. That great photo was taken in the "Pre-snowflake" era!

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  8. A time when men were men and women were women.

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