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This Week In Naval Aviation History

Excerpts from United States Naval Aviation 1910-1970

6/2/2003 - 6/8/2003
Monday, June 04, 1934 - The USS Ranger (CV-4) was placed in commission at Norfolk, CAPT A. L. Bristol commanding.
Monday, June 02, 1941 - The USS Long Island, first escort carrier of the U.S. Navy, was commissioned at Newport News, Va., CDR D. B. Duncan commanding. Originally designated AVG-1, the Long Island was a flush-deck carrier converted in 67 working days from the cargo ship Mormacmail.
Thursday, June 04, 1942 - A strong Japanese thrust in the Central Pacific to occupy Midway Island, was led by a four-carrier Mobile Force, supported by heavy units of the Main Body (First Fleet) and covered by a diversionary carrier raid on Dutch Harbor in the Aleutians. This attack was met by a greatly outnumbered United States carrier force composed of Task Force 17 (RADM F. J. Fletcher) with the Yorktown, and Task Force 16 (RADM R. A. Spruance) with Hornet and Enterprise, and by Navy, Marine Corps, and Army air units based on Midway. Planes from Midway located and attacked the Mobile Force (4 June) as it sent its aircraft against defensive installations on Midway. Concentrating on the destruction of Midway air forces and diverted by their torpedo, horizontal, and dive bombing attacks, the Japanese carriers were caught unprepared for the carrier air attack which began at 0930 with the heroic but unsuccessful effort of Torpedo Squadron 8, and were hit in full force at 1030 when dive bombers hit and sank the carriers Akagi, Kaga and Soryu. A Japanese counter attack at noon and another 2 hours later, damaged the Yorktown with bombs and torpedoes so severely that she was abandoned. In the late afternoon, U.S. carrier air hit the Mobile Force again, sinking Hiryu, the fourth and last of the Japanese carriers in action. With control of the air irretrievably lost, the Japanese retired under the attack of Midway-based aircraft (5 June) and of carrier air (6 June) in which the heavy cruiser Mikuma was sunk and the Mogami severely damaged. Japanese losses totaled two heavy and two light carriers, one heavy cruiser, 258 aircraft,and a large percentage of their experienced carrier pilots. United States losses were 40 shore-based and 92 carrier aircraft, the destroyer Hammann and the carrier rktown, which sank 6 and 7 June respectively, the result of a single submarine attack. The decisive defeat administered to the Japanese put an end to their successful offensive and effectively turned the tide of the Pacific War.
Sunday, June 07, 1953 - The major effort of carrier air was directed on a round-the-clock basis against Communist frontline and supporting positions to counter an apparent effort by the enemy to gain ground prior to a possible armistice.TEST
Thursday, June 06, 1957 - Two F8U Crusaders and two A3D Skywarriors flew nonstop from the carrier Bon Homme Richard off the California coast to the Saratoga off the east coast of Florida. This, the first carrier-to-carrier transcontinental flight, was completeed by the F8Us in 3 hours 28 minutes and by the A3Ds in 4 hours 1 minute.
Sunday, June 06, 1976 - An A-6 Intruder successfully test fired the tactical version of the Tomahawk cruise missile using the Terrain Contour Matching Navigation System. The Tomahawk was designed as a long-range weapons system with strategic and tactical application. It can be launched from tactical and strategic aircraft, surface ships, submarines and land platforms.
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