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Archive for April, 2014
Posted by Justwingit | Apr 18, 2014 @ 10:03 AM | 45,222 Views
Today I thought it fitting to remember an exceptional chapter in aviation history....the day a heroic band of Army pilots did the unthinkable....took land-based, medium bombers off of a pitching and heaving carrier deck and flew 600 miles deep into enemy territory with the mission of bombing their capitol city.

I originally posted this on the Wildcat thread, but thought the time and effort warranted posting it here in my blog as well, so please forgive my indulgence...

As is customary on this thread, we always look at chapters in our little 'Cat's history. One chapter not to be overlooked is the Doolittle Raid....

Although it was the USAAF pilots flying B-25 Mitchell medium bombers on that day that stole the spotlight (and earned EVERY word of praise for their efforts), our little Wildcat was there as well, with Wildcats from Enterprise's VF-6 flying both inner and outer CAP's just in case they were needed to repel any attacks on the Hornet as she came in close, and once the B-25's were on their way to Tokyo, Wildcats from VF-8 joined the patrols as well to give VF-6 some relief from the constant inner and outer CAPs.

Prior to the launch, however, on the morning of 18 April, Wildcats from VF-6 were involved in several sorties to attack and suppress Japanese picket boats, and Wildcats thoroughly strafed the Nanshin Maru and the Nitto Maru. Most of the fighter planes returned to the Enterprise out of ammo, prompting one of the Wildcat pilots, LT (jg) Wilmer Rawie to...Continue Reading