Underway in the Pacific, possibly during the ship's third WestPac deployment, February 16-September 28, 1961. An A3D-2 Skywarrior of VAH-8 "Fireballers" is in the foreground. Photo by SM2 Robert Parrott, OS Division, USS Midway (CVA-41), 1959-1962 - NS024177 - Submitted by his son, John.

Operations Evening Light and Eagle Claw, A Sailors tale of his Tour of duty in the U.S. Navy (August 1977 to February 1983)


A Sailors tale of his Tour of duty in the U.S. Navy (August 1977 to February 1983) Operation Evening Light and Eagle Claw - 24 April 1980


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Operations Evening Light and Eagle Claw, A Sailors tale of his Tour of duty in the U.S. Navy (August 1977 to February 1983)


USS Coral Sea CV-42 CVB-43 CVA-43 and CV-43 History and Those Aircraft Carriers Operating with Coral Sea During Her Tour of Service CONSTRUCTION to LAUNCHING and EARLY JET AIRCRAFT DEVELOPMENT (10 July 1944—2 April 1946) and a Tour of Duty in the U. S. Navy (August 1977 to February 1983)


ISBN: 9781434382917






1.  If one single factor were to be mentioned as having had the most detrimental influence on the entire period of operations covered by this report, it would be scheduling. At every turn, from the instant of return from the last deployment, this Air Group has been beset with problems most of which were generated by poor scheduling. It is realized that many of the problem areas in this regard were generated by the International Situation, but it is also felt that lack of appreciation or consideration for the real problems accounted for considerable difficulty. The following examples will serve to support this allegation:


a. Initial Fallen Deployment for entire group was slated for the month of June I960. BRAVO funds ran short and approximately 50% of CVG-2 funds were transferred to other squadrons for the month of June, thereby making a farce of the deployment,


b. Weapon Loading School quotas. Due to early deployment of other squadrons, and additional loading school quotas required by these activities CVG-2 firm quotas were repeatedly cancelled, and final quotas were made available only during subsequent weapon deployments, which meant that many ordnance personnel were in school during a time when their services were urgently needed at Fallon. Increasing school capacities for short periods would appear to be a wiser solution to unforeseen and sudden overloads, rather than push everything back with the resulting schedule conflicts.


c. CARQUAL periods. Here the traditional West Coast winter weather constantly plagued every effort to- complete minimum qualifications, which, when combined with a week deleted for NATC trials, another week for RCVG qualifications and several non-operating trips up and down the Coast to load and off-load SECNAV guests, resulted in extensive time embarked with minimum concrete results


d. The sudden urgent requirement to develop a Buddy Bombing capability hit CVG-2 partially through the Christmas leave period, which curtailed leave and added a two (2) week deployment to Yuma during a period when the time -could ill afford to be spared


e.  The above  snowballed to such an extent that the NORM, MORT and WEPTRAEX plus numerous AAWEX's were all scheduled into one  short at-sea period just prior to deployment. The normal two (2) weeks of uninterrupted in-port time just prior to deployment was thusly reduced to ten (10) days after curtailment of Christmas leave.


f. The AirPac schedule then .was- compressed beyond all reason to meet a WESTPAC arrival date. This meant that the SOA to Hawaii was over twenty (20) knots, thereby precluding any Air Operations enroute. The stay in the Hawaiian area was limited to six (6) days, during which time the ORI and NORM were conducted, with one day in the middle deleted due to Washington's Birthday, Limited briefings on WESTPAC operations and a ORI critique were also jammed into this abbreviated stay. The SOA to Guam was again in excess of twenty (20) knots in order to allow one day in that area to CARQUAL Guam units. Again Air Group Operations were not possible, not even in the Guam area where the stay was limited to one (1) day. The SOA to the Philippines again had to be in excess of twenty (20) knots to arrive on schedule, and immediately on arrival, with no inport period or briefings by SEVENTH Fleet, the ship and group participated in a major fleet exercise, "TOPHAT”.


g. The SEVENTH Fleet Schedule permitted only three (3) in-port periods when shore-basing was practicable during the entire time in WESTPAC.  The last of these was following the last regular operating period at sea when the main part of the cruise was over.  Extensive visits to Kobe, Iwakuni, and Sasebo were fine for people-to-people programs, but severely curtailed the ability of the group to maintain a high degree of readiness. In this connection, it is recommended that Carriers never be scheduled for visits to any ports other than Yokosuka and Cubi Point, and that shore basing be planned and executed during every such visit.


h. Daily flight scheduling under Commander Carrier Division THREE was, as a rule, from noon until midnight. This provided a satisfactory balance of flying except when inclement-weather precluded continuing operations beyond dark. In this case only half a day was obtained, and in some cases where the general weather picture made it obvious that night flying was going to be marginal for several days, the schedule remained firm and half of every day was lost.


i. The daily Air Plan was also specified by Commander Carrier Division THREE, and, in spite of many overtures to the contrary, a "heel-and-toe" schedule was usually specified, although the Group and the Ship wanted a ''Block" type launch schedule.  The latter allows breathing time between large launches during which time minor maintenance would enhance the ability to make the next launch. The "Heel-and-Toe", on. the other hand, meant that all planes on the flight deck were in almost continuous motion, making minor repairs next to impossible. In addition, this dictated flying the A4D's on a one (1) and one half (1/2) hour cycle, thereby wasting much time for urgently needed training, It made for more landings but less syllabus training.


j. The last major scheduling problem was planning a long trip to Hong Kong, a five day visit there, and the consequently longer return trip to CONUS after being relieved by the RANGER. This apparently needless waste of valuable time shortens the time to turn around in the States, .makes it necessary to move to new home ports immediately after return to CONUS, and, in general, was considered a complete waste of time as far as the Group was concerned. We had been relieved in WESTPAC and saw no reason for hanging around an extra fifteen (15) days when time is always so critical.




1. This Air Group was blessed with a long turnaround period, and as a consequence was able to obtain a considerable amount of training. There were some glaring problem areas, however, a few of which are listed below:


a. Stability of personnel. Constant attention had to be paid to critical rates to ensure that fleet manning levels were maintained. This should be automatic and not have to be made the subject of repeated visits, letters and phone calls.  Many men were received, trained to fit into the squadron and then transferred before they could "pay their way". It is difficult to accept the statement that everyone is short, and you will have to share the shortages and carry on with your normal workload by virtue of the "can do" spirit. At the same time you are urged to pursue an active career incentives and character guidance program. The two are not compatible. If we don't have the trained manpower to properly man a squadron, or a ship then why not cut down the squadrons or ships or stations until we can man them all properly. Horizontal manpower cuts will eventually ruin the Navy.  It seems as if we are heading rapidly to a point where we will excel at mediocrity.


b. Stability of aircraft. Here, again, the shortages are well known, and yet the mission or scope of training is not only not reduced, it is constantly being accelerated and increased,, The A3D is an excellent example. VAH-8 had only two turnaround pilots, so their training requirements were exceedingly high, yet from April through August their average on-board count of airplanes was three. Even these were constantly being transferred and replaced. At one time a plane was put through acceptance check and then ordered transferred before any training flights could be scheduled on it. Every minute of maintenance time spent on this plane was a complete waste. Again, if we don't have a stable of airplanes to handle numbers in overhaul, numbers in stand-by or pool status, and numbers to enable the squadrons to carry on their training responsibilities, why not reduce the numbers of squadrons and the commitments, and not fill the gap by increasing the hours spent on maintenance, working all night to keep the schedule filled, and accepting a reduced amount of training. Such stop-gap measures will reduce reenlistment rates, deplete the already critically short supply of highly skilled technicians, increase maintenance-caused accidents, and even result in squadrons deploying with a "paper capability" to properly perform their mission,


c. PAR workmanship. The prime detrimental factor in this regard was in the poor quality of workmanship, particularly on painting planes. F3H and AD aircraft out of O&R North Island were prime offenders. Time was wasted in repairing or maintaining the poor paint jobs obtained over extensive periods of time when the planes could have been used for urgently required training.


d. Sandblower flights.  The restrictions on low level navigation flights precluded any realistic training throughout most of the pre-deployment cycle. Present instructions alleviate this, but it was over four months after COMAIRPAC lifted the restrictions that COMFAIRALAMEDA lifted them in their area of responsibility.


e. Cross-Country Flight Restrictions. The present regulations governing conduct of cross-country flights are so restrictive as to almost preclude any extensive training in this regard. It is felt that such flights by individuals on their own, is invaluable training. Overnight stays should be encouraged to help entice pilots to spend more of their spare time conducting such flights. Every week-end at least a third of the squadron planes should be off on cross-country trips. To wait until a relatively new pilot is bingoed at night off a carrier to a foreign field with a tower operator who speaks little or no English, and with the plane at a critically low fuel state and then wonder why he gets in trouble is sheer folly. These pilots have to be trained to fly and think for themselves.  The day and age of the large "Group Grope" is gone. Present missions require training of individuals to go it on their own. Even formation flying is important only from the standpoint that in peacetime planes are sent off in pairs - it has little application in combat to-day. If allowing pilots to go to their home town will be an added incentive to their taking weekend cross-country flights, then this should be encouraged rather than avoided at all cost.


If accidents occur under the conditions outlined above, just think where they would happen if the first solo cross country over strange terrain were to be an actual mission in the event of all out hostilities. By legislating against this sort of flying we may salve the mind of an irate taxpayer who hates to see the neighbor boy ride home in a million dollar airplane, but we detract from the ability of that pilot to properly use that same plane. Which is more important?


f. Space restrictions aboard ship. The Group moved aboard ship after a lengthy stay ashore, and due to shipyard modifications, natural spreading out by some ship departments, and inadequate designated Air Group spaces, found it necessary to devote a considerable amount of effort to obtaining enough space to operate. Even at the end of the cruise, the Group was operating .under cramped conditions out of such spaces as Food Service Lockers, 3"/50 Caliber magazine, wire cages, elevator sheave rooms, voids, etc. In the latest MIDWAY ship plans, there are only five (5) designated Group working spaces opening onto the Hangar Deck, There is only one (1) squadron office so designated, and it will hold 4 desks and 10-12 file cabinets.  There are four (4) squadron Armorys, no squadron maintenance offices, no material offices, no stowage space for full pressure suits, etc. There are apparently plenty of Divisions in BUSHIPS and BUWEPS to worry about boat shops, electric shops, electronics spaces, magazines and so forth, but no where is there any office interested in adequate designated spaces for the Air Group, The Group ends up arguing with the ship, fitting into unused or unwanted spaces and working out of tool boxes. In view of the mission of the Carrier this is intolerable.


g. Operational/Readiness Reports. If the assumption is made that COMNAVAIRPAC and the local COMFAIRS require the present extensive and detailed Operational/Readiness reports, it is recommended that a meeting of the minds be arrived at in order to preclude the preparation of two separate and distinct reports on a monthly basis. Such a combined report should be screened carefully to ensure that the requested information is actually needed and utilized, and, in addition, try to use information that is already required by other reports in order to reduce the man-hours required to obtain the data in the desired form.




1, This section of the Cruise Report will be divided into many categories with all squadrons being covered in each section.  Naturally, many problems were common to all units, some were peculiar to one type of plane or one type of' mission.  The biggest single problem from the standpoint of the Air Group as a whole stemmed .from a reluctance on the part of all units to give up some of the prerogatives-they had enjoyed on the beach, and to realize that when embarked it is necessary to function as a single Group, not as a "Bunch". Seven or eight individual operations officers can't be pounding on Air Operations desk for their individual desires; every maintenance or line officer can't be pestering Flight Deck Control for spots, changes in schedules, etc.; it is up to the Air Group Staff to coordinate these functions, and provide a smooth request to the ship based on the overall needs of the Group, not based on who is the loudest talker or the- most persistent nagger.  Units shore based must be kept similarly advised and a smooth flow of information in both directions is necessary to accomplish .the assigned tasks.  Similar coordination between shore based units is essential. Finally, it is up to the Ship and the Group to cross-polinize in order to recognize each others problems and to insure reasonable demands. All of the above was accomplished on this cruise, but only after a painful learning period.




1.    PROBLEM:    The Deck Loading for the MIDWAY is too high.  Presently assigned Air Group planes, if all aboard, preclude any air operations. The accepted deck load factors for various type aircraft, and the tabulated "optimum” loads are incorrect, at least as regards the MIDWAY.


COMMENT:    The following steps taken singly or in groups would alleviate this:


a. Eliminate the AD-5Q.  Use in EASTPAC for training, but it is felt that they cannot contribute enough during combat to justify embarkation.


b. Shore base Photo aircraft in WESTPAC and embark only as required, The extensive space required to operate them from the carrier doesn't justify permanent assignment.  Most of their peacetime work can better be accomplished from the beach.


c.  Reduce Day Fighters to the maximum extent with the ultimate aim of replacing them with all-weather fighters.  Single limited mission aircraft are a luxury we can no longer afford.  In the case of the MIDWAY the largest single squadron was the F8U-2 with fourteen (14) planes assigned.  Some had to be shore based at all times, but in transit their assignment overcrowded the deck.


d.  Increase number of aircraft assigned to attack squadrons which have the need for alert loaded planes.


e.  Carefully survey every deploying squadron to eliminate unnecessary gear. Illegal items were eliminated prior to this cruise by such an inspection, but such bulky items as spare photo camera boxes    (342 cu ft), extra bomb racks for the A3D (300 cu ft), F3H bomb racks, Bullpup racks and control boxes, GTC-85 starting units  (Written requirement to shore base at Atsugi), and many miscellaneous "high usage" or "hard to get" items that every squadron inevitably drags along all showed up and required stowage.


2.  PROBLEM: Scheduling, though mentioned earlier, cannot be eliminated from any discussion involving operational .problems.  Comments are directed at various facets of this aspect of the cruise.




a.  The "Heel-and-Toe" or continuous around-the-clock type of daily air plan must be practiced since it may well be required by a combat situation.  However, it severely restricts training, and so should be used sparingly, not with the attitude that “you will, just have to  learn how to maintain your airplanes while they are moving up and down the deck.”  Training and availability both suffer heedlessly


b. Visits to ports where shore basing is not practicable should be reduced to no more than three  (3) days or eliminated.


c. Every at sea period which will terminate in shore basing should, as a matter of course be scheduled so that for the last day and night at sea the bulk of the planes are flown off and the deck utilized for day and night qualification type operations, building up the landings of both old and new replacement pilots. This cannot be left to the individual Task Force Commanders, but should be scheduled rigidly by the Fleet Commander.


d. Long transits at high SOAs .must be eliminated.


e. Operations should be planned near target facilities, limited though they are.


3. PROBLEM: Air Traffic Control is a facet of operations that must be carefully organized, scrupulously adhered to, an frequently practiced.  If safety is to be obtained, the inherent delays involved in continuous use must be accepted. Such practice must involve peacetime safety factors and a degree of precision attained so that in combat more rapid recoveries can be obtained even though there is -a resultant increased danger of crashes.


COMMENT: The Air Traffic Control procedures developed by the USS RANGER with slight modifications depending on equipment available to monitor the procedures, should be made mandatory for all carriers. The usage, including safety factors, should be carefully spelled out.


4. PROBLEM: Suitable target availability in WESTPAC has been mentioned in every Cruise Report in the last ten (10) years, yet no concrete results are yet available


COMMENT: Admittedly, steps are underway to provide suitable raked and instrumented ranges in WESTPAC, but, in addition, it is not understood how the Air Force can have such targets and no provisions are available for sharing them.  The Navy provides extensive services to the Air Force in strikes against Air Defense units, and in SAR missions, and yet, when target usage is requested, it is either turned down or limited usage is granted at odd hours, on a "not-to-interfere” basis.


5.  PROBLEM: Pilot minimums are difficult to obtain, but even more critical is the difficulty in obtaining enough carrier landings per month, particularly night landings.  With new Fleet Replacement Pilots arriving, and with the night requirements on all embarked pilots, unless all operations are conducted at night, the monthly landing totals will be too low.


COMMENT: As mentioned under scheduling, every at-sea period where shore basing is contemplated on completion, the last day and night at sea should be reserved for running through the deck.  Sufficient aircraft can be flown ashore in advance to enable the deck to handle carqual type operations.  This step must be specified and planned by COMSEVENTHFLT, since the individual Task, Force Commanders change so often, and have so many other commitments to meet.


6.  PROBLEM: Communication equipment breakdowns and general unreliability plagued the entire operation.  It is inconceivable, in this day and age of communications advances, that the equipment used in the control of aircraft is so obsolete, and unreliable




a. Tacan  trouble shooting both for Ship and Airplane components was poor. Recommend the ship installation be examined to determine how it can be more consistent and to improve system of monitoring. Aircraft Tacans should be worked on by one set of technicians regardless of squadron, to insure the same results.


b. UHF radios were unreliable and inconsistent.  The ARC-27 installed at the LSO platform was outstanding, but strictly a jury rig, The UHF remotes were a constant source of trouble in the tower, at the  LSO platform, in CCA and in CIC.  This entire system must be improved.


c. The Raspberry Net is essential to air operations in WESTPAC as well as any other area of operations. Single Side Band equipment should be utilized for a net that is so vital to safe peacetime operations.


7. PROBLEM: Alert loaded aircraft seriously hampered the attack squadrons in maintaining their readiness. Towards the end of the cruise this situation was vastly improved, but still the number of planes available to the squadrons for flying was severely reduced.


COMMENT: Additional aircraft must be assigned to these squadrons or the number of alerts reduced. If the squadrons are given extra aircraft, their alert requirements shouldn't be increased a proportional amount.  (It is hard to reconcile 24 plane Marine A4D squadrons with twenty six (26) pilots, for example, with no alert requirements).


8. PROBLEM: Shore basing provides an excellent means of rounding out training requirements, but some deficiencies exist in the facilities ashore.




a.  NAS Atsugi will not permit carrying bombs externally (Not even MK-76 practice bombs) so no bombing training can be conducted.  This should be corrected.


b.  NAS Atsugi rules prohibit jet flight operations after 2200 -local until 0500 local.  Even near large urban areas in the United States the restrictions are not permitted to cripple operations to this  extent.


c.  NAS Atsugi prohibits FCLP except under carefully controlled conditions.  (Two planes in the pattern, daytime only, only when Kizarazu is IFR, etc.). Again this restriction is more severe than those placed on Air Stations, in CONUS, and should be eliminated.


d.  Emergency landings are not permitted at NAF Naha for fear of fouling the runway.  The USAF sends all emergencies to Kadena some forty (40) miles by road, which makes repairs tedious due to no Navy support closer than Naha.  This has occurred twice to aircraft of this Group, and does not appear to be warranted.


9.  PROBLEM: The number of authenticators required to be carried on all flights in WESTPAC is unwieldy.


COMMENT: As many as three separate authenticators plus shackle code and SIF wheel information must be carried nearly all the time.  A single system of authentication for Navy ships, Air Defense sites and the Japanese Self Defense Force would appear to be entirely feasible, and would eliminate confusion and errors.




1.  PROBLEM: Level Readiness implementation was, as anticipated, not as smooth as might have been expected. It was new, and the deployed units were not certain of what product they would receive, and when the replacement pilots did start to arrive, considerable discussion was required to obtain training records.


COMMENT: By separate correspondence, a suggested format for a replacement pilot training record has been submitted. It was also recommended that this record be airmailed to the squadron, and a copy sent with the pilot, much as his health and pay records would be transmitted.


2. PROBLEM: Pilot training of replacement pilots varied considerably. The deficiencies sometimes noted made completion of their qualifications difficult to accomplish while deployed.


COMMENT: Much has been written regarding "Level Readiness" and the implementation thereof in the Pacific Fleet. It is felt that too much has been expected of the level ready pilot. However, if the system is to work as it is intended there are a few things that should be insured:


a.  The RCVG course of instruction must proceed at a rapid and steady pace in order to complete on schedule and with an optimum amount of flight time each month.


b. Complete day and, if required, night carrier qualifications must be accomplished and the last landings must be made just prior to departing to join the squadron if the squadron is deployed. In addition, if the squadron is deployed the replacement must complete "build up" landings


c.  Training records should be handled as mentioned above.


d.  The number of replacement pilots sent to a deployed unit must be scheduled so there are always enough pilots who deployed with the squadron to handle the squadron mission. In other words, it is virtually impossible to complete any qualifications on a pilot who reports in WESTPAC.  Lowering the requirements for qualification in order to deploy them fully qualified is not the answer. Realistic criteria must be maintained and plans formulated which will permit enough fully qualified pilots to complete the cruise. The tempo of operations, the lack of suitable raked targets, the difficulties experienced while shore based and the readiness posture which must be maintained simply preclude any extensive training. A replacement pilot, particularly one right out of the training command, has his hands completely filled just trying to stay alive while gradually building up a fund of operational experience from the deck of a carrier.


3. PROBLEM: Weapons Loading Officers are in constant demand during WESTPAC operations. Pilots are used for the most part, but when loads must be supervised, pilots briefed for their strikes and alert loads and follow on strikes are launched, a requirement immediately exists for qualified loading officers, whose services aren't required elsewhere.


COMMENT: All attack pilots of the rank of LT and below, plus all non-aviator officers sent to an attack squadron should attend loading school prior to reporting.


4. PROBLEM: Officers ordered detached often have little or no notice of impending transfer and are detached without adequate turnover or prior to relief reporting, aboard.


COMMENT: Admittedly an Operational hold. can be placed on these officers but this may involve missing convening dates on schools, curtailment or elimination of leave enroute or, in extreme cases, a complete change in orders.  Every attempt must be made to insure that any delays or unforeseen changes don't end up affecting the readiness of deployed units.  Inconveniences, short turnovers, delays, etc., must be absorbed elsewhere.


5. PROBLEM: Enlisted personnel report with no RCVG training and with little or no knowledge of the airplanes involved. Fleet manning levels are not maintained.


COMMENT: Here, again, it is better to receive a man late but to have him properly trained. Training certainly can be obtained while deployed but with manning levels as low as they are today, a certain degradation of maintenance and therefore readiness, must be anticipated. To the operational Commander this is never acceptable. Corrosion control, as discussed elsewhere, depletes the numbers of men to maintain-aircraft. If extra planes are assigned a squadron, some must be shore-based with the undesirable split of assigned personnel.  All of the above combine to increase the requirements for manpower.  Possibly a close look at manning levels for deployed squadrons versus those .in training in the States is in order.  In connection with personnel shortages, no input is sent to deployed units the last forty five (45) days of .a deployment.  Either no one should be ordered out of a unit for a comparable period, or the Operational Commanders should be informed to expect a reduction in readiness for this period.




1. PROBLEM: Corrosion Control for deployed aircraft is one of the .most difficult problems encountered in the field of aircraft maintenance.




a. During the time that COMCARDIV THREE acted as CTF 77, the -policy regarding use of NIPPI facilities to supplement squadron efforts was that no plane was to be inducted unless corrosion had progressed to the point where it was beyond squadron capability to correct it.  In others words, this service was limited to correction of pronounced deficiencies, and not used as. a supplement-for regular routing corrosion control. As a result, this Group was able to obtain approval for the induction of only four (4) A3D’s, one .(1) A4D, and one (1) AD during a cruise of over seven (7) and one-half (1/2) months.  Squadron level maintenance has neither the time, capability, nor facilities for complete corrosion control. They can only hope to decrease the rate of deterioration of the condition of the assigned aircraft and prevent major damage from occurring as a result of corrosion. Unless full utilization of NPPPI facilities is made, the following results must be anticipated:


                        (1)  Corrosion control will be below acceptable standards.


                        (2)  Excessive squadron man hours will be diverted, from vital routine maintenance.


                        (3)  Deep seated corrosion that cannot be controlled at squadron level will not only go unattended but may well also be disguised or hidden and will result in insidious corrosion that cannot be corrected.


2.  PROBLEM: Routine Maintenance was difficult to accomplish due; to large number of aircraft embarked. (COMNAVAIRPAC ltr serial 01770 of 28 December I960 refers). The loading multiple of one hundred and nineteen (119) is out of the question. With boats, vehicles, ready loaded aircraft, and support equipment also on the hangar deck, engine pulls, tail pulls, and general access to the planes for maintenance is severely hampered,


COMMENT: As outlined in MIDWAY ltr serial 056 of 13 February 1961 and supported after seven and one-half months of WESTPAC operations, a realistic loading factor- is 108.56 for normal operations with peacetime boat allowance. The usual reaction of Operational Commanders to this statement is "you don't know what you're talking about" or "You just aren't trying" or "You will just have to learn to live with a higher loading”.  All these answers avoid the problem, complicate maintenance, decrease safety factors and contribute to reduction of urgently needed flight time and landings.


Still the trend is towards more and more embarked planes, more specialized support equipment, more complicated systems, more flight time day and night, and increased safety. Every returning Group and Squadron preaches the same theme - if you reduce the numbers aboard, we'll get more flying accomplished. Instead MIDWAY deployed with a load factor of one twenty six (126) and was scheduled to return with a load of one thirty nine and eight tenths (139.8) until permission was requested and granted to Transpac five (5) A3D's, leaving a loading multiple of one hundred nineteen (119). The average lead during normal operations was 114-118 and availability suffered.


3.  PROBLEM: Maintenance support equipment was loaded aboard in sufficient quantity to barely support the embarked units. Immediately equipment started to break down and replacement parts were next to impossible to obtain. Hydraulic fittings on two (2) AERO 4000 stands broke and the .subject stands were never again in operable condition. Starting probes were in short supply, those available were overworked with resultant breakdowns, power jeeps gradually deteriorated and in spite of a valiant effort by the V-6 Division at upkeep, support equipment availability gradually went downhill until at the end of the cruise a severe .shortage existed.


COMMENT: It is not enough to provide equipment in sufficient numbers. Spare parts are just as critical as spare aircraft parts if, without these parts, the planes cannot be properly supported.


4. PROBLEM: Fresh water for corrosion control, was provided by the MIDWAY whenever requested. The system for obtaining it at the Flight Deck level was the problem here in that fresh water outlets are not readily available and suitable hoses are not stocked for this purpose.


COMMENT: The elaborate system for providing water at high pressures along with "gunk" under pressure is not considered to be  worth the effort. Adequate cleaning can only-be accomplished with "elbow grease", but fresh water from easily accessible outlets through regular garden hoses, is excellent for final rinsing, quick wash downs of loose salt spray obtained under  particularly heavy sea conditions, or for removing soot from inadvertent or ill-timed tube blowing.


5.  PROBLEM: Flight and Hangar deck "crunches" were excessive. Every effort was expended by both the Group and the Air Department to eliminate or reduce these incidents, but no real .reduction was attained.  During the cruise there were eighty one (81) "crunches" of which twenty three (23) required over ten (10) man hours to repair, while the rest varied from no repair required to minor effort. Naturally every man-hour thus expended was badly needed in other maintenance work.


COMMENT: This number of crunches is attributed to the following conditions:


                        (1) The excessive deck loading already mentioned.


                        (2)    The Air Department endeavored to provide every maintenance spot that the Group requested.  Often this would involve remaining at Flight Quarters three  (3) or more hours after the last landing.    As a result a great many moves were made, and often with personnel that were dead tired after long hours of work.


                        (3) The Air Department as well as the squadrons were shorthanded, and in many cases planes had to be moved without the optimum number of men watching for clearance.  Manning levels have been discussed elsewhere.


6. PROBLEM: J-71 engine reliability was low.  A total of thirteen (13) J-71 engine changes- were made.  One engine failed to pass the Surge Check prior to installing.


COMMENT: This is the subject of separate correspondence, but it is inconceivable that a newly overhauled engine could be shipped to WESTPAC and then fail to pass this check.  Overhaul procedures or checking procedures appear in urgent need of careful scrutiny.


7.  PROBLEM: Martin Baker seats were a source of repeated problems mostly generated by poor design.


COMMENT: Corrosion resulting from improper or inadequate metal plating, spare part shortages, and lack of complete maintenance instructions were responsible for the majority of these problems.  (MIDWAY DISPATCH 051248Z July summarizes these deficiencies).


8.  PROBLEM: Working spaces, though covered extensively, in other sections of this report, must be mentioned here under- Maintenance as a major problem.


COMMENT: Briefly, the Air Group has been forgotten when spaces have .been designated aboard the CVAs as to intended usage.  The major portion of the assigned Air Group working spaces are intended for other use, and the Group fits in wherever they can.  Few of these spaces are properly located, seldom are they ventilated, and there is no. assurance from one cruise to the next that they will even be available for use.  It is almost as if the Air Group were embarked on a "not-to- interfere" basis or as an after thought.  Attempting to maintain to-days complicated and costly aircraft out of temporary wire cages or out of a tool box is unthinkable, yet this is normal practice on most CVAs.




1.  PROBLEM: Maintenance, office, crews living, and support spaces inadequate, only marginally habitable, and inequitably assigned.


COMMENT: The ship is poorly designed for spaces in general, but even within the  limits of design, allocation of spaces to the Air Group reflects a conflict of interests which results in marginal working conditions for the Air Group.  Delineated herein are some of-the  specific problems which the broad field of space utilization includes.  The MIDWAY, as in every other aircraft carrier in the Navy, reflects the lack of high level coordination between the Bureau of Ships and the Bureau of Weapons in the area of space aboard a carrier and results in a losing battle that an Air Group must continually fight in this conflict of interests.  It is strongly recommended that a thorough study be made of the allocation and utilization aboard each individual carrier by motivated groups representing BUSHIPS and BUWEPS with the aim of adjusting the serious inequities which exist.  A Carrier Air Group must devote entirely too much time and effort in fighting for space and facilities each time it moves on a ship or onto an air station, always as a transient group that must be fitted into what space is left over, or can painfully be made available.


2.  PROBLEM: Squadron aircraft maintenance spaces are inadequate.  Almost all of these spaces are poorly located, too small, and too few in number.


COMMENT: Since most aircraft maintenance of any depth is performed on the hangar deck it would seem reasonable that priority for spaces off the hanger deck would be given for this purpose. Unfortunately this is not the case as there are, for example four (4) coffee lockers (two (2) G Division, one V-4 and one V-6 Division) off the hangar deck amidships, and there are, in addition, a supply turn-in cage, a ship's electrical shop, a 5" 38 repair shop, and a special weapons instrument room-all ideally located for aircraft maintenance use.  Meanwhile squadron maintenance personnel must work, to an unacceptable extent, out of cages and cruise boxes, it is recommended spaces off the hangar deck be assigned as air group maintenance spaces until these requirements are satisfied, and then remaining spaces be allocated to other uses.


3.  PROBLEM: Squadron administrative and office spaces are not adequate.


COMMENT: Through the years, originally assigned squadron office spaces have been reassigned to other uses.  The entire Air Group administrative and personnel effort, including that of three detachments, is now crowded into three compartments: (1) Squadron Armory #1, (2) the original Air Department and Air Maintenance Office which includes the Air Group Commander’s Ready Room, and (3) Squadron Office #3.  To augment this space desks are located in ready rooms, locker rooms, and other such sundry cubby-holes as can be found.  Offices, or even desks, for the Air Group Commander or Squadron Commanding Officers are non-existent -- these officers conduct their squadron business from their Ready Room or stateroom,


4.  PROBLEM: Squadron supporting spaces are inadequate.


COMMENT: Supporting spaces such as-material spaces, parachute drying room, flight gear locker- rooms, and line spaces are makeshift, inconvenient and inadequate for their purpose. Squadron material personnel, for example, are crowded into the lower deck and half-deck of the parachute drying room, parachutes must be dried and serviced ashore, flight gear locker rooms are used as line spaces, and flight gear is kept in the Ready Rooms and officers’ staterooms.


5.  PROBLEM: Berthing spaces for the crew are inadequate,


COMMENT: The crew, ship's company and air group work long, hard hours during periods of heavy operations, but their few hours of rest are lost in the hot, poorly ventilated living compartments where they must sleep.. This, of course, is a matter of design and configuration, but in a day when crew habitability has become such a widely recognized requirement, the living conditions of the crew of an aircraft carrier are ridiculously inadequate.




SQDN                           TYPE   DAMAGE        INJURY           DESCRIPTION OF ACCIDENT

AND AAR#                  ACFT   CODE               CODE 


VF-21 AAR 1-61         F3H-2   C                        E                        Pilot induced wheels up landing


VF-21 AAR 2-61         F3H-2   A                       A                       On bingo to beach, pilot ejected

`                                                                during porpoise on landing

VF-21 AAR 3-61         F3H-2   A                       C                        Engine malfunction (unknown),

pilot ejected low altitude.





VF-24 AAR 1-61         F8U-2   B                        E(A)                  Port landing gear strut exploded

on normal landing.  Wheel went

up deck and killed crewman.

VA-25 AAR1-61         AD-7                 A          E                        Engine failure at ramp, rolled

`                                      into water just astern.

VAH-8 AAR 1-61        A3D-2               C           E                        Nose gear dropped off on normal

T and G, aircraft landed on Strutt



DET A               NONE



DET A               NONE



DET A               NONE





UNIT                FEB          MAR        APR        MAY         JUNE       JUL       AUG        SEPT


VF-21                63/30*      186/54*    227/56*   219/78*   156/32*    292/36    350/27    31/2*

VA-22               95/17*     264/52*    143/35*   232/84*   229/30*    299/35*  437/19    53/17*

VA-23               76/9*       260/55*    162/34*   277/88*   227/29*    313/78    414/44    51/13*

VF-24                124/6*     294/0*      345/11*   395/59     320/22*    424/2      439/2      57/0*

VA-25               180/55*   462/71*    253/52*   466/122   453/72*    466/70*   533/41   87/12*

VAH-8              55/49*     205/33*    194/55*   224/83      257/36      242/53    369/75   46/3*


VAW-11          62/16*     75/7*        98/15       96/18*      160/11     115/12     175/24    16/0*


VAW-13          70/9         62/13        75/17       66/14        82/9         100/5       93/1         18/0*


VFP-63             38/0*       86/6          103/0       57/0*        81/0          100/0      93/0         9/0*


Indicates monthly flight time minimums were not met.


NOTE: VAW-13 based at Guam until June 1961.



Fourth “WestPac” deployment, operating with the Pacific Fleet, conducting Operational Readiness Inspection (ORI) and Nuclear Operational Readiness Maneuver (NORM) and the 7th Fleet, on her fourth South China Sea off the coast of Vietnam Summary (15 February to 28 September 1961).


Appendix V



“On 28 September 1961, USS Midway (CVA-41) with Rearl Admiral Frank B. Miller (assumed command in 1960), Commander and Captain French Wampler (assumed command in 1960), as Chief of Staff, Carrier Division Three and Commander R. J. Selmer, Commander, Carrier Air Grup Two (CVG-2) embarked arrived Naval Air Station, Alameda, California, with Captain Robert George Dosé, NAVCAD ’37, relieving Captain Ralph W. Cousins, as Commanding Officer and Commander Kenneth E. Gulledge, as Executive Officer, ending her fourth “WestPac” deployment, operating with the Pacific Fleet, conducting Operational Readiness Inspection (ORI) and Nuclear Operational Readiness Maneuver (NORM) and the 7th Fleet, on her fourth South China Sea off the coast of Vietnam. Midway pulled into port at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii on 20 February 1961. Twenty-two Secretary of the Navy guests observed carrier operations while the ship was enroute from Alameda, California to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii from 15 to 19 February 1961. Midway was underway in the Hawaiian operating area on 21 February 1961, pulling into port at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii a second time on 22 February 1961, operating in the Hawaiian area from 23 to 24 February 1961, making a port at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii a third time from 25 to 26 February 1961, conducting NORM-ORI – conducted by COMFAIRHAWAII from 20 to 25 February 1961, scoring 81.15% Tentative. Midway inchopped the Seventh Fleet on 4 March 1961, transiting to the San Bernardino Straits on 10 March 1961, underway in the Hawaiian operating area from 26 February to 5 March 1961 en route “WestPac”, Midway pulled into port at Apea Harbor, Guam from 6 to 7 March 1961, conducting Exercise Top Hat from 14 to 16 March 1961, underway in the Western Pacific from 7 to 19 March 1961, Midway pulled into port at Honkkong, B.C.C. from 20 to 22 March 1961, underway from 6 to 20 March 1961. Midway cut short her scheduled stay in Hong Kong and preceded to the South China Sea as ordered in response to the Laos situation, underway early in the morning on 23 March 1961, the ship moves to designated positions in the South China Sea. Throughout the Far East, the complicated US military machine is alerted, moving quickly to the South China Sea off the coast of Vietnam. Taken by surprise, the crew was forced to leave in Hong Kong over $13,000.00 in deposits, shirts and other clothes. (These deposits plus much laundry were later recovered by a special Supply Department task force.) The cause of the sudden departure is the rapidly deteriorating situation in the small, landlocked Indochinese country of Laos. In the dense, uncivilized jungles and rugged mountains, a rebel army, supported and supplied by Russia and Communist China, continues to move south, advancing against the poorly trained and in many cases poorly equipped Royal Laotian Army. At issue is possible military intervention by the US and/or SEATO, which has pledged aid to Laos. Midway delivered 2,000 lbs. of clothing, books and medical supplies via Operation Handclasp to missions in Hong Kong from 20 to 23 March 1961. The ship also contributed cash donations to Protestant and Catholic missions. Support was continued for the ship’s adopted son, Pang Ia Iong, a 14 - year old Hong Kong refugee, by providing his mission school with expenses for another year's lodging and schooling. Vice Admiral F. N. Kivette, recent Seventh Fleet Commander-in-Chief, has described the mission of the Seventh Fleet in one phrase: “We’re a fire department.” In other words, the fleet is ready to take action if – if a foreign military threat should arise against those countries with whom the U. S. has SEATO treaty obligations, and if the nation should request military assistance. If the Communists take any overt action, the Seventh Fleet and other deployed armed forces may serve their purpose merely by their presence. But to be effective, the threat must be no more buff. Midway is one of three aircraft carriers that comprise Task Force 77, the fleet’s attack carrier striking force. At least one of these carriers is at sea at all times. The Midway stands ready as a military and diplomatic weapon for the maintenance of peace. In the words of Admiral James S. Russell, Vice Chief of Naval Operations: “The modern flexible offensive power of our navy, the ability to apply force with Discernment, precise in location and appropriate in degree, lies in the manned aircraft of our fleets.” The aircraft carrier is their base”. Throughout the Far East, the complicated US military machine is alerted. Other units of the Seventh Fleet – USS Lexington (CVA-16) with CVG-10 embarked, USS Coral Sea (CVA-43) with CVG-15 embarked, USS Bennington (CVS-20) with CVSG-59 embarked and smaller support ships – move to designated positions in the South China Sea. Midway was underway in the South China Sea as ordered in response to the Laos situation, underway early in the morning on 23 March 1961, the ship moves to designated positions in the South China Sea until 26 March 1961. Throughout the Far East, the complicated US military machine is alerted, operating in the South China Sea from 23 to 31 March 1961, less a brief port at Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines on 27 March 1961 for six to eight hours to embark VMF-311, a Marine F8U squadron, underway from 23 to 26 March 1961 At the end of the reporting period she was still in that area; ready for any task that she might be called upon to carry out. During March 1961, Midway conducted four minor AAWEX’s and three ECM exercises with the destroyers in company conducting Exercise “TOP HAT” was a combined major STRIKEX, AAWEX and ASWEX scheduled by COMSEVENTHFLT from 14 to 16 March 1961. COMCARDIV THREE was Officer Conducting Exercise and Commander Task Force 77. As CTG 77.5, Midway operated as directed in CTF 77 Operation Order No. 322-61 in carrying out simulated iron bomb and nuclear warfare against designated domestic targets. Midway observed holiday routine during Easter Sunday, on 2 April 1961. Many crewmembers turned out for Easter church services and later bask on the flight deck in the hot tropical sun. The weather continues hot, in the low nineties. The sea water injection temperature is 84 degrees. In Laos and in Bangkok, the two sides exchange offers of conditional cease-fires, but the fighting in Laos’s steaming jungles continues. As hopes continue to rise for a cease-fire, Midway is ordered to proceed again to Subic Bay, this time to offload the Marines. Rumors of a trip North are persistent, yet at sea the ship lives in ignorance. As day after broiling day passes, the average sailor feels like a pawn on a great chess board. He has no idea when a move is coming, nor to where a move is coming, nor to where or for what purpose. He is curious, anxious, bored. He reads the morning news of conferences, discussions, studies, proposals, plans, and wonders why we can’t just fight it out and be done with it. Meanwhile the Midway steams in circles again around a stationary PIM in the South China Sea from 1 to 4 April 1961, conducting operations in the South China Sea from 28 March to 7 April 1961. To relieve the monotony, a gala Olympaid is held of thee flight deck of Midway, featuring such events as a bridle drag race and a swab throwing contest. In the final event, a tug of war, the burly flight and hangar deck crew from the Air Department bests everyone including the hefty, ominous-looking chiefs. In the meantime the ship was at last ordered North. Midway pulled into port at Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines from 8 to 9 April 1961 (In port approx 71/2 hours). Midway was underway in the Western Pacific from 8 to 13 April 1961, pulling into port at Yokosula, Japan on 14 April 1961. Captain Robert George Dosé, NAVCAD ‘37, assumed command during a change of command ceremony aboard Midway on 22 April 1961, relieving Captain Ralph Wynne Cousins, USNA ‘37, 19th Commanding Officer, serving from June 15, 1960 - April 22, 1961. Midway made a port of call at Yokosula, Japan from 14 to 24 April 1961, underway in the Philippine Sea from 24 to 27 April 1961, Midway conducted operations in the South China Sea from 27 April to 7 May 1961 and was off Buckner Bay, Okinawa on 8 May 1961. Commander Clarence F. Frossard, assumed command Executive Officer during a change of command ceremony aboard Midway in May 1961, relieving Commander Kenneth E. Gulledge, as Executive Officer serving from December 1960 to May 1961. Midway was underway in the Western Pacific from 8 to 14 May 1961, making a port at Kobe, Japan from 15 to 20 May 1961, underway from 24 April to 14 May 1961. Midway conducted Exercise Checkertail on 22 May 1961, underway in the Western Pacific from 20 to 28 May 1961. Midway made a port of call at Iwakuni, Japan from 29 May to 2 June 1961, underway from 20 to 28 May 1961. On 1 June 1961 JACKS, Eugene E. 487 22 94, ABF2, USN received a letter of commendation from the Air Research Corporation of Phoenix, Arizona for his suggestion on how to better the refueling operations of aircraft.  (JACKS is presently attached to VR-8 at NAS Moffett Field, Ca. Midway was underway in the Western Pacific from 3 to 8 June 1961, making a port of call at Sasebo, Japan from 9 to 17 June 1961. Midway conducted Exercise Big Shot from 20 to 23 June 1961, underway in the Western Pacific from 17 to 25 June 1961, making a port at Yokosula, Japan a second time from 26 to 29 June 1961, underway in the Western Pacific from 30 June to 9 July 1961. Midway pulled into port at Yokosula, Japan a third time on 10 July 1961, underway from 16 June to 10 July 1961. It is believed that the Midway set a record for the number of highline transfers conducted during a “WestPac” deployment when the 300th was made on 10 July 1961. Midway made a port of call at Yokosula, Japan a fourth time from 10 to 20 July 1961, underway in the Western Pacific from 20 to 25 July 1961. Midway pulled into port at Sasebo, Japan a second time from 27 to 30 July 1961, underway from 19 to 26 July 1961. On 27 July 1961 RADM R. N. SHARP, COMCARDIV ONE, embarked and relieved RADM F. B. MILLER, COMCARDIV THREE, as CTF 77 and CTG 77.5. The occasion was highlighted with attendance and a speech by VADM C. D. GRIFFIN, Commander SEVENTH Fleet, underway evading Typhoon Helen in the Western Pacific from 30 July to 2 August 1961, making a port of call at Sasebo, Japan a third time from 2 to 4 August 1961. Midway conducted Exercise Checkertail on 7 August 1961 and conducted Sparrow Missile Shoot from 9 to 10 August 1961, underway in the Western Pacific from 5 to 18 August 1961, making a port of call at Yokosula, Japan a fifth time from 19 August to 2 September 1961, underway from 5 to 18 August 1961, underway in the Western Pacific from 2 to 6 September 1961, making a port of call at Hongkong, B.C.C. from 7 to 12 September 1961, underway from 2 to 7 September 1961 and was underway evading Typhoon Nancy in the Western Pacific from 12 to 14 September 1961, inchopping to First Fleet on 19 September 1961, underway in the Western Pacific from 12 to 27 September 1961. During periods at sea, heavy emphasis was placed on anti-air warfare training throughout the deployments. Seventeen minor AAWEX’s and six simulated AAWEX’s were conducted exclusive of the major AAWEX conducted during exercise “Big Shot”. In April, June, and September considerable attention was given to ECM training.  Several ISE hours were spent, especially in May and July, conducting engineering casualty drills and emergency ship’s handling and maneuvering drills.  Numerous weapon loads were conducted during the course of the cruise to train and maintain the proficiency of the loading crews in this vital function. Fifty-three of the ship’s required annual competitive exercises were completed during the period of this report. Ports of calls include: Pearl Harbor, Hawaii four times; Apea Harbor, Hguam; Honkkong, B.C.C.; Leyte Pier, NAS Cubi Point, Subic Bay, Republic of Philippines, U.S. Naval Base Subic Bay, a bay forming part of Luzon Sea on the west coast of the island of Luzon in Zambales, Philippines, about 100 kilometers northwest of Manila Bay and is a major ship-repair, supply, and rest and recreation facility of the United States Navy located in Olongapo, Zambales, Philippines; Yokosuka, Japan, a city in Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan, covering an area of 100.7 km² and is the 11th most populous city in Greater Tokyo, 12th in the Kantō region; Kobe, Japan, the fifth-largest city in Japan and is the capital city of Hyōgo Prefecture on the southern side of the main island of Honshū, approximately 30 km (19 mi) west of Osaka; Iwakuni, a city located in Yamaguchi, Japan; Sasebo, a city in Nagasaki Prefecture, Japan; Yokosula, Japan a second time; Sasebo, Japan a second time; Yokosula, Japan a third time and Hongkong, B.C.C., situated on China's south coast and, enclosed by the Pearl River Delta and South China Sea. Over 2,300 people visited and toured the ship while it was in “WestPac”. Most visitors were members of special local groups such as city officials, college professors and students, school children, Chamber of Commerce member of the Nippon Kyokai on 22 August. See Midway’s Cruise Summary for a comprehensive summary report of operations and problems encountered while deployed to “WestPac” under operational control of COMSEVENTHFLT. A copy is appended herewith since the reporting period encompassed 80% of the deployment. Squadrons: VF-24, F8U-1 (F-8A); VF-21, F3H-2 (F-3B); VA-22, A4D-2 (A-4B); VA-23, VA-22, A4D-2 (A-4B); VA-25, AD-7 (A-1J); VAH-8, A3D-2 (A-3B); VAW-11 Det. A, WF-2 (E-1B); VCP-63 Det. A, F8U-1P (RF-8A) and HU-1 Det. A, HUP-2 (UH-25B). (*1) VMA-311 deployed aboard CVA-41 from 27 Mar. 1961 from Apr. 1961. Embarked at Subic Bay and (*2) VCP-63 redesignated VFP-63 on Jul.1, 1961. Her third deployment since her first recommission upon completion of SCB-110 (August 1955 to 30 September 1957), decommissioning in August 1955 upon arrival from her World Cruise and first “WestPac” deployment, operating with the U.S. Atlantic Command (USLANTCOM) (Atlantic Fleet), operational control extending to the 2nd Fleet and Pacific Fleet and tour of duty with the 7th Fleet, on her first South China Sea deployment, for a five month SCB-110 modernization that included new innovations such as an enclosed bow and an angled flight deck to be installed at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Bremerton Washington; redesignated CVA-41 on 1 October 1952. Her 13th Foreign Water Fleet Deployment (FWFD) since her commission 10 September 1945, having the destination of being the lead ship of her class, and the first to be commissioned after the end of lead ship of her class, and the first to be commissioned after the end of World War II (15 February to 28 September 1961)” (Ref. 1-Midway, 72, 1178-A, 1178-B, 1178-C, 1178-D, 1178-E, 1178-F, 1178-G, 1178-H, 1178-I, 1178-J, 1178-K, 1178-L, 1178-M, 1178-N, 1178-O, 1178-P, 1178-Q, 1179Z3, 1179Z4 & AVIATION HISTORICAL SUMMARY OPNAV FORM 5750-2 (6-57) PAGE 1 (1 January to 31 March 1961) and AVIATION HISTORICAL SUMMARY OPNAV FORM 5750-2 (Rev. 4-60) (1 April 1961 to 30 September 1961) of USS MIDWAY Command History for Calendar Year 1961).


15/02/61 to 28/09/61




Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal


24 to 25 Mar 61 *b

28 Mar to 7 Apr 61 *b

4th WestPac

4th SCS

National Defense Service Medal


Jan 1961 to Aug 1974


Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal - Service outside the geographical limits of South Vietnam and direct combat support to the Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces for more than six months.

Ref. 1081 & 1081/C



5750-2 (Rev. 4-60) of USS MIDWAY Command History for Calendar Year 1961).

(1 April to 30 September 1961) – Chapter 18, Appendix III.


USS Midway (CVA-41) USS Midway (CVA-41) Fifth “WestPac”Operations Summary (15 February to 28 September 1961) – Chapter 18, Appendix IV.


USS Midway (CVA-41) AVIATION HISTORICAL SUMMARY OPNAV FORM 5750-2 (REV. 4-60) of USS MIDWAY Command History for Calendar Year 1960).

(1 October 1961 to 31 March 1962)


Appendix VI




PERIOD COVERED:  1 OCT 1961 TO 31 MAR 1962

COMMANDING OFFICER:  R. G. DOSE                             









OFFICER:        AVIATORS: 22           AIR PILOTS -0-          OTHER: 112    TOTAL 134

ENLISTED:                  -0-                                   -0-                                   2485                  2485


4.  MISSION OR FUNCTION:          

             No change




             COMNAVAIRPAC 10-16-61 TO 3-12-62

             COMCARDIV ONE 3-12-62 TO 3-23-62

             COMNAVAIRPAC 3-23-62 TO 3-31-62






Exercise POTSHOT – Exercise “Potshot” was a combined major STRIKEX, AAWEX, ASWEX, and MEBLEX scheduled by COMFIRSTFLT and conducted by COMFIRSTFLT and designated subordinate commanders during the period 12 to 23 March 1962.  The MIDWAY participated as a unit of TF 17 and TG 17.1 (COMCARDIV ONE).  During the exercise MIDWAY conducted simulated conventional warfare in support of an amphibious landing and simulated nuclear strikes against assigned domestic targets on the West Coast of the U. S. as directed in COMFIRSTFLT Operation Order 1-62 and COMCARDIV ONE Operation Order 301.62.




             During Exercise POTSHOT, A3D’s were launched from MIDWAY to drop Marine Pathfinder Teams.  This is believed to be a first for this type of operation.




             As this period began MIDWAY had just returned from a WESTPAC deployment.  During the first month in EASTPAC intensive upkeep and repair work was accomplished at the San Francisco Naval Shipyard.  Following this yard period MIDWAY conducted carrier qualifications for various units until CVG-2 came aboard in January 1962.


             During periods at sea extensive training was accomplished and many competitive exercises were completed.  Heavy emphasis was placed on anti-warfare exercises and weapons loading to train and maintain the proficiency of all concerned in these vital functions.


             The facilities of Fleet School and training activities were utilized heavily for training new men reporting aboard and maintaining the proficiency of others.


             During this period MIDWAY was host to several groups of civilian guests of the Secretary of the Navy and guests from other services.  On 22 February 1962, Faye Emerson visited the MIDWAY as a personal guest of Capt. And Mrs. Dose.


             On 10 January 1962 MIDWAY entered port at NAS North Island.  This was MIDWAY’s first to San Diego in her history.





             See Page 6



             See page 7


3.  MILES STEAMED:           22,847


4.  SHIP’S FUEL CONSUMED:         8,227,758 gallons (NSFO)


AVIATION FUEL CONSUMED:      AVGAS 161,120 / JP-5 2,405,081 Gals.




Carrier Landings – During reporting period 4,496

Cumulative  total – 99,745

(See Page 6 for breakdown of even thousands)


             Catapult Launchings – During reporting period 5,383

                                       Cumulative total 29,673

                                       Total is from recommission 30 Sept. 1957.  No record of total from original commissioning available










1.  Geographical Location:


PERIOD                                     LOCATION


10/01/61 – 10/03/61                  NAS Alameda, California

10/03/61 – 11/03/61                  NS San Francisco, California

11/03/61 – 11/08/61                 NAS Alameda, California

11/08/61 – 11/15/61                  EASTPAC

11/15/61 – 01/29/61                  NAS Alameda, California

11/29/61 – 12/08/61                  EASTPAC

120/8/61 – 01/08/62                  NAS Alameda, California

01/08/62 – 01/10/62                  EASTPAC

01/10/62 – 01/11/62                  NAS North Island

01/11/62 – 01/17/62                  EASTPAC

01/17/62 – 01/29/62                  NAS Alameda

01/29/62 – 02/07/62                  EASTPAC

02/07/62 – 02/23/62                  NAS Alameda

02/23/62 – 03/02/62                  EASTPAC

03/02/62 – 03/12/62                  NAS Alameda

03/12/62 – 03/23/62                  EASTPAC

03/23/62 – 03/31/62                  NAS  Alameda


5.  Carrier Landings:


Thousands        Date                   Unit                   Type A/C         Pilot


96,000               11/13/61           VA-25               AD                     LCDR H. F. Griffith

97,000               1/12/62             VF-121             F3H                   LCDR J. R. Fischer

98,000               1/31/62             CAG-2               F8U                   CDR B. D. Holder

99,000               3/12/62             VF-21                F3H                   LTJG R. H. Lewis






2.  Air Units on Board or Tended:


Period                                                                    Unit


11/08/61 – 11/11/61                                            VX-4

11/09/61 – 11/15/61                                            VR-21

11/30/61 – 12/07/61                                            VAH-123, VF-124, VF-111, VF-121

12/01/61 – 12/07/61                                            VR-21

12/03/61 – 12/07/61                                            VAH-13

12/04/61 – 12/06/61                                            VAH-4

12/05/61 – 12/06/61                                            VA-126

01/14/62 – 01/17/62                                            VF-114

01/13/62 – 01/17/62                                            VF-124

01/31/62 – 02/07/62                                            VR-21

01/29/62 – 02/07/62                                            CVG-2

02/23/62 – 03/02/62                                            CVG-2

03/12/62 – 03/23/62                                            CVG-2