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Thread: USS Lexington found

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    Regular thebard's Avatar
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    USS Lexington found

    Paul Allen has found another WWII wreck, the USS Lexington.

    https://news.usni.org/2018/03/05/vid...-uss-lexington

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    Defense ProfessionalSenior Contributor tbm3fan's Avatar
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    Super cool. Love that TBD and am amazed how it made a 2 mile trip down in basically one piece.

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    Former Staff Senior Contributor Ironduke's Avatar
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    Amazing footage from Paul Allen's team:


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    The kill markings and Tomcatters squadron insignia being intact are amazing!
    “Loyalty to country ALWAYS. Loyalty to government, when it deserves it.”
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    I wonder if the planes could be brought up? I realise the carrier itself is classified as a war grave, but what of the planes themselves?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Albany Rifles View Post
    The kill markings and Tomcatters squadron insignia being intact are amazing!
    I can't believe the state of preservation. Indianapolis is in remarkable condition too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jlvfr View Post
    I wonder if the planes could be brought up? I realise the carrier itself is classified as a war grave, but what of the planes themselves?
    I was wondering that myself. The Devastators alone would be priceless, as there none on dry land.

    Problem is, how do you bring something like that up from 2 miles under the ocean and without wrecking it (and your bank account) in the process.
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, than to take rank with those poor, timid spirits who know neither victory nor defeat ~ Theodore Roosevelt

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    Senior Contributor Bigfella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TopHatter View Post
    I was wondering that myself. The Devastators alone would be priceless, as there none on dry land.

    Problem is, how do you bring something like that up from 2 miles under the ocean and without wrecking it (and your bank account) in the process.
    Very, very carefully. :-)

    Allen doesn't seem too concerned about the money, and I'm sure he could find people/institutions willing to help defray the cost if it was to be attempted.

    Reading up on his undersea exploration is really impressive. Kudos to the man.


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    Defense ProfessionalSenior Contributor tbm3fan's Avatar
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    The Wildcat, F-2, is another cool shot. I find it just unfrickinbelievable that a ship, wracked by gasoline explosions, seemingly sinks keel down onto the bottom and planes remain on the flight deck rather than dumped everywhere.

    Look familiar? So with four kills who flew F-2? Only one more needed to become an ace and I would have no doubt the pilot did just so.
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    Last edited by tbm3fan; 07 Mar 18, at 07:39.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tbm3fan View Post
    The Wildcat, F-2, is another cool shot. I find it just unfrickinbelievable that a ship, wracked by gasoline explosions, seemingly sinks keel down onto the bottom and planes remain on the flight deck rather than dumped everywhere.

    Look familiar? So with four kills who flew F-2? Only one more needed to become an ace and I would have no doubt the pilot did just so.

    It's Butch O'Hare...that's what it says on the photo!

    And yes he certainly got his 5!
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    Defense ProfessionalSenior Contributor tbm3fan's Avatar
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    The archival photo says Butch was flying F-13 alongside Thach in F-1. The caption that went with that photo said both planes went down with the Lexington. I haven't seen anything that says Butch flew F-2 which was the plane seen this week.

    I've just read more info that now says the Lex is in three pieces. This off a warbird forum. Also more pictures of a second Devastator. Here is a closer picture of the Wildcat and it turns out it is F-5. They are thinking F-5 could have been flown by Lt. Albert Vorse of VF3. Note the bomb on the cockpit. If more research by them shows up I'll bring it over.
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    Defense ProfessionalSenior Contributor tbm3fan's Avatar
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    Another poster thinks it could be Noel Gayler as they are trying to read the name on the cockpit. All feel they see an "R". Another shot of F-5

    Edit" VF-2 was aboard Lexington at the time of Coral Sea. F-5 is wearing VF-3 markings. VF-3 did a photo shoot as seen in my archival picture. It is possible this plane, still in VF-3 colors, might have had those kills painted on for the photo shoot. There is more but I have to go.
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    Last edited by tbm3fan; 07 Mar 18, at 16:20.

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    The curators of at least half the aviation museums in the world are now drooling...

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    Quote Originally Posted by tbm3fan View Post
    The archival photo says Butch was flying F-13 alongside Thach in F-1.
    I was reading on my iPhone. Now I can see it better.
    “Loyalty to country ALWAYS. Loyalty to government, when it deserves it.”
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    Defense ProfessionalSenior Contributor tbm3fan's Avatar
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    7 Devastators, 3 Dauntless, and 1 Wildcat

    Photo 1: A cropped view of the Wildcat decals, which seem to show four aerial victories, as well as a bombing symbol. The 'Felix the Cat' logo of VF-3 is clearly evident too. You can also make out some letters from the pilot's name just below the canopy rail. It looks most likely to be that of Noel Gayler who went on to become an ace. He also earned 3 navy crosses between February and May 1942, an astonishing feat. Gayler ended his career as an admiral. Of note, he was also the officer to first greet returning American Vietnam War POWs off the transport at Clark Field in the Philippines.
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