1951 Korean War Navy Carrier Operations

1951 Korean War Navy Carrier Operations

the It is 1951 during the Korean War and we’re sailing from Pearl Harbor
Hawaii on the USS Princeton aircraft carrier the ship was
the fifth US Navy ship to bear that name and was one of 23 similar carriers built during World War Two. Here you can
see the large cranes and massive equipment in Pearl Harbor that can repair and maintain large Navy
ships as needed. the Princeton is really a floating
city of 3500 men and can accomodate 100 fighter aircraft. It is here for a battle-readiness inspection
cruise before continuing on to Korea to provide
air suppport for Gen McArthur’s troops. The flight deck crews are arming the planes
now for strikes again the enemy. these Douglas AD Sky Raiders carry 2000 pounds of bombs and rockets. It takes a lot of manpower to attach those heavy bombs. The Princeton was built in the
philadelphia naval shipyard and was launched in nineteen forty-five just after world war two ended. It had
been decommissioned four years later in 1949
but when the Korean conflict erupted in the following year in mid-1950, she was quickly called back into active
service along with thousands of us is reserve units throughout the United States The older propeller
planes are now being pulled back to the aft part of the ship to make room for the new jets which
would be brought up from the hanger deck shortly. And here they are being raised on the deck-side elevator and pulled forward. these plans will be pulled forward in
pairs and attached to the launch catapaults, while the Jet deflector plates here are raised behind them. The pilots climb
aboard to prepare for their flight. Meantime the safety helicopter takes off
so they can fly alongside to monitor the operations and respond instantly to any emergency now they’re pulled forward in pairs – their front wheels are attached to those
powerful catapaults – the jet deflectors are raised behind them – they rev up their jets to full power, and
now they’re off accelerating from 0 to 200 miles an hour
in just two seconds! Fully up to flight speed, they’re on
their way. Now we can get a very good view have the operations from aboard the
helicopter. There they go when jet is lowered down the deck- side
elevator back down to the hanger dack since it wasn’t fully prepared for flight. after the jets are launched, the propeller
planes gull-wing f4u Corsairs and AD Sky Raiders take off under their own
power down the longer length of the deck. Noise from
these jets and the old piston engines is deafening during these operations, as you
can well imagine. Then they join in formation and head
to their targets These are gun camera photos showing the results of their
airstrikes Finally they return take their turns
at landing on the tiny floating and bobbing airport. This is the most dangerous part of their
mission the ship is 900 feet long, about three football fields in length which is not much compared to the mile or
longer land runways they have used previously. The planes have to be pulled way up to the front of the deck, while the
others land in rear I was midway through engineering school
at the University of Colorado when our naval reserve unit at Buckley Naval Air Station in Denver was called up and I was flown on
the huge Mars flying boat to Hawaii and Barber’s Point Naval Air Station on the west end of Oahu. My unit was the Fleet All-Weather Training Unit Pacific called FAWTuPac our duty was to train the pilots for night and
bad weather flying missions over in korea. I was in charge of the electrics crew calibrating and maintaining the radio and
radar equipment necessary for those difficult operations. As the
helicopter lands after the planes were all landed, I finally able to return to the deck and congratulate the pilot for a good flight. two of the most famous astronauts later flew from the Princeton into battle during the Korean and
Vietnamese wars John Glenn, the first man to orbit around
the world, and Neil Armstrong the first man to step
onto the moon. Now the jets return, and the signalman guides them
in gingerly, signalling them if they are too high or too low or right on the perfect glide path.
As they drop to the deck their aircraft tail hooks catch on
strong cables stretched across the deck to jerk them
to a stop and there are large safety nets ahead to
stop them from plowing into other planes if the tailhook miss then they move forward so that other
plans can land behind them as the net, the safety net is raised again. This plane was too high so
he was flagged off and had to make another round They fold their wings and pull forward and
they are chocked into position so that they don’t slide around on that
tossing deck. I right in there perfect landing two men rush out to
unhook the tailhook from the cable behind them – they fold their
wings and quickly move forward because
this is very close teamwork – very split second team work it takes to keep
this intricate operation going smoothly and avoid accidents. too high – he’s waived off – has to go around for another try. This
time the dropped it right in there He has a wave-off. Here comes one of the
bg Guppies with radar underneath he made a good
landing. right at the end of the deck. They all pull forward as far as possible, while
a fireman in his asbestos suit, is ready in case if
any conflagration. Ground crews check the safety net, and finally toward sunset, the last planes return. The signal officer says OK – gives an engine
cut, and finally when last one comes in. Cut! Thank you for joining me in this navy adventure!


  1. What was the name of that plane with the belly radardome and what was its specific function? Was it AEW or ASW?

  2. Thanks very much for posting this wonderful short film of naval operations in Korea. My father flew F4U's in Korea on the USS Boxer.

  3. Amazing video!….great narration too! Thanks for your service, and thanks for sharing this with the world! This is Bob, I met you tonight and really liked talking with you!

  4. That plane with NR on its tail was from my old squadron VC35 out of North island airbase San Diego. Station there in 1951.

  5. Aloha, Mr. Keller! My uncle Harvey was a fighter pilot in squadron 154 on-board the USS Princeton CVA-37: LTJG Harvey N. Kitaoka. He earned membership into the Century Club by completing his 100th jet carrier landing on Aug 27, 1953. If you have any memories of him that you can share with me, I would love to hear from you! I have his photo album in my possession, too, and it is full of black-and-white still photos from those days. But there is nothing quite like seeing live action, full color film of Grumman F9-F5 Panthers taking off and landing on-board the USS Princeton. This is priceless! Thank you so much for posting.

  6. Those skyraider's were some bad ass planes, and I love the dark sea blue scheme. Did the paint always keep its shiny luster?

  7. Looking forward to interviewing you, Richard Keller! Friends can tune in Sunday at 11am MST live here: http://player.radio.com/listen/station/cruisin-1430

  8. How is it possible that a carrier group radar ship named "Princeton" as part of the Nimitz fleet in 2004 which became famous because of the "tic tac" UFO story, take the name of "Princeton" from former Navy Aircraft carrier? I'm interested because I'm Navy proud due to my dad being a CPO in the Naval Reserves after WWII.

  9. Would appreciate helicopter footage. My father worked on them stateside, Lakehurst, NJ, US Navy 1951-1954.

  10. As soon as you see 1/2 of the credit screen you know you're watching something deliberately screwed up to avoid copyright infringement. No thanks. 'Bye.

  11. I found four different carriers in this great film: USS BOXER, CVA21; USS VALLEY FORGE, CVA45; PHILLIPINE SEA, CVA47P and USS LAKE CHAMPLAIN, CVA39. As a sea-going Marine, I spent nineteen months on the LAKE CHAMPLAIN as a Captain's Orderly. Spent endless hours on the bridge watching flight ops in all kinds of weather. Great duty. Semper Fi.

  12. Wow what a great video great experience. Those were the golden years of our country. Reminds me of the movie Bridges at Toko Ri. Had an uncle who fought in Korea. My respect to that generation and to those Service men and service women who everyday work hard to keep this nation going forward.

  13. Wow what a great video great experience. Those were the golden years of our country. Reminds me of the movie Bridges at Toko Ri. Had an uncle who fought in Korea. My respect to that generation and to those Service men and service women who everyday work hard to keep this nation going forward.

  14. Corsairs off USS Antietam and USS Bunker Hill ,that was dad CDR. Buck Carroll…now in Arlington Cemetery …thanks for this preservation .

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