BOOKs: Title: Eyes of the Fleet: Cloaked by jungle foliage, the unheralded seaplane tenders operated ahead of the Fleet, like the Navy's famed PT boats. As Halsey's South Pacific, MacArthur's Southwest Pacific, and Spruance's Central Pacific forces advanced toward Japan, these ships served as afloat-bases for patrol planes referred to as the "eyes of the fleet." The large fabric-clad PBY "Catalinas" and later PBM "Mariners" combed the seaways for Japanese forces and carried out bombing, depth charge, and torpedo attacks on enemy ships and submarines. Nighttime anti-shipping operations-"Black Cat" or "Nightmare" missions-were dangerous and daytime combat operations even more so, when encounters with more maneuverable and heavily-armed fighters necessitated hiding in clouds to survive. The Japanese were keen to destroy the scouts and their floating bases, and seaplane tenders often lived a furtive existence, particularly early in the war. Pilots, plane crews and shipboard personnel received scores of awards for valor, including the Medal of Honor, Navy Cross, Distinguished Flying Cross, and Silver and Bronze Star Medals. A few VP Squadrons mentioned include: VP-1, VP-11/VPB-11, VP-12, VP-13/VPB-13, VP-14, VP-16/VPB-16, VP-18/VPB-18, VPB-19, VPB-20, VP-21/VPB-21, VP-22, VP-23/VPB-23, VP-24, VPB-25, VPB-26, VPB-27, VPB-28, VP-32, VP-33/VPB-33, VP-34/VPB-34, VP-41, VP-42, VP-43, VP-44, VP-45, VP-51, VP-52, VP-53, VPB-54, VP-61, VP-62, VP-63/VPB-63, VP-71/VPB-71, VP-72, VP-73, VPB-74, VP-81, VP-82, VP-83, VP-84, VP-91, VP-92, VP-94, VP-101/VPB-101, VP-102/VPB-102, VPB-103, VPB-104, VPB-105, VPB-106, VB-106, VB-108, VPB-109, VPB-110, VPB-111, VPB-112, VPB-114, VP-115, VPB-116, VPB-117, VPB-118, VPB-123, VPB-130, VB/VPB-137, VPB-142, VB-143, VPB-146, VPB-151, VP-202/VPB-202, VP-204, VP-205, VPB-208, VP-216/VPB-216, VD-3, VH-1, VH-2, VH-3, VH-4, VH-6, VS-1D-11, VS-1D-13, VS-1D-14 and VT-3. A few Seaplane Tenders mentioned include: USS Absecon, USS Albemarle, USS Avocet, USS Ballard, USS Barataria, USS Barnegat, USS Belknap, USS Clemson, USS George E. Badger, USS Goldsborough, USS Osmond, USS Ingram, USS Bering Strait, USS Biscayne, USS Casco, USS Castle Rock, USS Chandeleur, USS Childs, USS Chincoteague, USS Cook Inlet, USS Coos Bay, USS Corson, USS Cumberland Sound, USS Currituck, USS Curtiss, USS Duxbury Bay, USS Floyds Bay, USS Gannet, USS Gardiners Bay, USS Gillis, USS Greene, USS Greenwich Bay, USS Half Moon, USS Hamlin, USS Heron, USS Hulbert, USS Humboldt, USS Kenneth Whiting, USS Langley, USS Lapwing, USS Mackinac, USS Matagorda, USS McFarland, USS Norton Sound, USS Onslow, USS Orca, USS Pelican, USS Pine Island, USS Pocomoke, USS Rehoboth, USS Rockaway, USS Salisbury Sound, USS San Carlos, USS San Pablo, USS Shelikof, USS St. George, USS Suisun, USS Swan, USS Tangier, USS Thornton, USS Thrush, USS Timbalier, USS Unimak, USS Valcour, USS William B. Preston, USS Williamson, USS Wright and USS Yakutat. The U.S. Navy's Seaplane Tenders and Patrol Aircraft in World War II is now available from Heritage Books: http://www.heritagebooks.com/. Contributed by CDR David D. Bruhn firstname.lastname@example.org [30APR2016]
P2V-7 Neptune Interior Photographs
BOOKs: Title: "Wings over Bermuda - 100 years of aviation in the West Atlantic" by Ewan Partridge and Tom Singfield. Contributed by Tom Singfield email@example.com [09JUL2015]
The first fixed wing aircraft in Bermuda in 1919 was a USN Curtiss Jenny from the ship SS Elinor. In 1924 the USN sent the first "operational" aircraft to Bermuda in the shape of a Vought UO-1 seaplane from the USS Cincinnati. Visits by the airship Los Angeles commencing in 1925 are detailed as are the much later operations by a variety of US Navy blimps from the airport.
Other pieces in the book that will interest VP Navy readers include the US Navy Naval Operating Base (always known as the NOB) (1939-1965). This massive base (no runway) was built from re-claimed land and housed warships and submarines as well as flying boats and seaplanes. After WW2 the flying boats became the front line force in the Cold War anti submarine "battle". Types operated there included Kingfisher, Goose, PBM Mariner, P5M Marlin and Albatross.
The US Navy was very active in Bermuda during WW2. The book has details of the early neutrality patrols of late 1940 and has extensive coverage of the Battle of the Atlantic and the specialist fleet training operations. The exploits of the Patrol, Scouting and Utility squadrons that were based at Darrell's Island and the NOB are also told.
Post war, the stories continue of the Patrol Squadrons through the cold war and details of support units, accidents, incidents at both the NOB (flying boats and amphibians) and Kindley Field are revealed. The book also includes the never before told story of the Navy Bermuda Flying Club. It also includes details of the many US Navy aircraft carriers that visited Bermuda and the surrounding seas to carry out operations and exercises.
The following US Navy Squadrons are all mentioned in "Wings over Bermuda".
FAW-9, VAQ-141, VB-105,VC-1, VC-13, VC-19, VC-42, VC-58, VC-69, VCS-8, VF-15, VF-41, VF-72, VGF-27, VGF-28, VGS-27, VGS-29, VGS-30, VJ-4, VJ-15, VP-8, VP-10, VP-11, VP-15, VP-16, VP-23, VP-44, VP-45, VP-49, VP-51, VP-52, VP-54, VP-63, VP-74, VP-92, VP-201, VP-204, VP-207, VP-215, VP-661, VP-MS-5, VP-MS-9, VQ-4, VR-1, VR-6, VR-8, VR-44, VRC-40, VS-2D1, VS-32, VS-35, VS-36, VS-41, VS-71, VS-72, VS-201, VS-5D4, VX-1, VX-4. In addition there are stories from FASRON 104, FASRON 111, FASRON 795 and the Naval Air Transport Service (NATS).
US Navy ships mentioned include USS Akron (airship), Bogue, Charger, Chenango, Cincinnati, Cobbler, Core, Croatan, Currituck, Effective, Elinor, Gannet, George E. Badger, Guadalcanal, Hamilton, Hornet, Intrepid, Laffey, Long Island, Mission Bay, Odum, Owl, Patoka (airship), Ray, St. Louis, Sicily, Philadelphia, Ranger, Santee, Savannah, Stansbury, Theodore Roosevelt, Thrush, Timbalier, Valley Forge, Wainwright, Wake Island, Wasp, Yorktown.
Many military bases with US Navy connections are mentioned including Patuxent River, Norfolk VA, Elizabeth City, Keflavik, Azores, Argentia, Charleston, Miami, Newfoundland and San Juan.
The book can be obtained direct from the National Museum of Bermuda for $60 plus P&P. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for details. The authors (both British) have some signed copies in the UK, contact email@example.com for details of costs etc.
This book was published in 2014 by the National Museum of Bermuda and for the first time ever tells the intriguing story of aviation in and around the British Colony islands of Bermuda. Historians, former Bermuda US Navy servicemen and women, and relatives of USN personnel based there will be delighted to see such a good coverage of all types of US Navy operations
BOOKs: Title: "Two Turning, Two Burning" by Jim Stark firstname.lastname@example.org. This is a memoir mixing the deadly seriousness of flying military aircraft with gutsy humor of young aviators laughing in the face of such challenges. Look over the shoulder of a student Navy Pilot as he makes his first aircraft carrier landing. Read about the surreal experience of an imminent plane crash. Learn how an aircrew discovers it is under attack by Russian MiG-21s following the Cuban Crisis. And smile at the humorous incidents experienced by the author during this interesting period of his life. Squadrons Mention: VP-10, VP-11, VP-23, VP-26, and NAS Brunswick, Maine. The book is available either through Amazon.com or my publisher, as shown on the Web site, http://www.jimstarknavy.com (http://www.jimstarknavy.com) but I would be happy to sell it directly at the discounted price of $15.00 postage included. I can be contacted Jim Stark email@example.com. Contributed by Jim Stark firstname.lastname@example.org [16JUL2009]
2008 CALENDAR "...P2V-7 Neptune Interior Photographs. The nose section (JAN, FEB, MAR and APR are from BUNO: 147951. It was in service with VP-7, VP-23, VP-24, VP-45, VP-56, and VP-66..." Contributed by Bob Self email@example.com [29JUN2007]
Where did the P2V's go? For those of you who have often wondered it's in the Arizona desert, static displays on various military bases and a few in air museums around the country. Most have been recycled.
In early 2002, I learned there was a group of P2V's in Missoula, MT being used to fight forest fires. I made an appointment to visit Neptune Aviation and found an aircraft they decided not to convert to a water bomber. It sat in the Arizona desert for decades and had been flown to Missoula a few months prior to my visit.
What I found was Buno # 147695. When active in the Navy it was assigned to VP-31. Other than having had the removal of many cockpit instruments and radios, and the obvious deterioration, it had most of the electronic boxes intact. The after station hatch had been left open and some critter had been making a bed in one of the flight deck seats for a long time. In 2006, the interior pictures were retaken for technical reasons. Then, location was made of a restored nose section of a P2V-7 close by, done by the VP-2 Restoration group. That came from Buno # 147951 and served with VP-7, VP-23, VP-24, VP-45, VP-56, and VP-66. Pictures were taken of the Bow, MAD station, and Cockpit, both Pilot and Co-Pilot positions.
The pictures of these two efforts have just been published into a calendar. It can be previewed by logging onto http://www.thelightcatchers.com/. You can now see some authentic pictures that has been circulating in your thoughts for years. Here's your chance to re-live some experiences of when you were in your 20's and bulletproof. By selecting "Samples" at the top, you can then select "P2V-7 Neptune 2008 Calendar" and preview each calendar page by scrolling through pages 1-4 at the lower left of the screen. You can order the calendar on-line by clicking Order Books at the top and following instructions. If you do not want to order on-line, then email me with your name and phone number and I'll call you at a convenient time with additional ordering information.
BOOKs: Title: "Consolidated-Vultee PB4Y-2 Privateer: The Operational History of the U.S. Navy's World War II Patrol/Bomber Aircraft by Alan C. Carey."
Format: Paperback, 176pp
Pub. Date: March 2005
Publisher: Schiffer Publishing, Ltd
The first comprehensive examination of the Consolidated-Vultee Aircraft Corporation's (Convair) PB4Y-2 Privateer, a 70,000-pound patrol bomber equipped with state-of-the-art electronics gear, armed with twelve .50-caliber machine guns, and the capability to deliver bombs, depth charges, and guided missiles. Beginning with the development and production of the aircraft, this book presents an in-depth examination of the patrol bomber's entire operational history from 1942 to the present. Containing nearly 300 color and b/w photographs and line art, the book covers the PB4Y-2's service with the U.S. Navy, Coast Guard, French Aeronavale, Republic of China Air Force, various countries of Latin America, and finally as a slurry bomber for aerial fire fighting companies.
USN squadrons covered in the book include: VP-23, VP-24, VP-25, VP-26, VP-28, VP-772, VP-801, VP-871, VP-881, VPB-102, VPB-104, VPB-106, VPB-107, VPB-108, VPB-109, VPB-111, VPB-114, VPB-116, VPB-117, VPB-118, VPB-119, VPB-120, VPB-121, VPB-122, VPB-123, VPB-124, VPB-143, VPB-197, VPB-200, VPW-1 and VPW-2. [20JAN2005]
ORIGINAL REQUEST FOR INFORMATION: "...I'm interested in obtaining post WW-II photos of PB4Ys including those that served with France, China, and other countries. A few squadrons that flew PB4Y include: VD-2, VP-9, VP-17, VP-22, VP-23, VP-24, VP-28, VP-42, VP-120, VP-122, VP-143, VP-197, VP-200, VP-772, VP-871, VPW-1, VPW-2, VPW-3, VPM-1, VJ-1, VJ-61, VW-1, VW-2, VC-11, to mention a few! As you know, the PB4Y-2 continues to serve after 56 years of service. I am thinking of doing a pictorial history of the PB4Y-1 and 2 (1946-Present). Anyone interested contributing photos and stories will be credited in the book. I will pay for the cost of copying. Sincerely, Alan C. Carey firstname.lastname@example.org..." [06JUN2000]
BOOKs: Title: "On Hell's Perimeters" By Don Klotz - The "Black Cats of the Navy" flew Hell's perimeters. Silhouetted against billowing white clouds and brightest blue skies, they soared in and out of some of the bloodiest and most costly battles in the Pacific. Here, for the first time, the PBY Catalina pilots and air crewmen of U.S. Navy Patrol Squadron 23 tell their epic World War II story. Don Klotz, a former radioman-gunner in the squadron, is publisher of the "Black Cat Log" newsletter. [17OCT2004]
AIRCRAFT ON DISPLAY: "...The Mid Atlantic Air Museum acquired two P2V's through the Federal Surplus Property program during the fall of 1983. BU NO 145915 filled the following assignments during its time with the US Navy: VP 21 and VP-23, NAS Brunswick, Maine, VP-92 NAS South Weymouth, Massachusetts, VP-94 NAS New Orleans, Louisiana, and VP-67 NAS Memphis, Tennessee. It served actively during the Cuban missile crisis in 1962, with VP-23..." Contributed by Fred Pierce email@example.com of Mid-Atlantic Aviation on the Web - http://avdigest.com/maam/p2_1.htm
BOOKs: Title: "C-C-Cold War Syndrome: Or Remember, It's Break Ground and Fly Into the Wind" by SPAULDING, CAPTAIN Gerry Retired firstname.lastname@example.org. The book is a collection of 43 humorous non-fiction short stories including some about VP-17 and VP-23. [05DEC2001]
"...I'm happy to report that the second edition of Cold War Syndrome, my book of short stories (including half a dozen VP-17 stories and a couple from VP-23), has just been republished in e-book, soft cover and hard cover formats. Also, my first novel, Decree, will be republished in all three formats in early 2003, with its sequel, Takeout, due to be published approximately nine months later. Eight of the short stories from Cold War Syndrome are posted along with a bunch of other stuff on my web site at http://www.ghspaulding.com/. Two of the eight stories, "Waddlethromp" and "Zero-g," are about VP-17. While the web site is unabashedly promotional in nature, it is not a commercial site, as nothing is sold from it. Its real purpose is to post things I hope friends will enjoy reading. It also takes the place of a Christmas letter. Hope you are all well and have a great new year...SPAULDING, CAPTAIN Gerry Retired email@example.com..." [29DEC2002]
BOOKs: Title: "PBY: The Catalina Flying Boat" by Creed, Roscoe. Annapolis: Naval Institute Press, 1986. 351 pp. This definitive study, first published in 1985, pulls together in a single volume all of the aircraft's fascinating facts. The author carefully analyzes the PBY's dual use in the war as a plane of mercy and as a bomber, and he chronicles the flying boat's contributions in peacetime. Squadrons mentioned include: VP-2, VP-5, VP-6, VP-7, VP-9, VP-10, VP-11, VP-12, VP-14, VP-21, VP-22, VP-23, VP-24, VP-31, VP-32, VP-33, VP-34, VP-41, VP-42, VP-43, VP-44, VP-45, VP-51, VP-52, VP-54, VP-61, VP-62, VP-63, VP-71, VP-72, VP-73, VP-74, VP-81, VP-83, VP-84, VP-101, VP-102, FAW-3, FAW-4, FAW-5, FAW-7, FAW-9, FAW-15, FAW-16, FAW-17, CPW-1, CPW-2, CPW-3, CPW-4, CPW-5, CPW-7, CPW-8, and CPW-10. [29MAR2001]
BOOKs: Title: "B-24 Liberator in Action Aircraft 80" by Larry Davis [VP-23 PB4Y-2 picture, etc.]
BOOKs: Title: "Flying Cats: The Catalina Aircraft in World War II" by Andrew Hendrie [Squadrons mentioned include VP-6, VP-11, VP-13, VP-14, VP-22, VP-23, VP-24, VP-33, VP-34, VP-41, VP-42, VP-43, VP-44, VP-51, VP-52, VP-53, VP-62, VP-63, VP-71, VP-72, VP-73, VP-74, VP-83, VP-84, VP-91, VP-92, VP-94, VP-101, VP-102, FAW-4, FAW-5, FAW-7, and FAW-17, etc.]
BOOKs: Title: "Air War Pacific Chronology: America's Air War Against Japan in East Asia and the Pacific, 1941-1945: Chronology" (Mentions VP-23, VP-54, VP-71, VP-72, VP-101, VD-1, VD-3, etc.) [13FEB99]
BOOKs: Title: "The Wind Chasers." The history of the Atlantic Fleet Hurricane Hunters. It includes VPW-3, VPM-3, VPHL-3, VP-23, VX-4, VJ-2 & VW-4. I am the offiial historian of the Hurricane Hunters. For further information please contact H. J. "Walt" Walter firstname.lastname@example.org. [10MAR99]
BOOKs: Title: "Black Cats and Dumbos: WWII Fighting PBYs" by Mel Crocker (Chapter 14)
BOOKs: Title: "Decree" The lead character is a former P-3 pilot. Authored by former P-3 Pilot Captain Gerry Spaulding, Retired email@example.com who served with VP-17 and VP-23. [17JAN2000]
MOVIE: "...Just wanted to pass on to the viewers that at the time I was station at Opa Lock, Fla. with VP-23 there was a motion picture produced depicting our primary mission at that time and that was tracking hurricanes. The title of the movie for you oldie but goodie buffs was Slattery's Hurricane and it starred Richard Widmark, Linda Darnell and Veronica Lake. Anyone wish to comment on that let me know, because I was there. I'm thinking late 1948 to early 1949 Check it out and as always have a safe flight...Bill Callegari firstname.lastname@example.org..." [09APR2001]
MOVIE: "00XXX00--APPROACHING AND IN THE EYE OF A HURRICANE...Control Number: NWDNM(m)-428-NPC-13406...General Material: Motion picture films...Description Unit: Item...Record Group: 428...Series Designator: NPC...Item Designator: 13406...Title: APPROACHING AND IN THE EYE OF A HURRICANE...Format: unedited...Scope & Content: 1) Winds in this hurricane were from 90 to 100 knots. These scenes cannot be accurately described. They show very rough water, dense cloud formations, foggy conditions, clouds and water combined. Film is suitable to show foggy weather or substitute as a small storm. There are no spectacular scenes on roll...QUALITY: FAIR...Subject Ref.: SQUADRONS, VP-23; HURRICANES, general; ROUGH SEAS; WEATHER, fogs; STORMS, general; AEROLOGY, clouds...Use Restrictions: Other. Department of the Navy, Naval Photographic Center...Contact: Motion Picture, Sound, and Video Branch (NWDNM), National Archives at College Park, 8601 Adelphi Road, College Park, MD 20740-6001 PHONE: (301) 713-7060 FAX: (301) 713-6904..." NARA ARCHIVAL INFORMATION LOCATOR (NAIL) http://www.archives.gov/index.html
"VP-23 Summary Page"