Phil Elsner – Star Group Member

The best part of our Association Member group so far has been getting to see everyone interact and tell their stories. Since the group started, Phil Elsner has been such an enthusiastic and highly involved group member. Curious about his story, and what drives his love for the ship, we talked with him about his time in the Navy and …

CHAIRMAN DEAN PETERSON

Here at the Association we love to give our members and prospective members, the opportunity to get to know our staff and board members. In this three part autobiography, our Board Chairman Dean Peterson tells us about his time onboard as well as other details of his exciting life of work and service. Read on to learn more about our …

A Family Tradition – The Henderson’s

Many of our members are the legacy of a sailor that served aboard the USS Yorktown. Their children join in patriotism, but more importantly, in honor of their father, grandfather, whatever the case may be. Recently, we have had the privilege of welcoming another generation of USS Yorktown CV-10 Association members. Through our new Facebook Group, we were able to …

We Were Sailors

1958-59 Far East Cruise By Terry G. Fritz. Ed’s Note: This is the third part of a multi-part piece written by Terry G. Fritz covering his experiences on the 1958 – 1959 WESTPAC. We went back to Pearl Harbor to get rid of the O.R.I. team and have a little celebration. This was on a Friday. Monday we got underway for …

Stranded in Rotterdam

By Steven R. Butler When the Yorktown left Norfolk in September 1969, I was on leave from my previous duty station. It wasn’t until I arrived at Norfolk in mid-September that I learned the ship had already departed for a 3-month cruise. After spending a miserable three weeks in the transient barracks in Norfolk and a further (and much more …

Memories of The Wife of A Yorktown Sailor

By Lorena R. Farrar In August 1955, my soon-to-be husband, Ted W. Farrar, was unexpectedly transferred from the Air Traffic Control School at the U. S. Naval Air Station in Olathe, KS (my hometown) to the USS Yorktown CVA-10, which was in dry dock in Bremerton, WA. On arrival, he questioned why he was being sent to an aircraft carrier, …

How Did It Start?

The following is from “ALL HANDS” of January 1967 and is reprinted with permission from that magazine. Paddle Landings Took Skill For nearly six decades, Navy pilots have progressed through various stages of carrier landings ranging from the seat-of-the-pants methods to the fully automatic landings now becoming operational. (Remember this article was written in 1967.) Antisubmarine Squadron 22 claims for …

The Roll

By Art Francis This piece is a composition based on information received from Dan Bernath, Steven Butler, Neil O’Connor, Dave Garrison, and the Department of the Navy, Naval Safety Center, Norfolk, VA. Wandering through the Hospitality Room and mingling with attendees at the various functions during an annual Reunion of the Yorktown Association is a terrific way to learn unique …

Things I Remember

A story told by Ben Couillard: I remember that when I was 16, 17 and 18 years old, I was serving aboard the USS Yorktown CV10 as a member of the Flight Deck fire crew. We were returning to Pearl Harbor, HI after participating in the invasion of Tarawa and adjacent islands in the Marshalls and Gilberts in the latter …

Veteran’s Corner

Among the many exotic ports most American Sailors visit when doing a WESTPAC – Western Pacific – deployment is Hong Kong. Sailors usually also enjoy memorable port visits to Singapore, Japan and the Philippines and sometimes on the way home, Australia. But the one thing most remembered about the WESTPAC port visits was a lady in Hong Kong named Mary …

Behind Enemy Lines

This Story goes back over 50 years to the fall of 1961. I was on my third and final Far East cruise aboard the USS Yorktown. I was assigned to V-6 Division upon arrival at the Yorktown from boot camp in Chicago. You might say I had good timing. V-6 Division took care of all the rolling stock assigned to …

Traveling by Railroad in 1944

Written by William (Willie) Lagarde. When Yorktown pulled into Bremerton, Washington in Sep 1944 I was looking forward to my first leave in twenty months. I was happy to see USS Dale as one of the three destroyers that escorted us in from the fleet because one of my back home buddies, Lutchie Wieland ,was a crew member. I was …

The Beginning of WestPac 1968

Based on the experiences of Melvin Bien and Art Francis I received a note from Melvin Bien shortly before Christmas 2015. In the note Melvin related the story of a submarine that Yorktown chased on the way to Pearl Harbor in January of 1968, and when one sailor tells a story it reminds every sailor within earshot of something with …

Chopper Down in the South China Sea

At the October 2015 Reunion of the Association, I enjoyed a long visit with Donald R. Heck and this is his story. Donald served aboard Yorktown as an AMS3 with a detachment from HU-1 as the ship worked up and deployed for the 1964-1965 WestPac. HU-1 was a utility helicopter squadron that provided small detachments to carriers of the Pacific …

Magic Carpet II

Every old sailor is familiar with the “Magic Carpet” business at the end of World War II when personnel were ferried back to the States from both Europe and the Pacific. As early as 1943, the Pentagon began contingency planning for returning millions of personnel from overseas whenever victory was won. It was an enormous task, sardonically cited by cartoonist …

Apollo 8 Recovered by Yorktown

It was December 27th, 1968 when Apollo reentered the pull of earth’s atmosphere and Yorktown recovered Apollo 8. A Yorktown Sea King from HS-4 recovered Astronauts, Navy Capt. James Lovell, Air Force Col. Frank Borgman and Air Force Major William Anders. after Frogman from UDT-12 assisted them from the space capsule. The Yorktown proved to be a skillful and integral …

Mrs. Roosevelt Christens the USS Yorktown

On January 21st of 1943 (or January 22nd according to Mrs. Roosevelt), the USS Yorktown CV-10 was launched into the water, nearly three quarters complete. She was christened by Eleanor Roosevelt, who had also christened the USS Yorktown CV-5 in April, 1936. Apparently, the CV-10 was eager to get into the water and head into battle. The Yorktown slid out of …

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USS Yorktown CVA-10 in the Second Taiwan Strait Crisis

  Two years after the Formosa Resolution was passed to ease tensions between communist China and Taiwan, Chinese communist leader Mao once again began movements to “liberate” Taiwan under the guise of “socialist transformation” of Chinese society, also known as the Great Leap Forward. Tensions reached a breaking point when Mao renewed bombings of Quemoy Island, an offshore island of …

Search and Rescue

  It was June of 1960, and the USS Yorktown CVS-10 was in route to Manila to provide support to President Eisenhower’s Far Eastern Goodwill Tour. An uneventful day at sea was suddenly interrupted when the Yorktown was ordered to stray from her course and provide aid to a British freighter, the SS Shun Lee. The freighter was stranded and …

USS Yorktown helps sink the Battleship Yamato

  It was 1945 and the war was coming to an end. The USS Yorktown CV-10 and other carriers of her task group had begun to concentrate solely on the island of Okinawa and its surroundings. She pounded the island with “soften-up strikes” and sent planes to the island to provide direct support for troops operating ashore. She returned to the …

USS Yorktown hit by Japanese Bomb off Kyūshū

  On March 14th 1945, the USS Yorktown CV-10 departed to begin preliminary work for operations in Okinawa, scheduled for the first of April. She began launching airstrikes on Kyūshū, Honshū, and Shikoku upon her arrival on March 18th. The Task Group came under air attack shortly after the operations began. Around 8:00am a twin engine bomber, most likely a Yokosuka P1Y “Frances,” …