A U.S. Navy Grumman A-6E Intruder (BuNo 159899) from attack squadron VA-165 “Boomers” aboard the aircraft carrier USS Constellation (CV-64) on 15 February 1990. Note the non-standard camouflage paint.
In the background is a Lockheed S-3A Viking (BuNo 160578) from anti-submarine squadron VS-33 “Screwbirds”. Both squadrons were assigned to Carrier Air Wing 9 (CVW-9) for a voyage aboard Constellation from San Diego, California, to Norfolk, Virginia, around Cape Horn from February to April 1990.
Interestingly enough, there is a more standard full-color image of the same Intruder in Navy service from 1981 when she was with the “Green Lizards” of VA-95.
Fast forward to today and Intruders, Vikings, Connie, America, the Boomers, Green Lizards, and Screwbirds are long gone, with VS-33 the last one to go, disestablished in 2006.
During World War II, the 50-ship-strong LST-491 class of tank landing ships, and the hundreds of follow-on LST-542-class near-sisters, proved both effective and remarkably versatile. Some 3,640-tons, these 328-foot vessels could shelp a full-strength infantry company or between 1600 and 1900 tons of cargo, landing them directly to the beach while launching landing craft from their davits to lead the way.
Over time, they served not only as amphibious warfare ships but also mini “L-Bird” aircraft carriers, repair ships, PT-boat tenders, minesweeper support craft, and ersatz ambulances.
USS LST-755, built by the American Bridge Co., Ambridge, PA, was commissioned in August 1944 and would spend 1945 earning her stripes in the Lingayen Gulf and Mindanao landings in the liberation of the Philippines.
After a stint in occupation duty, LST-755, along with her sisters, passed into mothballs in 1946.
By 1948, LST-755 was stricken and passed over to the Republic of China (Taiwan) as the ROCS Chung Hai (LST-201).
She would be joined by more than 30 sisters and, over the course of an amazing second career with the ROCN, steamed 75,126hrs and 556,728nms before she was retired in 2010.
Over the past decade, it was thought she would be retained as a museum ship but the plans repeatedly fell through.
The ship was sold for scrapping, 19 May 2020 after bidding for NT$14 Million according to United Daily News. In poor condition after 76 years afloat, she was reportedly slowly taking in water and sinking.
However, as reported by local media:
The sale drew condemnation from historians and military enthusiasts who saw the ship as an important cultural heritage artifact.
Even the scrap dealer was concerned about the backlash of public opinion if he were to dismantle the ship.
The navy then decided to postpone signing the sales contract with the winning bidder for one month, while relevant government agencies come up with a plan to possibly keep and restore the ship as an historic monument.
The Kinmen County Government issued a press release earlier this evening saying that it is coordinating with the Ministry of Defense to seek an alternative solutions, and to preserve “this important historical asset.”
Just missed May the 4th, but this just happened last week.
“Amphibious transport dock ship USS Portland (LPD 27) successfully disabled an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) with a Solid State Laser – Technology Maturation Laser Weapon System Demonstrator (LWSD) MK 2 MOD 0 on May 16. ”
LWSD is a high-energy laser weapon system demonstrator developed by the Office of Naval Research and installed on Portland for an at-sea demonstration. LWSD’s operational employment on a Pacific Fleet ship is the first system-level implementation of a high-energy class solid-state laser. The laser system was developed by Northrup Grumman, with full System and Ship Integration and Testing led by NSWC Dahlgren and Port Hueneme.
“By conducting advanced at sea tests against UAVs and small crafts, we will gain valuable information on the capabilities of the Solid State Laser Weapons System Demonstrator against potential threats,” said Capt. Karrey Sanders, commanding officer of Portland.
It’s a small plot of land that’s never left unguarded. The Sentinels who guard the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier are a small and exclusive group. They stand their post 24 hours a day, 365 days a year regardless of the weather. Hear the Sentinel’s Creed and you’ll know why. DOD video edited by Air Force Staff Sgt. Jared Bunn
The Navy’s 100th P-8A “Poseidon” was delivered to Patrol Squadron (VP) 30 at Naval Air Station (NAS) Jacksonville, May 14.
In July 2004, the Navy placed its initial order of P-8A aircraft to replace the venerable Lockheed Martin P-3C Orion, which has been in service since 1962. The Maritime Patrol community began the transition to the P-8A in 2012. The delivery of the 100th P-8A coincides with VP-40’s successful completion of the 12th and final active component squadron transition to the Poseidon.
The final transition concluded amidst a global pandemic, which could have halted or delayed the schedule, however, VP-40 remained on track.
“We finished up VP-40’s transition this month, and it has been a challenge. Despite the travel restrictions, the additional required procedures, and the aircraft transfers, VP-30 answered the call. The VP-30.1 detachment at NAS Whidbey Island, Washington was grinding every day to keep the transition on schedule,“ said VP-30 Commanding Officer Capt. T. J. Grady.
In the latest installment in the on-again/off-again relationship between the PI and the U.S., it seems that the U.S. Navy could see more of Subic Bay as a result of a commercial deal for a U.S./Australian consortium to take over the bankrupt South Korean-run Hanjin shipyard (HHIC Phil) in Olongapo.
For those following along at home, HHIC Phil was built in 2004 and was considered by the company to be the fourth largest shipyard in the world.
Vice Admiral Giovanni Bacordo said the two companies are in the final stages of negotiations with the Philippine government and several banks to take over the operations of Hanjin. The companies reportedly intend to invest about $2 billion and employ the shipyard’s over 30,000 skilled and experienced Filipino workforce.
Australian shipbuilder Austal Ltd has won a contract to deliver six offshore patrol vessels for the Philippines Navy while US private equity Cerberus will operate the other half of Hanjin’s facility for ship repair.
“I was told the companies were about to complete due diligence and final negotiations before the outbreak of the coronavirus, which could delay the process,” Bacordo said.