Video Thursday 2.17.11 Planes and Seacoast Mortars

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Today we start off with some classic rare video clips from the 1941 movie “Dive Bomber.” Stars Errol Flynn and Fred MacMurray were the main characters in the movie, which was filmed with the assistance of the U. S. Navy at North Island Naval Air Station in San Diego and onboard the USS Enterprise CV-6.

Trivia question: What famous Navy pilot was in the film footage?

It was Navy Lt. Edward “Butch” O’Hare. O’Hare served as a fighter pilot in the Pacific and shot down five Japanese planes in his first battle, earning ace status and received the Medal of Honor. O’Hare would go on to down 12 planes total and become one of the top heroes of the war before he was killed in action off the Gilbert Islands in November, 1943. O’Hare International Airport in Chicago was later named for him.

Next it is a look at the future, unmanned flight, I’m afraid combat aviators will one day become extinct as computers and machines can perform at speeds and forces that human bodies can’t.

The Civil War Sesquicentennial begins with a bang in another month. There will be a big shoot here in Charleston on 12 April and lots of artillery at Patriots Point. Here is a clip from the firing and receiving end of a 13 inch Seacoast mortar. Two 10 inch Seacoast mortars were in Mount Pleasant, SC, at Battery Gary in April of 1861 and helped to bombard Fort Sumter. More on Civil War artillery and Battery Gary in upcoming posts! Stay tuned!

 

 

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