WWII Remembrance and Presentation of F6F Hellcat
The National Naval Aviation Museum honored the World War II generation Friday, December 6 in the Blue Angels Atrium. Pearl Harbor survivors and other veterans of WWII were in attendance.
Featured speaker, Retired Marine Lt General Duane Thiessen, presented the Museum’s newly restored WWII F6F-3 Hellcat as part of the WWII Remembrance event. This combat veteran aircraft went to war with its assignment to Fighting Squadron (VF) 38 in July 1943. Based in the Solomon Islands, the squadron completed three combat tours between September 1943 and March 1944, during which time its pilots conducted numerous damaging strafing runs against enemy personnel, shipping, vehicles, airfields, and antiaircraft positions. In air-to-air combat, the ultimate test for a fighter squadron, VF-38 was credited with shooting down 22 Japanese airplanes.
Recovery and restoration of this aircraft was funded by the Taylor family of Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Company founder Jack C. Taylor, a former Naval Aviator, will be in attendance. He served aboard the aircraft carrier Enterprise (CV-6) flying F6F Hellcats during World War II. In 1957, he founded what was to become Enterprise Rent-A-Car, naming it for the famous ship.