For those who served in the RVAH Community, their families, and friends!
Several of us sailors served on this great ship, so sad about the big fire in 67 ! Though its happened aboard other ships at times through out history , its always scarey thing , even if it comes to a point that you have to swim for life if you survive !!!!!
While I was in VAH 6 we went to the East Coast and NAS OCEANA IIRC.There was where I found out we were getting ready to go on a cruise to the Med.
About a month or so there was an AIR SHOW they put on for some dignitaries fro Spain and France.
I worked in the Ready Room keeping launch and recovery times and status of the aircraft in our squadron(A3s)didn't find out til later they were known as WHALES.So one of the guys in the RR asks me if I'mm gonna go watch the practice.Wasn't sure but I said sure.When I got on the F D I went to Flight Deck Control just to make sure it was alright.Everybody said sure but when recoveries started I had to stay off.No Problem...Now as I turned the handle on the door to go out there was this ear splitting BOOM...and I KNOW I had thoseCARTOON eyes...the BIG ONES that take up your whole face....turn around and the guys are laffing their butts off...the one explained that was one of the AC breaking the sound barrier..So I finally get out and get to watck A3s A4s F4s Willy Fudds Helos doing their thing and it is amazing what they could do.After that I made sure if there was another "SHOW" I was there before anyone else..Found out it was the Marine F4 pilot that was breaking the sound barrier to start things going.
This led to a conversation one day by the Coffee Mess we had between our RR and the Marine F4 Squadron RR.One of our Pilots asked me one day if I wanted to get a launch and recovery in one of our "Whales" I said sure...which just as I said THAT the Marine pilot from the RR next to ours pipes up and says "cool then you can do one with me.After watching what that Marine could do with his aircraft I told both of em..."hummmmm lemme think about that guys" Yeah I chickened out...on both