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101 Carrier Planes Herald Navy Day

Roar Above Cheering City in Formation After Winging From Their Ships, Due Today

NEW YORK, Oct. 17 - A flight of 101 Navy fighter planes and torpedo bombers drummed thunderously above the city's skyscrapers yesterday afternoon to herald the arrival, at dawn today, of the first ten fighting ships to make New York Harbor for Presidential review on Navy Day, Oct. 27.

The planes took off from the carriers Enterprise, Monterey and Bataan somewhere far at sea, as those vessels plowed the waves on their way to Ambrose Light, escorted by the heavy cruiser Portland and six destroyers. The flotilla is due off Ambrose shortly after 4 A. M., off the Battery at 6 A. M.

Forty-four of the planes roared from the flight deck of "The Old Lady," as the Enterprise is affectionately known. Thirty soared from the Bataan's flat top, and twenty-seven from the Monterey. There were in all sixty-nine fighters and thirty-two torpedo bombers.

Downtown Manhattan saw and heard the naval air armada first. One sharp, clear-cut V-formation led the way. On its flank scores of outriders rose and fell, like surf-borne craft. Office windows flew open and thousands stopped in Manhattan's canyons to stare aloft and cheer.

The fighters and torpedo bombers cut across the city, high but easily visible in the bright sunlight, headed for the Naval Air Station at Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn, where they settled on the runways, with the salt of Tokyo Bay still on their wings.

Of the ten ships due today, Third Naval District officials said, probably only a few will be ready to receive visitors tomorrow. Each ship commander will decide when his vessel is ready. It is likely that visitors will be able to get aboard all ten vessels by Friday.

Only one of the fifty fighting ships scheduled to take part in the Presidential review will not go to a city pier. The 45,000-ton super-carrier Midway, when she gets here, will drop anchor off Ninety-first Street in the North River and will be held by mooring buoys.

The Navy Day mooring schedule calls for all the larger men-of-war to leave their assigned piers on Oct. 25 and 26 for their review positions. The submarine tender Gilmore will be first to take her place in line at 7:30 A. M. on Oct. 25. The heavy cruiser Macon, last to swing into line, will leave her pier at 4:30 P. M. on Oct. 26. All but the Midway will return to their piers for public visiting after the review.

The review line in the North River will reach from Sixtieth Street to Spuyten Duyvil Creek, above Baker Field. The hub of Navy activity will be the yacht basin at Seventy-ninth Street and Riverside Drive. The battleship Missouri, on which the Japanese surrender was accepted in Tokyo Bay, will be moored there.

Review to Start at 3:30

President Truman will leave the Missouri at 3:30 P. M. on Navy Day, board a destroyer and begin his two-hour inspection of the fleet amid salvos of twenty-one gun salutes.

The heavy cruiser Macon will be off Sixtieth Street, the heavy cruiser Columbus off Sixty-sixth Street, the battleship New York off Seventy-second Street.

Off Eighty-fifth Street will float the carrier Enterprise, the Navy's chief pride; off Ninety-first Street the super-carrier Midway, sister ship of the USS Franklin D. Roosevelt, which the President will commission at the Navy Yard in Brooklyn a few hours before the review.

The heavy cruiser Augusta that bore the President to and from the Potsdam Conference, and on which the Atlantic Charter was signed, will ride off Ninety-eighth Street. The light cruiser Boise, dubbed "The one-ship task force," will be at 103d Street.

The New York City Defense Recreation Committee has prepared an ambitious entertainment program for the men of the incoming battle fleet. The first listing is a free dance for enlisted men at Arcadia Ballroom, Broadway and Fifty-third Street. Mrs. Julius Ochs Alder, co-chairman of the welfare and hospitality committee, said close to 300 volunteer workers would turn to during Navy Week.

Save Her or Sink Her

NEW YORK, Oct. 16 - There is hardly a mile of the Pacific that has not felt the cut of her sharp prow. There was hardly a month of that long war against Japan that she was not at sea seeking out the enemy. Her eighteen combat stars[1] are more than any other ship of the Pacific fleet can wear. On her battered smokestack she could mount fifteen wound stripes, for she was hurt that many times by enemy action. So fearsome was her reputation in Japan that on no fewer than six occasions the Japanese people were told by government propagandists that she had been destroyed.

From the Marshalls and Gilberts in January, 1942, to Okinawa in May of 1945, she participated in every major engagement in the Pacific except the Coral Sea, and she was on the fringe of that. At one time in the Battle for the Solomons she was the only operating carrier in the Pacific. Off her battered and blood-stained decks have flown some of the Navy's finest fliers. At various times she has been the flagship of three of our best-known air admirals, Halsey, Mitscher and Sherman, who now is bringing her to New York for Navy Day.

And now they talk of scrapping her or retiring her to some secluded anchorage as one of the fleet reserve. We hope that Secretary Forrestal will carry out instead the suggestion he made on Aug. 27, when he said he thought she might be kept as a museum piece, such as the Constitution and the Constellation. If that is not done, then take her out to sea and practice on her with an atomic bomb. Let her death agony signalize the coming of the atomic age at sea. But let not the harpies of the shore pluck now this eagle of the sea, as Oliver Wendell Holmes said in 1830 of the old Constitution when she was rotting at a Navy dock. The aircraft carrier Enterprise deserves a better fate than that.

'Big E' Enters New York Harbor With the Silence of a Ghost

NEW YORK, Oct. 17 (UP) - The "Big E" came home from the wars today. The U.S.S. Enterprise, embattled queen of American aircraft carriers, ghosted through the fog into New York harbor shortly after dawn with nine other warships from the Pacific fleet.

A sailor stood in the mists at the Battery, and he said: "Well, there she is, boys. There's the old Big E."

The "Big E" nudged slowly through the strange, fresh waters of the Hudson River. A Navy blimp sailed down close to her. The carrier's tiny aldis lamps flickered messages to the speeding patrol craft around her, as if to say: "Take it easy, mates. This is my show. This is what I came home for."

PT Boats Give "Go Ahead"

The tiny PT boats flickered back: "Go ahead, Big E. Take over."

Because the ship never lived, big or little, that could steal much thunder from the famous "Old Lady."

The 10,000-ton aircraft carrier, Monterey, led the way. The Enterprise rode in second place, with eight other ships trailing along behind her.

The Monterey flew a giant American flag and a string of eight small balloons flapped from her masthead.

Sailors gathered along the Battery waved when they saw the Monterey pass. They shouted at the men standing on her flight deck. They laughed and talked about her among themselves.

With Ghosts Aboard

But they only stared quietly at the "Big E." For the big carrier was coming home with a record too obvious for flattery, and she sailed with too many ghosts aboard to cause reckless cheering. The seamen squinted through the haze and perhaps they remembered shipmates left at Guadalcanal, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, or lost in the bloody hours off the Santa Cruz Islands.

The "Big E" came back to New York with no shouting or bragging. She flew no flag[1], and only her radar screen stood out in sharp relief behind her superstructure.

There was no cheering from the men who lined her decks. The 20,000-ton carrier had chased the war for more than 275,000 miles and perhaps her crewmen were too tired to get excited.

The "Old Lady" passed within a few hundred yards of the Statue of Liberty. Many of the Enterprise's crew moved over to the port rail, their caps in hand, but still there was no cheering.

Remember Butch O'Hare?

Perhaps they remembered others who couldn't come today. Shipmates like Lt. Comdr. Edward H. (Butch) O'Hare, Congressional Medal of Honor winner, who had disappeared in his plane one night above the carrier in the far reaches of the Pacific.

The old Enterprise could afford to come into harbor quietly, letting a tug push her around. She had a record that could shout for itself.

Her planes and guns shot down 911 Japanese planes, her fliers sank 71 ships. They damaged or probably sank another 192.

The Navy calls her the "fightingest carrier in the fleet" and she wears 18 of a possible 22 Pacific theater battle stars[2]. The Enterprise was the first carrier to win a Presidential Citation, which was just the same as having a medal pinned on her bridge.

Covered Doolittle Raiders

She was the only carrier to send planes into the fight at Pearl Harbor and to stick it out until the desperate days around Okinawa. She covered the carrier Hornet when Jimmy Doolittle led his B-25s over Tokyo.

She was in there fighting when the Hornet died beside her on October 26, 1942, in the murderous fighting off Santa Cruz.

The "Big E" was wounded 16 times during the war, but she never struck her flag nor asked for quarter.

So Adm. Frederick C. Sherman brought the famous "work-horse" into the big town quietly today. The "Big E" maintained her dignity. She was no youngster to run around beating her chest and bragging.

The Enterprise, Monterey, and five destroyers - the Foote, Young, Zellars, Aulick and Douglas H. Fox - will remain in New York for the Navy Day celebrations on October 27. They probably will be open to visitors tomorrow, the 3rd Naval District reported."

"Big E" Steals Show

The other three vessels, the 10,000-ton carrier Bataan, the heavy cruiser Portland and the destroyer Sterett will leave New York shortly for Navy Day appearances in other areas.

But the "Big E" stole the show today. Adm. Halsey didn't call her the "galloping ghost of the Oahu coast" for nothing.

Early in the war she made the first attack on enemy territory, raiding the Japanese-held Gilberts and Marshalls. During that first year she was in every Pacific engagement except the battle of the Coral Sea.

In the battle of Midway she sank the large enemy carriers Kaga and Akagi, and a Mogami-class cruiser. She helped to sink the carrier Soryu[3] and damaged a battleship.

The "Big E" provided vital air cover in the battle of the Solomons and she helped to crush Japanese transports attempting to reinforce the beleaguered enemy on Guadalcanal.

Part of Task Force 58

The "Old Lady's" planes were the first to go up to meet enemy bombers at night. O'Hare, one of the planners of the night plane tactics, was lost on November 26, 1943, in the first fight.

The Enterprise participated in the invasions of the Marshalls, Hollandia, the Marianas, and joined in the devastating strikes of Task Force 58.

It was the "Big E's" planes in the battle of the Philippine sea that spotted the Japanese fleet when it appeared to have slipped away. Her pilots hung above the enemy, their fuel almost exhausted, until the attack was renewed.

In the first five months of 1945 she launched more than 1,000 target sorties. The "Old Lady" covered the Luzon invasion, made sweeps against French Indo-China, Hong Kong, the China coast, Canton, Formosa and Okinawa. She made two carrier strikes against Tokyo and the inland sea, and provided air support for the Iwo Jima and Okinawa landings.

These articles are property and copyright of their owners and are provided here for educational purposes only.

[1] Apparently the flag flying over her island aft was hidden from the reporter's view.

[2] Enterprise's record was later corrected to include 20 battle stars.

[3] Soryu was sunk by planes from Yorktown CV-5. Enterprise and Yorktown planes together sank Hiryu later during the Battle of Midway.

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