USS Midway, San Diego, California

This was by far one of the best self guided tours we could have ever gone on. The USS Midway, one of the longest serving aircraft carriers for the US in the 20th century (1945 to 1992). Though the ship missed world war 2 by only days it has been in several conflicts since including, Vietnam, Korea and the first war in Afghanistan, Desert Storm.

Here are some facts : From the beginning of its service, the Midway played key roles in the Cold War. In 1946 it became the first American carrier to operate in the midwinter sub-Arctic, developing new flight deck procedures. The following year Midway became the only ship to launch a captured German V-2 rocket. The trial’s success became the dawn of naval missile warfare. Just two years after that, Midway sent a large patrol plane aloft to demonstrate that atomic bombs could be delivered by a carrier. Midway served with the Atlantic Fleet for ten years, making seven deployments to European waters, patrolling “the soft underbelly” of NATO. A round-the-world cruise took Midway to the west coast in 1955, where it was rebuilt with an angled deck to improve jet operations.

Over a chaotic two day period during the fall of Saigon in April 1975, Midway was a floating base for large Air Force helicopters which evacuated more than 3,000 desperate refugees during Operation Frequent Wind. Its final mission was the evacuation of civilian personnel from Clark Air Force Base in the Philippines after the 20th century’s largest eruption of nearby Mount Pinatubo. As a visitor it gives you an up close and personal look into how these boys lived and worked, the conditions they did it in and what they went through on a daily basis.  I was awe struck with what I saw, impressed and also saddened, when talking with the volunteers on the ship who actually served on the ship.  The would bow their heads as they told us of fellow shipmates who did not return from missions.  They are proud of their time on board and want to share it with as many as will hear it.  I shook hands and thanked them for their service every chance I got.

For any who would like to see and hear about this live, visit here.  It is no waste of time and when you leave you are actually humbled by what you have learned.  Note: Make sure you reserve at least three to four hours of your time and have comfy shoes, you don’t want to miss anything.  I have many more images and will drop in an album into the site to share them with you.   I loved it and recommend it to everyone

…. Kevin



Here is a quick slideshow from the ship

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Of course we have many more pics!  As I said, I recommend this to anyone who is in the area.  A great, hands on view of history!