USS Yorktown (CV-10)
The keel for the aircraft carrier BonHomme Richard was laid down December 1, 1941, six days before the attack on Pearl Harbor. The vessel was renamed USS Yorktown (CV-10) in honor of the original carrier Yorktown (CV-5), the only U.S. carrier lost at the Battle of Midway in June 1942. The CV-10 conducted numerous air strikes including the Marshall Islands, Tarawa, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, Battle of the Philippine Sea, Formosa, and on the Japanese mainland. The ship’s crew numbered 380 officers, 3,088 enlisted personnel and 90 planes. Nicknamed “The Fighting Lady”, she received the Presidential Unit Citation and earned eleven battle stars for World War II service. She was placed in reserve from January 1947, until December 1952. Her deck was cantilevered in 1955 in order to accommodate newer aircraft. In 1957, the vessel was again overhauled and reclassified as an antisubmarine warfare (ASW) carrier and designated CVS-10. During deployment in the Pacific, she qualified for the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal on three occasions for her responses to the Communist Chinese shellings of Formosa, Quemoy, and Matsu. From 1965 until 1967, Yorktown’s main activity was in combat operations in Vietnam where she earned an additional five battle stars. In 1968, she recovered NASA’s Apollo 8 capsule from the Pacific Ocean. In the late 1960s, she conducted exercises in the Atlantic Ocean participating in the major fleet exercise Operation Peacekeeper. The carrier was featured in the 1970 Japanese-American produced film, Tora, Tora, Tora. Decommissioned that same year, she is now the honored main feature of the Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum.