USS Midway (CV-41)
Midway, her keel was laid down in October
1943 and launched in March 1945, is
the third ship to bear that name. An
Air Craft Carrier that is now used as
a museum (as of 2004), she is now permanently
located in San Diego. Her history is
long and filled with honour: Starting
her life just after then end of the
Second World War, The Midway was used
as the head of her group (CarDiv1) by
1946, and a year later was performing
some of the first U.S. rocket tests
off of her decks. Serving as a key item
in U.S. sea/air power projection, she
was upgraded many times to accommodate
heavier and more advanced aircraft.
By the 1950s she was participating in
North Sea manoeuvres with NATO, and
in 1957 she was refitted with an angled
flight deck; an angled flight deck is
important for quick launch-landing turnarounds
and made the Midway more efficient.
1950s saw fighting break out in North
and South Korea, and the USS Midway was
there. By the 1960s her aircraft tested
the air defence systems of Japan, Korea,
Okinawa, the Philippines, and Taiwan.
She was in the right place to begin hostilities
in Vietnam in 1965. Returning for a re-fit
in early 1966, she would rest at the San
Diego shipyards until 1970. Recomissioned,
the Midway returned to Vietnam in 1971,
where she once again launched aircraft
into hostile territory and help rescued
pilots that had ejected in combat. In
1975 The Midway was present when South
Vietnam began to collapse, and helped
operations like “Operation Frequent
Wind” to evacuate hundreds of U.S.
personnel and Vietnamese nationals.
By 1979 The Midway was in the Indian Ocean,
helping to maintain an American presence
in the Arabian Sea and Persian Gulf. She
was present during the fall of “the
Shaw’s Iran” when 63 U.S.
citizens were taken hostage. During the
1980s the USS Midway would repeat such
feats, arriving in unstable areas to let
people known that Uncle Sam wasn’t
far away. In 1990 the USS Midway was once
again present in the North Arabian Sea
when Iraq invaded its neighbour Kuwait.
Launching hundreds of flights a day, the
Midway would help the coalition throughout
the length of the war. Soon she was brought
back to San Diego to be decommissioned
in 1994, stricken from the naval roster