Class: Essex Aircraft Carrier
Launched: January 21, 1943
At: Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Company
Commissioned: April 15, 1943
Length: 856 feet
Draft: 30 feet
Displacement: 33,292 tons
Armament: 90 aircraft; twelve 5-inch/38 caliber guns (original);
reduced to four 5-inch/38 caliber guns; 40mm and 20mm guns.
Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum
40 Patriots Point Road
Mount Pleasant, SC 29464
Second of the Essex class carriers, Yorktown replaced her namesake, lost at the Battle of Midway in June 1942. The Essex carriers formed the core of the fast carrier task forces that struck Japanese forces in the Pacific with devastating results. Yorktown's planes inflicted heavy losses on the enemy at Truk and in the Marianas; the carrier supported American troops in the Philippines, at Iwo Jima, and at Okinawa. Yorktown received 11 battle stars for her World War II service and was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation. For service off Vietnam she was awarded four battle stars.
Yorktown and other Essex class carriers were the core of the U.S. postwar fleet. After Korean War duty, Yorktown was modernized for antisubmarine warfare and was deployed to Vietnam. In 1968, the carrier recovered the crew of Apollo 8, the first manned flight to orbit the moon. Decommissioned in 1970, Yorktown became the centerpiece of the fleet of ships at Patriots Point in 1975. Her onboard exhibits include more than two dozen historic carrier aircraft that saw service in World War II and the Persian Gulf War. Yorktown conducts youth group overnight encampments.
As the National Memorial to Carrier Aviation, Yorktown serves as host to the following memorials: the Arlington of Carrier Aviation, the Carrier Aviation Test Pilots Hall of Honor, the Carrier Aviation Hall of Fame. the Carrier Aviation Combat Aircraft Exhibit, and the Enlisted Combat Aircrew Roll of Honor. Yorktown also serves as the headquarters for the Congressional Medal of Honor Society and the Congressional Medal of Honor Museum.
USS Yorktown is a National Historic Landmark.
"The Enlisted Combat Aircrew Roll of Honor Wall"
In Memory and Honor of Those Hereon Identified
As Well as Those Deserving Enlisted Combat Aircrew
Known But to God.
"Yorktown at sea off Hawaii, circa the early 1960s"
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