Known by the men who flew it as
“The Beast”, the Curtiss SB2C
Helldiver was nearly 37 feet long
with a wingspan approaching 50 feet.
Powered by a 1900 hp Wright engine,
the plane was... More > considered under-
powered and suffered many teething
problems. It eventually earned the
grudging respect of Navy and Marine
pilots for its ruggedness and its ability
to survive high-g, steep and fast dives.
Over 7100 SB2Cs were made during
Originally printed by the U.S. Navy, this
Flight Operating Handbook taught pilots
everything they needed to know before
entering the cockpit. Classified
“Restricted”, the manual was
declassified and is here reprinted in
book form. This affordable facsimile
has been slightly reformatted. Care has
been taken however to preserve the
integrity of the text.< Less
From enlistment in 1942, through cadet aviation training, joining VBF-12/Air Group 12 as a SB2C Helldiver pilot, later switching to the F6F Hellcat, embarking on the USS Randolph (CV-15), and... More > conducting air operations including fighter sweeps over Tokyo, combat missions over Iwo Jima and Okinawa, and fighting off kamikaze attacks. 20 B&W and 4 color photos.< Less
This is the story of Bill Horsch's 20-year career in Naval Aviation. Starting as a Seaman Recruit in WW2, Bill climbed the Navy's enlisted ranks to retire as a Senior Chief Aviation Electronics... More > Technician at the height of the Cold War.
Originally an aircraft radio and radar systems maintainer, Bill later became a Naval Aircrewman logging flight time on many different aircraft such as the SB2C Helldiver, PBY Catalina, P4Y Privateer, R4D Skytrain, and S2F Tracker. During the early postwar era Bill was part of the elite cadre of active-duty “Stationkeepers” who moved New England’s Naval Air Reserve headquarters from historic NAS Squantum, MA to NAS South Weymouth.
This book features 151 pages covering Bill's experiences in WW2 as well as his postwar career as an active-duty Stationkeeper in the Naval Air Reserve Training Command based at NAS Squantum and NAS South Weymouth, MA, NAS Los Alamitos, CA, and NAS Minneapolis, MN. The book includes a special section containing 33 photographs.< Less