A-6 Intruder from Attack Squadron 196 (VA-196) on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Coral Sea (CV-43). There is also an F-4 Phantom II which is getting ready to launch. The aircraft have Iran Hostage raid markings on their wings.
“The USS Lexington explodes after being bombed by Japanese planes in the Battle of the Coral Sea in May of 1942. More than 200 of the carrier’s 2,951-man crew went down with the ship. While Japanese forces won a tactical battle, a number of their damaged ships were unable to participate in the upcoming pivotal Battle of Midway, which took place one month later.”
May 4 is the anniversary of the Battle of the Coral Sea. A tactical victory for the Japanese (ships sunk), but a strategic one for Allied forces (invasion turned back). The Lexington was lost, and the Yorktown was damaged. The Japanese thought the Yorktown was a write-off, but just a month later, it was back in action during the Battle of Midway.
On the 73rd anniversary of this important, but often ignored battle, all I have to say is
VF-194 F-4Js in experimental camouflage intercepting Tu-95 Two McDonnell Douglas F-4J Phantoms of fighter squadron VF-194 Red Lightnings intercept a soviet Tu-95 Bear reconnaissance plane on 10 March 1977. VF-194 was assigned to Carrier Air Wing Fifeteen (CVW-15) aboard the aircraft carrier USS Coral Sea (CV-43). Note the experimental camouflage scheme of the Phantoms. The crew of the F-4S nearer to the camera was William Dvorak/J.T. Walior, the other was Don Duffington/Wayne Cheatum.