Flying Jacket

Description
Physical Description
Khaki jacket.
Specific History
This khaki flying jacket was worn by George Gay at the Battle of Midway, June 4-7, 1942.
General History
On June 7, 1942 the crippled carrier USS Yorktown rolled over and sank off Midway Island. Its crew members, watching from escorting destroyers, broke down in tears. All ships lowered flags to half staff. "The Old York's going down," a chief said over and over. As the carrier sliped beneath the waves, the Battle of Midway finally ended.
Earlier that day the Japanese tried to get closer to the American ships. Fifteen TBD-1 "Devastators" of Lieutenant Commander John C. Waldron's Torpedo Squadron Eight (VT-8), from USS Hornet, bravely pressed their attack against a swarm of nimble and deadly Japanese "Zero" fighters. All were shot down. One man pulled out of the ocean was Ensign George Gay, the sole survivor of Torpedo Squadron Eight. At the time of Gay’s death in 1996, his ashes were scattered over the grid reference off Midway where his shipmates fell, forever reuniting Torpedo Squadron Eight's aviators.
Object Name
jacket
associated date
1941 - 1945
user
Gay, George H.
Physical Description
cotton (overall material)
metal (overall material)
plastic (overall material)
Measurements
overall: 25 1/2 in x 15 1/2 in; 64.77 cm x 39.37 cm
used in
Asia
ID Number
AF*59193-N
catalog number
59193-N
accession number
253618
related event
Battle of Midway
World War II
The Great Depression and World War II
See more items in
Armed Forces History: Armed Forces History, Military
Military
ThinkFinity
Exhibition
The Price of Freedom: Americans at War
Exhibition Location
National Museum of American History
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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