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The Two Hundred Year Legacy of Hornet

"A Heritage of Excellence"


The first Hornet christened what would become one of the most distinguished names in American naval history with her performance in the Revolutionary War. The first two ships in the new Continental Navy were "Hornet" & "Wasp".


The second "Hornet" carried Marines to the shores of Tripoli. In a one-hour gun battle she silenced the Citadel at Djerna and landed the Marines thus deciding the war with the Barbary Pirates.


The Seventh "Hornet" (CV-8) launched 16 Army B-25's to strike the Japanese home islands in one of the most daring raids in the history of warfare. She went on to fight at the Battle of Midway and was lost to an overwhelming air attack at the Battle of Santa Cruz.


The eighth "Hornet" (CV-12) was commissioned just 16 months after her keel was laid.

For 15 continuous months she was in action in the forward areas of the Pacific combat zone, sometimes within 40 miles of the Japanese home islands.
Under air attack 59 times, she was never hit.
Her aircraft destroyed 1410 Japanese aircraft, the WWII record for aircraft carriers.
Her air groups destroyed or damaged 1,269,710 tons of enemy shipping.
10 HORNET pilots attained ''Ace in a Day'' status.
30 of 42 VF-2 Hellcat pilots were aces.
72 enemy aircraft shot down in one day, the Navy record
255 aircraft shot down in a month, the Navy record
Supported nearly every Pacific amphibious landing after March 1944
Scored the critical first hits in sinking the super battleship YAMATO
In 1945 launched the first strikes against Tokyo since the 1942 Doolittle Raid

Heritage of Excellence

Earned 7 battles stars for her service in WWII
Awarded the Presidential Unit Citation for WWII (only nine carriers so cited)
Flawlessly recovered the Apollo 11 astronauts, the first men on the moon - 1969
USS HORNET (CVS-12) is designated a National Historic Landmark - 1991
HORNET opens as an aircraft carrier museum in Alameda, California. The F/A-18 strike fighter carries on the name of Hornet in today's Navy - 1998