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    USS Hornet (CV-8) - "The Fighting Lady" of the Doolittle Raid.
    USS Hornet (CV-8), a Yorktown-class aircraft carrier, was the seventh ship to carry the name Hornet. CV-8 was named to commemorate the six American warships that had previously borne the name. During World War II, Hornet famously launched the Doolittle Raid on Tokyo and participated in the Battle of Midway.

    The ensign of the USS Hornet is a 48-star, 92" X 102" sewn bunting flag finished with a roped header with an upper hoist loop and a lower lead-line and loop. It is marked in black, "USS Hornet CV-8."

    Hornet was an apt name for an aircraft carrier. A hornet is a large flying insect that aggressively guards its nests with severe, painful and repetitive stings. The career of the Hornet was short, only 371 days. Commissioned in October of 1941, she was in the Atlantic when Pearl Harbor was attacked. The ship arrived in Alameda Naval Air Station in March of 1942 preparatory to the April Doolittle Raid on Tokyo, where Hornet transported and launched 15 US Army Air Force B-25 Mitchel bombers to make the first strike against the Japanese homeland. In a popular morale-boosting remark, President Roosevelt referred to Hornet only as "Shangri-La." Two years later, the Navy would give this name to an aircraft carrier.

    In June she fought in the battle of Midway where her torpedo bombers were awarded a Presidential Unit Citation and she assisted the sinking of the heavy cruiser Mogami and the crippling of the cruiser Mikuma and damaging the destroyers Asashio and Arashio. The victory at Midway was a decisive turning point in the War in the Pacific. The Japanese lost four large carriers, over 250 aircraft and a high percentage of their most highly trained and experienced pilots. After Midway, Hornet was briefly the only operational US carrier in the South Pacific.

    Her next engagement was the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands on 26 October 1942 where there was no surface contact between combatant vessels. While the Hornet's warplanes were attacking the Japanese carriers, she was herself attacked and badly damaged when both the propulsion and electrical systems were knocked out. Dead in the water and unable to launch or land her aircraft, she was taken under tow while repairs were started and nearly completed when another attack scored a fatal hit and the order was given to abandon ship. The decision was made to scuttle her by gunfire; however, advancing Japanese forces finished the task with torpedoes. The Hornet was the last American fleet carrier sunk in action. Her legacy lived on when the USS Hornet (CV-12) and the USS Shangri-La (CV-38) were commissioned in 1943 & 1944.

    The ensign of the USS Hornet is in good condition. It is used, worn, soiled and stained. The fly had been shortened and repaired in the upper and lower fly corners.

    Awards: American Defense Service Medal with "Fleet" clasp; American Campaign Medal; Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with four campaign stars; World War II Victory Medal. Torpedo Squadron 8 flying from the Hornet was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation.

    This flag was formerly in the collection of Dr. Clarence Rungee, and is accompanied by his original museum inventory sheet with identifying information.

    Auction Info

    Proxy Bidding Ends
    14th Saturday 10:50 am CT
    Auction Dates
    14th Saturday
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    This lot is in: 1 - Signature® Floor Session (Live Floor, Live Phone, Mail, Fax, Internet, and Heritage Live):
    (Lots 42001-42188) - 11:00 AM Central Time, Saturday, December 14, 2019.
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