Profile Photo
Tom Cleaver
915 articles

Eduard 1/48 F6F-5N Hellcat – celebrating the USMC 238th birthday

November 10, 2013 · in Aviation · · 7 · 1.9K

For the 238th birthday of the Marine Corps, the Royal Class -5N flown by Bruce Porter of VMF(N)-542 at Okinawa, June 1945.

Bruce Porter first entered combat in the Solomons with VMF-121 in 1943, flying the F4U-1 Corsair. He scored his first victory on his first mission, and had a score of 3 by the time the unit's tour was up. He was then transferred to VMF(N)-544 at MCAS Cherry Point to undergo night fighter training on the F6F . In February 1945, half of the unit was redesignated as VMF(N)-511 and sent aboard the USS Block Island II (CVE-106). The unit did not see active combat, and Porter campaigned to get transferred to one of the units assigned to operate ashore in the Okinawa campaign. He was first sent to VMF(N)-533 in time for the April invasion, then transferred to VMF(N)-542 in May, then stationed for air defense at the Ulithi Atoll fleet anchorage. On May 30, VMF(N)-542 was transferred to Kadena AB on Okinawa. On June 15, 1945, Porter scored two victories over Japanese intruders to become an ace.

The Royal Class kit has complete photo-etch, a resin engine, and decals for five different aircraft. The model was done complete OOB using kit decals.

Reader reactions:
4  Awesome

9 additional images. Click to enlarge.

7 responses

  1. Tom,
    Nice build and nice "back story", it always adds to the prestige of the model.

  2. It's hard for me to get interested in late war Navy aircraft due to the majority being dark blue but yours got me looking.
    Clean build as usual.

  3. Tom,
    Very nice build of a real gentleman's airplane. I had the pleasure to meet and have a very nice chat with him. His book, "Ace" (Porter/Hammel) is a great read. I really like what you have done here

  4. Nice work Tom - clean build and as Al said, you made an uninteresting scheme still interesting to look at.

    I too like the historical context. I might follow your lead on my next upload; as you know, I have a few stories myself.

  5. Well researched as usual, Tom, you certainly know your stuff, and another nicely finished model.

  6. My Dad was a Marine when Bruce was in VMFN 544. I just ran across a picture of him and a letter from a former Marine who worked with my Dad, who has been gone 30 years. Semper Fi!

Leave a Reply