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On This Day…December 28th

Battleship USS Iowa entering floating dry-dock ABSD-2 at Manus Island, Papua New Guinea, December 28th 1944. The Iowa earned 9 Battlestars in WWII and two for her service in Korea. Quite unbelievably she was only finally decommissioned in 1990, due to her reactivation (along with her sister ship USS New Jersey) in 1990 as part of Ronald Reagan’s “600 ship Navy” scheme.

When Zuiho and her sister ship Shoho were laid down, they were of such a flexible design that they could be completed as a light carrier, an oil tanker, or a submarine tender. She was originally launched in 1934 as the oil tanker Takasaki, but was converted to a light carrier in 1941. The Zuiho was sank in In October 1944, during the Battle of Cape Engaño.

The much maligned competitor to the Bristol Beaufort, the Blackburn ‘Botha’ took to the air for the first time on December 28th, 1938. Underpowered, with poor lateral stability and with terrible problems with field of vision, the Botha was relegated to Target Tug duties although 580 somehow managed to get built.

The disappearance of a Douglas DST airliner, registered NC16002, occurred on the night of 28 December 1948 near the end of a scheduled flight from San Juan, Puerto Rico to
Miami, Florida. The aircraft carried 29 passengers and 3 crew members. No probable cause for the loss was determined by the official investigation and it remains unsolved.

Soldiers rest near the shoreline at Suvla Point, Gallipoli, waiting for evacuation on December 28th, 1915.

December 28th, 1946 saw the first flight of the Edo OSE. A rarely seen aircraft designed for a variety of roles including observation and anti-submarine patrols. Unusually, it carried a rescue pod on the underwing hardpoints, which would be capable of carrying a single person when used for air-sea rescue.


11 responses to On This Day…December 28th

  1. These battleships were so massive… Thanks again for maintaining this great series, David!

  2. Ese Edo OSE parece un Tucano argentino.Si que es raro.

  3. De acuerdo. Ella es un pàjaro raro. Tambien, un poco feo…

  4. The Iowa class ships were relatively young in time in service. I actually worked for EDO Corp in the ’80s.

  5. I was berthed next to the Iowa at Newport News Shipyard in the early 90s when I did a CQ Det aboard the Eisenhower. They are impressive. I reenlisted aboard the Missouri in Pearl Harbor on our way home from Iraqi Freedom, that was a thrill!

  6. Rob, that is a hell of an experience, to enlist on the ‘Big Mo’ at Pearl. Thanks for sharing!

    • One of the things I did not expect was that when you do a military ceremony on the MO, is that since she is now a museum, the public is invited! I did not get to do my ceremony on the site of the surrender though, someone else had it reserved that day.

  7. I was lucky enough to see Iowa’s sister ship New Jersey from the air when she was pulled in Long Beach for refit. She was massive!
    As for the missing DC-3, two words…Bermuda Triangle….Excuse me I have go take my tinfoil hat off now.

  8. I’m just getting caught up after New Years – I’ve never seen the Edo OSE – want one, but only found resin kits, which I don’t build!

  9. She’s an unusual one, Greg. Would be a great little project. Had a quick search and also only found the resin kit.

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