Our Location: Three Lakes FL Wildlife Management Area

Saturday, 30 December 2017

USS Lexington Aircraft Carrier Museum

One of the reasons we stopped in Corpus Christi/Padre Island was because I wanted to tour the aircraft carrier USS Lexington which is now a museum in the harbour there.  We headed in about 11 am and arrived just before noon.  Ed and Lessie joined us in our adventure.  Although it was overcast, it was actually a nice day to tour the carrier.



Here is proof we were actually there.  We actually look a little worried about what was going to happen to us!!!


It cost Susan and I 14.95 each to do the tour.  I don’t get a break for being a senior in the USA.  The tour was well worth the money.  Inside were some examples of the planes that were stored in the hanger area.  These aircraft have been restored to a T.


We took in the 3D movie showing which, is part of our entrance fee.



The girls made sure I ended up in the brig.   Maybe I was right in being worried in the other picture.


We went up a couple levels and we were on the flight deck.  Those pilots must have had nerves of steel to take off and land on this short runway.  It was actually a little shorter than I had envisioned.


They have a lot more restored aircraft up on the deck.  We asked them what they did with all the aircraft when Hurricane Harvey was coming and they said they can still use one elevator which will accommodate an aircraft, so they took them below to the hanger just like they used to do in wartime.


One of the aircraft (the Texan) reminded me of a Harvard and brought back my flying experiences.  I had the pleasure of flying in one doing aerobatics, and I also had the opportunity to actually fly a Cornell which was a WWII training aircraft.  I actually looked up in the sky maybe dreaming of those flying days.


True to form, a couple of ships passed in front of the carrier.  It was like they knew I needed my ship fix for the day.


They had a list of the ships accomplishments posted on the wall of the flight deck.  She had been involved in a lot of skirmishes. 


When we went up on the bridge we passed the captains quarters.  He never got to go to far from his job and his quarters were right outside the bridge.  I imagine he was a busy man at times.


We then started the tour of the essential services area of the ship.  First off was the barber shop.  Everyone on board always had a tidy head of hair and I doubt anyone on board had hair as long as there was on these mannequins. 


We went past the machining room.  Everything on this ship had to be repaired at sea if it broke.  It was a fully equipped shop.


And of course everyone had to eat.  The displays almost looked real.  It is a known fact that the food on the ships were very good.  A sailor or airman with a full belly was a happy productive worker.  Sue even thought the food looked good.



We snuck by the dentist office and Ed would only peek in.  They had a recording of a guy in extreme pain coming from inside.  I watched as some of the kids behind us looked in with a terrified look in their eyes.


And the Post office.  You can almost hear him saying “sign here and I will get you your Amazon package!”


And this poor guy got something in the side of the head so ended up here in the emergency room.  I noted there was only one person on duty in emergency, so I hope he got good enough care.

There was a really nice sign in the Chapel that showed the Lexington as the “Blue Ghost”.  Apparently the Japanese named her this because in 1943 the Japanese sunk the original USS Lexington.  They actually saw her go down.  Now at the time the shipyards were just completing another carrier which hadn’t been named yet so the workers sent a letter to the Government asking them to re use the name Lexington for the new carrier in honour to the original one.  They agreed and very soon after the new Lexington was spotted by the Japanese and they couldn’t believe what they were seeing.  They thought it was a ghost.  So they named it the Blue Ghost.


Of course every museum has to end in the souvenir shop and this was no different.  I got a walking stick medallion to add to my collection and Sue got a sticker.


On the way out the ships bell was on display.  What a beautiful brass bell.


This sign outside shows the meaning of the Japanese Rising Sun flag which is placed on the bridge of the ship.  This is the location where a Kamikaze Japanese pilot drove his aircraft into the carrier in November of 1944 killing 49 and injuring 132 men.  They actually had a display on the carrier about the Kamikaze’s and it is a sobering display depicting how these young Japanese were duped into believing that suicide for their country was of the highest calling.  Apparently it was faster to train pilots to steer their planes into ships, than to teach them how to drop bombs on them.  It also only took one man vs numerous men on a bomber.  Hard for my mind to process the atrocities of those wars.


Well after all of that walking our little tummies were ready for some food and look over there…..its a Cracker Barrel!!!! 


Poor Ed is coming down with a cold and although he didn’t complain, I think he was feeling pretty tough.  He has that “just fill my belly and take me home” look.   Lessie was showing me a new game with the sugar packets.  She always wins.


Here is the view from our window again tonight.  No change from last night



Our Location tonight:  Malaquite Beach Texas.  Boondocking


8 comments:

  1. Very interesting tour pictures of the Lexington!

    Thanks!!!!!

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  2. Looks like a fun time and you just saved us a bunch because now we don't have to go and visit the Lexington, you just show it all to us! :-)

    www.travelwithkevinandruth.com

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    Replies
    1. We really enjoyed it. We were there about 4 hours I think.

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  3. We toured the USS Yorktown in Charleston, SC it was fantastic but the food looked much better on board this ship. Looks like a great time. I think your friend already knew the game with the sugar packets.

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    1. Lessie just kept beating me at the sugar packet game.

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  4. We toured the USS Midway in San Diego a few years ago and really enjoyed it. They sure do a great job of showing you how life was.

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  5. I can only imagine how it felt to be on board and know that you could be sunk at any time. There were some brave souls on there.

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