Civilian Orientation Cruise
on the USS John F. Kennedy CV-67
Our group observed the USS John F. Kennedy's mission, which was to steam off the Florida coast and qualify new Naval Aviators with their first carrier landings and catapults. The graduating examination for a student Navy pilot is to land aboard an aircraft carrier six times --- and catapult off six times. This line period was scheduled from April 30 to May 4; BUT because of the superb airmanship, training and USS Kennedy seamanship all students were completed on May 2nd and the Kennedy was able to return to port a day early.
A note: During this short line period there were more than 1,050 catapults and over 1,050 landing traps. There were NO accidents, mishaps nor injuries! All students were initially qualified. Well done Captain Weber, USS Kennedy crew and participating training squadrons including Training Squadron Seven --- the last Skyhawk training squadron!
Bud Southworth, author and photographer.
Eleven civilians participated in the Navy Orientation Cruise on May 2 and May 3, 1998. Guests met at Naval Air Station Norfolk, Virginia.
Back row left to right: Gary Cornett, John Reed, Otto Krueger, Dr. Steven Bradley, Jeff Knutson,
Christy Carter, Bruce MacInnes, Steve Wilson & Bud Southworth
Kneeling left to right: Ted Langworthy & Ray Sick
VRC-40 Grumman C-2 Greyhound Taxi
A VRC-40 Grumman C-2 Greyhound taxies to Naval Air Station Norfolk, Virginia Base Operations to embark the civilian orientation group. The Greyhound is referred to as the "COD" Carrier Onboard Delivery aircraft. May 2, 1998 Bud Southworth Photograph.
VRC-40 C-2 Greyhound Takeoff
The VRC-40 Grumman Greyhound climbs from NAS Norfolk, Virginia for a flight out to the USS John F. Kennedy. May 2, 1998 Bud Southworth Photograph.
A two block fox
Over the USS Kennedy (in time for lunch). As usual "the Boat" is hiding under a cloud.
Please note: The term "two block fox" is a traditional moniker for an aircraft carrier. An aircraft carrier is two blocks in length and at sea using its 40 mile per hour speed, clouds, night, fog and other obscurations --- well, the aircraft carrier is as hard to find as a fox. May 2, 1998 Bud Southworth Photograph.
Greyhound pilot has the Kennedy three wire
The Greyhound pilot grabs an OK three wire on the USS John F. Kennedy. The Kennedy is steaming in the Atlantic several hundred miles east of Jacksonville, Florida. May 2, 1998 United States Navy Photograph.
Greyhound ramp down
"Welcome Aboard!" The Kennedy Welcome Committee ushers us off the COD. The window in the island is to the Flight Deck Control Center --- from where all aircraft onboard the JFK are controlled. The purple shirts are part of the JFK's refueling team. May 2, 1998 Bud Southworth Photograph.
Guests on the "Big John" hangar deck
Left to right:
Bruce MacInnes, Gary Cornett, John Reed, Christy Carter, Dr. Steven Bradley, Ray Sick, Jeff Knutson, Ted Langworthy, Otto Krueger and Bud Southworth (Steve Wilson is hiding behind Otto). May 2, 1998 Bud Southworth Photograph.
Time for a little lunch
In the Officer's Wardroom with the JFK guides. Left to right:
Ted Langworthy, Bud Southworth, Lt. Jennifer Holden - Ships Store Officer, Steve Wilson, Lt. Wesley Joshway - Avionics Officer, Lt. Joe Walker - Public Affairs Officer and Bruce MacInnes. May 2, 1998 Bud Southworth Photograph.
After a "little lunch" its time to see the "really big flight deck show." Guests are taken to Flight Deck Control for a safety briefing and assigned Yellow Shirt guides to keep them safe while watching flight operations from the flight deck.
JFK Flight Deck Control Center
Left to right:
Flight Deck Director ABH2 Theodoro, Flight Deck Director ABH2 Wetzel and Lcdr. Bill Koski - Flight Deck Boss.
Lcdr. Koski controls everything that moves on the hangar and flight decks through radio transmissions to his many crew members. Flight Deck Directors wear a headset built into their "Cranial Caps" to get instructions from Lcdr. Koski. FDD crew wear Yellow Shirts and are responsible to move all aircraft on the ship --- both on the flight deck and on the hangar deck; the FDD crew co-ordinates refueling aircraft that are running the deck.
Flight Deck Directors ABH2 Theodoro and ABH2 Wetzel were assigned to Bud Southworth (Skyhawk Association Webmaster Emeritus) --- co-ordinating and keeping him safe while he took the catapulting and trapping pictures used on this website. They and Lcdr. Bill Koski were extremely co-operative in allowing me access to vantage points to best portray Skyhawk operation on the USS Kennedy. During this time they kept me (Bud Southworth) safe on the most hazardous five acres in the world. Thank you guys!!! May 2, 1998 Bud Southworth Photograph.
Yellow Shirt and Bud Southworth
Bud Southworth and Flight Deck Director ABH1 Chuck Meeuwsen. Flight Deck Director ABH1 Meeuwsen assisted Bud Southworth on the Kennedy's fantail area while observing carrier landings. Thanks Chuck!!! May 2, 1998 Ltjg. Wesley Joshway Photograph.
Yellow Shirts and Bud Southworth
Bud with Flight Deck Director ABH1 (AW) Robert Sparkman (Cranial Cap on) and Flight Deck Director ABH1 Chuck Meeuwsen. These Flight Deck Directors assisted Bud Southworth on the Kennedy while observing carrier landings. Thanks Guys!!! May 2, 1998 Ltjg. Wesley Joshway Photograph.
A picture collage of the Captain's In Port Cabin
The Captain's In Port Cabin was designed by Jacqueline Kennedy-Onassis. The cabin contains