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Bridges at Toko-Ri

Discussion in 'WWII General' started by USMCPrice, Dec 24, 2017.

  1. USMCPrice

    USMCPrice Idiot at Large Patron  

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    Was flipping through the channel guide and came across this war movie classic. I stop and watch it anytime I see it's on.

    First rate cast: William Holden, Mickey Rooney, Fredrick March, Earl Holliman, Grace Kelly, and Dennis Weaver.
    Great story by James Michener
    Navy ships and jet aircraft
    Extensive use of real combat footage.
    The USS Oriskany CV-34 and LST-827 USS Hillsborough County, the F9F-2 Panther's of VF-192 "the Golden Dragons" (standing in for the F2H Banshee's in the book).
    VF-192 had two combat deployments to Korea flying the F4U Corsair.

    [​IMG]

    F2H Banshee

    [​IMG]

    F9F-2 Panther

    If you ever notice "The Bridges of Toko Ri" on television be sure to stop and watch it, you won't be sorry.
     
  2. JJWilson

    JJWilson Active Member

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    I own this film actually, I haven't watched it in a couple of years, it would be good to dust it off and give it go again. It's a shame that the Korean conflict has been so overlooked, 36,000 Americans lost their lives fighting for the Koreans, and while they didn't succeed in pushing the communists out of the peninsula, they saved millions of Koreans from living under the horrible regime in the North, and giving them their God given right of Freedom and liberty. That Sounds like a Victory to me.......
     
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  3. USMCPrice

    USMCPrice Idiot at Large Patron  

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    It really is a hidden gem of a film.
     
  4. rkline56

    rkline56 USS Oklahoma City CG5 Patron  

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    Loved the book since 8th grade. Have seen the film twice, sad at the end.

    Michener based his novel on actual missions flown against the railroad bridges at Majon-ni and Samdong-ni, North Korea, during the winter of 1951–52, when he was a news correspondent aboard the aircraft carriers USS Essex and USS Oriskany.[5][6] Michener based the character of Harry Brubaker on Lieutenant Donald S. Brubaker, who like his counterpart, was a 29-year-old Naval Reservist from Denver recalled to active duty aboard USS Valley Forge. The basis for Admiral Tarrant was Rear Admiral John Perry, the carrier division commander at the time; that of Lee was Commander Marshall U. Beebe, CAG aboard Essex in 1951 and technical advisor for the film; and Forney on Chief (NAP) Duane Thorin, himself a colorful enlisted pilot known for his trademark non-regulation green headgear.[7]

    The pilot's rescue attempt at the climax of the novel and film was a composite of a pair of unrelated rescue attempts on February 8, 1952, both in the area of Wonsan, North Korea, with the second one involving a propeller-driven Douglas AD-1 Skyraider from Valley Forge that had been shot down while bombing the railroad bridges at Samdong-ni. However, though the shot-down aviators in the second attempt were initially listed as missing in action, they survived their ordeal, and they were captured by North Korean soldiers.[8]

    In the attacks against the historical bridges, the McDonnell F2H Banshee fighter-bombers (represented by Grumman F9F Panther) that are at the heart of the story did not bomb the bridges themselves, since they did not have the capability of carrying the heavy aerial bombs that were needed. Instead, they carried out the perilous mission of suppressing enemy anti-aircraft fire.[9] Source: Wikipedia
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2017
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  5. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    The original F2H-1 had no provision for external stores, however, subsequent versions did. First USN F2H squadron was VF-17A, later designated VF-171.

    VF-171 squadron insignia
    VF-171 insignia smaller.jpg

    VF-171 CO (L) VF-172 CO (R) Aug 1950
    CO VF-171 &  CO VF-172 Aug 1950.jpg

    VF-171 F2H (CO in # 101); USS Coral Sea below formation
    VF-171 F2Hs small.jpg

    Information on external stores, rockets and bombs, can be found,e.g., in the Pilot's Handbook for Navy Models F2H-2, -2N Airplanes pages 39 and 40. Up to two 500# bombs could be carried.

    Rich
     

    Attached Files:

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  6. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    This is an F2H-4 to be found at the National Museum of Naval Aviation in Pensacola (behind it is an F2H-2P). You can clearly see pylons for external stores on the -4. There were four per wing, the outer two on each wing were for rockets only. The inner two in each wing could be either rockets or bombs.

    . F2H-4.jpg

    Merry Christmas to all!

    Rich
     
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  7. USMCPrice

    USMCPrice Idiot at Large Patron  

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    Love that museum, IMHO it's one of the best in the nation. Immaculately clean, all displays well maintained, an amazing number of artifacts. Been at least a dozen times, could easily do a dozen more and it would never get old.
     
  8. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    Yeah, one of my absolute favorites, too. Even found my father's signature on one of the panels of the von Tempsky wall.
     
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