USS Kitty Hawk CV63 Countdown to Retirement


Dec 2, 2000
58,654
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From The Navy Times:

Kitty Hawk aircraft fly into history

Air Wing Five closes the book on carrier’s flight deck
quote:

It was down to the wire Wednesday onboard the aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk as 53 aircraft from Carrier Air Wing Five flew off the ship for the final time.

Most of the wing’s aircraft had already left the ship earlier in the day, but two aircraft – an F/A-18 Hornet from Strike Fighter Squadron 102 and an EA-6B Prowler from Carrier Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 136 – had maintenance issues and needed parts from off the ship.

A final launch was scheduled for after 5 p.m., when the C-2A Greyhound “COD”￾ from Detachment Five of Fleet Logistics Support Squadron 30 was due to return to the ship.
Full story at http://www.navytimes.com/news/2008/08/navy_kittyhawk_080708/

Comment: The last fossil fueled carrier in the U.S. fleet deserves her own thread. Built at the hight of the Cold War, her decks have seen a lot of history and been a part of it. Some stats for the ship's career as the books are closed on her life as a man-o-war:

Arrested landings: 407,511
Catapult shots:
Cat 1: 165,433
Cat 2: 99,190
Cat 3: 100,085
Cat 4: 83,592

Total: 448,301

A high resolution photo of the ship arriving in San Diago can be viewed at http://www.navy.mil/management/photodb/photos/080807-N-7029R-021.jpg
 

Grant Carman

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Jun 19, 2006
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Michael

What do you think will happen to her? Will she be scrapped, like the JFK will probably be, or will she be preserved in the ghost fleet?
 
Dec 2, 2000
58,654
581
483
Easley South Carolina
Most likely, she'll be scrapped or turned into a reef. There are several efforts afoot to save one of the so-called supercarriers as a museum and so far, the only one I've seen which looks like it has a chance of happening is with the USS Ranger.

Going over the Naval Vessels Register at http://www.nvr.navy.mil/index.htm I see that the Forrestal, and Constellation are listed as Stricken, to be disposed of. Only the Saratoga and the Ranger are on donation hold. The America was disposed of in destructive testing and the Kitty Hawk and Kennedy will probably go the same way.

The problem here is that ship preservation is a massively expensive undertaking and even reletively small vessels have problems. There have been several spectacular failures such as the fiasco surrounding the USS Cabot which was the last surviving light aircraft carrier from the Second World War. If you want to see what it takes to make it happen, and it's quite a bit, see http://www.hnsa.org/standa.htm

You may also find http://peoships.crane.navy.mil/donation/ to be of some use.
 
Dec 2, 2000
58,654
581
483
Easley South Carolina
From The Navy Times:

Kitty Hawk arrives in U.S. for final time
quote:

The aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk returned to the U.S. Thursday, after being “forward deployed”￾ for a decade.

Ten years, one month and one day after departing its former home port of nearly 35 years for Japan, the 47-year-old aircraft carrier steamed back into San Diego Harbor to begin her delayed turnover with the carrier George Washington.

The GW is undergoing repairs in Southern California after a May 22 fire damaged more than 80 spaces and prevented the nuclear-powered carrier from meeting Kitty Hawk in Pearl Harbor in early July.

Kitty Hawk is expected to depart San Diego for Bremerton, Wash., and will be decommissioned Jan. 31.
More at http://www.navytimes.com/news/2008/08/navy_kittyhawk_080808w/

See also http://www.navy.mil/management/photodb/photos/080807-N-7883G-302.jpg for a high resolution photo of the Kitty Hawk alongside the George Washington.
 
Dec 2, 2000
58,654
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Easley South Carolina
From The Seattle Post-Intelligencer:

USS Kitty Hawk coming to Bremerton to be decommissioned
quote:

The 47-year-old aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk, the Navy's oldest and longest serving active warship, is heading to the Seattle region to end its operational life.

"The Hawk," which served from the Vietnam War to the war in Afghanistan -- and for one day in 1963 was a floating White House for President John F. Kennedy -- will depart San Diego Thursday morning for Bremerton.
More at http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/376678_kittyhawk28.html

Kitty Hawk Official Website at http://www.kittyhawk.navy.mil/
 
Dec 2, 2000
58,654
581
483
Easley South Carolina
From The Navy Times:

Former sailors pay tribute to Kitty Hawk
quote:

BREMERTON, Wash. – Carlos Rivera served on the Kitty Hawk’s first crew. Aaron Lussier is part of its last.

They and sailors from the 48 years between them gathered in the aircraft carrier’s hangar bay Thursday to say goodbye to America’s oldest active warship.

Commissioned in April 1961, the Hawk has seen its last battle. It will be replaced this spring by the George H.W. Bush.
More at http://www.navytimes.com/news/2009/01/ap_kittyhawkgoodbye_013109/
 
Dec 2, 2000
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581
483
Easley South Carolina
From The Navy Times:

2,000 celebrate Kitty Hawk at Puget Sound
quote:

BREMERTON, Wash. – More than 2,000 past and present crew members of the SS Kitty Hawk gathered to celebrate the nation’s oldest active warship, many saying they’d take up battle stations once again if called.

Not that anyone is likely to see action again on the more than 47-year-old aircraft carrier, the last in the nation’s fleet to run on fossil fuel rather than nuclear power.
More at http://www.navytimes.com/news/2009/02/ap_kitty_hawk_020209/
 
Dec 2, 2000
58,654
581
483
Easley South Carolina
From The Navy Newsstand:

Navy Decommissions USS Kitty Hawk
quote:

BREMERTON, Wash. (NNS) -- The aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) was decommissioned May 12 at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility in Bremerton, Wash., after more than 48 years of service.

Members of the final crew lowered the ship's commissioning pennant from the main mast and the U.S. Flag and First Navy Jack from their staffs after Kitty Hawk Commanding Officer Capt. Todd Zecchin closed out the ship's deck log.
More at http://www.navy.mil/search/display.asp?story_id=45202

Comment: This is the actual decommissioning as opposed to the formal ceremony back in February. With the departure of the Kitty Hawk, the Navy now has no fossil fueled carriers. Every vessel in service now is a nuke.
 

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