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The USS Hornet–Featuring Apollo Mission Artifacts and WWII Flying Ace Dean Laird!

April 6, 2016

The USS Hornet–stationed in Alameda, CA. Of course this was another NASA destination that I had not yet heard about! I had no Idea that the USS Hornet was so close and even has a a little NASA museum onboard! Come with me for a day in Alameda.uss hornet alamedauss hornet alamedauss hornet alameda

Leave your highheels at home laides….you will be doing a lot of walking and ladder climbing. Upon entry there is security and they do take it very seriously. If you don’t want your bag searched through every little pocket leave it at home. I had my little purse searched through with a flashlight-ha! They want you to sit and watch a video before heading into your self guided tour–I never have the patience for those. Sat for 5 seconds then sneaked away. In these next few photos I wanted to give you an idea about how the wings fold up on different types of aircraft on carriers–isn’t that incredible??

uss hornet alameda

uss hornet alamedauss hornet alamedauss hornet alamedauss hornet alamedaTo my surprise–Flying Ace Dean Laird was aboard–Lucky me! A World War II flying Ace that I had all to myself for about 10 minutes as it was early in the day. This gentleman flew 99 different types of Aircraft! I couldn’t even fathom that in my mind as he said it so non-chalantly! He is also the only known U.S. Navy Ace to shoot down German and Japanese planes in WWII. This was such an incredible treat. Thank you Mr. Laird for your sacrifice and service to our country and for letting me pepper you with a million questions. You are still handsome as can be, they don’t make men like you anymore–that is a fact.flying ace dean laird

This carrier was huge! See the photo below.

uss hornet

On to the NASA exhibit–really the reason that brought me here. I was way to excited for this!

nasa exhibit on the uss hornet

nasa exhibit on the uss hornetIs it strange that I was most excited to see the Airstream, Buzz Aldrin, Neil Armstrong and Michael Collins stepped into after thier Mission to the moon! It must have been all that iconic footage I’ve watch too many times too count. Come take a closer look with me.buzz aldrin michael collins neil armstrong in airstream trailer

nasa airstream trailer in the uss hornet

nasa airstream trailer in the uss hornetinside the nasa airstream trailer in the uss hornet

And the iconic Sea King!

sea king uss hornet

sea king in the uss hornet

sea king uss hornet

apollo test capsule in uss hornetinside apollo test capsule in uss hornet

I think I was the only NASA nerd to be walking in the astronauts footsteps painted on the ground over and over…… and over…… and over. Were people looking at me? Maybe. Did I care? No.

neil armstrong and buzz aldrins first footprints on earth after walking on the moonneil armstrong and buzz aldrins first footprints on earth after walking on the moon

Just when I thought the exhibit was over–I stumbled upon another NASA room! Woo hoo! How cute is this little mid century room!

nasa room on the uss hornet

And just around the corner were more artifacts to enjoy!

nasa museum on the uss hornet

signs from the nasa airstream on uss hornet

A piece from John Glenn’s capsule!

piece from john glenns capsule

This was so cool–a strip of film from Gus Grissom’s camera during his mission! I love Gus Grissom–do they make a T-shirt that says that? I would buy it.

film from gus grissoms personal camera

As I pried myself away from the NASA exhibits–I went on to explore. I found the Chapel–they hold a Sunday service every week! How cool would it be to go to church on an Aircraft carrier. If I lived closer I would go!!uss hornet chapel serviceI snapped this photo of a prayer from an old program lying around. Beautiful.prayer from the uss hornet

Here’s a quick look at some of the Chaplains from years past.

uss hornet chaplains

And some current Chaplains below.

recent chaplains from uss hornet

christian flag on uss hornet

chapel on the uss hornetThis photo is heartbreaking.chaplain from 1945 uss hornet

They had a POW-MIA White Table on display–very moving.

pow mia white tablepow mia table setting

After I wondered through the chapel I headed to the flight deck…so exciting!

flight deck of uss hornet

flight deck of uss hornet

american flag on uss hornet view of oakland from uss hornetAs I was enjoying the views on the Flight deck–they were telling those who wanted a tour of the Island to congregate near it ASAP. I reported right away-ha! We had the nicest docent who was also a Veteran–he was so incredibly knowledgable, kind, patient and detailed. Thank you for the amazing tour!!docent on uss hornet

Here is the famous Captains chair. No, I did not feel the need to sit in it and snap a selfy but it was cool to see.

captains chair uss hornet
island tour uss hornet

island tour uss hornet

On the way out I stopped by the store–wish I had more time to grab some things but they were closing. You can buy To The Moon, and Super Carrier  online though.

uss hornet gift shop

After a very exciting day on the Hornet we drove across the bridge and into the city for a fun evening.

File_009

I hope you enjoyed this post about the Hornet–please let me know in the comments if you did. Also, if you know of any Norcal Nasa destinations I should visit please let me know that too!

Address:

707 W Hornet Ave, Alameda, CA 94501

Phone:

510.521.8448

Hours:

Thursday 10AM–5PM
Friday 10AM–5PM
Saturday 10AM–5PM
Sunday 10AM–5PM
Monday 10AM–5PM
Tuesday 10AM–5PM
Wednesday 10AM–5PM

Thanks for stopping by. Click here for my post about The Space Station Museum in Novato if you have not already seen it.

By for now!

XO,

Goldie+James

 

 

Goldie James

Hi there! Thanks for stopping by my blog--if you enjoyed it please comment and subscribe for my latest post!

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