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USS Kitty Hawk CV-63 Supercarrier

USS Kitty Hawk CV-63 Supercarrier

The USS Kitty Hawk, with a crew of more than 5,500, was commissioned in 1961 and has served in the Vietnam War and Iraq War.

After receiving an amazing video from a former Marine of the USS Kitty Hawk in high seas, it prompted me to create this post. The power of the US Military is amazing and the conditions that our service members is even more extraordinary. I think it is best I just start with the video to give you a sliver of the potential of the Kitty Hawk:

USS Kitty Hawk During High Seas Video

It is no wonder why the terrorist have headed for the mountains for shelter. To be within the range of this ship and its payload is not a good idea for any enemy.

Here is the overview and technical profile of the USS Kitty Hawk.

USS Kitty Hawk Information

Name: USS Kitty Hawk
Namesake: Kitty Hawk, North Carolina
Ordered: 1 October 1955
Builder: New York Shipbuilding Corporation
Laid down: 27 December 1956
Launched: 21 May 1960
Commissioned: 29 April 1961
Decommissioned: 12 May 2009
Out of service: 31 January 2009
Reclassified: CV-63
Homeport: Puget Sound Naval Shipyard
Status: Decommissioned

USS Kitty Hawk Overview

USS Kitty Hawk CV-63

USS Kitty Hawk CV-63

The supercarrier USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63), formerly CVA-63, was the second naval ship named after Kitty Hawk, North Carolina (the site of the Wright brothers’ first powered airplane flight for those who are now up with their history). The Kitty Hawk was the first and last active ship of her class, and the last conventionally-fueled aircraft carrier in service with the U.S. Navy.

Kitty Hawk was laid down by the New York Shipbuilding Corporation, Camden, New Jersey, 27 December 1956; and launched 21 May 1960, sponsored by Mr. Neil H. McElroy; and commissioned 21 April 1961 at Philadelphia Naval Shipyard, Captain William F. Bringle in command.

Kitty Hawk was launched by flooding her drydock. A conventional slide down ways was ruled out because of her mass and the risk of impact with the Philadelphia shore on the far side of the Delaware River.

Since the decommissioning of Independence on 30 September 1998, the USS Kitty Hawk held the title of the ship with the second longest active status in the Navy (The USS Constitution sailing ship in Boston Harbor is still retained on active Navy status). With this title came the honor of being one of only two aircraft carriers ever to be honored with flying the First Navy Jack, this came to an end with an instruction dated 31 May 2002, where the Secretary of the Navy directed all United States Navy ships to fly this flag in honor of those killed in the September 11, 2001 attacks for the duration of the War on Terrorism.

For 10 years Kitty Hawk was the forward-deployed carrier at Yokosuka Naval Base in Yokosuka, Japan. In October 2008 she was replaced in this role by the George Washington. The Kitty Hawk then returned to the United States and had her decommissioning ceremony on 31 January 2009. She was officially decommissioned on 12 May 2009 after almost 49 years of service.Kitty Hawk was replaced by the USS George H. W. Bush.

A group based in Wilmington, North Carolina is lobbying to bring the ship to the city after decommissioning to serve as a floating museum alongside the battleship North Carolina. At one time, the Indian Navy was considering the purchase of the carrier after its retirement, but this was thankfully later rejected.

USS Kitty General Characteristics

Class and type: Kitty Hawk-class aircraft carrier
– 61,351 long tons (62,335 t),
– 81,985 long tons (83,301 t) full load
Length: 1,068.9 feet (325.8 m) LOA
– 282 feet (86 m) extreme
– 130 feet (40 m) waterline
Draught: 40 feet (12 m)
Draft: 38 feet (12 m)
Propulsion: Westinghouse geared steam turbines, eight steam boilers, four shafts; 280,000 shp
Speed: 33 knots (61 km/h)
Complement: 5,624 officers and men
Armament: RIM-7 Sea Sparrow surface-to-air missiles, 2 RIM-116 RAM, 2 Phalanx CIWS Automated Anti-Missile/Aircraft Defenses
Aircraft carried: 85
Typical 2000 air wing (70 aircraft):
– 11 F-14B Tomcat interceptors,
– 36 F/A-18C Hornet fighter-bombers,
– 4 EA-6B Prowler combat EW,
– 4 E-2C Hawkeye AEW,
– 7 S-3B Viking ASW,
– 7 SH-60F/HH-60H Sea Hawk helicopters,
– 1 C-2A Greyhound carrier on-board delivery

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One Comment

  1. It’s the USS Kitty Hawk..not the “USS Kitty” as reported underneath the second video.
    CV-63   1992-1993

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