SEATTLE, Nov. 10, 2009
--The Museum of Flight's Senior Curator, Dan Hagedorn, will lead a program looking at the design, development and missions of the famous World War II Navy and Marine fighter aircraft, the F4U Corsair. The Nov. 28, 2 p.m. presentation is one in a new series of up-close "briefings" in the Museum's replica World War II Quonset hut. The briefing will also describe the history, recovery and restoration of the Museum's F4U, which was stationed at the Naval Air Station, Sand Point, Seattle in 1950, and was ditched into Lake Washington following a midair collision. The aircraft was recovered from the lake in 1983 and restored to mint condition through the efforts of Seattle resident, Museum Board Trustee, George Schuchart. The aircraft was restored and dedicated to the memory of his son, Lt. j.g. Jerome Reese Schuchart, USNR, to serve as a tribute to all military aviators. Jerome Schuchart died April 13, 1989 in the service of his country. Following the program Hagedorn will lead a tour of that aircraft, which is located next to the Quonset hut in the J. Elroy McCaw Personal Courage Wing (PCW). The presentation is free with admission to the Museum.
The Chance Vought F4U Corsair was the premiere Navy and Marine fighter of World War II. The Museum's F4U was built under license by the Goodyear Company. The Corsair, along with the Grumman Hellcat, are credited with turning the tide of the Pacific air war by overwhelming the Japanese Zero fighter. Besides its role in air-to-air combat, Corsairs were used as fighter-bombers near the end of WWII and throughout the Korean War. The Corsair had an unusually long production run for a WWII-era aircraft with 12,571, the last in 1952.
Corsair designer Rex B. Beisel, was a graduate of Seattle's Queen Anne High School and the University of Washington. UW graduate and Corsair "fighter ace" Gregory "Pappy" Boyington is profiled in the Museum's McCaw Personal Courage Wing.
Before assuming his position at The Museum of Flight in January 2008, Hagedorn was the Adjunct Curator for Latin American Aviation at the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C. In 2006 he was decorated with the Orden Merito Santos-Dumont by the Government of Brazil for services to the history of aviation in that country.
Image: The Museum of Flight's F4U Corsair with wings folded up as it was when parked on an aircraft carrier. The Museum's Quonset hut is in the foreground. Museum of Flight photo.