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WWII Patch, USN, VCS-8 VS-14 Rare ETO MTO Navy SQ

WWII Patch, USN, VCS-8 VS-14 Rare ETO MTO Navy SQ

Product Information
WWII US Navy Squadron Patch
USN VCS-8 Cruiser Scouting SQ
Cruiser Scout Squadron 8
Cruiser Scouting Squadron Eight (VCS-8), Cruiser Division Eight / SOC-1/3
   USS Brooklyn (CL-40): Cruiser Scouting Squadron Eight (VCS-8) / SOC-3
   USS Nashville (CL-43): Cruiser Scouting Squadron Eight (VCS-8) / SOC-1/3
   USS Philadelphia (CL-41): Cruiser Scouting Squadron Eight (VCS-8) / SOC-1
   USS Savannah (CL-42): Cruiser Scouting Squadron Eight (VCS-8) / SOC-3

VCS = Cruiser Scout Squadron
USN VS-14 Scouting SQ
Navy Scout Squadron 14

ETO = European Theater of Operations
MTO = Mediterranean Theater of Operations
Italian Campaign

4 inches

OCT 15 1942 - Cruiser & Aircraft Location
Cmdiv Eight VCS-8 (12 VSO)

  USS PHILADELPHIA ('F) / Unit / Norfolk
Unit / Norfolk
  USS SAVANNAH / Unit / Norfolk

VCS-8, Seagulls to Mustangs
Operations in the Mediterranean had shown that SOCs and OS2Us were too vulnerable to operate effectively in skies infested with German fighters. An alternative to their use had to be found. Vice Ad- miral H. Kent Hewitt, Commander, Western Naval Task Force, convened a conference in January of 1944. Representatives of the RAF, FAA, U.S. Navy and staff gunnery officers at tended. The purpose of the meeting was to decide which available aircraft would be the most suitable for the air spotting mission. The aircraft chosen was the P-51 Mustang. Time did not permit training Navy VCSlVO pilots to fly the P-51 in time for Operation Shingle, the amphibious invasion of Anzio, SOthe Navy trained Army Air Forces fighter pilots to perform the spotting mission. Ideally, the Navy needed to train fighter pilots in handling the air spotting mission, and in December the first steps toward this goal were being made. The problem was the urgent demand for fighter-observation pilots in theater.
On 5 January 1944, Commander, Cruiser Division Eight, requested that Commander in Chief, Mediterranean, arrange for the training of four Naval Aviators from USS Brooklyn (CL 40) in high-speed aircraft. The request was approved, and on 15 January the commanding officer of VCS-8, Lieutenant Delwine A. Liane, reported to Berteaux, Algeria, with three other VCS-8 aviators from USS Brooklyn to commence training in P-40 Warhawks. In February, aviators from USS Philadelphia’s (CL 41) aviation unit joined those from USS Brooklyn. Fighter training for both vessels’ aviation units continued through spring, and in April the Naval Aviators began checking out in P-51 Mustangs.
On 21 April, Commander, U.S. Naval Forces, Northwest African Waters, approved the assignment of nine Naval Aviators to the 111th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, flying F-6A Mustangs (the F-6A was the camera-carrying reconnaissance version of the Allison-engined P-51 Mustang). This was the beginning of a four-month association between the 111th and VCS-8. The Naval Aviators continued training in P-51s and soon began flying operational missions in support of the campaign in Italy.
On 15 June, Lieutenant (jg) Harold J. Eckardt of USS Brooklyn’s aviation unit was flying an F-6A on a reconnaissance mission when his leader was shot down by antiaircraft fire. He circled his downed comrade until homing stations could get a fix on his location. Eckardt then continued the mission alone. Poor weather forced him to fly within the effective range of German flak positions and his aircraft was badly damaged. The 111th’s war diary recorded Ltjg. Eckardt’s return: “LT.(jg) Eckhardt [sic], a Navy pilot, came back from his mission with holes in the scope [scoop] of his plane. Gas and oil were pouring out making LT. Eckhardt a very lucky guy to be back.” For his actions Ltjg. Eckardt was awarded an Army Air Medal.
Late in July, 10 brand-new P-51C Mustangs were delivered to the 111th for use exclusively by VCS-8 aviators. The invasion of southern France began on 15 August, and by 30 August, Commander, Task Force 86, requested that all Naval Aviators assigned to the 111th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron return to their ships. In all, 11 flyers from VCS-8 participated in combat operations from the cockpits of 111th P-51 Mustangs.  LINK

Price: $195.00 $170.00

Product Code: PatchUSN.008.VCS8.VS14
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