HELLCATS POUND THE EMPIRE
OF THE WASP
BY CMDR. ROBERT H. TURNELL, USN;R;, RE T., AS TOLD TO & WRI T TEN BY JAMES P. BUSHA
I am a United States Navy flyer. My countrymen built the best airplane in the world and entrusted it to me.
They trained me to fly it. I will use it to the absolute limit of my power. With my fellow pilots, air crews,
and deck crews, my plane and I will do anything necessary to carry out our tremendous responsibilities.
I will always remember we are part of an unbeatable combat team—the United States Navy. When the
going is fast and rough, I will not falter. I will be uncompromising in every blow I strike. I will be humble
in victory. I am a United States Navy flyer. I have dedicated myself to my country with its many millions of
all races, colors, and creeds. They and their way of life are worthy of my greatest protective effort. I ask the
help of God in making that effort great enough.—Navy Flyer’s Creed
As Lt. (j.g.) Robert Turnell and his shipmates on the Wasp closed in on Japan,
Grumman was continuing to turn out F6F Hellcats at a prodigious rate, making it
one of the hardest-hitting ordnance-delivery platforms in the Japanese homeland
attacks. (Photo by John Dibbs/;e Fighter Collection)