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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORY AND HERITAGE COMMAND

Photo # NH 95572: Hole in the underside of USS Yorktown's flight deck, from bomb hit received on 8 May 1942

Online Library of Selected Images:
-- EVENTS -- World War II in the Pacific --

Battle of the Coral Sea, 7-8 May 1942 --
Damage to USS Yorktown, 8 May 1942

The same Japanese air attack that fatally injured USS Lexington also hit the carrier Yorktown (CV-5). The more smaller and more nimble Yorktown evaded several enemy torpedoes that came her way, but she was dented and punctured by dive bombers' near misses off her port side amidships and off the starboard bow. More seriously, a third bomb hit the flight deck near the after end of the island, penetrated five decks down into the ship and exploded above the fourth deck. Its blast and the resulting fires killed and injured dozens of crewmen.

Fires were controlled quickly and Yorktown's effectiveness was not seriously harmed. However, structural damage was serious enough to require correction at the Pearl Harbor Navy Yard during the ship's two day emergency repair period late in May. The near miss damage amidships also needed shipyard attention, as it had ruptured fuel tanks, producing a highly visible oil slick.

This page features views relating to damage received by USS Yorktown on 8 May 1942.

For links to other Battle of the Coral Sea photographs taken on 8 May 1942, see:

  • Events of 8 May 1942.

    For links to additional pictorial coverage on the Battle of the Coral Sea, see:

  • Battle of the Coral Sea, 7-8 May 1942 -- Overview and Special Image Selection.

    If you want higher resolution reproductions than the Online Library's digital images, see: "How to Obtain Photographic Reproductions."

    Click on the small photograph to prompt a larger view of the same image.

    Photo #: NH 95572

    USS Yorktown (CV-5)


    View of the underside of her flight deck structure, showing the impact hole made by the Japanese bomb that struck the ship amidships during the Battle of Coral Sea, 8 May 1942. This bomb penetrated several decks before exploding, killing or seriously injuring 66 crewmen.
    This view looks upward, with a patch over the flight deck visible within the hole. Note structural beam in lower part of the photo, distorted by the bomb's passage.

    Copied from USS Yorktown war damage report of 20 May 1942.

    U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

    Online Image: 70KB; 740 x 535 pixels

     
    Photo #: NH 95573

    USS Yorktown (CV-5)


    View of damage on the third and fourth decks, amidships, caused by a 250 kilogram bomb hit received during the Battle of Coral Sea, 8 May 1942.
    This view looks forward and to starboard from the ship's centerline at frame 110. The photographer is in compartment C-301-L, shooting down through the third deck into compartment C-402-A. The large hole in the deck was made by the bomb's explosion. Many men were killed or badly injured in C-301-L, a crew's messing space that was the assembly area for the ship's engineering repair party.

    Copied from USS Yorktown war damage report of 20 May 1942.

    U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

    Online Image: 82KB; 740 x 525 pixels

     
    Photo #: NH 95297

    Lieutenant Milton Ernest Ricketts, USN
    (1913-1942)

    Halftone photograph copied from Medal of Honor, The Navy.
    Lt. Ricketts was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for heroism during the Battle of Coral Sea, 8 May 1942.
    He was in charge of a USS Yorktown (CV-5) damage control party that suffered many casualties from a bomb explosion. Despite mortal wounds, Lt. Rickets deployed a fire hose and successfully contained the resulting fire before he died.

    U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

    Online Image: 172KB; 640 x 765 pixels

     


    For links to other Battle of the Coral Sea photographs taken on 8 May 1942, see:

  • Events of 8 May 1942.

    For links to additional pictorial coverage on the Battle of the Coral Sea, see:

  • Battle of the Coral Sea, 7-8 May 1942 -- Overview and Special Image Selection.


    If you want higher resolution reproductions than the Online Library's digital images, see: "How to Obtain Photographic Reproductions."


    Return to Naval Historical Center home page.

    Page made 25 July 2000
    Coding updated 6 May 2001