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Aero In SD – “Tailhook Aces” – The U.S. Navy Carrier Aces of WWII Symposium

March 4, 2010

On Sunday, March 7, 2010, at the Veterans Museum in Balboa Park, the Southern California Friends of the American Fighter Aces hold their first meeting of 2010 with a gathering of Naval Aviators who are an elite group of fighter pilots known as the “Tailhook Aces.” Doors open at 12 noon and will feature a panel of Navy Aces who flew in some of the earlier carrier battles of 1942 at the Battle of Coral Sea and Santa Cruz Islands, the fleet carrier operations of 1943 in the Central Pacific and Norway, and the first carrier air strikes against Tokyo and the last Pacific Island Campaign in Okinawa.

Featured attendees include: LCDR Fred “Buck” Dungan of the History Channel’s “Dogfights” and Navy Cross recipient; CDR Dean “Diz” Laird who flew F4F Wildcats for victories over the Germans; CAPT. Stanley “Swede” Vejtasa Jr. who was also featured in “Dogfights” and is a three-time recipient of the Navy Cross Medal; CDR Edward “Wendy” Wendorf who is a F6F Hellcat Ace who landed a damaged F6F with only one arm and no tailhook; and CDR W.E. “Bill” Hardy, Ace in a Day and Navy Cross recipient.

These WWII Tailhookers will tell their stories and sign autographs during the session. Doors open at 12 noon, the presentation of the Aces begins at 1:15 p.m. with the Autograph Session starting at 3 p.m. Admission charge is $30 for SCF Members and Veterans, $35 for non-members, and only $15 for Active Duty Military. Tickets can be purchased at the door with cash or check only. Call for Group ticket discounts.

For more information on advanced ticket purchases please call: 909-282-2428, e-mail scfaces (at) verizon.net, or visit: www.socalfriendsaces.com

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