GRUMMAN F9F COUGAR (~1956-1959)

Grumman F9F

OK here is one for you CVA 20 guys, if this plane didn't say VA 192 on the side, I would have sworn this was Bobby Quinn's plane. except, I am sure Bobby had a shamrock on the side of his plane. (Bobby was a plane captain in VF 72)

Bill Copeland

Chance-Vought Cutlass coming aboard

The photo you sent is a Grumman F9F Cougar, the successor to the Grumman F9F Panther. The Panther had straight wings with tip tanks and served in the Korean war. The Chance-Vought Cutlass had twin engines, twin rudders and a very high nose gear. The Cutlass never entered regular service, its life being short-lived. The Cougar was aboard during my service on Bennington, 1956 - 1959.

Enclosed (ABOVE) is a very poor scan of a Chance-Vought Cutlass coming aboard Bennington. Note the high nose gear, twin engines and the barely visible twin rudders.

Fred A. Flores


The designation for the Cutlass is F7U-3M in the group of photos found under GRUMMAN F9F COUGAR (~1956-1959) The Cutlass had a nick name of the "Gutless Cutlass" That was one fine looking a/c in the air.
I was in one of the first squadrons that received them back in August 1955 - Attack Squadron 86.
In 1956, we made the shake down cruise on the USS Forrestal CVA-59.
On our way to the Gitmo area, the squadron received a urgent message to cease all carrier operations.
The reason that high nose gear wasn't strong enough for landing aboard a carrier.
There were a few Cutlass's that when landing, the nose gear went through the cockpit and ejected the pilot (before the days of the Martin-Baker ejection seats) and the pilot was killed.
VA-86 was lucky that we didn't loose any pilot's on carrier operations.
All a/c were launched once we got into the Gitmo area. On the way back, they loading all by crane.
And when we got close to Norfolk, they catapulted all flyable a/c.
I think there was one that was down and couldn't go - they had to tow that from Norfolk to NAS Oceana.
Shortly after that, we transitioned to the A4D.

Hope to see you Bennington in August.

Fred Miller

CVA-20 AFT - Grumman F9F

Ready For Action Aft

CVA-20 Forward

Look What is Forward