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Remember When the Nimitz Was Young And Air Wing 8 Was Famous?

“Air Power At Sea” Is A Comprehensive Look Back At 1980s-Era Carrier Aviation

The film Air Power at Sea was created by Grumman in 1982 as a promotional film for the Intrepid Museum Foundation using aerial footage shot by the legendary Clay Lacy and scored with music from the 1980 United Artists film “Final Countdown.” Air Power at Sea is narrated by actor and pilot Cliff Robertson and was shot aboard the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN-68).

The film features Carrier Air Wing EIGHT (CVW-8) consisting at the time of VF-41 Black Aces and VF-84 Jolly Rogers Grumman F-14A Tomcats, VA-82 Marauders and VA-86 Sidewinders Vought A-7E Corsair IIs, VA-35 Black Panthers Grumman A-6E and KA-6D Intruders, VS-24 Scouts Lockheed S-3A Vikings, VAQ-134 Garudas Grumman EA-6B Prowlers, VAW-124 Bear Aces Lockheed E-2C Hawkeyes, VFP-63 Eyes of the Fleet Vought RF-8G Crusaders, VRC-40 Rawhides Grumman C-1A Trader CODs, and HS-9 Sea Griffins Sikorsky SH-3H Sea Kings.

Official US Navy photograph

Also appearing in the film is previously shot footage of VA-52 Knightriders A-6Es, escorts ships cruiser USS Texas (CGN-39), destroyer USS Briscoe (DD-977), frigate USS Bowen (FF-1079), an unidentified Los Angeles-class SSN, and some auxiliaries seen during an underway replenishment (UNREP) event. The footage was shot during a workup cycle prior to Nimitz and her Battle Group deploying to the Mediterranean in 1982.

Official US Navy photograph

Also featured are Nimitz officers and crew going about their work aboard the carrier. Nimitz made port calls at Naples and Livorno in Italy, Tunis in Tunisia, Haifa in Israel, and Palma de Mallorca in Spain during her 1981-1982 Med deployment. Thanks to YouTuber PeriscopeFilm for uploading this entertaining video.

Official US Navy Photograph

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Bill Walton

Written by Bill Walton

Bill Walton is a life-long aviation enthusiast and expert in aircraft recognition. As a teenager Bill helped his engineer father build an award-winning T-18 homebuilt airplane in their Wisconsin basement. Bill is a freelance writer, an avid sailor, engineer, announcer, husband, father, uncle, mentor, coach, and Navy veteran. Bill lives north of Houston TX with his wife and son under the approach path to KDWH runway 17R, which means they get to look up at a lot of airplanes. A very good thing.

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