Four VC-5 AJ-1s in Formation, 1955

Jule F. "Jay" Merkel, my friend and fellow BN from VC/VAH-5 sent me in late January 2005, this picture of four of our squadron aircraft in formation over Florida. Jay mistakenly identified them as AJ-2s. Undoubtedly he was judging from the lack of dihedral in the tail, but a careful inspection of the after portion of the canopies will reveal that they are AJ-1s that have been retrofitted with an AJ-2/2P tail group. We were flying the remanufactured AJ-1s soon after we returned from deployment in February 1955. The new squadron logo, "Mushmouth," that had been chosen during the early days of that deployment was in late 1955 beginning to appear on the rudder cap of the vertical tail fin. The newer light gray coloring was not applied to the squadron aircraft until March 1956 or later. Side number NB7 appears in grey paint on page 94 of Ginter's book, where the aircraft is identified as BuNo 124170


Four AJs in formation
This picture has been compressed to 2/3 size for viewing on this page. To see the picture in full-size, "right click" on the image and choose "view image" from the dropdown menu. To see a still larger version (the one that Jay's son prepared as a screen saver), "left click" on the image.


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Kenneth Jennings Wooster
27 Abdallah Avenue
Cortland, NY 13045-3302
(607) 753-3558
File created: February 16, 2005.
File modified: February 16, 2005.