Fighter Plane Removed From Lake Michigan

A World War 2 F6F-3 Hellcat fighter plane will be raised fromt he depths of lake michigan off waukegan, illinois this morning. The US Navy is leading the recovery. This will be the 6th Hellcat recovered from Lake Michigan where they have been submerged since January of 1945 CBS

A World War II F6F-3 Hellcat fighter plane was raised from the depths of Lake Michigan off Waukegan, Ill. Monday morning, CBS Station WBBM-TV reports.

The US Navy led the recovery of the sixth Hellcat removed from Lake Michigan. The plane has been submerged since crash landing during training in December of 1944.

During World War II, Navy pilots trained to land on aircraft carriers in Lake Michigan before seeing active duty. The carriers used for training were in fact old lake freighters modified with wooden landing decks. The ships were docked at Navy Pier in Chicago and the planes were flown out of Glenview Naval Air Station.

The plane being raised today is an F6F-3 Hellcat and was piloted by Walter B Elcock. Elcock attempted a landing on the USS Sable when he crashed into 250 feet of water.

Elcock survived the crash and currently lives in Atlanta. More than 17,000 pilots completed the training at Glenview Naval Air Station, including former President George H.W. Bush
  • CBSNews

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