Gayle Anderson was live in Torrance, where the Pacific Battleship Center (PBC) has secured the purchase of one of the last two HUP-2 helicopters available in the United States. This amazing piece of history is at Torrance Airport where refurbishment is now completed and the special aircraft will travel to San Pedro for display the Battleship Iowa.
The HUP-2 helicopter was trailered from the American Helicopter Museum in West Chester, Pennsylvania. Originally produced at Piasecki Factories for the U.S. NAVY in the early 1950’s, it saw action in the Korean War and was in service until 1962. Only 165 HUP-2 helicopters were put in service during the Korean War and few have survived.
The addition of this HUP-2 helicopter to the Battleship Iowa Museum will help share the story of the evolution of battleship aviation and expand the narrative of the ship’s involvement in the Korean War. Although the USS Iowa was built for World War II, she had more engagement in the Korean War alongside HUP-2 helicopters, which emphasizes the significant relationship between the two.
The aviation story of Battleship IOWA dates back to when she was first commissioned in 1943. Originally, Battleship IOWA was equipped with catapult based float planes that would be launched from the deck of the ship and recovered with a crane from the water upon returning to the ship and landing on water. Shortly after the end of World War II, the flight deck was modified to act as one of the first helicopter flight decks aboard a surface combatant. During the ship’s service in the Korean War, helicopters operated from the flight deck of IOWA for critical missions such as rescuing downed pilots, forward observation, and supply replenishment.
As a nonprofit organization PBC relies on the support of the public and has set up a Go Fund Me page in hopes to reach our $65,000 goal to fund the purchase, transport, and restoration of this amazing piece of history. All efforts to help the Battleship IOWA can be made HERE.
For more information about Battleship IOWA, click HERE.
For more information on the HUP-2 helicopter, click HERE.
If you have questions, please feel free to call Gayle Anderson at 323-460-5732 or e-mail Gayle at Gayle.Anderson@KTLA.com.