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USS Hornet Museum Commemorates Tokyo Doolittle Raid of WWII

Richard Nowatzki LCDR USN (Ret) speaks to the audience on-board the USS Hornet (CV-12) museum. (Action Alameda News)

Richard Nowatzki LCDR USN (Ret) speaks to the audience on-board the USS Hornet (CV-12) museum. (Action Alameda News)

On Saturday, the USS Hornet museum commemorated the anniversary of the Tokyo Doolittle raid in World War II. Author and retired U.S. Navy Lieutenant Commander Richard Nowatzki of Roseville, California, shared his memories as part of the event.

Nowatzki, a 5-inch anti-aircraft gun sight-setter, watched the B-25 bombers launch from the deck of the USS Hornet (CV-8) for Tokyo and remained part of the crew until the boat was sunk in the Battle of Santa Cruz Islands in October, 1942.

The 92-year old Chicago native reminisced and took questions for about an hour, then signed copies of his book, Memoirs of a Navy Major.

The Doolittle raid on Tokyo, on April 18, 1942, did little damage, but was a psychological boost for Americans stunned by the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor the prior December and demonstrated to the enemy that its home territory too, was vulnerable to air attack.

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