Topics - Target Drone Crash
USS Wright - May 12, 1953

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On May 12, 1953, a pilotless target drone plane went out of control, crashed into a catwalk on the USS Wright CVL-49, and exploded.  Three servicemen were killed and four were injured.  The USS Wright was on a training cruise en route to the Gulf of Mexico when the accident happened.  The 14,500 ton aircraft carrier was 300 miles off Key West, Florida at the time.  The drone plane had been hit by anti-aircraft fire at 1500 feet and again at 600 feet, causing it to go out of control.  The carrier's catwalk ended along the sides of the flight deck.


  • Anderson, Seaman Apprentice Herman Lee

He was the son of Mrs. Eva Lee Anderson, West Virginia.

  • Johnston, Hospital Corpsman 2C Orval Dewayne

Born November 28, 1927 in Jay County, Indiana, he was the husband of Mrs. Shirley E. Johnston, Maryus, Virginia.  He is buried in Union Baptist Church Cemetery, Achilles, Virginia.

  • McNeal, Stewardsman Robert Leslie Jr.

He was the son of Mrs. Louella McNeal, Smithfield, Virginia.


Casualties - Wounded:




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