Chase the Blue Dot

Texas: On the USS Lexington, part 1

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When we were looking for things to do while we were in the Rockport area, we found the USS Lexington Museum in Corpus Christi. The USS Lexington, a Naval aircraft carrier, was originally named the USS CABOT. During World War II, final construction was being completed at Massachusetts’ Fore River Shipyard when word was received that the original carrier named USS LEXINGTON, CV-2, had been sunk in the Coral Sea. The new carrier’s name was changed to LEXINGTON.

Of course, we had to go. Not only was this a rare chance to see a Naval aircraft carrier up close, but they were having a fireworks viewing from the flight deck on July 4th. 🙂 And the flight deck has planes that are outside and not crammed into a warehouse style building.  🙂

I have so many good photos, this post will be the first of several.

The ship’s interior

I have a mix of cel phone and DSLR photos for the ship’s interior. It’s a lot easier when there are crowds to use the cel phone. Most of these photos are from the Hangar Deck.

The ship’s bell.
The women’s restroom was down a very steep flight of stairs and was very narrow.
This was the waiting area in the women’s restroom area.
A wall map displayed of the Battle of Leyte Gulf.
The order of battle in the Battle of Leyte Gulf.

My grandfather served in the Navy in World War II and was present in the Battle of Leyte Gulf, so the map caught my eye.

 The Lower Decks tour

This tour is long, especially when it is crowded like it was on July Fourth. I had to be ready to take a photo at a moment’s notice. I tried as much as possible to not capture other people in my photos, but my luck varied. There are no restrooms on the tour, and no shortcuts back to the Hangar Deck while on the tour, so go before you take the tour.

Tour route signs #1
Tour route signs #2
Tour route signs #3

The ship carried a lot of the materials and shops needed to make repairs while the ship was underway.

The layout of the machine shop shown in a map.
The machine shop.

The captain’s area is spacious, in comparison to the crew quarters.

Plaques displayed from the ship’s captains.
The sitting room in the captain’s area.
Stairs in the captain’s area allowed the captain to get to certain areas very quickly without going through the maze.
Medals awarded to former captains of the USS Lexington.
Scale model gallery #1
Scale model gallery #2

It was interesting to see the ductwork and piping throughout. Sometimes, it made the ceiling seem pretty low.

Ductwork in the turbine area.
Ductwork in the turbine crossover area.
A map of the fuel oil and transfer system on the ship.
Piping on the ship showing two different colors.
The color coded map for pipelines on the ship.
The POW Memorial in the mess hall area.
A salvaged table in the mess hall area.
The crew’s quarters, with lockers.
The bunks in the crew’s quarters.
More bunks in the crew’s quarters, near the all. Notice the piping overhead.
The escape shuttle in the crew’s quarters.
Though it is sealed up, this is the escape shuttle.
More piping and valves.
Closer look at some of the piping and valves.
But wait, there are more valves and piping here.
Overhead piping in the ceiling.

It was a hot and humid day. By the time we got done with this tour, we were pretty tired and sweaty, so we rested for a bit. Although you can tour the Lady Lex in one day, it’s much easier to break up the tours into several visits. The next post will cover the Flight Deck tour, with all the planes.

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