Grumman S-2 Tracker

1954

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Grumman S-2 Tracker

The Tracker is a twin 1,136.4kW Wright R-1820-82WA-powered carrier-based antisubmarine search and attack aircraft, produced originally for the US Navy but currently also in service with the air forces and navies of several countries.

The prototype flew for the first time on 4 December 1952 and more than 1,000 S-2s were delivered by Grumman. The initial production version was designated S-2A (CP-121, formerly CS2F-1 for the Canadian version). Next came the S-2B with new anti-submarine detection equipment; the TS-2B trainer; S-2G with enlarged bomb bays to house two homing torpedoes (most converted to US-2C or RS-2C); S-2D with improved anti-submarine equipment, wider cockpit and longer range; S-2E with improved anti-submarine equipment; S-2F with uprated submarine detection equipment; S-2G, early version uprated with a Martin Marietta kit; US-2A/C, S-2A/C converted for target towing; US-2B utility/transport conversion of the S-2B; RS-2C, S-2C converted for photo-reconnaissance/ survey work; AS-2D, S-2D modified for night attack; and E-1B Tracer, AEW version with a radome on its back.

S-2E Tracker

Specification 
 MODELS-2E
 CREW4
 ENGINE2 x Wright R-1820-82WA Cyclone, 1137kW
 WEIGHTS
  Take-off weight13222 kg29150 lb
  Empty weight8505 kg18750 lb
 DIMENSIONS
  Wingspan22.12 m73 ft 7 in
  Length13.26 m44 ft 6 in
  Height5.05 m17 ft 7 in
  Wing area46.08 m2496.00 sq ft
 PERFORMANCE
  Max. speed426 km/h265 mph
  Cruise speed241 km/h150 mph
  Range w/max.fuel2092 km1300 miles
 ARMAMENTone nuclear dive bomb, sonobouy launchers, bombs, missiles, torpedos

Comments1-20 21-40 41-60 61-80 81-100 101-120 121-140 141-160
james e brown jr, e-mail, 22.12.2021 00:16

Was a part of CAG-55 and a pilot in VS-25 for their 1964-65 and 1965-66 cruises aboard the USS Yorktown , CVS-10. With Capt. Osterhouht on the 1964-65 cruise we broke every record ever held by a CVS - most days at sea, most day cats and traps, most night cats and traps, you name it, we broke it. If the weather allowed, when we returned from our flights, Capt. Osterhouht would give us extra traps and cat shots - I ended up a night centurion and double day centurion as did most of VS-25 and VS-23's pilots. When I went aboard the Yorktown in Charleston a few years ago there was not a single indication that we had ever been aboard her. Sad.

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Richard Harness, e-mail, 16.11.2021 18:25

My father flew S2F-1 in 1956. He recently passed away and I'm trying to find a phot of the typical aircraft he flew. He was carrier based in Europe.

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Tom Hale, e-mail, 11.03.2018 16:25

I flew with VS-21 from September of 1963 to May 1967. Operated all positions. Made the rest of the 1963 cruise, the 1964 cruise and the 1966 cruise. All on the USS Kearsarge. Flew in the Gulf of Tonkin from 12 August to 19 October 1966 and flew 36 combat flights and earned an Air Medal. My next S-2 tour was with VS-38 from November 1967 to August 1971 with one cruise on the USS Ticonderoga in 71.

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Philip Fry, e-mail, 29.07.2021 Tom Hale

Hi Tom, I believe my dad was stationed on the USS Ticonderoga:1971 through 75. I was curious if you heard his name being thrown around or if you may have been in contact with him:Lieutenant John Fry?

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Patrick A Hidalgo, e-mail, 10.03.2018 04:16

Flew as aircrewman operating MAD,ECM and APS 38 radar 1961-1962 as an AMS2 with air squadron VS 32 attached to the USS Lake Champlain CVS 39. 51 carrier takeoffs /landings,300plus flight hours. On board May 5,1961 when "The Champ" recovered Cdr Alan Shepard.Very cool stuff to do as a 19 year old airdale.

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Jack Waterworth AX2(AC), e-mail, 24.01.2018 05:30

I was in VS-29 embarked on the uss kearsarge on the 1967-68 Viet Nam cruise. i flew radar, #3 seat. On several surveilance flights we deployed zuni rockets and sank sampans smuglling weapons from China down along the coast of VN.. One night we flew inside 3 miles of the coast after a surface contact and were locked on by a SAM missle which went off in our exhaust trail. Miraculous no damage to the plane and we made it back to the carrier unharmed. I am interested in the VS 29 reunion. My Co pilot was Lt Young. JJ man was Rick Myotte, Pilot was from Tenn.

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James Brozek, e-mail, 07.01.2018 21:01

I still have nightmares about safety wiring those CSD units

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Steve Hamby, e-mail, 22.08.2017 17:49

I started my S2 experience with VS-30, NAS Key West. I made AE3 and AE2 while stationed there. Transferred to AE B School NATTC Jax and from there to USS Yorktown CVS-10 for its final cruise. Took E6 exam before transferring to VS-32 Quonset Point. Put on AE1 upon arrival at VS-32. Last command with S2D /E and one G model. Off to VT-10, ADCOP and the back to VS-30. Sadly VS-30 now at Cecil Field flew S3As. Good airplane but not a Stoof. Made E7 and Ensign while in VS-30. I would never have made LDO if not for Cdr Thompson who was acting CO of VS-30 when I applied. He was Lt Thompson when we were stationed in Key West and was my Div O when I made plane captain in 1967. I retired in 1988 as a Lieutenant and if I had stayed in Stoofs, hell I might have retired as O6. Loved them all.

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ignatius marchese, e-mail, 06.05.2017 16:11

why don.t you show pic. on my acft. accident in 1964 on and pic. on internet

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John Davis, e-mail, 14.02.2017 23:10

I. Flew the 3seat in the S2-E while stationed with VS-33 at NAS North Island and aboard the USS Bennington (CVS-20) from August,1964 - July, 1967.

LCDR George Yenowine was my plane commander and Lt. Ken Foote was my TACCO.

Saw duty in the Gulf of Tonkin in 1965, 1966-1967 flying radar barrier from the DMZ north Haiphong, the west coast of Hainan Island, and from the southern tip of Hainan to Tigre Island as well as doing SAR flights.

Before earning my AC wings I was a plane captain at both NAS North Island and aboard the Bennington, and I knew that plane inside and out. It was a great plane to fly in and I had over 200 cat shots and arrested landings.

I should point out that I washed out of AX school and made PO3 as an AK which was a bit of a rarity. An AK3 with aircrew wings???

I separated from active duty 25 July 1967.

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Joe Freudenberg, e-mail, 19.11.2016 00:12

NAS Whidbey 1968 1972 Served with Scott Rogers @ AOM Maint.
We had two US2B aircraft 136502 was damaged beyond repair in a landing misshap. the other 136712 is still an active aircraft. It is now a Turbo Firecat with turbine engines home port France. See pictures on line search Grumman 136712

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marchese plan capt. 1964, e-mail, 16.10.2016 18:01

why don't you show my accedent i tryed for 2 yr.on the internet i tryed for 2 yr.s what are you trying to hide the accedent was on march 1964 long island sound n.y.

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a. buenaflor qm3, 23.09.2016 04:40

serving aboard as aquartermaster, had the good fortune to fcat off and trap in vs-26 stoof, thru good graces of lcdr toxey callif and cdr hamberg, scared the hell out of me, but it was fun, real aviators flew stoofs. uss Randolph crewman

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Jim Barber, e-mail, 06.08.2016 00:10

Re Doug Snyder's comments above, I am the older brother of Tommy Barber, MIA during a night mission from the Yorktown 3 /68 just a few days after his 21st birthday. Status changed to KIA a few weeks later. Parts of the record are still sealed. RIP also Hubbs, Benson, and Nightingale.

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Gary Bloom, e-mail, 12.04.2016 05:53

I was a plane captain on S-2E at NAS Quonset Point, RI from 1970-1972. My squadron was VS-27. We went on the NATO cruise in 1971 to the Med, Baltic Sea, and above the Arctic Circle a few times, hunting subs. I loved flying, so I went on carrier quals and any other type of flight that I could get oked to go on. Just before being released from active duty, I was getting my turnup license. Any squadron members that see this, please e-mail me.

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Jim Campbell, e-mail, 29.03.2016 14:35

I was a draftee, stationed at NAAS Kingsville in 1956-1957 in ATU-102 (T-28's) at South Field. I needed flight hours in order to draw flight skins, so I would hitch rides after my day job on S2-F's from ATU-402. Missions were for training multi-engine students to fly on instruments. Would take off with the student behind aluminum "shields" over the windscreens. I was a "scanner" and would watch the edge of the runway in and out of sight as we took off. Would then fly out over the Gulf of Mexico for about an hour east, the an hour north, The other student pilot in the L.H. Scanner seat had done the calculation for the left turn to fly the 3rd leg of the triangle. There was a light on a pole on the beach designated as our "return target." I have seen us cross the light on time and on course!! There was no GPS, just "knee-board" calculators. Great experiences! My son became a radarnav /bombardier on a B-52 for 16 years, retiring in 2007 as an Air Force Major.

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William Iglesias, e-mail, 15.03.2016 23:12

I need a copy of the resolution procedure for emergency engine failure on take off for the aircraft Grumman S2E or F (Natops Flight manual). Thank you very much. William.

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Ethan Wagner, e-mail, 08.02.2016 05:52

My Father in law, Ronald Lipnick flew is VS25. If anyone served with him, it would sure be great to hear any stories as he has been deceased for 15 years. just trying to get insight to what he did on the plane.
ethandwagner@icloud.com

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Mike Combs, e-mail, 29.07.2021 Ethan Wagner

Forgive my type errors on the first message! Did he ever tell you about VS-25 losing one of their aircraft in around June of 1966? I was a member of VS-25 then. I was one of the very few to see it happen because of its angle of where it hung by its tail hook over the the waters of the Tonkin Gulf. I actually saw the cable break and dropped the S-2 nose first into the water. All four members exited the plane several minutes before it dropped. All four members exited the hanging aircraft several minutes before the cable broke causing the S-2 to drop nose first into the Tonkin water. No one in the plane died or was really injured as far known. I watched the aircraft sink within a minute or two. The carrier was at full stop at that time period. Let me know! I believe I knew him. Do you have any photos of him from service?

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Mike Combs, e-mail, 29.07.2021 Ethan Wagner

Did he ever tell you about VS-25 losing one of their aircraft in around June of 1966? I was a member of VS-25 then. I was one of the very few see it happen because of its angle where it hung by its tail hook over the the waters of the Tonkin Gulf. I actually saw the cable break and dropped the S-2 nose first into the water. All four member exited the plane several minutes before it dropped. All four members exited the hanging aircraft several minutes before the cable broke causing the S-2 to drop nose first into the Tonkin water. No one in the plane died or was really injured as far known. I watched the aircraft sink within a minute or two. The carrier was at full stop at that time period. Let me know! I believe I knew him. Do you have any photos of him from service?

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Jill Hubbs - Daughter of Cdr. , e-mail, 19.01.2016 18:52

My father was the commanding officer of VS-23 stationed aboard the USS Yorktown. (Cdr. Donald Richard Hubbs) He and his crew were flying a mission on an S-2 on March 17, 1968 when they became missing in action. (Lee Benson, Randall Nightingale, Thomas Barber were his crew mates. He was the pilot on that mission.) I am looking for anyone who knew my father or anyone in the crew. They are all still unaccounted for in Vietnam. Our family have received a live sighting report, identified my dad in a Vietnamese propoganda film and I traveled to Vietnam in 1993 where I discovered a Vietnamese grave registration document with my father's name listed on it.

I would appreciate it if anyone who knew or flew with my dad would contact me. Many thanks! Jill Hubbs, Pensacola. kjhubbs@yahoo.com

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Stan Ellefson, e-mail, 19.01.2016 02:03

My picture was taken doing the cowlings on the very last S-2 (US-2B) to leave NAS Norfolk AOMD in 77 I believe. I was there from 74-77 and also worked on the C-1's and T-28's.

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Ken R., e-mail, 25.12.2015 03:53

My uncle was on the old Essex, flew as a backseater in an S-2 squadron. Which squadron I am not sure of. He passed away about 10 years ago and always talked about the "Stoof" as if it was a best friend. After he passed my mom told me he survived a crash in the Med, but not everyone got out. Does anyone know of a squadron on the Essex that lost a plane in the Med? mY uncle eventually went on to a P-3 squadron, but he said it wasn't the same as the Stoof!

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