The USS Lexington is an aircraft carrier that was built for the United States Navy during World War II. The builder was the Fore River Shipyard. This was the fifth ship that had been named in the honor of the Revolutionary War Battle of Lexington. The ship was originally suppose to be named "Cabot" but because the C-2 USS Lexington was lost in battle, they renamed it. The USS Lexington was commissioned in February of 1943 and did extensive service through the Pacific War. The ship was the recipient of 11 battle stars for all its work. The USS Lexington now resides in Corpus Christi, Texas at the museum.
Backstory and Context
The USS Lexington was built for use during WWII and is a vintage Essex Class aircraft carrier. She was a flagship for a majority of her service under Admiral Marc Mitscher. The submarine was located at Fort Knox being constructed on June 16, 1942 when the United States decided to change its name, and Knox agreed to it. She was then launched on September 23, 1942 and commissioned on February 17, 1943 with Captain Felix Stump in command. The ship got its name, "The Blue Ghost", from the Japanese because the ship would appear randomly after reportedly being sunk. Due to the awareness that Japan was watching the USS Lexington, she appeared at Pearl Harbor on August 9, 1943.
While in Pearl Harbor, the ship and its jets air raided the base of Tarawa and Wake Island between September and October. After these voyages she returned to Pearl Harbor to prepare for the Gilbert Islands operations. During the raid of the Gilbert Islands her jets brought down twenty-nine enemy aircrafts. The USS Lexington was very proactive during WWII. Between battles and task forces she was always right in the middle of the action. The USS Lexington was decommissioned at Bremerton, Washington April 23, 1947 and then went into the National Defense Reserve Fleet. During her decommission she was revamped and got new parts added to her including a steam catapults. The ship was then commissioned in August of 1955 under Captain A. S. Heyward. She sailed a 6th month deployment with the 7th fleet.
The ship continued to partake in tours with various fleets until she became a training fleet. The USS Lexington operated out of her home ports in Pensacola, New Orleans, and her now permanent home, Corpus Christi. The ship prepared the Navy and Marine Corps for vital operations in Vietnam. She continued this training until November 8, 1991 where she was decommissioned again and struck. Thankfully USS Lexington did not suffer any major damage, just a small fire. After this incident, the ship was officially decommissioned in 1991. She was brought to Corpus Christi in 1992 as a result of fundraising. The USS Lexington now serves as a naval aviation museum.