In mid-1943, the Grumman Aircraft Corp. began to deliver the F6F Hellcat—its latest and greatest fighter—to the U.S. Navy. It was fast, maneuverable, heavily armed and armored. It was built “Grumman tough” and soon earned the nickname “Ace Maker.” As a replacement for its little brother, the F4F Wildcat, the Hellcat was everything the F4F wasn’t. During this period, the Navy began to use a one-two-punch technique against the Japanese. First, it used a full...
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