The Most Decorated Ship of the Second World War
States Pacific Fleet and Pacific Ocean Areas WWII
Chester W. Nimitz, USN, Commander in Chief
USS ENTERPRISE (CV-6) AIR
GROUP BOMBING 6 INSIGNIA
Dedicated to Capt. Tony F. Schneider’s Service to the US Navy
Tokyo Raid support; Kwajalein and Maloelap;
Battle of Midway; Gudalcanal;
to1945 USS Yorktown Squadron Commander
Adm. John McCain; Iwojima;
sinking of Japan’s
greatest warship Yamato;
1945 Bombed mainland Japan off USS Lexington and Yorktown;
Douglas Dauntless SBD Dive Bomber
Edited and maintained by Doug Cook. Tony Schneider is his wife’s uncle and was Col. Wm. Ross’ college roommate.
Last Update August
November 11, 1917-
October 16, 2010
in Albuquerque Journal
6B5 Lt.(jg) W.E. Roberts, A-V(N), USNR. STEINMAN, W.B., 376 01 68, AMM1c, USN.
6B6 Ens. D.W. Halsey, A-V(N), USNR. JENKINS, J.W., 372 17 00, RM3c, USN.
6B8 Ens. T.F. Schneider, A-V(N), USNR. HOLDEN, G.L., 300 09 02, ARM2c, USN.
6B9 Ens. E.A. Greene, A-V(N), USNR. MUNTEAN,
S.A., 401 42
22, RM3c, USNR.
6B11 Ens. T.W. Ramsay, A-V(N), USNR. DUNCAN,
S.L., 376 06 50, AMM2c, USN.
6B13 Lt.(jg) J.J. VanBuren, USN. NELSON, H.W., 382 02 50, ARM1c, USN.
6B14 Ens. N.F. Vandivier, A-V(N), USNR. KEANEY, L.E.J., 283 21 96, Sea1c, USN.
6B15 Ens. G.H. Goldsmith, A-V(N), USNR. PATTERSON, J.W., 387 23 15, ARM3c, USN.
6B18 Ens. B.S. Varian, A-V(N), USNR. YOUNG, C.R., 356 55 07, ARM3c, USN.
6B3 Ens. F.T. Weber, A-V(N), USNR. HILBERT, E.L., 382 18 65, AOM3c, USN.
Only a scant handful of veterans
from the Black Rams (VB-6) survive in 1999 (time of Daniel Rush’
article). One of them is the last living command officer of the Battle of Midway, Dick Best.
Another was John's roommate on Enterprise,
Tony Schneider. And another a
backseat Dauntless radioman and gunner, Stuart
Tony Schneider’s account to Doug
April 18, 1942
Enterprise (Ens. Tony Scneider on board) had rendezvoused with Hornet on the
Doolittle B-25 mission to bomb Tokyo. Enroute and approaching the planned mission
launch point. Tony in scout
plane“spotted a Japanese sampan and made a strafing run”. Meanwhile a Japanese
line of defense ship Nitto Maru was
spotted and sunk by the Nashville.
The surprise approach was lost and the Doolittle mission had to take
off 200 miles from their planned launch point with not enough fuel to make it
to their planned landing site in China…
“When we took off from the Enterprise on June 4,
1942, the squadron had to waste fuel for an hour circling to join full formation
before leaving for the search of the Japanese Task Force. Squadron Leader Dick Best initiated a box search and finally they saw
the white wake of a Japanese cruiser. [The Dauntless has a range of about 1100
miles at a speed of 200+ mph.] They
followed it to the heart of the Japanese Task Force where Best and McCloskey
and others were able to penetrate Japanese defenses and inflict fatal blows on
several carriers and ships. Tony
Schneider’s plane coughed and ran out of fuel (as did many
others). Tony told his rear gunner
(GL Holden?) to jettison the guns as he landed the plane in the blue sea. The guns were not jettisoned and hit the
gunner in the head knocking him out cold.
Tony inflated both of their Mae West vests and the life raft and had his
silk parachute for sun cover.” They were
to be rescued by a PBY three days later after the great battle raged across a
great distance round them.
Al Wellmam’s Tribute to Capt. Tony Schneider
Daniel Rush and CV-6 webmaster.
Bombing Six Officers, early 1942:
Back Row: ENS Doherty, ENS Rausch, ENS Weber, ENS Halsey, ENS Holcomb,
Middle Row: LT(jg) Check, ENS Vandiver, ENS Tony Schneider,
LT(jg) Kroeger, LT(jg) Anderson, LT(jg) Van Buren, ENS Walters, ENS Bill
Front Row: LT Lanham, LT Smith, LT Dick Best, LCDR Hollingsworth, LT
Blitch, LT Penland, LT McCauley
The SBD Dauntless bomber
was the principle Allied dive bomber in the Pacific Theater of Operations.
Image courtesy of
While Scouting Six and Bombing
Six circle overhead, Enterprise
clears her flight deck in preparation for launching Torpedo Six, Battle of
Midway, 4 June 1942. Though only four of the fourteen torpedo plane crews would
return from this strike, VB-6 and VS-6 would destroy two Japanese carriers (and
a third later in the day).
Enterprise CV-6 off Pearl Harbor, 1940. Aircraft from fore to aft are F3F
fighters, SBC dive bombers, BT-1 dive bombers and TBD-1 torpedo bombers.
Bombing Six SBD-2 Dauntless
dive-bombers warm up on Enterprise's flight
deck, preparing to strike Japanese-held Wake Island,
24 February 1942.
Five VB-10 SBDs from Enterprise
CV-6, in formation, March 1944.
Source: US Navy
Two bombers from Hornet CV-8's
Scouting Eight prepare to attack damaged Japanese cruisers near the end of the
Battle of Midway, 6 June 1942. The burning ship is believed to be the Japanese
cruiser Mikuma, which sank shortly after this attack. Mikuma's sister ship,
Mogami, also heavily damaged during the battle, managed to return to Japan.
US Government file
accounts of the Battle of Midway and Capt. Tony Schneider’s participation.
Tony Schneider’s account to Doug
Cook and Doug’s other personal contacts : Tony Schneider’s second Navy deployment was at
Henderson Field in Gudalcanal. After
this deployment he married Jean Ross, the sister of his college roommate and
best man Col. Wm. Ross who on week later (August 28,
1943) married Lenore Boyd (grandparents to my daughters Haley and
Madline). Tony Schneider’s third Naval
deployment was on the USS Yorktown (and Lexington)
as Squadron Commander (1943-1945) Under Four Star Admiral John McCain (father
of Sen. John McCain). Tony participated
in the Battle of Iwojima and Okinowa as the US steadily advanced island to island to
mainland Japan. In the Battle of
Okinawa, then Commander Tony Ross’ squadron took part in the sinking of Japan’s
greatest battleship Yamato.
Battleship Yamato sinking April
7, 1945 (US Government Archives)
[This was the US’ last step before invading mainland Japan.
As costly as the advance to Okinowa had been, a land invasion of Japan
could have cost hundreds more thousands of American lives including the fathers
of many of (Doug Cook’s) friends. ] Commander Tony Schneider and his squadron
bombed many military targets on mainland Japan
in 1945 (e.g. Mitsubishi Aircraft Works?) prior to the decisive and “justified”
A-bomb drops on Hiroshima (August 6, 1945) and Nagasaki (3 days later).
[Doug Cook worked with the son ( Tom Ferebee Jr.) of the Enola Gay Bombardier
Lt. Tom Ferebee. Lt. Ferebee was proud of his participation in it that saved so
many American lives and brought WWII to an end.] Commander Tony Schneider was thankfully back
home in the States by VJ Day but continued his Navy career to retire as Captain