Midway’s Doomed C-117

US Navy C-117 at Midway Island - 1977

Who that were at Midway in the 1970’s remembers the C-117? I used to love that plane but in hindsight it was a doomed aircraft.

It was Midway’s aerial bus and pickup truck, you might say. It was used to haul personnel and supplies to and from Midway via Honolulu between the regular visits of the C-141 Air Force Log Flights. It used to make regular flights to resupply and transfer Coast Guard personnel to and from the even more remote and much smaller Kure Island, the location of a huge Loran tower.

On one particular day I remember taking off from Midway to head to Honolulu for Christmas leave with a full plane, passengers and luggage. We got about 20 minutes out from Midway when all of sudden the port side of the aircraft was smeared with oil and then soon after the engine was shut down.

For those who know this aircraft they will realize that there are only two engines, and with one not operating, and a full load, we weren’t going to make it to Honolulu.

The plane took a sharp about face and headed back to the island. My roommate was the flight engineer and as he walked past me, from the cockpit to the rear of the aircraft, I could see the look of worry in his eyes. He was preparing for a water landing. Fortunately we made it back but in conversation afterward with my roommate it was clear that if we had been much further away from the island we would have had to ditch the plane.

When the island was phased down in 1978 the aircraft was sent to Guam. Not long afterward the aircraft was ditched in the ocean and two people were killed. This article explains a few of the details of that terrible day.

Today this aircraft sits at the bottom of the ocean.

US Navy C-117 Crash at Guam - 1978
US Navy C-117 Crash at Guam – 1978

Midway Island Hobby Shop 1960’s

Midway Island Hobby Shop

Midway friend Bill Langletz Jr. shared these excellent photos of the Midway Island Hobby Shop at Special Services in the 1960’s. These photos were taken by Bill’s father, ADCS Bill Langlitz.

Midway from The Air

Midway Island / Midway Atoll

Here’s a beautiful photo of ourpressious island from a flight as it approached before landing for the 65th anniversary ceremony commemorating the Battle of Midway.

You can order a print of this photo by following this link.  CLICK HERE.
Or by clicking on the photo below.

Midway Island / Midway Atoll
Midway Island / Midway Atoll


The Battle of Midway 2018

Sgt. Edgar Fox Battle of Midway Survivor

It was 76 years ago today that the Japanese attacked Midway Island in the beginning of what will be known as the Battle of Midway, decidedly the most decisive battle of World War II, turning the tide of the Pacific war. The battle effectively disabled the ability of the Japanese Navy to attack the west coast. This allowed the US military to concentrate more resources toward the European theater.

Please remember history. Please remember those who fought and died to win the battles that assured victory of the allied forces during World War II today.

These are photos from the 70th Anniversary Memorial Ceremony at Midway Island in 2012.

Welcome to Magic of Midway

Gooney Birds

Welcome to Magic of Midway.

A short video about Midway Island by volunteer Katerina Paleckova who graciously volunteered her time for the annual bird count.