NF 207 Bu. No.
On June 22, 1989, while in the South China Sea,
about 90 miles west of the Philippine island of Luzon,
this aircraft experienced
an engine failure while being launched off Midway's starboard catapult. I
standing all the way forward on the port bow with one of our Prowlers and
watched NF 207 go down the
cat with sparks flying out behind it. The aircraft became airborne, suddenly
wobbled and went into the
water directly in front of the ship. All I could see as it hit was a huge spray
of water and smoke with a
parachute floating down. The Hornet sank immediately and the ship turned hard to
port to avoid hitting
the pilot, LCDR D.C. Conrad who was rescued soon after by a helo from HS-12.