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Light Photographic Squadron 62


Our 12th Year on the Web

Home Base Cecil Field (NZC), FLA.

This site is dedicated to the officers and enlisted men who served with VC/VFP-62.

VFP-62 provided detachments to all Atlantic Fleet attack carriers.
This RF-8A was from Det 38 "Sooper Snoopers"
USS Shangri La (CVA-38) circa 1964-65.
---contributed by Larry Plourde, former PH2

Book Cover of Blue Moon over Cuba:

Aerial Reconnaissance during the Cuban Missile Crisis

by Captain William B. Ecker USN (ret.) & Kenneth V. Jack

VFP-62 RF-8G 1967-68 - USS Shangri La Detachment
The Last VFP-62 Detachment before squadron disestablishment in Jan. 1968
Photo: Lt. Gary Adams & Contributed by: Capt. Len Johnson

RF-8G (F8U-1P) ready to fly into the early sun

Photo Courtesy: Arthur W. Scarborough PHC

The VFP-62 Mission:

Before satellite intelligence gathering, the United States relied upon aerial photographic reconnaissance to gather intelligence to assist the fleet in guarding our country. This progressed from the early days when a Navy Photographer (Photomate) would hang out of the open doorway of a plane, with a heavy camera strapped to his neck, to a supersonic jet manned only by the pilot. VFP-62 flew the RF-8A&G Crusader, to gather high quality aerial photography for that purpose.

Intelligence specialists considered the Navy's Light Photographic Squadron, VFP-62, the best low-level reconnaissance unit in the armed forces, because the unit's personnel were well trained and the Crusader was an especially stable aerial photography platform equipped with cameras of advanced design.

President Kennedy presenting the Navy Unit Commendation to VFP-62

"As I said in our meeting at Boca Chica, the reconnaissance flights, which enabled us to determine with precision the offensive build-up in Cuba, contributed directly to the security of the United States in the most important and significant way."
--President John F. Kennedy
(Letter to (then) Cdr. William B. Ecker --January 26, 1963)

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The Eyes of the Fleet