National Naval Aviation Museum Unveils New Exhibit

The Naval Aviation Museum Foundation hosted their Hall of Honor Gala on October 29th. The evening included the enshrinement of four aviators into the Naval Aviation Hall of Honor at the National Naval Aviation Museum. Major General Patrick Brady, USA (Ret.), a Medal of Honor recipient, gave the keynote address. To conclude the evening, guests enjoyed an advanced screening of the motion picture Devotion. This film tells the heroic story of two US naval aviators in the Korean War, ENS Jesse L. Brown and CAPT Thomas J. Hudner, Jr., both of whom are enshrinees in the Naval Aviation Hall of Honor. Talent from the film attended the gala, including one of the film’s stars, Glen Powell, and the film’s director, J.D. Dillard. Adam Makos, the author of the book Devotion (which the film is based upon) was also in attendance.

Filming under way at Statesboro-Bulloch County Airport, Georgia, where a full-size replica of the USS Leyte’s island was constructed.
Adam Makos

For the occasion, the museum unveiled its newest exhibit which features a replica F4U-4 Corsair actually used as a prop in several scenes in the film Devotion to help tell the inspirational, true story of ENS Jesse Brown, the first African-American to complete the Navy’s flight training program, and his squadronmate, LTJG Thomas Hudner, Jr.

On December 4th, 1950, the Battle of the Chosin Reservoir was raging; a Marine Division and other allied combatants were encircled. To help the trapped leathernecks break free, the now legendary F4U Corsair pilots Tom Hudner and Jesse Brown flew into combat with their squadron and others to attack the enemy. Within hours, one of the two airmen would be shot down, while the other would do something so remarkable it would provoke the captain of his aircraft carrier, USS Leyte, to utter the words: “There has never been a finer act of unselfish heroism in military history.”

Ensign Jesse L. Brown, the first African-American naval aviator, walking with his cremates aboard the USS Leyte during the Korean War. (photo via Bryan Makos)

The National Naval Aviation Museum is open Monday through Sunday from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. to current Department of Defense (DoD) ID cardholders. Access to NAS Pensacola is limited to Department of Defense (DoD) ID card holders (active duty service members, retirees, and their families). For Veterans Health Identification Card (VHIC) holders please visit for base access information. DoD ID card holders can escort guests but must remain with them at all times.

The museum has established a special visitor information line at 850-452-8450 for answers to your questions about visiting the museum. Plan your visit today!

The Giant Screen Theater is open daily.

The Motion-Based Simulator and MaxFlight 360 simulators are open Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The Flight Deck Store is open Tuesday – Sunday from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

The Cubi Bar Cafe is open Tuesday – Saturday from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

For more information, visit

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