The early days of the Second World War were trying for U.S. navel aviation. Reduced to four operational aircraft carriers the U. S. Navy found itself fighting a vastly numerically superior Japanese force. The shortcomings in the abilities of navel aircraft was also being felt with only one offensive aircraft that could effectively meet the Japanese threat, the Douglas SBD Dauntless. Later supplemented by the Grumman TBF Avenger the Dauntless was a front line attack aircraft throughout most of the war in the Pacific.
The Dauntless manned by experienced carrier veterans in 1942 played a major part of the Battle of Midway. Flying off the U.S.S. Enterprise Sr. Lt. Richard Best and the men of Bombing Six are captured by Jim Dietz in "Best of the Deck."