Aircraft Operated by VR-24

Douglas R5D Skymaster

VR-24 operated the Douglas R5D in greater numbers than any other type of aircraft. Having received its first R5D1Z, Buno 39148, in 1949, the squadron had as many as nine in its inventory at any given time through 1962. A derivative of a larger civilian airliner design from the mid-'30s, the DC-4 first flew in February 1942. Powered by four Prat&Whitney R-2000 engines, of 1450 hp each, the performance and capacity of the DC-4 far exceeded any aircraft then flying. Production of the new transport was immediately diverted meet wartime military needs. Under military "nomenclature", the DC-4 became the Army Air Corps/Air Force C-54. In the Navy's aircraft designation system, "R5" indicated that it was the fifth transport type acquired by the navy, and "D" identified Douglas as the builder. Perhaps best known for its role in sustaining the Berlin Airlift, the R5D proved to be one of the most dependable aircraft ever operated by the Navy. Stories abound of the diverse loads hauled by VR-24 flight crews in the R5D. Anything that would fit through the seven-foot wide cargo door was considered acceptable for air transport. At one time or another, everything from aircraft engines, various kinds of rolling stock, to a company of Moroccan soldiers, along with their livestock, found its way onboard squadron aircraft.

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R5D 56529 Port Lyautey (prather)
R5D 56540 Naples 1956 (lester)
R5D 120 Port Lyautey (jackson)
R5D 39120 (USNAM Collection)
R5D 50854 Port Lyautey (capel)
R5D 91999 Naples (salerno)

R5D 91998 (USNAM Collection)

R5D 56534 Barcelona (prather)
R5D 56534 Barcelona (prather)

R5D 759 in early "bare-metal motif" (auger)

R5D 90389 in maintenance Port Lyautey (owen)
R5D 39120 dwarfs ATN2 Melvin Summers (ballock)
R5D 91999 and R4Q 668 at Port Lyautey, 1961 (borbe)
R5D 50854 at Port Lyautey, 1962 (jevans)

R5D 91998 at Port Lyautey, 1962(jevans)

R5D 758 at Port Lyautey, 1952(w_smith)

R5D 56533 overflies base ops and air terminal at Port Lyautey(miner)
R5D 56518 at Port Lyautey(wmiller)
A VR-24 R5D identified by the letters 'RD' and diagonal stripe on tail, Port Lyautey, 1953 (paxton)
Tail view of VR-24 R5D in bare-metal, Port Lyautey, 1953(paxton)
R5D 56540 gets engine maintenance, Capo, 1956(carter)
R5D 56506 prepares to depart Capodichinno, 1956(carter)
R5D 39120 at Decimimonu, Sardinia 1959. (prather)
R5D 39120 takes on fuel. Location unknown. (owen collection)
R5D 91999 in dayglo orange. Location unknown. (owen collection)
R5D 56549 on ramp Port Lyautey 1961. (wagoner)
R5D 56549 on ramp Port Lyautey between 1959 and 1961. (niedzwiedz)

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