Glimpsing the Independence for the first time yesterday, Delgado could tell how the ship landed. She came down with a whole lot of inertia, that’s for sure, and landed on her nose. “She settled bow-first, which was probably heavier because of the removal of the machinery aft that was done.” The evidence? Tell-tale flexing and breaking at the bow—something the overhead view of the sonar couldn’t show.
But perhaps the most incredible discovery (by metric of the livestreamed astonishment of the crew) was the carcass of a Hellcat fighter plane in the belly of the carrier. Which might get you wondering: Why on Earth would the Navy sink a plane instead of scrapping it?