USN Sopwith Camel Fighter
The Sopwith Camel accounted for more aerial victories than any other Allied aircraft during World War I. Credited with destroying 1,294 enemy aircraft; it was called the Camel due to the humped fairing over its twin .303 cal Vickers machineguns. An agile, highly maneuverable biplane, the Camel was a difficult plane to fly. Noted for its tendency to kill inexperienced fliers, many pilots feared its vicious spin characteristics. During World War I, 413 pilots died in combat and 385 pilots died from non-combat related causes while flying the Sopwith Camel. About 5,490 Camels were produced and they served with the Australian Flying Corps, Belgian Air Force, Canadian Aviation Corps, Estonian Air Force, Hellenic Air Force, Latvian Air Force, Royal Netherlands Air Force, Polish Air Force, Swedish Air Force, Royal Flying Corps, United States Army Air Service and the US Navy.
The US Navy received several Sopwith Camels after the end of WWI. One was assigned to the battleship USS Texas (BB-35) and in 1919 was flown off a platform built atop the number 2 gun turret by Lt. Commander Ed McDonnell. This was the first time an airplane was launched from a battleship. Also see the Sopwith Camel British Fighter here.