After completing his training, LTJG Bush eventually departed from NAS San Diego aboard the USS San Jacinto to serve in the Pacific as part of Air Group 51 (VT-51). While on this unit, Bush flew 58 combat missions. During a strike against the Japanese held island of ChiChi Jima, he and his crew were shot down by flak and had to bail out. LTJG Bush was the only one to survive from his three-man crew. He was eventually rescued by the submarine USS Finback.
On October 3, 1992, President George H. W. Bush visited the NASFL Museum, where he signed "On Final Approach," a large aviation mural painted by artist Bob Jenny, featuring the airplane flown by LTJG Bush and other squadron members, in airborne training.
Video by: Lani Day