One of the best kept secrets of the Aviation Art world is the limited availability of the lithograph, "Sole Survivor" by William J. Reynolds and signed by Naval Pilot George H. Gay.
While searching for a patch of Torpedo Squadron 8, we happened to come into contact with the grandson of George Gay. After a few emails and a few more phone calls, Eric agreed to make us an exclusive dealer for the piece.
To further enhance the collectibility of "Sole Survivor", you now have the option to purchase an original copy of that famous Life Magazine with Ensign Gay on the cover for only $20.00 more.
"Sole Survivor" by William J. Reynolds and signed by George H. Gay
George H. Gay, knowing that a war was eminent left his College (Texas A&M) and joined US Navy, after receiving his commission in September 1941, Ensign Gay was assigned to Torpedo Squadron Eight (VT-8). On June 4th 1942, while operating from the US aircraft carrier USS Hornet (CV-8) during the Battle of Midway, his squadron, commanded by Lt Cmdr Waldron was annihilated while making an unsupported torpedo attack on the Japanese carrier force. Gay was the only survivor of the thirty pilots and radiomen after their attack. After his plane went down, he witnessed the US dive bombing attacks that destroyed three of the four Japanese carriers that were present at this historic battle that turned the tide of the war.
Torpedo Squadron Eight’s suicidal mission using obsolete aircraft was not in vain because their attack drew the Japanese fighters down from altitude and enabled the US dive bombers to make their bombing runs almost unopposed. Ensign Gay spent about 30 hours in the ocean before he was rescued. After recovering from being shot multiple times Ensign George H. Gay’s photo was put on the cover of LIFE magazine in August 1942. He spent his life telling the story of Torpedo Squadron Eight and on October 21st 1994 George Gay died. The US Navy then honored his final request and scattered his ashes over the site were his friends gave their lives defending their country.
From the estate of Ensign George H. Gay these classic high quality Battle of Midway Sole Survivor aviation art prints are now almost 30 years old and were found still in mint condition after being in storage for many years. They have been stored flat in acid free materials and have never been framed.
Each Sole Survivor aviation art print was signed in pencil by late Ensign George H. Gay and Signed and numbered in pencil by the late artist William J. Reynolds. The Edition size was only 1000, the remainder of the limited edition is extremely low in availability.. Each print comes with a Certificate of Authenticity and a Letter of Origin signed by the Grandson of Ensign George H. Gay.
Battle of Midway - USS Hornet - Torpedo Squadron Eight - WW II Art Print