Designed to replace the Douglas AD-1 Skyraider the Skyhawk first flew in 1954. Its small size was a radical departure from the normal “Big” thinking of the time. The USN first took delivery in late 1956 with the USMC receiving theirs 3 months later. Over the years many nicknames were used, “Tinker Toy”, “Heinemann’s Hotrod” (the designer was Ed Heinemann), with the E and F models labeled the “Camel” because of the electronics hump along the dorsal. Probably the most well known nickname used for the 2,960 A-4’s that were produced is “Scooter”.
Douglas Skyhawk A-4 Bu 155061 made its maiden flight on July 31, 1967. The aircraft was assigned to VA-155 in October 1968 and reassigned to VA-212 in 1969 where it spent time in Vietnam War. In 1971 the aircraft was sold to the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) and delivered to VF-805 as N13-155061 (RAN code 874). In 1983 874 was withdrawn from service until July 1984 when it was sold to New Zealand. The aircraft became NZ6216 and converted to a “K” variant and later donated to the Omaka Museum, New Zealand.