on Canvas, 36" x 18"
The Commission Brief
“Orion’s Game” portrays a Patrol Squadron FORTY-FIVE P-3C conducting
anti-submarine operations in support of a carrier battle group, south
of Crete in the Mediterranean Sea, during the October of 1973 Yom
Kippur War. Based at NAF Sigonella, Sicily, the aircraft turns inbound
on a now localized and surfaced Soviet Juliett class cruise missile
submarine. In this scene, the USS Independence battle group is
conducting flight operations on the horizon.
November 17th of 1964, A VP-45 P-3A aircraft, call sign “Fineart 9,”
was lost at sea with all hands. The crew of nine was returning after an
operational mission to their base at Argentia, New Foundland when, for
reasons unexplained, the P-3A, side number LN-9, crashed into the sea.
There were no survivors. The Patron Four Five Association had
commissioned aviation artist Peter Wenman to paint this work, Orion’s
Game” and, in memory of these gallant men who gave their lives in the
service of their country, the Association assigned side number “9” to
the aircraft portrayed in this image. The original oil painting, from
which these 145 prints were struck, was donated for display in the
National Museum of Naval Aviation in Pensacola, Florida.