91-year-old pilot brings history to life at Patriots Point

91-year-old pilot brings history to life at Patriots Point (Image 1)

In honor of SC Aviation Week, Patriots Point is recognizing long-time volunteer Bill Cart, a former World War II, Marine Corps Dauntless and Corsair pilot.

Cart, a Charleston native and resident of Mt. Pleasant, left the Citadel his sophomore year in 1942 to join the V-7 Navy program, which made him an aviation cadet. Cart went on to the Marine Corps where he flew the SBD Dauntless Dive Bomber and then the Corsair.

When Cart left the Marine Corps, he spent years selling aircraft in Greenville, and then moved back to Charleston where he chose to volunteer at Patriots Point.

“It brings back a lot of memories and I enjoy the people who come on the ship who are inquisitive about World War II,” Cart said.

At 91-years-old, Cart volunteers on the USS Yorktown twice a week and has been giving his time there since 2000.

Patriots Point Executive Director Mac Burdette believes having the knowledge and charisma of Cart onboard the Yorktown is far more valuable than any static display.

“Bill Cart brings history to life, and his passion is contagious. When you stand beside Bill you know you are walking in the steps of a real hero,” Burdette said.

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