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The F-8 Crusader (originally F8U) was a single-engine aircraft carrier-based fighter aircraft built by Chance-Vought of Dallas, Texas, USA. It replaced the Vought F-7 Cutlass. The first F-8 prototype was ready for flight in February 1955, and was the last American fighter with guns as the primary weapon. The RF-8 Crusader was a photo-reconnaissance development and operated longer in U.S. service than any of the fighter versions. RF-8s played a crucial role in the Cuban Missile Crisis, providing essential low-level photographs impossible to acquire by other means. Naval Reserve units continued to operate the RF-8 until 1987.