Vet revisits his ship, virtually

Uncle David Brouchoud with Jon Brouchoud. (Image courtesy Jon Brouchoud.)

Uncle David Brouchoud with Jon Brouchoud. (Image courtesy Jon Brouchoud.)

It was quite an honor to witness my uncle, David Brouchoud, exploring a virtual recreation of the USS Helena CA-75, a Navy heavy cruiser he served on more than 60 years ago.

Using the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset, he was able to walk the decks of the ship again, even though it was scrapped in 1974. For the past 60 years, he’s has carefully studied the ship’s history, collecting and cataloging everything he can find on his website, USSHelena.org.

With the new Oculus Rift application, veterans, historians and anyone interested in the ship’s history can visit the ship virtually, through an application set to be publicly available later in 2014. Future versions will become increasingly accurate and detailed, eventually including historical reenactments of specific events, such as helicopter and life raft search and rescue missions and more.

(Image courtesy Jon Brouchoud.)

(Image courtesy Jon Brouchoud.)

The model was built in equal parts Autodesk Maya and 3DS, then brought into the Unity3D game engine where the Oculus Rift application was published.

 

(Image courtesy Jon Brouchoud.)

(Image courtesy Jon Brouchoud.)

Many special thanks to Mike Lenzi, Michael Chen, Alexis List, Joseph Caddell and RJ Kikuchoyo for their generous contributions to the Virtual USS Helena CA-75 project.

(Image courtesy Jon Bruchoud.)

(Image courtesy Jon Brouchoud.)

(Article reprinted with permission from ArchVirtual.)

jbrouchoud@gmail.com'

Jon Brouchoud

Jon Brouchoud is founder and CEO of ARCH Virtual, which develops virtual reality solutions with Oculus Rift and game development engines for use in visualization, simulation and marketing solutions.

  • Jon, thanks for sharing this clip, really brought tears in my eyes. I mean to see your uncle’s reaction is quite moving.

  • Belovan Zuta

    Well done! As a homeschooling family I always love to see new virtual projects that bring history to life for us! Thank you for your time and effort on this.