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HistoryVP-108 HistoryHistory

Circa 1947

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraNAAS Crows Landing "...Historic California Posts - Naval Auxilary Air Station, Crows Landing - History..." WebSite: The California State Military Museum http://www.militarymuseum.org/NAASCrowsLanding.html [06NOV2005]

Photograph: Title: Crows Landing - Image Number: A92-0471-4 - Date: 1992 - Keywords: aerial - Crows Landing - historical - Description: Aerial photo, NAAS Crows Landing; Photographer: US Navy; Date: August 5, 1947 WebSite: http://ails.arc.nasa.gov/Images/Historical/A92-0471-4.html

NAAS Crows Landing, located 2-1/2 miles northwest of the town of the same name, began in late 1942 as an auxiliary air station to NAS Alameda, California. It was used to train Navy fighter pilots. Pilots of F4F Wildcats, TBF and TBM Avengers trained here first in Link and Panoramic trainers then eventually in actual planes. Later, pilots in R4D Skytrains and R5D Skymasters (Navy versions of the Army's C-47 and C-54) trained here. After the war the station was placed in caretaker status.

History
by M.L. Shettle, Jr.
Historical works by M. L. Shettle, Jr.


In late 1942, the Navy chose a site in the San Joaquin Valley, 71 miles southeast of Alameda, for an auxiliary air station. An 804-acre parcel of land was purchased for $86,708 and ground broken on December 1, 1942. The site was located near the agricultural community of Crows Landing, 1940 population of 363, that consisted of a gas station, country store, and a freight train stop. During con struction, the project was known as NAAF Patterson for the nearest post office, six miles to the north. After the Navy decided to include a post office on the station, the base commissioned on May 25, 1943, as NAAF Crows Landing.

On June 18, 1943, VC-36 became the first unit assigned. A detachment of Alameda's CASU 6 also arrived in support. For the next nine months, Crows Landing hosted various carrier units. These units included VC-65, and elements of CAG 28, CAG 18, and CAG 11. In the meantime, a detachment of CASU 37 replaced CASU 6 and Crows Landing was upgraded to an NAAS. Up to the spring of 1944, multi-engine patrol aircraft were based at NAAS Vernalis, 18 miles to the northwest. The Navy real ized that Crows Landing's 7,000-ft. concrete run ways would be better suited for the heavier weight multi-engine aircraft than Vernalis's asphalt run ways; thereafter, Vernalis was designated for carrier units and Crows Landing for multi-engine types.

In March 1944, the first multi-engine squadron, VPB-137 arrived from Alameda with PVs. From June to November, the station embarked on an expansion project that added housing, a hangar, and other improvements. The runways were widened from 150 to 200 ft. The station's ramp that initially was 200 x 400 ft. was enlarged by a 1200 x 200-ft. and a 1890 x 260-ft. section. In August 1944, the first PB4Y-2 Privateer squadron, VPB-118, arrived from NAAS Camp Kearny, California. In January 1945, Crows Landing added six enlisted barracks, a warehouse, and a 100-man ground training building. From February 2, to March 27, 1945, a VRE-1 Detach ment with 12 R4Ds was based at the station. VRE-1 was one of the Navy's three evacuation squadrons that transported wounded men from combat areas in the South Pacific to the various Naval Hospitals in the U.S. In addition, Oakland's VR-4 and VR-11 used Crows Landing for training throughout the sta tion's existence.

Crows Landing's isolated location prompted the Navy to run 10 liberty buses a day to Modesto and Patterson. Navy men were allowed to use the swim ming pool at Patterson High School. In June 1945, the station's complement stood at 27 officers and 185 men -- squadron personnel added an additional 245 officers and 1220 enlisted men. Available billeting accommodated 268 officers and 2116 men. Patrol squadrons that passed thought the station during the war included VPB-115, VPB-122, VPB-101, VPB-103, VPB-107, VPB-133, VPB-140, VPB-118, and VPB-108. The PV operational training squadron, VPB-198, also spent time aboard. Patrol squadrons were supported by PATSUs 8-2, 8-4, 8-5, and 8-7. Other units that operated and trained at Crows Landing were VJ-12 and ABATU 105. By war's end, the station was valued at $4 million.

Crows Landing decommissioned on July 6, 1946, becoming an OLF to NAS Alameda, California and later NAS Moffett Field, California. In recent years, the Navy maintained a perma nent detachment at the field that supplied crash equipment and refueling services for Naval aircraft from the stations in the area. With the closing of Moffett, the Navy turned Crows Landing over to NASA's Ames Research Center in 1993.

Circa 1945

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...History of FAW-18 - History from 01DEC45-31DEC45 - Submitted January 30th, 1946. Squadron's Assigned: VP-23, VP-32, VP-53, VP-102, VP-108, VP-116, VP-144 and VP-152..." Official U. S. Navy Records (National Archives and Records Administration) via Fold3 http://www.fold3.com/ [10DEC2012]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraFAW-2 VP Aircraft and Location "...FAW-2, VPB-15, VPB-53, VPB-100, VPB-108 and VPB-109 - FAW-2/A12-1-0133 01 MARCH TO 31 MARCH 1945..." Official U. S. Navy Records (National Archives and Records Administration) via Fold3 http://www.fold3.com/ [15OCT2012]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...VB/VPB-108 (November 1943 to July 1945 and March to August 1945)..." WebSite: PB4Y-1 Liberator and PB4Y-2 Privateers Information Center http://alanc.carey.freeservers.com/custom3.html [11DEC2007]

This was the first PB4Y-1 squadron to serve in the Central Pacific. Commanding officers: Commander E.C. Renfro (1943-1944); Lt. Commander John Muldrow (March to May 1945); Lt. Commander Robert C. Lefever May-August 1945). First tour: Assigned operational control under Task Force 57 and administrative control under FAW 2. Second tour: Assigned to FAW 1 (March to April 1945); FAW 18 (May to August 1945. First Tour: Based at Ellice Islands (November 1943), Gilbert Islands, and Marshall Islands. During the second tour it was stationed at Peleliu, Tinian, and Iwo Jima.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Full Text Citations For Award of The Navy Cross - To U.S. Navy Personnel - World War II - (2,889 Awards) - Navy Cross Citations U.S. Navy - World War II..." WebSite: Home of Heros http://www.homeofheroes.com/ valor/ 1_Citations/ 03_wwii-nc/ nc_06wwii_navyL.html [22NOV2007]

MULDROW, JOHN ELLISON

Synopsis:

The Navy Cross is presented to John Ellison Muldrow, Lieutenant Commander, U.S. Navy, for extraordinary heroism in action on 9 May 1945, while serving with Patrol-Bombing Squadron 108 (VPB-108) deployed over Marcus Island. His outstanding courage and determined skill were at all times inspiring and in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Lieutenant Commander Donald H. Hartvig..." WebSite: Distinguished Flying Cross Society http://www.dfcsociety.org/citation_detail.asp?ID=4133 [05JAN2007]

Lieutenant Commander Donald H. Hartvig, United States Naval Reserve, is awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for heroism and extraordinary achievement in aerial flight as Patrol Plane Commander of a PB4Y-2 in Patrol Bombing Squadron ONE HUNDRED EIGHT during operations against enemy Japanese forces in the Western Pacific War Area from March 27 to August 9, 1945. Participating in twenty missions during this period, Lieutenant Commander (then Lieutenant) Hartvig contributed materially to the success of his squadron. His courage and devotion to duty in the face of hostile anti-aircraft fire were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation News Magazine "...28 Units Receive Commendation - Naval Aviation News - October 1945.." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1940s/1945/15oct45.pdf [10NOV2004]

VP History ThumbnailCamera

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: Naval Aviation News Magazine "...Truck Spoils A Record - Naval Aviation News - January 1945.." WebSite: http://www.history.navy.mil/nan/backissues/1940s/1945/15jan45.pdf [10NOV2004]

VP History ThumbnailCamera

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Late 1945 to 1946 - Nose Art taken at NAS Pearl Harbor, Hawaii loaded onto bardges and taken out to sea!..." Contributed by COLLINS, MCPO WM H. Collins Retired mcpousnrret@aol.com [26JUN2004]

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Buccaneer Bunny
BUNO: 59478
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La Cherie
BUNO: 59489


UPDATE "...My Dad, LT Leon Paradise, was the pilot of the VPB-108 PB4Y-2 "La Cherie" (BUNO: 59489). Does anyone remember him and the circumstances on how he lost his aircraft?...Richard Paradise paradisecinp@aoll.com..." [14NOV2006]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...According yo the Aviators Flight Log Book ---- During the early morning of 15 August 1945, VPB-108 Privateer # 59483 took off from Iwo Jima. The mission, fly fleet barrier, patrol along Japan, Nagoya to Tokyo Bay. Lt. Edward Bezursik (Buzz) Pilot of Crew 16, Ens. John McKinnon CoPilot/Navigator in the right seat, Ens. James Bloomer CoPilot/Navigator at the navigators table, Russell Roberts Plane Captain watching instruments, Charles Alison in the bow turret, Mike O'Mally on radar, Harold Hohlman manned the top forward turret, Francis Callan at the radio station, Robert Straw in the aft top turret, James Foote in the port lemon turret, Foster Scott in his starbord lemon turret, and John Merril manned the tail turret. Approaching Tokyo Bay, bomb bay doors open, Buzz, hands on the bomb release pickle switch. Then a morse code radio message at 10.00 AM. It read, "the war is over, cease offensive action." Buzz dropped the bombs in the water. A Navy Privateer firing its last shot in World War Two. Then someone, unknown, sent another message. It read "Thank God." I'll roger that and I did--dit dah dit..." Contributed by Francis C. Callan timberflash@AOL.com [09MAY2000]


Circa 1944 - 1949

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraPB4Y-2 Squadron Assignments "...PB4Y-2 Squadron Assignments 1944 - 1949 by W. T. Larkins 5-11-1984. A review of the aircraft history cards for the 740 aircraft 59350-60009 and 66245-66324 allows the following squadrons with one or more aircraft. Unfortunately the original assignment on many in 1944 is simply "PAC" for Pacific area. No card was found to verify VB-200 as the first squadron delivery or any Marine Corps squadrons. Squadrons listed include VP-12, VP-21, VP-22, VP-23, VP-25, VP-26, VP-27, VP-28, VP-29, VPB-100, VPB-101, VPB-10, VPB-102, VPB-104, VPB-106, VPB-107, VPB-108, VPB-109, VPB-111, VPB-114, VPB-115, VPB-116, VPB-117, VPB-118, VPB-119, VPB-120, VPB-121, VPB-122, VPB-123, VPB-124, VPB-143, VPB-197, VPB-200, VP-HL-1, VP-HL-2, VP-HL-4, VP-HL-6, VP-HL-7, VP-HL-8, VP-HL-9, VP-HL-10, VP-HL-11, VP-HL-12, VP-HL-13, VPM-1, VPW-1, VPW-2, VPW-3, VX-1 and VX-2..." Contributed by Bill Larkins wtl@earthlink.net [01AUG2010]


Circa 1944

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraVP-108 Gary Post-Tribune Newsletter Article "...July 22nd 1944 - Gary Flier (AO1 Robert Lee MINTON) Develops New Navy Bombing Technique..." Contributed by Laurel Jones laurel2131@att.net [28MAY2014]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraVP-108 Gary Post-Tribune Newsletter Article "...July 22nd 1944 - Gary Airman (AO1 Robert Lee MINTON) Bags 3 Zeros While Using New Bomb Technique..." Contributed by Laurel Jones laurel2131@att.net [28MAY2014]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: History ThumbnailCameraVB-108 History "...VB-108 - 56 - Minto - 2 June 44 - 1400 GCT - 8.25" Var..." WebSite: EBay http://www.ebay.com/ [29JUN2008]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Location of U. S. Naval Aircraft - Dated 11 Jan 1944..." WebSite: Naval Historical Center http://www.history.navy.mil/ [29SEP2006]

VP SQUADRONS MENTIONED

VD-1, VD-2, VD-3 and VD-4

VJ-1, VJ-2, VJ-3, VJ-4, VJ-5, VJ-7, VJ-8, VJ-9, VJ-10, VJ-11, VJ-12, VJ-13, VJ-14, VJ-15, and VJ-16

VP-6 Coast Guard

VP-11, VP-12, VP-13, VP-14, VP-15, VP-16, VP-17, VP-18 and VP-19

VP-20, VP-23 and VP-24

VP-32, VP-33 and VP-34

VP-43, VP-44 and VP-45

VP-52 and VP-54

VP-61 and VP-62

VP-71, VP-72, VP-73 and VP-74

VP-81 and VP-84

VP-91, VP-92 and VP-94

VP-101, VP-102, VP-103, VP-104, VP-105, VP-106, VP-107, VP-108 and VP-109

VP-110, VP-111, VP-112, VP-113, VP-115, VP-116 and VP-117

VP-126, VP-127, VP-128 and VP-129

VP-130, VP-131, VP-132, VP-133, VP-134, VP-135, VP-136, VP-137, VP-138 and VP-139

VP-140, VP-141, VP-142, VP-143, VP-144, VP-145, VP-146, VP-147, VP-148 and VP-149

VP-150 and VP-151

VP-201, VP-203, VP-204, VP-205, VP-208 and VP-209

VP-210, VP-211, VP-212, VP-213, VP-214, VP-215 and VP-216


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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...11APR44 - Patrol Bombing Squadron VB-108 equipped with 12 Consolidated PB4Y-1 "Liberators" relocates to Eniwetok. That same day, the I-174 fails to answer roll call..." [01OCT2005]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...12APR44 - Off Truk. While on early morning patrol, VB-108's Executive Officer, LtCdr John E. Muldrow's Liberator attacks a submarine with depth bombs and claims a sinking. An oil slick and debris are visible at 10-45N, 152-29E for the next two days. Post war, Japanese records confirm that the submarine was sunk and that it was the I-174..." [01OCT2005]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...08JAN44 - Aerial minelaying operations in the Marshalls continue: eight PB4Y-1s (VB-108 and VB-1098), flying from Apemama, mine the waters off Wotje and then strafe enemy facilities on the island and shipping offshore; seven PBY-5s (VP-72), flying from Tarawa, mine Wotje anchorage and Schischmarov Strait..." WebSite: HyperWar http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USN/USN-Chron/USN-Chron-1944.html [13SEP2005]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...01JAN44 - Aerial minelaying operations in the Marshalls continue: four PB4Y-1s (VB-108), flying from Apamama, mine Enijun Channel, Maleolap; flying from Tarawa, three PV-1s (VB-137) mine the waters off Jaluit; two PBY-5s (VP-72) mine Jabor Anchorage, Jaluit..." WebSite: HyperWar http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USN/USN-Chron/USN-Chron-1944.html [13SEP2005]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: APPENDIX 3 Submarines Sunk by Patrol Squadrons During World War II - Naval Historical Center http://www.history.navy.mil/branches/dictvol2.htm [04MAY2001]

I-174, 12 April 1944
Type: 1 st Class Fleet Submarine, Improved Kaidai
Type 6B Laid Down: 1934
Commissioned: 28 March 1937, Sasebo.
Commander: 19401942, LCDR Toshi Kusaka; 1942 1944, LCDR Nobukiyo Nambu; 1944, LCDR Katsuto Suzuki
Career: Originally designated I-74, redesignated I-174 20 May 1942. Assigned: SubRon3, Kure Naval Base. Modified to transport configuration in early 1943 to accommodate 46-foot Daihatsu landing craft or other equipment.
Successes: Served as refueling vessel for first Operation K mission (overflight of Oahu by Emily long-range seaplanes), sank one 7,000 ton merchantman in April 1942. Later in the war I-174 sank three merchant ships of 11,568 tons and damaged an LST and two other merchant ships 7,713 tons. On 24 November 1943, I-174 sank the American escort carrier Liscome Bay (CVE 56).

Fate: Departed Kure, Inland Sea of Japan, on 3 April 1944 for Marshall Islands. Failed to answer when called on 11 April, listed by the Japanese navy as lost with all hands (crew of 107). VB-108 had just been relocated to Eniwetok on 11 April 1944. In the early morning on the next day a squadron PB4Y-1 Liberator flown by Lieutenant J. E. Muldrow attacked an enemy submarine while on patrol, claiming a sinking at 1045'N, 15229'E. MacDonough (DD 351) and Stephen Potter (DD 538) were credited with sinking this submarine on 29 April 1944, but postwar examination of records indicated that the submarine sunk on 29 April by the two destroyers was actually RO-45 and VB-108 is credited with sinking I-174 on 12 April 1944.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...United States Pacific Fleet Air Force Patrol Bombing Squadron One Hundred Eight..." Contributed by Jeff H. Olsen j.olsen@ssamarine.com [09MAY2000]

United States Pacific Fleet
Air Force
Patrol Bombing Squadron One Hundred eight
Fleet Post Office
San Francisco, Calif
31 august 1945

Subject: Summary Operations, Patrol Bombing Squadron One Hundred Eight

1. Patrol Bombing Squadron One Hundred eight was reformed at the U. S. Naval Air Station, Alameda, Calif., on 0 September, 1944, under the Command of Liut. Comdr. John E. Muldrow, USN. On 9 May 1945 Lieut. Comdr. Muldrow was shot down while leading a strike on Marcus Island and was officially reported Missing in Action. On 9 May 1945 Lieut. Comdr. Robert C. Lefever, USN, assumed the Command of the squadron.

2. Deployment of the squadron to date has been as follows:

20SEP44-16OCT44
Alameda, Calif
Reforming
Fleet Air Wing EIGHT

17OCT44-18JAN45
Cros Landing, Calif
Training
Fleet Air Wing EIGHT

19JAN45-12MAR45
Kaneohe, T. H.
Training
Fleet Air Wing TWO

16MAR45-04APR45
Peleliu
Offensive Search
Fleet Air Wing ONE
Antisub patrols

04APR45-15APR45
Tinian
Offensive Search
Fleet Air Wing ONE

15APR45-03MAY45
Tinian & Iwo Jima
Offensive Search
Fleet Air Wing ONE
Antisub patrols

04MAY45-09MAY45
Tinian & Iwo Jima
Offensive Search
Fleet Air Wing EIGHTEEN
Antisub patrols

09MAY45-03JUN45
Tinian
Offensive Search
Fleet Air Wing EIGHTEEN

03JUN45-31AUG45
Iwo Jima
Offensive Search
Fleet Air Wing EIGHTEEN
Air-Sea Rescue
Antisub patrols
Fleet Barrier Patrols



3. At its maximum complement the squadron was composed of (18) eighteen Flight Crews, six (6) Ground Officers, one (1) Ground Chief, two (2) Yeoman, and three (3) aviation radio technicians. The squadron did not receive its full authorized complement of (18) eighteen flight crews and (15) fifteen PB4Y-2 aircraft until December 1944, two and a half months after it was reformed. A second ACI Officer and a RCM officer reported for duty on 24 of February 1945 and 12 March 1945 respectively. The Radar Officer was detached from this Command on the 26 MAY 1945. A squadron of this size, while operation in the forward area, requires the services of three (3) instead of two (2) Yeoman to handle the immense amount of paperwork, including Action Reports, Recommendations for Awards, Personnel Reports.

4. Following is a summary of Combat Operations from 15 March 1945 to 31 August 1945:

FLIGHT

Combat Missions
731
Hours in Combat MissionsTest and Miscellaneous FlightHours on Test and Miscellaneous FlightsTotal Number of FlightsTotal Hours Flown
LAND TARGETS
DESTROYED

1 Government Building
1 Warehouse
1 Radio and Weather Station
Barracks
Harbor Facilities
Boat Repair Basin

DAMAGED
1 Airstrip
8 Radio Stations
5 Lighthouses
8 Revetments and Installations
5 Harbor Facilities
4 Warehouses

C. Enemy Aircraft

ENEMY AIRCRAFT IN THE AIR
DESTROYED
2 Zekes
1 Oscar

PROBABLES
1 Oscar

DAMAGED
2 Oscars
1 Zeke

ENEMY SHIPPING
SUNK OR DESTOYED

6 ??? Sugars
25 Sugar Dogs
2 Motor Torpedo Boats
1 Whale Killer
2 Sub Chasers
6 Trawlers
1 Sea Truck
1 Auxiliary Schooner
1 Powered Lighter
1 Junk
1 Sea Going Tug
2 Landing Craft
68 Victor Ables, Luggers and Sampans

118 Total SUNK

DAMAGED
3 ??? Dogs
2 Picket Boats
1 Sugar Baker Sugar
1 Sugar Able Sugar
3 Motor Torpedo Boats
1 Gunboat
1 Sub Chaser
15 Sugar Dogs
1 Sea Going Tug
1 Powered Lighter
4 Trrawlers
7 Junks
10 Barges
108 Victor Ables, Luggers and Sampans

159 Total DAMAGED


The majority of the attacks on enemy shipping were made just off the coast of Kyushu, Shikoku, Honshu, and the Izu Islands (northern Nahfo Shoto) within range of shore batteries and in close proximity to enemy airfields.

Soon after Iwo Jima was occupied, the blockade of enemy waters south of the empire was so effective that large cargo ships were no longer risked in these waters, and for the most part traffic was confined to small cargo vessels, which kept close to the shore and often traveled only at night. For this reason, although this squadron flew offensive searches regularly to the Japanese mainland and investigated coves, and harbors closely, in spite of frequent AA fire and occasional fighter interception, the hunting was usually poor.

PERSONNEL CASUALTIES
Missing---8
Seriously Wounded---2
Slight Wounded---13

F. Aircraft Losses

AIRCRAFT LOSSES

ENEMY ACTIONS

1 Enemy Action
Shot down over Marcus Island

1 Forced Ditching
After being hit by AA fire from A A.P.D.

1 Forced Ditching
At end of long search as flown through enemy (exploding) ship; damaged beyond repair.

PATROL LOSSES

1 Forced Ditching
At end of long search as result of Navigation and Communication difficulties.

OPERATIONAL LOSSES

1 Hit by towed sleeve during air to air firing exercise
(Kaneohe, T.H.)

1 Delayed emergency landing
Engine trouble, damaged beyond repair.

MISCELLANEOUS

1. This squadron was the first to install two fixed forward firing 20 mm. guns in any PB4Y-2 aircraft and to demonstrate the effectiveness of the increased fire power in combat. During the period of advanced training at Kaneohe, work was begun on an experimental installation in one of the squadrons aircraft. The work was completed in March at Peleiu, and when the squadron was transferred to Tinian, installations were made in other planes. The first combat test occurred off the coast of the Japanese mainland on April 26, 1945, when a steel hulled picket boat was attacked and sunk by 20 mm. fire. Since that date 20 mm. guns have been used extensively in combat by pilots of this command, and have been the major factor in the destruction of enemy shipping. It is believed that the additional fire power has materially increased the effectiveness of the PB4Y-2 for combat patrols.

The entire original assemblies were conceived, designed, assembled, and constructed by personnel of this squadron. Later installations were made with the assistance of CASU (F) 44 (TINIAN) and CASU (F) 52 (Iwo Jima).

2. It is believed that this unit was the first Navy Patrol Squadron to test the effectiveness of Napalm Bomb against small enemy cargo ships and important land targets. Both the AN/M13 500lb. and AN/M47A2 100 lb. Napalm Bombs have been used successfully in low level attacks.

3. In June, July, and August pilots of this squadron flew many Air Sea Rescue missions in Japanese Empire waters, and co-operated with lifeguard subs and surface craft in providing facilities for the assistance and rescue, when necessary, of Army B-29 and fighter pilots during long-range strikes on target on the mainland of Japan.

4. during July and August seventy (70) Barrier Patrols, averaging about 11.5 hours each, were flown by the squadron in close support of the operations of the Third Fleet in Japanese Empire waters.

COMMENTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

1. The experience of this command had indicated that the Navy's Long Range Search and Reconnaissance Squadrons could operate more efficiently in the combat area with (15) crews and (15) planes, instead of eighteen (18) crews and fifteen (15) planes which has been standard complement.

2. Although the rotation plan has been working satisfactory, relief by squadron rather than by individual crews is believed to be preferable for the reason that it tends to produce a more closely knit and effective organization.

3. In preparation for combat flying, more heavy-load take-offs at all hours and in all kinds of weather than were called for in the flight training syllable are desirable. While this squadron was operation the forward area, take-offs with gross weight of 68,000 lbs. or more were made regularly under adverse flying conditions.

4. The present relief system for CASU's is not considered satisfactory. Maintenance efficiency and morale of CASU personnel definitely decreased after twelve months of service in the forward area, where equipment, facilities, and living conditions are generally inadequate.

5. The maintenance work of CASU (F) 52 at Iwo Jima is especially commended. Operation under the adverse conditions of a newly occupied forward base, the CASU kept this squadron's planes, as well as the PB4Y's of other squadrons, at a high level of operational and combat efficiency.

6. Command of this squadron was transferred 31 August 1945 from Lieut. Comdr. Robert C. Lefever, USN, to Liut. Comdr, Alexander D. Walter, Jr. USNR.

Circa 1943 - 1945

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...VB/VPB-108 (November 1943 to July 1945 and March to August 1945) This was the first PB4Y-1 squadron to serve in the Central Pacific. Commanding officers: Commander E.C. Renfro (1943-1944); Lt. Commander John Muldrow (March to May 1945); Lt. Commander Robert C. Lefever May-August 1945). First tour: Assigned operational control under Task Force 57 and administrative control under FAW-2. Second tour: Assigned to FAW-1 (March to April 1945); FAW-18 (May to August 1945. First Tour: Based at Ellice Islands (November 1943), Gilbert Islands, and Marshall Islands. During the second tour it was stationed at Peleliu, Tinian Island, Marianas Islands, and Iwo Jima..." WebSite: U.S. Navy Pacific-Based PB4Y Squadrons in World War II http://www.alanc.carey.freeservers.com/custom3.html [26NOV2005]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Air-to-Air Shoot Downs by Navy and Marine Corps Patrol Type Aircraft During World War II - This Squadron Mentioned...Naval Historical Center ADOBE Download File: http://www.history.navy.mil/avh-vol2/Appen4.pdf [12FEB2004]
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Circa 1943

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Location of U. S. Naval Aircraft - Dated 31 May 1943..." WebSite: Naval Historical Center http://www.history.navy.mil/ [02OCT2006]

VP SQUADRONS MENTIONED

CASU

PATSU

VD-1, VD-2 and VD-3

VJ-1, VJ-2, VJ-3, VJ-4, VJ-5, VJ-7 and VJ-10

VP-1

VP-11, VP-12, VP-13, VP-14 and VP-15

VP-23

VP-32, VP-33 and VP-34

VP-43, VP-44 and VP-45

VP-52, VP-53 and VP-54

VP-61, VP-62 and VP-63

VP-71, VP-72, VP-73 and VP-74

VP-81 and VP-84

VP-91, VP-92 and VP-94

VP-101, VP-102, VP-103, VP-104, VP-105, VP-106, VP-107, VP-108 and VP-109

VP-125, VP-126, VP-127 and VP-128

VP-130, VP-131, VP-132, VP-133, VP-134, VP-135, VP-136, VP-137, VP-138 and VP-139

VP-140, VP-142, VP-144 and VP-146

VP-201, VP-202, VP-203, VP-204, VP-205, VP-206, VP-207, VP-208 and VP-209

VP-210, VP-211 and VP-212

History - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge Thumbnail

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Location of U. S. Naval Aircraft - Dated 09 Nov 1943..." WebSite: Naval Historical Center http://www.history.navy.mil/ [01OCT2006]

VP SQUADRONS MENTIONED

CASU and PATSU

VD-1, VD-2, VD-3 and VD-4

VJ-1, VJ-2, VJ-3, VJ-4, VJ-5, VJ-15, and VJ-16

VP-6 Coast Guard

VP-1

VP-11, VP-12, VP-13, VP-14, VP-15 and VP-16

VP-23 and VP-24

VP-32, VP-33 and VP-34

VP-43, VP-44 and VP-45

VP-52, VP-53 and VP-54

VP-61, VP-62 and VP-63

VP-71, VP-72, VP-73 and VP-74

VP-81 and VP-84

VP-91, VP-92 and VP-94

VP-101, VP-102, VP-103, VP-104, VP-105, VP-106, VP-107, VP-108 and VP-109

VP-110, VP-111, VP-112, VP-113, VP-114, VP-115 and VP-116

VP-125, VP-126, VP-127, VP-128 and VP-129

VP-130, VP-131, VP-132, VP-133, VP-134, VP-135, VP-136, VP-137, VP-138 and VP-139

VP-140, VP-141, VP-142, VP-143, VP-144, VP-145, VP-146, VP-147, VP-148 and VP-149

VP-150

VP-201, VP-202, VP-203, VP-204, VP-205, VP-206, VP-207, VP-208 and VP-209

VP-210, VP-211, VP-212, VP-213, VP-214, VP-215 and VP-216


History - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge ThumbnailHistory - Tap To Enlarge Thumbnail

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...1956 NAS Kodiak, Alaska Cruisebook..." Contributed by Edwin Trefry edtref@earthlink.net [01JUN2001]

Patrol Squadron Twenty Eight (VP-28) has well deserved its place in the long and honorable history of Naval Aviation. Formed in the trying and difficult times of 1943, at the height of battle, Patrol Squadron Twenty Eight (VP-28) went to service with P4Y 'Liberators' in the Pacific Theatre. While in combat, the pilots of VB-l08 developed the low-level bombing techniques that are standard tactical practice today. After careful planning, one of the pilots, skimming the 'Pistol Packin' Mamma' just above the waves to avoid Japanese radar, practically reduced the island stronghold of Mille to a shambles in a single pass over the runway. Caught completely by surprise, the enemy had no time even to pull off the ir gun covers before the plane had thoroughly strafed, bombed, and leveled the base and gone on to sink a Japanese supply ship in the harbor with his remaining two bombs. The day of the low-level surprise attack was at hand, devised bv the pilots and men of VB-l08.

'Liberator's' to the utmost for in the latter five months of 1945 VPB-l08 flew 731 combat missions, sank or damaged more than 200 enemy ships and shot down three Japanese aircraft. Soon after, on V-J day, ten aircraft of VPB-l08 flew low over Truk in formation as part of the surrender ceremonies. They had more than won the honor to participate in the surrender of the "Pacific Gibraltar". After World War II, the squadron returned to Hawaii and conducted advance base operations on Guam, Kwajalein, and Okinawa. The squadron was redesignated VP-28 on the First of September, 1948.

Called again to action in 1949, at the beginning of the Korean conflict, VP-28 flew patrols covering the waters in and around the Formosa Straits. The squadron returned briefly to Hawaii to train new personnel, then re-deployed to Itami, Japan, maintaining day and night vigilance over North Korea and along the Com- munist-held China Coast. Later, working closely with units of Marine Land Forces, Patrol Squadron Twenty Eight (VP-28)helped develop night flare dropping techniques that proved particularly effective against the night time 'human sea', tactics used by the massed attacking Communist troops. As a result of outstanding performance of duty, Patrol Squadron Twenty Eight (VP-28) received the Korean Presidential Unit Citation.

In 1952, after near ly ten years res idence in the Hawaiian Islands, Patrol Squadron Twenty Eight (VP-28) adopted a "new look" by exchanging their old and honorable P4Y's which had done such long anddependable service for the newer P2V "NEPTUNES", along range reconnaissance and anti-submarine patrol plane. The following year, in recognition of their beautiful home base and their long term of residence there, VP-28 changed its name to the "Hawaiian Warrior" squadron.

During the present tour in Kodiak, the men and planes of the "Hawaiian Warrior" squadron have flown in the Alaskan-Aleutian area in all kinds of weather, safeguarding our far Northern Defense Perimeter. In addition, they have also conducted search and rescue mercy missions, training, and ice I reconnaissance patrols far into the Arctic North of Alaska.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...On 13 December 1943, Lieutenant Commander John J. McCormack took off from Nuku Fetau, Ellice Islands in PB4Y-1 32099 for a routine patrol. They were never heard from again. However, Harlan Scott in his, United States Navy Bombing Squadron One Hundred Eight (Tokyo Rose's Four Engine Fighters, writes "Two months later, intelligence officers at the newly captured Japanese base at Kwajalein, found prisoner of war interrogations among "Jap" secret documents. They revealed the questioning of three men captured after a lone Liberator had been shot down in a low-level attack on strongly defended Jaluit. These men, it is believed from the personal data given, were *Ensign Darrel D. Whitmore, of Ulathe, Kansas; *Lonnie Powell, ACRM, of Opa Locka, Florida; and *John A. Zillis, AMM1c, of Baltimore, Maryland." Documents from American Graves Registration Service (Pacific Zone) and Department of the Army Memorial Division Repatriation Branch, during the late 1940s and early 1950s, conducted a series of inquires and declared the entire crew dead as of 12 January 1946. An interesting notation in the report seems to support Mr. Scott's assertion that some members of the crew had been taken prisoner. The three men identified by Scott matches those listed by the American Graves Registration Service. What happened to them remains a mystery as they did not survive the invasion of the Marshall Islands and were they listed with repatriated POWs at the conclusion of the war. The crew consisted of: John Joseph McCormack, Lieutenant Commander, Richard Ellis McClung, Ensign, *Darrell Devere Whitmore, Ensign, John Francis Ilkovich, AOM2c, Santiago Arredondo Lopez, ARM2c, James Eley Morgan, AMM3c, Robert William Nelson, ACOM, *Lonnie Powell, ACRM, Lonnie Herman Ziesemer, AOM3c, and *John Anthony Zillis, AMM1c..." Contributed by Alan C. Carey acarey@austin.rr.com..." [30MAR2000]


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