VPNAVY VP-5 Mercury Capsule Recovery
http://www.vpnavy.org
VPNAVY Address

HistoryVP-82 HistoryHistory

Circa 1943

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Location of U. S. Naval Aircraft - Dated 16 Jan 1943..." WebSite: Naval Historical Center http://www.history.navy.mil/ [01OCT2006]

VP SQUADRONS MENTIONED

CASU and PATSU

VJ-1, VJ-2, VJ-3, VJ-4, VJ-5, VJ-6, VJ-7 and VJ-8

VP-6 Coast Guard

VP-3

VP-11 and VP-12

VP-23 and VP-24

VP-31, VP-32, VP-33 and VP-34

VP-41, VP-42, VP-43 and VP-44

VP-51, 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, VP-82, VP-83 and VP-84

VP-91, VP-92VP-93, 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-127, VP-128 and VP-129

VP-131, VP-132, VP-133 and VP-134

VP-200, VP-201, VP-202, VP-203, VP-204, VP-205, VP-206, VP-207, VP-208 and VP-209

VP-210, VP-211, VP-210, and VP-216


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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Location of U. S. Naval Aircraft - Dated 09 Feb 1943..." WebSite: Naval Historical Center http://www.history.navy.mil/ [28SEP2006]

VP SQUADRONS MENTIONED

VJ-1, VJ-2, VJ-3, VJ-7 and VJ-8

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

VP-23 and VP-24

VP-31, VP-32, VP-33 and VP-34

VP-41, VP-42, VP-43 and VP-44

VP-61, VP-62, and VP-63

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

VP-81, VP-82, VP-83 and VP-84

VP-91, VP-92, VP-93 and VP-94

VP-101

VP-127, VP-128 and VP-129

VP-130, VP-132, VP-133 and VP-134

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

VP-210, VP-211 and VP-212
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Circa 1942

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Patrol Squadron EIGHT-TWO (VP-82) - U. S. Action with Enemy on 28AUG42..." Official U. S. Navy Documention [01FEB2013]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Patrol Squadron EIGHT-TWO (VP-82) - U. S. Action with Enemy on 20AUG42..." Official U. S. Navy Documention [01FEB2013]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Patrol Squadron EIGHT-TWO (VP-82) - U. S. Action with Enemy on 26MAY42..." Official U. S. Navy Documention [01FEB2013]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Patrol Squadron EIGHT-TWO (VP-82) - U. S. Action with Enemy on 23MAY42..." Official U. S. Navy Documention [01FEB2013]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Patrol Squadron EIGHT-TWO (VP-82) - U. S. Action with Enemy on 03MAY42..." Official U. S. Navy Documention [30JAN2013]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Patrol Squadron EIGHT-TWO (VP-82) - U. S. Action with Enemy on 25APR42..." Official U. S. Navy Documention [01FEB2013]

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HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...UNITED STATES ATLANTIC FLEET - SUPPORT FORCE - PATROL WING EIGHT - PATROL SQUADRON EIGHTY-TWO - Argentia Air Detachment, Argentia, Newfoundland, January 30, 1942..." WebSite: U-Boat Archive http://www.uboatarchive.net/U-85VP-82Report.htm [11NOV2006]

UNITED STATES ATLANTIC FLEET
SUPPORT FORCE
PATROL WING EIGHT

PATROL SQUADRON EIGHTY-TWO
A16-3(02) 	 
  	                                                                                      Argentia Air Detachment, 	 
  	                                                                                      Argentia, Newfoundland, 	 
  	                                                                                      January 30, 1942. 	 
  	  	 
  	
From: 	Commander Patrol Squadron Eighty-Two.
To: 	Commander-in-Chief, U.S. Fleet.
Via: 	Cfficial Channels.
  	 
Subject: 	Report of Engagement with Enemy Submarine on January 28, 1942.
  	 
Reference: 	(a)  U.S. Navy Regulations, Article 874(6)
		(b)  CincCLant dispatch 291910.
	 
  	
        1.	On January 28, 1942, 82-P-9 made contact and depth bomb attack upon an enemy submarine.  
          	This engagement occurred during anti-submarine patrol operations being conducted by Task Unit 4.3.5.  
		Report of this engagement is made herewith in accordance with references (a) and (b).
  	
        2.	(a)  82-P-9 took off at 1310 LST (plus 3 1/2) to make anti-submarine sweep astern of convoy HX-172.  
		Plane was armed with two .303 cal. fixed machine guns, one .303 cal. free machine gun, 2200 rounds 
		of .303 ammunition, and two Mk XVII (325 lb.) depth bombs fitted with Mk XXIV fuses set at 50 
		feet depth.  The plane crew consisted of the following:
  	  	 
  	        Pilot:  MASON, Donald Francis, 328 39 50, AMM1c(NAP), USN. 	 
  	        Co-pilot:  BALDWIN, Algia Milton, 380 94 39, AMM1c(NAP), USN. 	 
  	        Plane Captain:  ZINK, Albert James, 243 55 17, AMM2c, USN. 	 
  	        Radioman:  MELLINGER, Charles Darwin, 375 94 28, RM2c, USN. 	 
  	  	 
                (b)  At 1515, upon reaching Latitude 43-50 N, Longitude 53-50 W, plane sighted submarine periscope to 
		left of course.  Attention was drawn to target by a flash of reflected light, apparently from glass 
		of periscope.  Plane was on course 000 (T), indicated air speed 140 knots, altitude 800 feet.  
		Submarine's course was estimated as 270.  She was leaving a well defined wake.  Sea was rough, wind 
		West 30 knots (estimated) ceiling 1,000 feet, visibility 5 miles.  Charted depth at this point is 
		1500 - 2,000 fathoms.
	 
		(c)  Plane turned and attacked at once.  Submarine was apparently completely surprised, as periscope 
		was visible throughout entire attack.  Approach was made from astern submarine on a course about 20 
		degrees across submarine's course.  Bombs were released at estimated altitude of 25 feet, indicated air 
		speed 165 knots.  Two bombs were dropped with a spread of about 25 feet. 	 

		(d)  Plumes of the explosions were seen to spread, one on either side of periscope, estimated distance 
		10 feet from wake line and nearly abreast the periscope.  The submarine was lifted bodily in the water 
		until most of the conning tower could be seen.  Headway of submarine seemed to be killed at once and she 
		was observed to sink from sight vertically.  Five minutes later, oil began to bubble to the surface and 
		continued for ten minutes.  At this time it was necessary to leave area in order to return to base by 
		dark.  Plane landed at 1628. 	 
  	 
		(e)  Detailed employment of crew during bombing attack was as follows: 	 
  	
			(1) Pilot at the controls:
			(2) Co-pilot in the cockpit alongside the pilot, armed bombs, stood by manual release.
			(3) Plane Captain attempted to take photographs of target with F-48 camera during glide 
				approach and after attack.  Pictures of this attack were poor because of greatly 
				reduced lighting conditions.
			(4) Radioman in bow at the Navigator's Desk, acting as lookout with binoculars.

					W. L. ERDMANN. 	 
Cc.  ComPatWing 7 (direct) 	 
	
UNITED STATES ATLANTIC FLEET
SUPPORT FORCE
	
U. S. S. PRAIRIE  Flagship

A16-3/FF13-15 	 
(   08  ) 	 
										Care Postmaster, New York, N.Y. 	 
										FEB 4 1942 	 

FIRST ENDORSEMENT to 	 
Compatron 82 conf. ltr. 	 
A16-3(02) of January 30, 1942 	 
  	  	 
  	
From: 	Senior Officer Present Afloat, Argentia
  	(Commander Support Force, U.S. Atlantic Fleet).
To: 	Commander-in-Chief, U.S. Fleet
Via: 	Commander-in-Chief, U.S. Atlantic Fleet.
  	 
Subject:	Report of Engagement with Enemy Submarine on January 28, 1942.
  	 
Rerefence:	(a)  U.S. Navy Regulations, Article 874 (6).
		(b)  CinClant despatch 291910 of January 1942.
	 
  	        1. 	Forwarded. 	 
  	        2.	The fact that the periscope remained plainly in view until the depth bombs were dropped 
			indicates that the submarine was taken completly by surprise.  The pilot's instantaneous 
			correct reaction and appreciation of the situation resulted in an excellent attack.  It is 
			considered that this submarine was definitely damaged and probably destroyed. 	 
  	        3.	The facts set forth in the basic letter were confirmed by extensive interrogation of all 
			the plane personnel.  Photographs were taken but because of the rapid sequence of events, 
			coupled with radical plane movements necessary to enable  the pilot to maintain his view, 
			these snapshots did not show the scene of action.  The lifting of the submarine from the water, 
			the abrupt checkage of headway and the later continuous bubbling of oil from the same spot 
			are considered to be conclusive evidence of serious damage to the submarine.  The pilot was 
			correct inhis decision not to remain longer at the scene of the attack.  Distance from base, 
			bad weather, the the fact that the landing field at Argentia is still under construction and 
			unlighted made necessary a return before darkness. 	 
  	        4.	As soon as the evidence of the success of this attack was adjudged, the Force Commander 
			directed that the pilot, D. F. MASON, A.M.M.1c, (NAP), be advanced in rating to Chief Petty 
			Officer. 	 
  	  	 
		5.	If the success of this attack is accepted it is recommended that the pilot and crew of the 
			plane be given further recognition. 	 
  	  	 
										A. L. Bristol 	 
  	  	 
  	  	 
Copy to: 	 
Compatron 82 	 
Compatwing 7 	 
  	  	 
 
UNITED STATES ATLANTIC FLEET
U.S.S. CONSTELLATION,  (Flagship)
	
CinCLantFile
	
  	P15/A16-3/                                                                NAVAL OPERATING BASE, 	 
  	(   0256  )                                                                   NEWPORT, R.I. 	 
											9-FEB 1942 	 
  	  	 
SECOND ENDORSEMENT to 	 
Compatron 82 conf. ltr. 	 
A16-3(02) of January 30, 1942 	 
  	  	 
  	
From: 	Commander in Chief, United States Atlantic Fleet.
To: 	Commander in Chief, United States Fleet.
Via: 	Commander-in-Chief, U.S. Atlantic Fleet.
  	 
Subject: 	Report of Engagement with Enemy Submarine on January 28, 1942.
  	 
Rerefence: 	(c)  CominCh Serial 079 of February 1, 1942.
	 
  		1.	Forwarded. 	 
  	        2.	In my opinion the pilot of this plane, who sank a submarine almost single handed, 
			should be awarded a decoration of some sort.  Action is being withheld, however, pending 
			the establishment of standards by the Board of Awards, as recommended by reference (c). 	 
  	  	 
  	  	 
  	                                                                                     R. E. INGERSOLL 	 
  	  	 
  	  	 
Copy to: 	 
ComDupForLant	 
ComPatWing 7	 
ComPatRon 82

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Patrol Wings - Rear Admiral A. D. Bernhard - August 1942..." Contributed by John Lucas JohnLucas@netzero.com [28DEC2005]

PATROL WINGCOMMANDING OFFICER
CPW-3CDR G. L. Compo
CPW-5CDR G. R. Owen
CPW-7CDR F. L. Baker
CPW-9CDR O. A. Weller
CPW-11CDR S. J. Michael
SQUADRON
TENDER
COMMANDING OFFICER
VP-31LCDR A. Smith
VP-32LCDR B. C. McCaffree
VP-33LCDR H. D. Hale
VP-34LCDR R. S. Calderhead
VP-52LCDR F. M. Hammitt
VP-53LCDR F. M. Nichols
VP-73LCDR J. E. Leeper
VP-74LCDR W. A. Thorn
VP-81LCDR T. B. Haley
VP-82LCDR J. D. Greer
VP-83LCDR R. S. Clarke
VP-84LCDR J. J. Underhill
VP-92LCDR C. M. Heberton
VP-93LCDR C. W. Harman
VP-94LCDR D. W. Shafer
TENDERCOMMANDING OFFICER
USS Albemarle (AV-5) 
USS Pocomoke (AV-9) 
USS Chandeleur (AV-10) 
USS Clemson (AVP-17) 
USS Goldsborough (AVP-18) 
USS Lapwing (AVP-1) 
USS Sandpiper (AVP-9) 
USS Barnegat (AVP-10) 
USS Biscayne (AVP-11) 
USS Humboldt (AVP-21) 
USS Matagorda (AVP-22) 
USS Rockaway (AVP-29) 
USS San Pablo (AVP-30) 
USS Unimak (AVP-31) 

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...15MAR42 - While providing coverage for convoy ON 74, PBO (VP-82) bombs and sinks German submarine U-503, North Atlantic, 43°50'N, 48°45'W..." HyperWar WebSite: http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USN/USN-Chron/USN-Chron-1942.html [16SEP2005]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...01MAR42 - PBO (VP-82) on an antisubmarine sweep, bombs and sinks German submarine U-656 south of Newfoundland, 46°15'N, 53°15'W. U-656 is the first U-boat sunk by U.S. Navy forces during World War II..." HyperWar WebSite: http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USN/USN-Chron/USN-Chron-1942.html [16SEP2005]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...28JAN42 - PBO (VP-82) on an antisubmarine sweep astern of convoy HX 172 attacks a surfaced submarine in the North Atlantic off Newfoundland at 43°50'N, 53°50'E. Although pilot (Aviation Machinist's Mate First Class Donald F. Mason) reports "sighted sub, sank same" no U-boat is lost on this date..." HyperWar WebSite: http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USN/USN-Chron/USN-Chron-1942.html [16SEP2005]

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...01MAR42 - Ensign William Tepuni, USNR, piloting a Lockheed Hudson, PBO, of VP-82 based at Argentia, Newfoundland, attacked and sank the U-656 southwest of Newfoundland—the first German submarine sunk by U.S. forces in World War II..." http://www.history.navy.mil/avh-1910/PART05.PDF [28MAY2003]

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]

U-656, 1 March 1942
Type: VIIC Laid Down: 4 September 1940, Howaldtswerke, Hamburg
Commissioned: 17 September 1941, Kptlt. Ernst Kröning
Commander: September 1941 March 1942, Kptlt. Ernst Kröning
Career: Assigned: September 1941 December 1941, 5th Flotilla (Kiel); January 1942–March 1942, 1st Flotilla (Brest)
Successes: None

Fate: Sunk 1 March 1942, south of Cape Race, in position 46°15'N, 53°15'W, by a PBO-1 Hudson assigned to VP-82 flown by Ensign Tepuni. 45 dead (entire crew lost). U-656 was the first German submarine sinking attributed to United States forces in WWII.

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]

U-503, 15 March 1942
Type: IXC Laid Down: 29 April 1940, Deutsche Werft, Hamburg
Commissioned: 10 July 1941, Kptlt. Otto Gericke
Commander: July 1941 March 1942, Kptlt. Otto Gericke
Career: Assigned: July 1941 February 1942, 2nd Flotilla (Wilhelmshaven); February 1942 March 1942, 2nd Flotilla (Lorient)
Successes: None

Fate: Sunk 15 March 1942, in the North Atlantic southeast of Newfoundland, in position 45°50'N, 48°50'W, by a PBY-5 Catalina assigned to VP-82. 51 dead (entire crew lost). VP-82 claimed a heavy damage assessment on a German submarine off Cape Race. It was not until after the war that examination of German records indicated that U-503 was ac-tually sunk.

HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Squadron Awards..." Contributed by Mahlon K. Miller mkwsmiller@cox.net [23APR2001]

  • Navy Unit Commendation
    15 Jan 42 – 10 Jun 42
    01 Apr 43 – 30 Apr 43

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "01MAR42--Ensign William Tepuni, USNR, piloting a Lockheed Hudson, PBO, of VP-82 based at NAS Argentia, Newfoundland, Canada, attacked and sank the U-656 southwest of Newfoundland; the first German submarine sunk by U.S. forces in World War II..." http://www.history.navy.mil/branches/avchr7.htm

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "01MAR42--German submarine sunk: U-656, by naval land-based aircraft (VP-82), south of Newfoundland, 46 d. 15' N., 53 d. 15' W...." http://www.pagesz.net/~jbdavis/navy_42.txt

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "01MAR42--On 1 March 1942, U-656 became the first German submarine sunk by American forces during World War Two. The attack was carried out by Ensign William Tepuni piloting a Hudson bomber with Patrol Squadron 82 (VP-82). Two weeks later VP-82 pilot, Chief Aviation Machinist's Mate Donald Mason, sank U-503 southeast of the Virgin Rocks..." http://www3.nf.sympatico.ca/aviation.nf.lab/Argentia.htm [08NOV98]

    UPDATE "...I´d like to contact the family of Chief Aviation Maschinist´s Mate Donald Mason on board of a VP-82 who sank the German Submarine U-503 on March 15. 1942 southeast of Virgins Rock. The Commander of this submarine was Capt.lt. Otto Gericke and he is my grandfather, he was 32 years old when his boat sunk and me and my family would like to know more about the day he died. So I would be very thankfull about more informations. They were all victims of a horrible war and I hope Informations could help a bit that something like that war would never happen again. Thank you...Christian Schneider c.s51@debitel.net..." [13JAN2001]

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "15MAR42--German submarine sunk: U-503, by naval land-based aircraft (VP-82), North Atlantic area, 46 d. 50' N., 48 d. 50' W...."


    Circa 1941-1945

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...History of FAW-9 - History from 00MAY41-00JAN45 Submitted June 19th, 1945. Squadron's Assigned: VP-31, VP-52, VP-81, VP-82, VP-91, VP-92, VP-93, VP-94, VP-128..." Official U. S. Navy Records (National Archives and Records Administration) via Fold3 http://www.fold3.com/ [02DEC2012]

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    Circa 1941-1944

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...History of FAW-8 - History from 08JUL41-31DEC44 Submitted April 12th, 1945. Squadron's Assigned: VP-16, VP-18, VP-19, VP-20, VP-21, VP-22, VP-25, VP-26, VP-27, VP-28, VP-43, VP-61, VP-62, VP-63, VP-72, VP-81, VP-82, VP-83, VP-84, VP-92, VP-118, VP-123, VP-133, VP-137, VP-140, VP-142, VP-144, VP-148, VP-150, VP-153, VP-198, VP-205, VP-208 and VP-216..." Official U. S. Navy Records (National Archives and Records Administration) via Fold3 http://www.fold3.com/ [01DEC2012]

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    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...History of FAW-7 - History from 01MAR41-31DEC44 Submitted June 11th, 1945. Squadron's Assigned: VP-31, VP-52, VP-53, VP-63, VP-71, VP-72, VP-73, VP-74, VP-82, VP-84, VP-92, VP-93, VP-103, VP-105, VP-110, VP-111, VP-114, VP-125, VP-126 and VP-128..." Official U. S. Navy Records (National Archives and Records Administration) via Fold3 http://www.fold3.com/ [30NOV2012]

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    Circa 1941

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Hearings Before The Joint Committee On The Investigation Of The Pearl Harbor Attack - Congress Of The United States - Seventy-Ninth Congress...Squadrons mentioned: VP-11, VP-13, VP-14, VP-21, VP-22, VP-23, VP-24, VP-31, VP-32, VP-41, VP-42, VP-43, VP-44, VP-51, VP-52, VP-71, VP-72, VP-73, VP-74, VP-81, VP-82, VP-83, VP-84, VP-91, VP-92, VP-93, VP-94, VP-101, VP-102, CPW-1, CPW-2, CPW-3, CPW-4, CPW-5, CPW-7, CPW-8 and CPW-9..." WebSite: The public's library and digital archive http://www.ibiblio.org/pha/pha/misc/rainbow5.html [01APR2005]
    Get Adobe Reader
    Open VP History Adobe FileHearings Before The Joint Committee On the Investigation Of The Pearl Harbor Attack 333KB

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "00XXX41--In the fall of 1941, with amphibian versions of the PBY flying but not yet in service, the Navy turned to a quick reaction approach to address the upcoming winter need...The first 20 of the A-20s were delivered directly to the Navy as PBO-1s, with 40 pilots, along with other personnel, undergoing expedited training to form a new land-based patrol squadron, VP-82..."'PBO-1 Hudson' by Mr. Hal Andrews, Naval Aviation News, March-April 1990 Page 16 http://www.history.navy.mil/branches/nhcorg5.htm Contributed by George B. Winter pbycat@bellsouth.net

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "00OCT41--VP-82 equipped with PBO-1 - naval version of Hudson becoming the first (of many) naval squadrons to fly land based planes..." http://www.halisp.net/listserv/pacwar/1314.html

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "00DEC41--Order of Battle December 1941 Patrol Wing Eight, Norfolk VP-81 PBY5 n/a South Pacific '43-44, VP-82 POB-1 NAS Argentia, Newfoundland, Canada, VP-83 PBY5 n/a 1/43 Natal, Brazil, and VP-84 PBY5 NAS Argentia, Newfoundland, Canada=B9..." http://www.halisp.net/listserv/pacwar/1314.html

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...In March 1941, the United States Navy organized Patrol Wing Support Force, comprising VP-51, VP-52, VP-55, and VP-56 and Seaplane Tenders Albemarle, Belknap and George E. Badger. Issued on 5 May 1941, Operation Plan No. 1-41 provided that the Wing "proceed on advance base exercises [and] maintain at least one squadron based on tender(s) at Argentia." In accordance with this plan, Albemarle established Wing Headquarters at Argentia and on 18 May PBY-5A seaplanes of VP-52 commenced operations. The following week, American neutrality notwithstanding, they searched unsuccessfully for the German battleship Bismarck.

    In July 1941, the Wing's name was changed from Patrol Wing Support Force, to Patrol Wing Seven (redesignated Fleet Air Wing Seven the following year). This adjustment included the renumbering of squadrons. Beginning in August, Patrol Wing Seven, in addition to convoy coverage, established a daily harbor patrol of the approaches to Argentia. It soon became evident, however, that Newfoundland's harsh winter weather would make tender-based aerial operations extremely hazardous. Consequently, efforts were begun to re-equip the Wing with land planes. Meanwhile, runway construction on the Argentia Peninsula had progressed such that by late 1941 three were available for emergency use. The new year brought change and success to Wing operations at NAS Argentia, Newfoundland, Canada as facilities improved, new squadrons arrived and aerial reconnaissance intensified. On 1 March 1942, U-656 became the first German submarine sunk by American forces during World War Two. The attack was carried out by Ensign William Tepuni piloting a Hudson bomber with Patrol Squadron 82 (VP-82). Two weeks later VP-82 pilot, Chief Aviation Machinist's Mate Donald Mason, sank U-503 southeast of the Virgin Rocks.

    Throughout 1942 and much of 1943, the principle activity of Argentia based aircraft continued to be search and rescue, convoy escort, and anti-submarine patrol. A significant change came in April 1943 when United States, British, and Canadian authorities agreed that Canada assume responsibility for the protection of shipping in the Northwest Atlantic. Thereafter, operational direction of aircraft came from the combined Royal Canadian Air Force-Royal Canadian Navy headquarters at St. John's, Newfoundland. The Wing functioned under this system until its transfer overseas in August 1943. In July 1943, Coast Guard Patrol Bombing Squadron Six (VPB-6) began training and indoctrination at Argentia preparatory to North Atlantic operations. After its commissioning in October 1943, Coast Guard Patrol Bombing Squadron Six (VPB-6) reported to its main operating base at Narsarssuak, Greenland, however, a detachment of two aircraft (PBY-5A) was assigned to Argentia; administrative control was vested in Fleet Air Wing Nine. Duties included antisubmarine patrol, convoy coverage, and search and rescue. Lighter Than Air Blimp Squadrons provided additional support during the summer and fall of 1944. When war ended in 1945, Coast Guard Patrol Bombing Squadron Six (VPB-6) duties changed to ice observation, medical evacuation, and utility missions; it continued air-sea rescue operations..." WebSite: Aviation in Newfoundland and Labrador http://www3.nf.sympatico.ca/aviation.nf.lab/Argentia.htm [URL Updated 09JUN2002 | URL Updated 09JUN2001 | 08DEC2000]

    HistoryA BIT OF HISTORY: "...Chronicles of PBY-5A #2459 - The U.S. Navy's top-scoring antisubmarine bomber in WWII - Compiled by Ragnar J. Ragnarsson ragsie@centrum.is - 23 DEC 1941 - PBY-5As are first mentioned in VP-73's War Diary on this date when three planes drawn from VP-83 were test-flown at NAS Norfolk, Virginia. On 25 December they were loaded onboard the USS Albemarle (AV-5) at NOB Norfolk for shipment to Iceland. On 27 December a further two PBY-5As were drawn from VP-83 at NAS Norfolk, Virginia and flown to NAS Quonset Point, Rhode Island, where they were loaded onboard the USS Albemarle on 30 December...Note: At the outbreak of war on 7 December 1941, VP-73 was operating as part of PatWing 7 with divisions of PBY-5 seaplanes based at Reykjavik, NAS Argentia, Newfoundland, Canada and NAS Quonset Point, Rhode Island. Replacing the divisions at Reykjavik and NAS Argentia, Newfoundland, Canada with landplanes was a matter of considerable urgency as winter operations of seaplanes from these bases was considered "extremely hazardous" as concluded in a study made by the Bureau of Aeronautics. The first 5 PBY-5As went to replace the PBY-5s of the Iceland division, thereby becoming the first to be equipped with the amphibian version of the PBY, while the NAS Argentia, Newfoundland, Canada division was withdrawn to NAS Quonset Point, Rhode Island on 2 January 1942 having been replaced by PBO-1s (Lockheed Hudsons) of VP-82...The BuAer's concern in regard to seaplane winter operations in Iceland became all too evident on 15 January 1942 when, during a hurricane-force storm at Iceland with winds of 90 kts, gusting to 120 kts, three PBY-5s of VP-73 and two PBM-1s of VP-74 were lost at anchor in Skerjafjordur (the seaplane anchorage adjacent to Reykjavik airfield). When the storm hit, four PBY-5As were already at Reykjavik airfield, the fifth being still onboard the USS Albemarle at Hvalfjord. The planes at the airfield were tied down, but it took all hands to secure the planes on the field with all available lines and weights...OCT 1942: October saw the arrival of VP-84 in Iceland to replace VP-73. About half of VP-73's planes en-route back to the United States when the squadron received orders to return to Iceland and thence to the United Kingdom and North Africa, once an airfield had been secured there following the 'Torch' landings. Some of VP-73's planes were presumably quite battered and in need for overhaul so seven of these were exchanged for newer planes brought to Iceland by VP-84. One of the planes passed to VP-84 was #2459, to become 84-P-7...PLUS MUCH MUCH MORE!" Contributed by JOHN B OUBRE VP84@WEBTV.NET via WebSite: Stichting Cat Air http://www.vliegtuigen.com [URL Change 18JUN2000 | 19JAN98]


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