By Dr William Wolf (Mi
Within the savage air strive against over Guadalcanal after which the both bloody air battles up Solomon chain, New Georgia and Bougainville, thirteenth Fighter Command took a again seat to Marine aviation in body of workers, gear, provide, operations, and exposure
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Additional resources for 13th Fighter Command in World War II : air combat over Guadalcanal and the Solomons
Three Air Force pilots were on standby alert from midnight, sitting in the cool hangars waiting for something to happen, but just before dawn the destroyer slipped in undetected, landed its troops, and was gone. At 0930 Bougainville coast watchers reported 20 single-engine aircraft coming down from Buka Passage, flying to the southeast. At 1130 all Marine and Army CAP aircraft were recalled for refueling to meet the daily Tojo Time. Since the reported aircraft were single-engine it was assumed that a divebombing attack on the shipping in Tulagi Harbor was imminent.
VMF-223 Marines had another big day, bagging 14 Japanese Zeros, with Capt. John Smith adding four and Capt. Marion Carl adding three to make him a double ace with 11 victories. At 1500 Col. William Wallace, MAG-23 commander, arrived at Henderson with 19 Wildcats of Maj. Robert Galer's VMF-224 and 12 Dauntlesses of Maj. Leo Smith's VMSB-231, navigated by two B-17 escort bombers. A half hour later, with the airfield packed with aircraft, 18 Japanese dive-bombers flying in two large Vs bypassed the vulnerable airfield and attacked the shipping in Tulagi Harbor instead.
Tojo Time was imminent, and the ground crews reluctantly crawled out of their slit trenches and hurriedly refueled the new reinforcements. The tired pilots took off to orbit the eastern end of the island and waited out the raid that never appeared. Lt. Zed Fountain left Espiritu late due to a minor repair, managed to navigate to Cactus, and arrived later that day to put 13 total P-400s on the island. On 27 August, "Patsy Flight" led by Capt. john "Tommy"Thompson and consisting of Lts. Brown, Childress, Dillon, Glazier, Head, and Wythes landed at Cactus during an air raid alert.
13th Fighter Command in World War II : air combat over Guadalcanal and the Solomons by Dr William Wolf (Mi