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"Midway query" Topic

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Personal logo green beanie Supporting Member of TMP15 Dec 2018 6:59 a.m. PST

Any one know how many and the types of US aircraft destroyed on the ground during the IJN air attack? In the John Ford film, I keep seeing the remains of a biplane and a twin engine plane. Thanks for the help.

Major Mike15 Dec 2018 7:16 a.m. PST

Some info here on the Marine aircraft on the island and losses

here is an OB with units and a/c totals link

and here is another source that mentions that many aircraft were scrambled when the attack was detected. link

Wackmole9 Supporting Member of TMP15 Dec 2018 8:38 a.m. PST


hes a pdf of losses

PDF link

NOLA Chris Supporting Member of TMP15 Dec 2018 10:25 a.m. PST

Nice links! Thank y'all!

I've always wanted to try a "what if" where the landing force invades at the same time as the naval action…
(if the Japanese had been even more overconfident)

Dynaman878915 Dec 2018 1:34 p.m. PST

> In the John Ford film, I keep seeing the remains of a biplane and a twin engine plane. Thanks for the help.

I'm pretty certain those particular scenes were snatched from the movie "Pearl Harbor". I like Midway but all (or at least most) of the battle scenes were borrowed from other films or documentary/gun camera footage.

rmaker15 Dec 2018 4:39 p.m. PST

Dynaman, green beanie is talking about the film Ford shot on site during the battle. It would have been impossible to "borrow" the footage from other films. My guess on the biplane would be the SOC Seagull, commonly used as station hacks.

Dynaman878915 Dec 2018 6:04 p.m. PST

Oops, an 18 minute documentary/propaganda piece – didn't know about that one but should have guessed since Ford was mentioned. I thought it was the movie from the seventies.

Murvihill16 Dec 2018 9:59 a.m. PST

You mean 'Tora Tora Tora'? 'Pearl Harbor' was an entirely different kettle of fish.

Dynaman878916 Dec 2018 5:50 p.m. PST

Lordy yes. Tora Tora Tora. Ack! A terrible mixup on my part.

R Leonard16 Dec 2018 6:49 p.m. PST

Pretty much all the aircraft on the Midway Air Station got off the ground prior to the arrival of the Japanese air raid. To the best of my knowledge, they almost all, like all but one, did.

The station CO, Cyril Simard's, after action report lists all the damage to facilities on the station, but lists no aircraft as damaged or destroyed. Same with the MAG-22 report from Ira Kimes.

The report from the station's Air Officer, Logan Ramsey, gives us more to chew on. He specifically notes that all aircraft on the station were in the air when the Japanese arrived except for a single J2F utility craft, a small single engine seaplane . . . a biplane . . . it was destroyed on the ground, this noted in the last sentence of the last page of his report: "One J2F was destroyed on the ground."

My guess, since it does not show up in the inventories of any of the VP squadrons, the PatWing command elements (nor the ComPatWing2 action report for that matter), or MAG-22, this J2F as probably the station "hack," that is, a utility aircraft assigned to the station.

There was a decoy aircraft which, since it was not real, was left out in plain view as a bullet magnet. It was jokingly designated a JFU which stood for Jap-Fouler-Upper. I've only seen reference to same anecdotally; not a clue as to its fate. It may, in fact, have been the J2F mentioned above were it a hangar queen.

Most, if not all, of the photos one sees of damaged aircraft on the station are those that made it back in shot-up condition . . . Bert Earnest's TBF comes to mind.

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