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5th Hiko Buntai
Built by Mitsubishi at Nagoya No. 3 Works during May 1943. At the factory, painted with green upper surfaces and gray lower surfaces. Delivered to the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) as Type 1 Attack Bomber / G4M1 Betty manufacture number unknown.
Assigned to the 702 Kōkūtai (702 Air Group), 5th Hiko Buntai. Tail code 2-343 with a single white strip above the number.
On June 30, 1943 took off from Vunakanau Airfield near Rabaul armed with an aerial torpedo on a torpedo mission along against the U. S. Navy (USN) Task Force supporting the U. S. lands on Rendova Island. Also, nine Bettys from the 705 Kokutai (705 Air Group) participated in the mission. Over the target, this Betty was shot down and crashed on Rendova Island. When this aircraft failed to return it was reported as Missing In Action (MIA).
In fact, this Betty crashed into a jungle covered area of Rendova Island. Afterwards, the crash site was visited by U. S. Army personnel and the tail section was photographed showing tail code 2-343 with single white stripe above.
Thanks to Minoru Kamada and Richard Dunn for additional information
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