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USAAF October 7, 1943
USAAF October 19, 1943
USMC December 1943
USN December 27, 1943
1990 via Fellows
Barakoma Airfield is located at the southeast corner of Vella Lavella Island, bordering Barakoma Bay to the east and to the south was Sanaparo and further to the southeast is Barakoma. When constructed, this was the most forward American airfield to Rabaul which was 349 miles away. Also known as simply "Fighter Strip". Today located in Western Province in the Solomon Islands.
On August 15, 1943 American forces landed at Barakoma and immediately the U. S. Navy (USN) 58th Construction Battalion (SeaBees) immediately began clearing a swampy area of jungle for development into a fighter strip along the coast of Vella Lavella Island.
Between August 19-28, 1943 Japanese
aircraft attacked Allied forces in the Barakoma area
losing a considerable number of aircraft and Allied fighters and anti-aircraft claimed about 50 attackers. None of the raids did considerable damage. The last recorded Japanese raid was January 16, 1944 when four bombs were dropped three miles wide of the airfield. At night, harassment raids by Japanese
interfered with, but did not stop the construction.
American units based
at Barakoma Airfield
F4U-1A Corsair Bureau Number 55828
P-38H "Jan II" Serial Number 42-66893
Japanese missions against Barakoma
View in Google Earth
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