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    Battle of Midway Minor Outlying Islands United States
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USN November 24, 1941

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USN June 1942

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USN 1945

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Google Earth 2016
The Battle of Midway occured in the Pacific Ocean off Midway Atoll in the United States.

Wartime History
The Battle of Midway June 4-6, 1942 was the second carrier engagement of the Pacific War after the Battle of the Coral Sea (May 4–8, 1942) without opposing ships making contact. Only carrier and land based aircraft attacked the opposing fleets. The Battle of Midway was a decisive American victory and a turning point in the Pacific War.

On June 4, 1942 at 5:32am a PBY Catalina spots the Japanese Fleet northwest of Midway Atoll. After the Japanese fleet was spotted, land based aircraft from Midway Airfield scramble with bombers attacking the warships while the fighters including 18 Buffaloes and 6 Wildcats remain behind for defence.

TBF Avengers from Torpedo Squadron 8 (VT-8) at Midway began their combat career with attacks on the Japanese Fleet. During the battle, four B-26s, in conjunction with U.S. Navy torpedo bombers, attacked a carrier; two of the B-26s are shot down. In further morning action 14 B-17s attacked the task force approaching Midway at a distance of 145 miles; they claim several hits on carriers and 2 Zekes shot down. In the late afternoon 2 B-17s attack a carrier force, claiming hits on a battleship and a carrier and 9 aircraft shot down; 4 other B-17s claim a hit on heavy cruiser 185 miles from Midway. Six B-17s, en route to Midway from Hawaii, bomb ships 170 miles from Midway, claiming hits on Hiryu, hit earlier in the battle, and a destroyer, which is claimed sunk.

On June 5, 1942 at 2:55am Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto canceled Operation MI and the remainder of the Japanese fleet withdraws westward ending the Battle of Midway.

On June 6, 1942 the battle ends with the remaining Japanese Fleet withdraws in which the heavy cruiser Mikuma was sunk and the Mogami severely damaged.

The Battle of Midway was a decisive defeat for the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) that failed to capture Midway Atoll and were forced to withdraw.

The Japanese lost all four aircraft carriers that participated in the action including Kaga and Soryu both sunk June 4, 1942. Akagi and Hiryu sunk June 5, 1942 plus heavy cruiser Mikuma sunk on June 6, 1942. Also lost were 332 aircraft and 3,500 personnel killed and missing.

American losses included aircraft carrier USS Yorktown (CV-5) and destroyer USS Hammann DD-412, Also lost were 105 aircraft and 307 men killed, a decisive American victory.

Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge and Battle of Midway National Memorial
The Battle of Midway (1942) directed by John Ford includes combat footage during the Battle of Midway June 1942
Revenge of the Red Raiders (2006) pages 101-105

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Last Updated
June 7, 2022


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