January 16, 1942
Today in World War II Pacific History
Day by day chronology
FRIDAY, 16 JANUARY 1942
CENTRAL PACIFIC (Hawaiian Air Force): The first significant deployment of aircraft
from Hawaiian Air Force begins with movement of 6 B-17s commanded by Lieutenant
Colonel Walter C. Sweeney to Palmyra Airfield for patrol duty in support of U. S. Navy Task Group
8.9 (TG 8.9).
Alaska: A group of B-26s on a ferry flight run out of fuel and force land near Smith River in British Columbia. Lost are B-26 40-1464 and B-26 40-1459.
USN: TBD Devastator 0335 pilot ACMM Harold F. Dixon ditched out of fuel and lost after a reconnaissance mission scouting ahead of Task Force 8 (TF-8). The three crew deploy their life raft and drift in the open sea for 34 days before reaching land and are rescued. Patrol Squadron 23 began daily patrols of the sea between their temporary base at Canton to Suva in Fiji.
These are the first combat patrols flown by U. S. Navy aircraft in the South Pacific.