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April 1942
Today in World War II Pacific History
Day by day chronology

WEDNESDAY, 1 APRIL 1942

THURSDAY, 2 APRIL 1942

FRIDAY, 3 APRIL 1942

SATURDAY, 4 APRIL 1942

SUNDAY, 5 APRIL 1942

MONDAY, 6 APRIL 1942

TUESDAY, 7 APRIL 1942

WEDNESDAY, 8 APRIL 1942

THURSDAY, 9 APRIL 1942

FRIDAY, 10 APRIL 1942

SATURDAY, 11 APRIL 1942

SUNDAY, 12 APRIL 1942


MONDAY, 13 APRIL 1942

TUESDAY, 14 APRIL 1942

WEDNESDAY, 15 APRIL 1942

THURSDAY, 16 APRIL 1942

FRIDAY, 17 APRIL 1942

SATURDAY, 18 APRIL 1942

SUNDAY, 19 APRIL 1942

MONDAY, 20 APRIL 1942

TUESDAY, 21 APRIL 1942

WEDNESDAY, 22 APRIL 1942

(10th Air Force): Aircraft begin to evacuate military and civilian personnel and supplies from Burma to India. By 15 Jun the 10th Air Force has evacuated 4,499 passengers and 1,733,026 pounds (786,095 kg) of freight.

(SOPOA, 7th Air Force): A joint US-New Zealand Naval Command is ordered established under Vice Admiral Robert L Ghormley. It is to operate separately but in close liaison with General Douglas MacArthur and Vice Admiral Herbert F Leary.

Fiji Lost is P-39F 41-7104.

FRIDAY, 24 APRIL 1942
(SWPA, 5th Air Force): 8th Photographic Squadron, 5th Air Force (attached to Allied Air Forces), transfers from Melbourne to Brisbane with F-4's; first mission was 16 Apr. Lost on a ferry flight are: B-25C "Tojo's Nitemare" 41-129??, B-25C "Chattanooga Choo Choo" 41-129??, B-25C "Salvo Sadie" 41-129??.

In the morning, twelve A6M2 Zeros from the Tainan Kokutai attack Port Moresby, six dog fighting with RAAF 75 Squadron P-40 Kittyhawks and six attacking other aircraft and bombers. They claimed nine shot down (five P-40s, one P-39, two B-26s) and damaged a PBY. In fact, they destroyed two B-26s [one is B-26 "Hell's Angel" 40-1428] and B-17E 41-2641. Also destroyed is PBY A24-5 and three P-40E Kittyhawks from 75 Squadron were shot down: P-40 A29-43 (Channon, KIA) and P-40E A29-76 (Crawford, survived).

USN - A new specification for color of naval aircraft went into effect. The color of service aircraft remained non-specular light gray with non-specular blue-gray on surfaces visible from above. Advanced trainers were to be finished in glossy aircraft gray with glossy orange yellow on wing and aileron surfaces visible from above while primary trainers were to be finished glossy orange-yellow with gray landing gear.

SATURDAY, 25 APRIL 1942

(IJN) Japanese aircraft attack Darwin.

(5th Air Force) Over Darwin, flying together for the first time, the 49th Pursuit Group claims ten Japanese bombers and three Zeros without incurring any combat losses. B-17s strike Rabaul. Lost returning from the mission is B-17E 41-2505 (MIA).


SUNDAY, 26 APRIL 1942
(SWPA, 5th Air Force): 35th and 36th Pursuit Squadrons (Interceptor), 8th Pursuit Group (Interceptor), transfer from Brisbane and Townsville respectively to Port Moresby with P-39's and P-400's; first mission is 30 April. Lost on the Cape York Peninsula is P-39F 41-7210 (KIA).

MONDAY, 27 APRIL 1942


(10th Air Force): Ground echelon of 9th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 7th Bombardment Group (Heavy), transfers from Karachi to Allahabad; the air echelon is at Baumrauli with B-17's.

(IJN) A single C5M2 Babs from 3rd Kokutai took off from Koepang at 7:30am for a reconnaissance mission over Darwin at 9:50 for ten minutes then returned safely. Meanwhile at Koepang Airfield, seventeen G4M1 Betty bombers led by Lt. Tanemasa Hirata took off from Koepang at 8:37am armed with 60kg bombs on a bombing mission against Darwin. At 9:00am, twenty-one A6M2 Zeros from the 3rd Kokutai led by Lt. Takeo Kurusawa departed to escort the bombers. Over the target at an altitude of 20,000' the Bettys dropped their bombs at 11:35am while Australian 3.7" heavy anti-aircraft guns opened fire and P-40s intercepted the formation. Returning, the Bettys landed between 1:30pm to 2:00pm and the Zeros landed at 1:50pm. References: Darwin’s Defenders (forthcoming) by Bob Alford.

(RAAF) On the ground at Darwin Airfield Japanese bombs damage No. 1 Officers accommodation block, the Airmen’s Mess kitchen, recreation hall, main North-South Road and water pipeline from Manton Dam. Killed on the ground was Sgt Vincent A. Doran, Sgt John B. Rohr and Sgt Douglas C. E. Upjohn and Cpl Frank K. Lewis were killed by Japanese bombs. References: Darwin’s Defenders (forthcoming) by Bob Alford

(5th AF) At Darwin, P-40 Warhawks from the 49th Fighter Group took off to intercept Japanese aircraft attacking Darwin. Lost is P-40E Warhawk pilot Strauss (KIA) and P-40E Warhawk pilot Fish (KIA).

RAAF: Crashed is P-40E Kittyhawk A29-69 (KIA).

TUESDAY, 28 APRIL 1942
(RAAF) Six Kittyhawks took off at 10:36am to intercept eight Japanese bombers escorted by A6M2 Zeros over Port Moresby.  During the combat two were lost: P-40E Kittyhawk A29-8 piloted by S/L John F. Jackson (KIA) and P-40E A29-47 piloted by F/Lt B. M. Cox (MIA).  F/O Brereton was wounded and his aircraft severely damaged but returned to base. Lost is A6M2 Zero 1575 piloted by Yoshimitsu Maeda (POW).

WEDNESDAY, 29 APRIL 1942

(10th Air Force): A flight of B-17's bomb the dock area at Rangoon.


(SWPA, 5th Air Force): In the afternoon at Batchelor Field a P-40E Warhawk piloted by 2nd Lt. Robert G. Hazard from the 49th Fighter Group lost control on take off and crashed into a parked Lockheed C-40 transport piloted by Major Joseph "Joe" H. Moore and the passengers began exiting including Brigadier General Harold Huston George and passengers aboard. Wreckage from the crash possibly one of the P-40's wheels struk General George in the head severely injuring him. Two others standing nearby were killed instantly including 2nd Lieutenant Robert D. Jasper and war correspondent Melville Jacoby, TIME/LIFE.

THURSDAY, 30 APRIL 1942



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