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May 27, 1944
Today in World War II Pacific History
Day by day chronology

SATURDAY, 27 MAY 1944

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Two bombers fly weather and armed photo reconnaissance and bomb Ushishiru.

BURMA-INDIA (Tenth Air Force): 15 B-24s bomb Pakokku and Nyaung-u, Burma.

CHINA (Fourteenth Air Force): 24 rocket-firing P-40s hit the barracks area west of Sinyang, military installations and trucks at Nanchang, and troops, trucks, barracks, and warehouse area in the Puchi vicinity.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA (POA, Seventh Air Force): 24 B-24s from Kwajalein and 52 B-25s from Engebi pound Ponape.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Thirteenth Air Force): On New Britain Island, about 200 AAF, USMC and USN aircraft (fighters, dive-bombers, and B-25s) are sent against gun positions on Hospital Point; 160+ aircraft bomb the targets with more than 90 tons (99.2 tonnes) of explosives, destroying or damaging several of the guns; other fighters hit targets of opportunity in the Rabaul area and a barge off SW New Ireland Island; and 4 B-24s bomb Tobera. AAF fighters attack beached barges in the Chabai area and in Buka Passage, Aku and Nova Plantation and a bridge over the Oamai River; detachment of 419th Night Fighter Squadron, 18th Fighter Group, operating from Bougainville since Jan with P-61s, returns to base on Guadalcanal.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Babo and Biak are pounded by 170+ B-24s and B-25s; after the aerial and naval bombardment, Allied amphibious forces land at Bosnik on Biak secure the beachhead, and gain control of a trail over ridges to the inland plateau to the north. About 170 A-20s, P-38s, P-40s and B-25s blast the Wewak area. Lost are P-47D 42-75940 (MIA) and P-47D 42-22661 (MIA / POW, executed).

USN: The U. S. Navy supports the U. S. Army landing on southern Biak.

U. S. Army: The U. S. Army 41st Infantry Division "Jungleers" land at Bosnik on Biak secure the beachhead, and gain control of a trail over ridges to the inland plateau to the north.

JAAF: A joint JAAF and IJN raid was launched to attack the fleet off Biak. The raid consisted of four Ki-45 Nicks from 5th Sentai lead by Major Takada from Sorong and seven Ki-43 Oscars from 24th Sentai led by Lt. Oshima. The Nicks attempted to bomb and straffe the ships, followed by the Ki-43s to do the same. Intercepting, P-47s from the 342nd FS operating from Wakde claim five shot down (actual losses were only four Ki-43s, including Lt Oshima). All four Ki-45 Nicks were lost including Ki-45 piloted by Takada (KIA).

USMC: A single PBJ Mitchell from VMB-423, escorted by four F4Us fly over Rapopo Airfield. They drop their bombs and a 65 foot scroll signed by 35,000 Oklahoma school children, who had raise war bond money to buy a plane. General Mitchell decided a PBJ crew from Oklahoma should drop the scroll on the Japanese at Rabaul. Two Oklahoma natives, S/Sgt Bill Woolman and Lt. Dick Morgan led the flight, with four other crewmen who became adopted 'Okies' for a day. The scroll was attached to a parachute and a burned out .30 cal machine gun barrel, and dropped with their bombs. They observed the scroll landing, but according to post war files, no indication exisits that the scroll was located by the Japanese. Reference, Leatherneck Bombers by Alan Carey page 23.



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