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    Voza Choiseul Province Solomon Islands

Lat 6° 52' 60S Long 156° 39' 0E  Located on the southern coast of Choiseul Island in Choiseul Province in the Solomon Islands. Offshore is Zinoa Island.

Wartime History
During late 1943, Voza was undefended by the Japanese.

Marine Landing
On October 28, 1943 at 1:00am, four APDs escorted by USS Conway DD-507 transported roughly 700 U. S. Marines from the 2nd Parachute Battalion from Villa Lavella made an amphibious landing at Voza. This was a diversionary raid ahead of the main effort, the American landing at Empress Augusta Bay on Bougainville. Voza was chosen as a landing site because it was known to be undefended. A Navy PBY Catalina also landed at Choiseul transporting Australian coastwatcher, Carden W. Seton, who would accompany the raid force and ensure it received the full support of natives.

From this location, the Marines conducted diversionary raids along the northwestern coast of Choiseul Island towards Nokiki (Nukiki) and Choiseul Bay to give the Japanese the impression they were a much larger force attempting to seize the island. To enhance the the battalion's firepower, I MAC attached a platoon of machine guns from the regimental weapons company and an experimental rocket platoon. Altogether the reinforced battalion numbered roughly 700 Marines. They also surveyed a site for a possible PT Boat base but the Navy opted not to build on Choiseul.

On November 3, 1943 the Marines returned to the beach at Voza and established a perimeter and prepared to withdraw from Choiseul aboard three LCIs covered by an LCI gunboat. A demolition platoon placed hundreds of booby traps on the avenues of approach. Japanese forces were moving closer and enemy patrols began to reach the Voza area around midnight and triggering the traps.

By November 4, 1943 at 1:30am, the three LCIs beached and the withdrawal was completed in less than 20 minutes. Afterwards, the LCIs departed for Villa Lavella arriving by 8:00am. The operation resulted in American losses of 11 dead and 14 wounded. The 2nd Battalion estimated it had killed a minimum of 143 Japanese and seriously disrupted the movement of enemy forces from Choiseul to Bougainville. That same morning, the coastwatchers reported the Japanese occupied the Voza area.

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Last Updated
October 23, 2019


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