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

THURSDAY, 1 OCTOBER 1942
CARIBBEAN (Sixth Air Force): During Oct, the 22d Fighter Squadron, 36th Fighter Group, moves from Vega Baja, Puerto Rico to Waller Field, Trinidad with P-39s and P-40s (detachments are operating from Aruba, Curacao and Zandery Field, Surinam).

ALASKA A Japanese reconnaissance airplane over Adak establishes US occupation of the island; seven B-24s on a search-attack and photo reconnaissance mission over Kiska hit hangars and ramps, starting several fires; 4 fighters appearand are engaged; 1 probable victory is claimed; 2 other B-24s take off, after a Navy PBY contact a transport, but cannot locate it.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC B-17s and P-400s pound forces and communications in the Owen Stanley Range, hitting Menari, Kagi, Myola Lake, the Kokoda area, Wairopi Bridge, and the Buna-Wairopi Trail; and the 71st Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 38th BG (Medium), moves from Bredden Field, Australia to Port Moresby with B-25s.

FRIDAY, 2 OCTOBER 1942
CARIBBEAN (Sixth Air Force): German sub, U-512, is sunk off French Guiana, 06-50N, 52-25W, by aircraft of the 99th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 9th Bombardment Group (Heavy), based at Zandery Field, Surinam.

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): 11 B-24s and 6 P-39s bomb two cargo ships in Kiska Harbor (no hits observed), drop demolition charges throughout the Main Camp area, and hit a hangar S of the seaplane ramp; 4 floatplanes and 1 biplane are shot down. Enemy aircraft bomb the Adak Airfield without inflicting damage.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): In the Owen Stanley Range A-20s bomb and strafe Japanese campsites around Myola and hit several trails in the area, while P-400s strafe bridges at Sirorata and Wairopi and a village northeast of Wairopi. B-17s bomb shipping and airfield at Rabaul.

SATURDAY, 3 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): 6 B-24s, 4 P-38s, and 8 P-39s bomb and strafe 7 vessels in and around Kiska Harbor hitting a beached cargo vessel and the camp; the fighters down 6 float fighters attempting interception. Japanese aircraft bomb Adak Airfield but inflicts no damage. The 77th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 28th Composite Group, moves from Elmendorf Field to Adak Airfield (the squadron continues to operate from Umnak with B-25s and B-26s until Dec 42).

INDIA AIR TASK FORCE (IATF): The IATF is activated at Dinjan to support Chinese resistance along the Salween River by hitting supply lines in Burma; the new task force, commanded by Colonel Caleb V. Haynes, includes all AAF combat units in India, all based at Karachi 7th Bombardment Group (Heavy), 51st Fighter Group, and 341st Bombardment Group (Medium).

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): HQ 347th Fighter Group and the 339th Fighter Squadron are activated on New Caledonia with P-38s, P-39s, and P-400s (a detachment of the 339th begins operating from Guadalcanal); the 67th, 68th and 70th Fighter Squadrons are transferred to the 347th Fighter Group; the 67th is based on New Caledonia with P-39s and P-400s but is operating from Guadalcanal; the 68th is based on Tongatabu with P-39s and P-40s; and the 70th is based in the Fiji with P-39s.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): A-20s bomb andstrafe Efogi and Myola Lake, P-40s strafe the Efogi-Buna trail, B-25's hit a bridge at Wairopi, and a lone B-17 bombs a camp on the Kumusi River.

SUNDAY, 4 OCTOBER 1942
(11th Air Force): 3 B-24s abort weather, bombing and photomissions over Kiska due to weather and instead attack a cargo vessel; the ship's rudder is probably damaged; 1 B-24 is damaged.

OREGON COAST Japanese Submarine I-25 sinks the tanker SS Camden off Coos Bay on the south Oregon coast.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): The 72d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 5th Bombardment Group (Heavy), based on Espiritu Santo with B-17s, begins operating from Guadalcanal. Lost is B-17E 41-9118.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): P-40s strafe forces and occupied areas at Myola Lake, Kokoda, Wairopi, Yodda, and Buna; a US reconnaissance party from the 126th Infantry Regiment, 32d Infantry Division reaches Jauri, completing a reconnaissance of the Kapa Kapa-Jauri Trail, which is found to be difficult but practicable for use as a route in a contemplated offensive against the Buna-Gona area.

MONDAY, 5 OCTOBER 1942
(11th Air Force): 6 B-24s, 3 P-38s and 3 P-39s abort a bombing, weather, and photo mission over Kiska due to weather.

INDIA AIR TASK FORCE (IATF): The 9th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 7th Bombardment Group (Heavy), returns to Karachi from Lydda, Palestine.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-25s attack a convoy off Buna, lost is B-25D "Battlin' Biffie" 41-29701; A-20s hit AA positions at Sanananda Point and bomb the village of Sanananda; B-17s bomb airfields at Buna. Six B-17s bomb Vunakanau Airfield and are intercepted by Zeros. Several are damaged and lost is B-17E 41-9196.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA: B-17F "Aztec's Curse" 41-24457 bombs Gizo.

USN - Two F4F Wildcats from TF-17 CV Hornet, piloted by Lt. Cdr. H. G. Sanchez and Lt. (jg) W. V. Roberts Jr were escorting SBD's & TBD's bombing Tonlei Harbor, flew 20 miles south to Faisi (Korovou) in the Shortlands. They straffed 2 lines of Type 97 (Mavis) flying boats moored in the channel. Sanchez estimated there were 10 aircraft and they probably destroyed 4. He noted they didn't burn so hadn't been refuelled. The main strike of Avengers arrived less than an hour later and destroyed or damaged a number of ships in the harbour. This later strike was attacked by up to 11 Type 2 floatplanes (Rufe) but either due to very bad weather (squalls) or good fortune very few of these seaplane fighters were able to engage the carrier bombers so no losses were reported by US forces. Japanese reports put JNAF losses at 3 Type 97 (Mavis) flying boats badly damaged and 1 Type 0 (Jake) floatplane destroyed.

TUESDAY, 6 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): 8 B-24s, 1 B-17, 10 P-39s, and 8 P-38s fly bombing and weather missions over Kiska; a large transport is bombed in the harbor which is left sinking; hits are scored on a corvette and on a large freighter at Gertrude Cove and on a hangar in Main Camp; the radio station is damaged; a float fighter is strafed and set afire, and 6 Zekes are hit on the water.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Fifth Air Force aircraft complete the movement of the reinforced Australian 18 Brigade to Wanigela Airfield; this is part of the move aimed at capture of the Buna-Gona area.

WEDNESDAY, 7 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Three B-24s taking off to bomb Kiska and patrol, but abort the mission due to mechanical failure and instead fly reconnaissance over Agattu, Attu, and Semichi with negative results.

Guadalancal - USMC defend the Matanikau River.

THURSDAY, 8 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): 9 B-24s, 3 B-17s, and 12 P-38s blast Kiska Harbor installations (starting fires in Main Camp), and strafe AA positions, hangars, a corvette (silencing her guns), and a freighter.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-25s bomb the Buna area while A-20s pound Buna and the Kokoda Trail; the Japanese withdrawal northeast across the Owen Stanley Range slows as they prepare to make a stand at Templeton's Crossing.

Guadalancal - Fighting on the Matanikau River.

FRIDAY, 9 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): 7 B-17s and 10 B-24s escorted by 6 P-38s and 4 P-39s bomb Kiska six times. Targets include shipping in Gertrude Cove, small cargo vessels in Kiska Harbor, installations at North Head, a hangar, Main Camp area (hit severalt imes), and various shore facilities.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): During the night, twenty-six B-17s bomb Rabaul at night dropping bombs and incendiary clusters starting large fires in the town. Fourteen B-25s hit the airfield at Lae; and HQ 49th Fighter Group moves from Batchelor to Port Moresby.

Guadalcanal - Fighting on Matanikau & Japanese 17th army HQ lands at Tassafaronga.

USMC - Crashed after a night take is R4D-1 Dakota 01981 (KIA).

SATURDAY, 10 OCTOBER 1942
CARIBBEAN (Sixth Air Force): The 12th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 25th Bombardment Group (Medium), moves from Benedict Field, St Croix, Virgin Islands to Dakota Field, Aruba, Netherlands West Indies with B-18s.

AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): 10 B-24s, 7 B-17s, and 4 P-38s fly 4 missions against Kiska; the third mission (3 B-17s) does not make contact. The others bomb and strafe the Main Camp area, hit shipping in Trout Lagoon and a ship off South Head, where gun positions and installations are also blasted; fires are started in the Main Camp and hangar areas. The 344th Fighter Squadron, 343d Fighter Group, is activated at Elmendorf Field with P-40s.

CBI THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Tenth Air Force):

INDIA AIR TASK FORCE (IATF): HQ 51st Fighter Group and the 26th Fighter Squadron move from Karachi to Dinjan with P-40s.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-17s pound Rabaul and nearby Lakunai. A-20s hit targets along the Buna-Kokoda Trail and, with P-400s, strike villages in the area of Asisi and Sanananda; and the 9th Fighter Squadron moves from Batchelor to 14 Mile Drome with P-40s.

SUNDAY, 11 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Kiska is hit by three bombing and strafing missions flown by 10 B-24s and 3 B-17s; the B-17s make no contact; the B-24s blast Kiska Harbor and Main Camp.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): B-17s sight a Japanese Task Force of cruisers and destroyers bearing down on Guadalcanal in the afternoon; search has been and continues to be the most useful service of the B-17s in the SOPAC.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): The 22d Troop Carrier Squadron, Air Carrier Service, Air Service Command, Fifth Air Force, moves from Essendon Airfield to Garbutt Field with C-47s.

USN (Night of October 11 - 12) Battle of Cape Esperance (Second Battle of Savo Island) an American forces consist of four cruisers and four destroyers led by Rear Admiral Norman Scott. The Japanese squadron, commanded by Admiral Goto, has three cruisers and two destroyers. Confused night action ensues during which both sides fire on their own ships. Despite heavy casualties, both sides' transports get through. The Japanese loose Fubuki and Natsugumo sunk, heavily damaged is Furutaka.

MONDAY, 12 OCTOBER 1942
ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Two B-24s abort bombing of Kiska due to overcast and instead fly shipping search west of Attu.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): Five B-17s bomb installations at Buka.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Two A-20s from the 3rd BG, 89th BS hit Isivita dropping fragmentation bombs from 2,000'. They drop 8 x 20 lb frags and fire 400 x .50 caliber and 500 x .30 caliber rounds. B-25s bomb Buna, Wairopi bridge, and targets along the Buna-Kokoda Trail. The 64th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 43d Bombardment Group (Heavy), arrives at Fenton from Iron Range with B-17s.

New Guinea - Murakumo sunk off Guadalcanal by U. S. planes.

RAAF - Wirraway A20-51 is lost on a strike to Buna before reaching the target.

IJN - Damaged during the Battle of Cape Esperance, Heavy Cruiser Furutaka sinks.

TUESDAY, 13 OCTOBER 1942
ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): A search mission is not completed due to weather.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): Six B-17s bomb Buka and Tonolai. Japanese aircraft from Rabaul pound Henderson Field during the day and hit troops of the Americal Division disembarking at Lunga Point; artillery also begins shelling the airstrip; during the night of 13/14 Oct the Japanese battleships Kongo and Haruna hit Henderson Field with a terrific bombardment; the field is damaged severely and many aircraft are destroyed or damaged. Lost in an aerial collision is B-26B Maruder 41-17590 and P-39D Airacobra 41-7043.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-17s bomb Vunakanau and Lakunai Airfields. A B-17 bombs Buna. A pair of B-25s search for Japanese warships off Goodenough, but fail to locate them. Instead they hit the Japanese landing party at Waytutu Point. On the return flight, lost is B-25C 41-12501. The 6th Troop Carrier Squadron, 63d Troop Carrier Group, arrives at Port Moresby from the US with C-47s. The 65th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 43d Bombardment Group (Heavy), moves from Torrens Creek to Iron Range with B-17s.

Guadalcanal - 64th Infantry Regiment of Americal Division arrives to reinforce 1st Marine Division. Japanese warships Kongo and Haruna bombard Henderson Field in an attempt to knock the airfield out of action, and cover landings on both the east and west sides of the.

WEDNESDAY, 14 OCTOBER 1942

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): 9 B-24s, 6 B-26s, 1 B-17 and 12 P-38s bomb and strafe Kiska installations and shipping; fire bombs are dropped on hangars and the Main Camp area where a large fire is started; two torpedo attacks on shipping in Gertrude Cove score no hits; the P-38s destroy 3 floatplanes on the water; 1 P-38 is shot down.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-25s attack Lae, a bridge 40 miles (64 km) N of Port Moresby, and the area of the Wairopi bridge; on the Kokoda Trail Japanese offer fierce resistance to Australians pushing NE in the vicinity of Templeton's Crossing. C-47s begin flying Australians and Americans forces from 14 Mile Drome to Wanigela. Ditched is P-38F piloted by Shifflet (rescued).

Guadalcanal - Japanese battleships Chokai and Kinugasa shell Henderson Field. 48 out of 90 American aircraft are destroyed.

THURSDAY, 15 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): 3 B-26s bomb and 1 B-24 flys a photo reconnaissance over Kiska and Attu. B-26s hit a large cargo ship afire in Gertrude Cove. On Attu, they hit buildings. AA claims a B-26 shot down.

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA HQ 318th Fighter Group is activated at Hickam Field; squadrons assigned, all equipped with P-40s, are the 44th and 72d Fighter Squadrons at Bellows Field and the 73d Fighter Squadron on Midway.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): Aviation fuel arrives at Henderson Field from Espiritu Santo by aircraft and ship.

At 1600, SBDs spotted Japanese "Tokyo Express" run north of Guadalcanal. Four P-39s took off armed with 300 pound bombs and two P-400s armed with 100 lbs bombs, plus SBD Dauntless of VMSB-141 took off from Henderson Field to attack six transports off Santa Isabel. Afterwards, no gasoline was available at Henderson Field, so fuel was siphoned off two 11th BG B-17s that were abandoned at the airfield. Refueled, seven Airacobras (3 x P-39s and five P-400s) took off from Henderson Field on Guadalcanal at 5:15. Two Airacobras (Sawyer and Haedtler) aboarted due to mechanical problems and crashed while landing in the dark, killing a ground crewman. The SBDs scored two near misses, and all the aircraft strafed. The returning aircraft were forced to land at Fighter 1 Airfield, due to Haedtler's crash. Returning, P-400 piloted by Barr ditched off the Russells, pilot returned to duty. Missing is P-39K 42-4287 (MIA).

IJN - A Japanese Navy high speed convoy including Sado Maru, Azumasan Maru, Kyushu Maru, Nankai Maru, Sakito Maru and Sasako Maru, escorted by destroyers Shigure and Akizuki reaches Guadalcanal. Unloading proceeded as fast as possible through the night but at dawn on October 15, 1942 American planes attacked in waves through the day. Beached and destroyed is Azumasan Maru, Sasako Maru and Kyusyu Maru.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s and P-40s pound forces south of Templeton's Crossing and Popondetta; B-25s bomb Salamaua and hit targets in the Owen Stanley Range and in the area around the bridge at Wairopi. A single B-17 attacks shipping near the Treasury Islands.

FRIDAY, 16 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): 1 B-17, 6 B-26s, and 4 P-38s bomb Kiska and low level bomb and claim two destroyers, Oboro is sunk and Hatsuharu heavily damaged. B-26 40-1478 is shot down. Duds hit Nozama Maru beached at Trout Lagoon.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): Seabees on Guadalcanal patch up Henderson Field runways enough for use by fighters; US MarineCorps (USMC) fighters and AAF P-400s and P-39s begin pounding the invasion force landing at the Kokumbona-Doma Reef area just 8 miles away; however, the enemy continues to bombard Henderson Field by air strike andartillery and to land troops. Sunk is Azumasan Maru.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): A-20s and B-25s hit the village of Pawaia, the Kokoda Trail area, and villages at the mouth and along the Mambare River; and B-25s also bomb the Mubo-Salamaua trail. B-17s bomb the airfield at Rabaul and attack Buin Airfield, and shipping off Moila Point and the Shortland Islands. Lost on a cargo drop is C-47 "Maxine" 41-18585.

IJN: Nine Vals attack tanker off Guadalcanal and destroyer. One is shot down by a Grumman, two lost over the target and a third is MIA: D3A1 3122.

USN: Task Group 17 carrier aircraft from USS Hornet hit targets in the Buin-Tonolei-Faisi area.

SATURDAY, 17 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Five B-24s bomb the Main Camp area on Kiska and Nozama Maru beached at Trout Lagoon; the results are unobserved due to clouds; A B-24 flying weather reconnaissance finds no trace of two destroyers, confirming their sinking a day earlier.

Guadlacanal - B5N2 Kates from Junyo and Hiyo escorted by A6M2 Zeros attack ships at Lunga Point off Guadalcanal. During the mission, A6M2 Zero piloted by Harada had a head-on gun battle with American pilot Bill Freeman who shot him down. Also lost was B5N2 Kate piloted by Kuno.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): The 403d BombardmentSquadron (Heavy), 43d Bombardment Group (Heavy), moves from Torrens Creek to Iron Range with B-17s.

USMC - Lost after a search mission to Rekata Bay is SBD 03361.

SUNDAY, 18 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Four B-24s bomb Main Camp on Kiska and score near misses on Nozama Maru beached in Trout Lagoon, and hit a gasoline storage area. Weather aircraft fly reconnaissance missions over Attu, Segula, Little Sitkin, and Garelois.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): Admiral William F Halseysucceeds Vice Admiral Robert L Ghormley as Commander-in-Chief, South Pacific (COMSOPAC).

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-17s attack shipping and aircraft in the Faisi area, schooners and buildings at Lorengau, Kahili Airfield, and shipping off Kahili, Pupukuna Point, and Buin. B-25s hit Wairopi bridge, the village of Mubo, and the dock and occupied area on PileloIsland; the Fifth AF completes the air movement of most of the 128th InfantryRegiment, 32d Infantry Division, to Wanigela Airfield; and the 39th Fighter Squadron, 35th Fighter Group, moves from Townsville to 14 Mile Drome with P-38s.

MONDAY, 19 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): A B-17 flies weather reconnaissance and bomb runs over Attu, Semichi, Kiska and Amchitka; 6 B-24s dispatched to bomb Kiska abort due to weather.

TUESDAY, 20 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Six B-24s take off for Kiska but return due to weather; reconnaissance is flown to 70 miles east of Attu; a negative search is made for a missing C-53. The detachment of the 56th Fighter Squadron, 54th Fighter Group, moves from Nome to Elmendorf Field with P-39s (the squadron is based at Harding Field, Louisiana).

PACIFIC OCEAN AREA: The 19th Fighter Squadron, 18th Fighter Group, moves from Kualoa Field to Bellows Field with P-40s.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): Admiral William F Halsey sends the Army's 147th Infantry Regiment to Guadalcanal and also institutes construction of another bomber strip to be located at Koli Point, 12 miles (19 km) SE of Henderson Field.

WEDNESDAY, 21 OCTOBER 1942

CBI (Tenth Air Force): INDIA AIR TASK FORCE (IATF): B-24s of the IATF stage through Chengtu, Chinato bomb Lin-hsi, China coal mines; the plan is to blast nearby power stations and pumping facilities and flood the mines; the attack fails to flood the mines but inflicts considerable damage to the target area; this marks thefirst use of heavy bombers in China and the first AAF strike N of the Yangtzeand Yellow Rivers.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-25s hit Luscan Harbor onthe S coast of New Britain.

Lost in the central Pacific is B-17D 40-3089 aboard as a passenger is Eddie Rickenbacker.

THURSDAY, 22 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Weather reconnaissance aircraft reports a asubmarine at 52-08N 177-21 W. US Navy aircraft later makes contact and drop depth charges, results of the attack are unknown.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): Henderson Field on Guadalcanal is out of operation again as result of enemy action.

RAAF: Lost on a training mission is Beaufort A9-26 (KIA)

FRIDAY, 23 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Seven bombers, escorted by six P-38s fly an armed reconnaissance mission over Kiska hitting installations including the submarine base and Main Camp; visibility is excellent and direct hits are scored, including one hit on the submarine base. A detachment of the 56th Fighter Squadron, 54th Fighter Group, based at Harding Field, Louisiana, begins operating from Elmendorf Field with P-39s.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): Henderson Field,Guadalcanal, is again made operational by the Seabees, and USMC andAAF fighters begin to inflict heavy losses on Japanese naval aircraft;Japanese ground forces assault defensive lines around the airfields but arethrown back.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): A-20s bomb and strafe Deniki and the Deniki-Kokoda Trail area. B-17s bomb shipping at Rabaul. HQ 19th Bombardment Group (Heavy), which has been fighting since December 8, 1941, begins a movement from Mareeba to the US. Lost is B-25C "Yankee Vengeance" Serial Number 41-12889.

First "skip bombing mission" B-17 from the 63rd Bombardment Squadron bomb Rabaul from 5,000 to 8,500' then drop down and bomb from 400', claiming hits on four vessels thought to be sunk. In fact, they hit two subchasers.

Guadalcanal - 23,000 American, 22,000 Japanese troops on Guadalcanal

SATURDAY, 24 OCTOBER 1942

ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Three B-17s hit the Kiska submarine base but the results are not observed. A weather reconnaissance flight is made over Attu.

CHINA-BURMA-INDIA (CBI): The 11th Bombardment Squadron (Medium), 341st Bombardment Group (Medium), based at Kunming with B-25s, sends a detachment to operate from Nanning.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): USMC and AAF fighters at Henderson Field, Guadalcanal, continue to inflict damaging losses uponthe Japanese naval air force; Japanese ground forces, attacking aggressively,are again repulsed by defenses around Henderson area.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-25s hit Lae Airfield. Organized Japanese resistance on Goodenough ceases.

GUADALCANAL: Having nearly destroyed a Japanese regiment single handedly during the Battle of Bloody Ridge, Sergeant John Basilone earns the Medal of Honor, the first enlisted marine ever to recieve the award.

SUNDAY, 25 OCTOBER 1942
CHINA AIR TASK FORCE (CATF): 12 B-25s and 7 P-40s, led by Colonel Merian Cooper, hit Kowloon Docks at Hong Kong; 21 aircraft intercept; 1 B-25 and 1P-40 are shot down; this marks the first loss of a CATF B-25 in combat; the Japanese interceptors are virtually annihilated; during the night of 25/26Oct 6 B-25s, on the first CATF night strike, continue pounding Hong Kong, bombing the North Point power plant which provides electricity for the shipyards; Three other B-25s bomb the secondary target, the Canton warehouse area, causing several large explosions and fires.

INDIA AIR TASK FORCE (IATF): In India, Japanese aircraft attack airfields connected with the the India-China air transport route, heavily bombing Dinjan and Chabua and scoring hits also at Mohanbari and Sookerating; 10 US aircraft are destroyed and 17 badly damaged; 9 Japanese aircraft are downed. The 492d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 7th Bombardment Group (Heavy), arrives at Karchi from the US with B-24s; and the 493d Bombardment Squadron is activated at Karachi and assigned to the 7th Bombardment Group (the 492d and 493d will fly their first mission on 24 and 26Jan 43 respectively).

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): On Guadalcanal, Japanese ground assaults on the defensive lines around Henderson Field are again thrown back; USMC and AAF fighters continue to inflict telling losseson Japanese Navy aircraft. During the afternoon, a B-17 on sea-searchmission sights a powerful Japanese Task Force NW of Santa Cruz, Solomons, heading for Guadalcanal. A detachment of the 33d Troop Carrier Squadron, 315th Troop Carrier Group, which is enroute from the US to Australia, begins operating from New Caledonia. Japanese ship Yura sunk

GUADALCANAL / USN - "Battle of Santa Cruz" (east of the Solomons) Admiral Halsey's task forces meet the numerically superior Japanese forces commanded by Admiral Yamamoto. The forces never come within gun range of each other. The battle is fought entirely by aircraft. The Americans lose the carrier Hornet and the carrier Enterprise is damaged and forced to withdraw. Damage to the Japanese fleet temporarily paralyzes their movements by sea.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): 13 B-17s bomb shipping at Rabaul. A-20s bomb and strafe the Isurava-Kokoda Trail, the west bank of the Kumusi River, and the area north of Asisi as Australian ground forces push toward Kokoda and HQ 38th Bombardment Group (Medium) and the 405th Bombardment Squadron (Medium) move from Townsville to Port Moresby with B-25s. The 93d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 19th Bombardment Group (Heavy), begins a movement from Mareeba to the US.

MONDAY, 26 OCTOBER 1942
CHINA-BURMA-INDIA (CBI) THEATER OF OPERATIONS (Tenth Air Force): CHINA AIR TASK FORCE (CATF): CATF B-25s move to west China to carry out the neutralization of Lashio Airfield, where the Japanese have aircraft they are using against Dinjan; P-40's continue to hit the Hong Kong and Canton area, using dive-bombing tactics for first time in the area.

INDIA AIR TASK FORCE (IATF): In India, the Japanese again hit airfields in Assam connected with the India-China transport route, concentrating onSookerating; a freight depot, containing food and medical supplies for China,is destroyed but no US aircraft are lost; due to a lack of warning, nofighters intercept the attacking force.

USN - USS Hornet, in Task Group 17 (Rear Admiral G. D. Murray), and, with the Enterprise, fought in the Battle of Santa Cruz (26-27 Oct) in which she was sunk by air attack.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): Naval Battle of Santa Cruz: U.S. force sustains heavy loss, but checks Japanese movement toward Guadalcanal Carrier aircraft from theaircraft carriers USS Hornet (CV-8) and USS Enterprise (CV-6) fight a fierceair action with a Japanese Task Force in the Battle of Santa Cruz; B-17s also attack the task force but report no hits; with 3 of his carriershit and almost 100 airplanes lost, Vice Admiral Chuichi Nagumo retires toward Truk in the Carolines; the USS Hornet is severely damaged andis sunk the following day by Japanese aircraft and US destroyers with bombsand torpedos.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-25s hit Salamaua and Lae Airfield; A-20's, escorted by P-40s, bomb and strafe trails in the Missima-Kaile-Deniki area.

Sunk after an accidental colission with an American mine is SS President Coolidge.

TUESDAY, 27 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Six B-24s flying an attack on the Kiska submarine base turn back due to weather. A weather aircraft flies reconnaissance over Gareloi, Segula, Kiska, and Attu.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s hittrails in SE Papua around Alola, Isurava, and Abuari; P-39s escort RoyalAustralian Air Force (RAAF) Hudsons in strike against small craft at FergusonIsland in the D'Entrecasteauxs.

RAAF: Crashed is Hudson A16-38 (crew KIA)

WEDNESDAY, 28 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Six B-24s turn back from an attempted attack on the Kiska submarine base because of adverse weather. A B-17 bombs Attu with unobserved results and flies weather reconnaissance over Kiska, Amchitka, and Tanagas.

SOUTH PACIFIC AREA (SOPAC, Joint Chiefs of Staff): The 68th Fighter Squadron, 347th Fighter Group, begins moving from Tongatabu to New Caledonia.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): B-17s pound shipping in the harbor at Rabaul while B-25s bomb the airfield on Gasmata Airfield.

THURSDAY, 29 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): The Japanese reoccupy Attu. A special reconnaissance flown with Lieutenant General Simon B. Buckner, covers Tanaga, Amchitka, and Kiska.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Overnight, 19th BG and 43rd BG B-17s bomb the harbor and shipping in the Buin-Faisi area. Lost is B-17E "Clown House" 41-9235 (crew rescued). Lost taxing is A-20A 40-082 at Charters Towers.

FRIDAY, 30 OCTOBER 1942
USMC - Fighters of VMF-212 shot down "float planes" at Rekata Bay, claiming 5 victories at 0515:
1/Lt Jack Conger: 2, 1/Lt Frank Drury: 1, 1/Lt Robert Sout: 1, 1/Lt. William Watkins Jr; : 1

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): Lost on a recon flight is B-25D "Lil De Icer" 41-29731.

SATURDAY, 31 OCTOBER 1942
AMERICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS ALASKA (Eleventh Air Force): Weather and reconnaissance flight over Attu and Kiska. Over Kiska, the weather aircraft draws AA fire from Little Kiska; no other missions as all combat aircraft arealerted for a possible naval target.

SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA (SWPA, Fifth Air Force): In New Guinea, A-20s bomb and strafe Nauro and the area to N; B-25s strafe supply trucks SE of Gona. B-17s bomb shipping at Rabaul and in Buin-Faisi-Tonolai area.

 

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