Information relating to Pacific Wrecks website
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Sergeant Hajime Toyoshima, the first Japanese prisoner of war (POW). Toyoshima was the pilot of a Japanese Mitsubishi Zero B11-1 aircraft, from the Japanese imperial navy aircraft carrier Hiryu, who participated in the first air raid on Darwin. During the raid on Darwin his plane was damaged and he made a crash landing on Melville Island. He was disarmed and captured by aborigines who then took him to Bathurst Island and handed him over to Sgt Leslie J Powell (right), 23 Field Company, Royal Australian Engineers, who using Toyoshima's service pistol escorted him into captivity. Powell had been sent to maintain demolition installations on the island and was unarmed. Toyoshima was later to die in the breakout of Japanese prisoners from the Cowra POW camp on the night of 04/05 August 1944. The bugle he blew to signal its start is held in the Australian War Memorial collection. He posed as Tadao Minami, claiming to be a Sergeant Pilot flying from Ambon to Darwin, and under this name was allocated the first number (PWJ 910.1) for a Japanese POW captured on Australian soil. His was the first intact Zero captured by the Allies.