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  A6M3 Zero Manufacture Number ? Tail V-???
Tainan Kōkūtai
3rd Chutai

Pilot  PO/1 Sadaô Yamashita (KIA)
Crashed  August 27, 1942

Aircraft History
Built by Mitsubishi. Assigned to the Tainan Kōkūtai. Unclear if this aircraft was an A6M2 or A6M3.

Mission History
On August 27, 1942 one of five Tainan Kokutai Zeros that took off from Buna Airfield on a mission to escort D3A Val dive bombers from the 2nd Kokutai. Sadaô Yamashita flew in 3rd Chutai, with wingman Enji Kakimoto.

Due to bad weather, the formation arrived over Milne Bay at 8:20am and the D3A Val dive bombers completed their dive bombing attacks and departing the area. Afterwards, the Tainan Kokutai Zeros dove down to strafe Gurney Airfield (No. 1 Strip, Fall River), firing at LB-30 Liberator AL-818 that was already destroyed and unservicable.

Afterwards, Ninomiya was flying with NP Kihachi Ninomiya and observed the ditching of A6M3 piloted by Kakimoto and thought his Zero had ditched in very shallow water because they could see it from the air in very clear water. They dove down and strafed the water, in an attempt to destroy it to prevent it from being salvaged by the Allies.

While strafing, the were surprised by two P-40E Kittyhawks from 75 Squadron piloted by Les Jackson (C. O.) and his wingman Sgt Roy Riddel, who shot down both Zeros.

Thanks to Osamu Tagaya and Edward Rogers for additional information

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Last Updated
January 5, 2018


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