|Pilot Lt Jôji Yamashita (KIA)
Crashed August 27, 1942
Assigned to the Tainan Kōkūtai with tail code V-???. Unclear if this aircraft was an A6M2 or A6M3.
One of five Tainan Kokutai Zeros that took off from Buna Airfield on a mission to escort 2nd Kokutai D3A Val dive bombers, and arrived over Milne Bay, at 8:20am due to bad weather as the dive bombers were completing 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. Over the airfield, two of the Zeros including Kakimoto were hit by anti-aircraft fire.
Yamashita reported over his radio that he was leaving the area to gain altitude and encountered a flight of B-26 Mauraders from the 22nd Bombardment Group, HQ and 33rd Bombard Squadron searching for Japanese shipping. He made unsuccessful firing passes before going down. It is unknown if his was brought down by defensive fire from the B-26 or if it was the result of the damage from anti-aircraft fire, or a combination of both, and likely crashed on land.
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January 5, 2018