|Pilot Lt. David H. Pope, O-082732 (MIA / KIA) DC
MIA July 18, 1943
Built by Grumman Corporation in Bethpage, New York as a model G-36 with manually operated folding wings. Delivered to the United States Navy (USN) as F4F-4 Wildcat bureau number 11978.
Assigned to USS Sangamon (CVE-26) to squadron VF-28 "Wolves". No known nickname or nose art.
On July 18, 1943 took off from Banika Island in the Russell Island Group on an escort mission for B-24s bombing Kahili Airfield on southern Bougainville. Over the target, intercepted enemy fighters. When this Wildcat failed to return, it was officially declared Missing In Action (MIA).
Pope was officially declared dead on the day of the mission. He is memorialized on the tablets of the missing at Manila American Cemetery. He earned the Silver Star, Air Medal and Purple Heart, posthumously.
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - David H. Pope
Lt David H Pope (tablets of the missing)
Navy Serial Number Search Results F4F Wildcat 11978
USN Overseas Aircraft Loss List July 1943 F4F Wildcat 11978 piloted by Pope missing 7/18/1943
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January 5, 2018