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|Pilot 2nd Lt. Jack
G. Morris, O-25665 (survived) Ridgefield, WA
Crashed February 10, 1944
Built by Vought. Delivered to the U. S. Navy (USN) as F4U-1 Corsair bureau number 02566. Disassembled and shipped overseas to the South Pacific and reassembled.
Assigned to the U. S. Marine Corps (USMC), Marine Air Wing 1 (MAW-1), Marine Air Group 11 (MAG-11), Marine Fighting Squadron 214 "Black Sheep" VMF-214. No known nickname, nose art or squadron number.
This Corsair is only known to have flown one combat mission with the squadron. On December 23, 1943 took off at 12:30pm piloted by 1st Lt. Edwin A. Harper on a fighter sweep over Rabaul and landed safely at 2:00pm.
Afterwards, transfered to Marine Fighting Squadron 218 (VMF-218). No known nose art or nickname. Assigned to pilot 2nd Lt. Jack G. Morris.
Jack G. Morris adds:
"On the way to combat zone on January 31 I flew an old rehab with birdcage canopy on ferry hop 600 miles from Espiritu Santo to Guadalcanal, gladly left it in the fighter pool at Henderson. It backfired whenever I throttled back, made me nervous. Its was F4U Corsair 02566."
On February 10, 1944 took off Piva Uncle (Piva North Airfield) on Bougainville piloted by 2nd Lt. Jack G. Morris on a mission to escort B-25 Mitchells on a bombing mission against Vunakanau Airfield near Rabaul along with other escorting USN, USAAF and RNZAF fighters.
Over the target, Morris' plane was 'tail end Charlie' in the whole formation when he was shot down by an enemy fighter and wounded above his eye and momentarily passed out. Just before crashing, he awoke and managed to bail out.
Morris landed safely in the jungle and spent the next eight days behind enemy lines, following a river towards the sea. When he reached the coast, he deployed his life raft and was spotted in the open sea and rescued by Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) Catalina NZ4013 piloted by by Fg Off McGrane and returned to duty.
In December 1990, the wreckage was recovered from the crash site and placed on display outdoors at the Kokopo
War Museum. The wreckage was put on display as it had been discovered with nothing removed, restored or changed. The wreckage includes .50 caliber ammunition and twisted metal that makes it an interesting presentation
a WWII relic.
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