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  G4M1 Model 11 Betty Manufacture Number 1570 Tail 377
IJN
705 Kōkūtai
6th Buntai

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M Claringbould 1998

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Stan Gajda 1995

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Stan Gajda 1998

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Justin Taylan 2003

Aircraft History
Built by Mitsubishi at Nagoya No. 3 Works, completed during January 1943. Delivered to the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN). Assigned to the 705 Kokutai, 6th Buntai. Tail 377 painted in white.

Mission History
During 1943, this Betty crashed into a jungle covered hillside near the Bonegi River on Guadalcanal. The entire crew was killed on impact.

Wreckage
During July 1943 a team from the U. S. Army visited the crash site and located the manufacture nuber 1570 and tail number 377. Four bodies were found and left undisturbed. At the crash site, a document dated May 12, 1942 was found that had the names of the crew of 377 and 378. This document was turned over to Allied Translator and Interpreter Section (ATIS), but not translated. Afterwards, this bomber was reported in "Crashed Enemy Aircraft Report No. 10.

Jim Long adds:
"Betty No. 1570 with white tail marking 377 was inspected by Allied air intelligence personnel on Guadalcanal during 1943 and reported upon in Crashed Enemy Aircraft Report No. 10, issued by the Office of the Assistant Chief of Air Staff, Intelligence, Washington D.C., dated 16 August 1943. The plane crashed in flames in dense jungle near the Bonegi River. The fuselage stencil was noted and the data on it was preserved. The stencil had three lines:
Model: Type 1 Land-borne Attack Plane Model 11
MFG No: Mitsubishi 1570
Belong To : (Field left blank)

During the 1970s, the nose section and part of the outer wing including the Hinomaru was recovered to the Vilu War Museum.

During 1995, John Innes visited the crash site and found bones and recovered a 7.7mm machine gun and 20mm tail cannon from the crash site. During 2003, these weapons were donated by him to the Solomon Islands National Museum. The tail with " 377" was still visible.

Michael Claringbould , next visited the site in 1996:
"The marking "H 359" hand-painted on one engine exhaust. Air Group 705 (formerly the Misawa Air Group) and used the letter "H" as an air group identification letter during 1942 and early 1943. But for a time during 1943, perhaps from April to June, Air Group 705 displayed no air group symbols on its aircraft and instead used just individual aircraft numbers for identification. I notified the Japanese of the bones present. The relatives visited the site by helicopter and held a memorial service there and recovered them."

Justin Taylan visited the site in September 2003:
"I visited this site and was impressed with the complexity of the site. Having crashed over a jungle covered ravine area, the wreckage is widely dispersed."

References
Many sources incorrectly state this Betty was lost on June 13, 1943 or June 14, 1943 on a night bombing and was intercepted and shot down by a P-70 night fighter.
Monograph 122
Crashed Enemy Aircraft Report No. 10
(CEAR No. 10) August 16, 1943: relates to a Betty 11 near Bonegi River, Guadalcanal, no date of crash given, inspection team noted manufacture number 1570 tail 377 assigned to the 6th Buntai, section 64D. Shot down by a U. S. fighter on a night bombing mission. Document dated May 12, 1942 found at the crash site lists the names of all the crew aboard 377 and 378. This bomber's crew included Ishisiso [sp?], pilot Fujimatsu Hayashi [sp?], observer Takeshi Ozawa, gunner Takao Watanabi and Mischio [sp?].
Japanese Aircraft Makers Plates and Markings, Report No. 20, March 20, 1945, page 15
Japanese Aircraft Makers Plates and Markings Report No. 68 lists Betty 1570 at Bonegi River, Guadalcanal date of crash June 14, 1943
Air'Tell Research Report "G4M Serial Numbers" by Jim Long
Thanks to Michael Claringbould, William Bartsch, Richard Dunn, Jim Long and Minoru Kamada for additional information

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Last Updated
January 9, 2018

 

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