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  Ki-49-II Helen Manufacture Number 3297  
9th Hikodan
61st Sentai

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Click For Enlargement
December 29, 1943

Pilot  1st Lt. Negi (survived)
Force Landed  December 16, 1943

Aircraft History
Built by Nakajima during early August 1943. Uncoded serial number 297.

At the time of its final mission had engines 876 (right) 884 (left) made in May 1943. Painted in motted green upper surfaces unpainted lower. No tail markings were pained, aside from a white fuselage strip near the tail.

Mission History
One of seven bombers that took off from Dagua Airfield piloted by 1st Lt. Negi. Escorted by sixteen Ki-43 Oscars provided close escort (including nine from 248th Sentai), plus eighteen Type 3 fighters as top cover.

On the way to their target, one bomber aborted. Their mission was to attack Arawe, but were spotted at about 13,000' P-38s escorting B-24s on a mission to bomb Cape Gloucester.

The bombers attempted to climb to 20,000', but were by 25 P-38 Lightnings of the 431st FS and 432nd FS east of Umboi Island, within sight of Cape Gloucester Airfield. Five of the bombers were shot down before reaching their target, and were incorrectly claimed as Betty bombers by the Lightnings.

This sole survivor of six made an emergency landing, with wheels retracted up on Cape Gloucester No. 2 Strip, and was photographed on the airfield by Americans over the next two days.

Captured by American Marines on December 29, 1943 at Cape Gloucester No. 2 Strip, it was reported in burned out condition, apparently burned by the Japanese after the force landing.

"Nakajima Ki-49 Serial Numbers" by Jim Long for production data
Tuluvu's Air War by Richard Dunn
Landings in Western New Britain | Aircraft of Tuluvu
Setting Suns page 34 Setting Suns II page 96

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Last Updated
December 2, 2018


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