|Pilot 1st Lt. Raymond A. Morrissey, O-660180 (MIA / KIA) IL
MIA February 13, 1943
MACR 605 / 611
a earned the Silver Star with Oak Leaf Cluster, Air Medal and Purple Heart (posthumously).
Built by Curtiss as a model H87-B3 in Buffalo, New York during 1941. This aircraft was the 511 of 699 P-40Fs powered by a Rolls Royce Merlin engine with a shorter fuselage. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as P-40F Warhawk serial number 41-14110.
Disassembled and shipped overseas to the South Pacific then reassembled.
Assigned to the 13th Air Force, 347th Fighter Group 68th Fighter Squadron. No known nickname or nose art. This aircraft was assigned to the 44th Fighter Squadron Detachment (44th FS Detachment) operating from Fighter 2 (Kukum) on Guadalcanal.
When lost, the Missing Air Crew Report 605 (MACR 605) list this aircraft as P-40F Warhawk serial number 41-14110. When lost engine V-1650-1 serial number unknown. Weapon serial numbers unknown.
On February 13, 1943 took off from Fighter 2 (Kukum) on Guadalcanal on an escort mission with 4 P-38s and 7 P-40s escorting 6 B-24s on a bombing mission against shipping in the Shortland-Kahilli-Buin area. The weather was good with clear visibility. Inbound, 3 P-40s and 2 P-38s aborted the mission due to engine trouble, leaving the B-24s with an escort of 2 P-38s and 4 P-40s: this aircraft, P-40F 41-14102, P-40F piloted by Bade and P-40F piloted by Westbrook.
Over the target, the formation was intercepted by 39 enemy fighters including A6M Zeros and A6M2-N Rufe floatplanes. This P-40 was last seen circling Kahilli Airfield on Bougainville. When this aircraft failed to return, Morrissey was officially declared Missing In Action (MIA).
Justin Taylan adds:
"I researched this mission at the Tokyo Defense archives. A total of 39 Japanese aircraft intercepted: 11 Rufes (one aborted) of 802 Kōkūtai, 20 Zeros of the 252 Kōkūtai and 9 Zeros of the 204 Kōkūtai."
Morrissey was officially declared dead the day of the mission. He is memorialized on the tablets of the missing at Manila American Cemetery.
USAF Serial Number Search Results - P-40F Warhawk 41-14110
"14110 (347th FG) MIA Feb 13, 1943, Kahili. MACR 605"
Missing Air Crew Report 605 (MACR 605) related to Morrissey
was created September 11, 1943
Missing Air Crew Report 611 (MACR 611) pilot Johnson was created created September 11, 1943 (with map circa June 1943 indicating the approximate loss locations of 1. Morrissey, 2. Johnson, 3. Sooter and 4. Carter)
Kodochosho, 802nd Kōkūtai, February 13, 1943
Kodochosho, 204th Kōkūtai, February 13, 1943
Kodochosho, 252nd Kōkūtai, February 13, 1943
Guadalcanal and the Origins of the 13th Air Force pages 180-181
Vampire Squadron page 25-26
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May 22, 2018