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|Pilot 2nd Lt Harold G. Schlendering (survived)
Gunner PFC Edward Oliver Smith, 296050 (MIA / KIA) MS
Crashed June 4, 1942
Built by Douglas at El Segundo. Constructors Number 652. Delivered to the U. S. Navy (USN) as SBD-2 Dauntless bureau number 2148. Assigned to the U. S. Marine Corps (USMC) to 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, Marine Air Group 22 (MAG-22) to Marine Scout-Bombing Squadron 241 (VMSB-241). No known nickname or nose art.
Col. Ira L. Kimes, commanding officer of MAG-22 ordered the squadron to "Attack enemy carriers bearing 320° distance 180 miles course 135° speed 20 knots." The formation included a total of 27 Marine aircraft including sixteen SBD-2 Dauntless dive bombers led by SBD-2 Dauntless 2129 piloted by Major Lofton R. Henderson plus eleven SB2U-3 Vindicators led by Major Benjamin W. Norris.
Flying faster than the Vindicators, the Dauntless formation climbed to 9,000' and sighted the Japanese fleet at 7:55am including at least two enemy carriers. Henderson's formation circled to 8,500' in preparation for initiating a glide bombing attack from 4,000'.
At roughly 8,000' the formation was intercepted by Japanese A6M2 Zeros. As lead aircraft, Henderson's SBD-2 Dauntless 2129 was one of the first targeted by Zeros and shot down.
After Henderson was shot down, Captain Glidden took command of the rest of the formation and attacked despite heavy anti-aircraft fire and Zeros. This SBD sustained damage to the elevator controls and killed gunner Smith.
Although the Marines claimed one of the carriers was burning and smoking heavily, they claimed three direct hits and two near misses. From the Japanese side, three SBDs from VMSB-241 likely scored near misses against Kaga at 8:30 and four near misses against Hiryū at 8:50am. Possibly, one of the SBDs (misidentified as a fighter by the Japanese) strafed Hiryū and killed four crew. Nagumo erroneously noted that Akagi and Soryu sustained bomb hits but this seems to have been reported in error as the damage caused to both carriers were likely caused by U. S. Navy SBD Dauntless dive bombers later in the morning.
Damaged, this aircraft turned back to base and managed to reach within eight miles from the reef at Midway Atoll before the engine failed.
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