Pacific Wrecks
Pacific Wrecks    
  Missing In Action (MIA) Prisoners Of War (POW) Unexploded Ordnance (UXO)  
Chronology Locations Aircraft Ships Submit Info How You Can Help Donate
 
    Colonia Airfield (Yap Airport) Yap State Federated States of Micronesia
Click For Enlargement
Click For Enlargement

June 22, 1944

Location
Lat 9° 29' 56N Long 138° 4' 57E  Colonia Airfield is located near Colonia on southern end of Yap Island in Yap State in the Federated States of Microneisa. Today known as Yap International Airport (Yap Airport).

Construction
Built by the Japanese, the base was completed in May 1944.

Wartime History
During the Pacific War, Colonia Airfield based the 61st Air Flotilla and 22nd Air Flotilla.

Japanese units based at Yap
523 Kokutai (D4Y Judy) late May - July 1944 (disbanded)
202 Kokutai (A6M Zero) late May - July 1944 (disbanded)
261 Kokutai (A6M Zero) late May - July 1944 (disbanded)
265 Kokutai (A6M Zero) mid June - July 1944 (disbanded)
201 Kokutai Buntai S306 (survivors of 263 and 343 Kokutai) July 16 - August 2, 1944

On April 1, 1944 Colonia Airfield was first located by U. S. Navy carrier aircraft that attacked during late June 1944 until August 1944.

American missions against Colonia Airfield
April 1, 1944 - August 10, 1944

During 1944, attacked by U. S. Navy (USN) carrier aircraft and U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) B-24 Liberators. On July 16, 1944 buntai-cho Lt. (j.g.) Naoshi Kanno, formally took over the air defense of Yap with his newly activated Buntai S306. By early August, the remaining air strength of eight fighters was transferred to Palau, leaving twenty or so unserviceable aircraft dispersed around the airfield. Occupied by the Japanese until the official surrender of Japan on September 2, 1945.

Today
Still in use today as Yap International Airport (Yap Airport), small airport and port of entry. The single runway is oriented 25/07 measures 6,000' x 150' surfaced with asphalt. Airport codes: ICAO: PTYA / IATA: YAP.

The wreckage of several Japanese aircraft damaged during air raids remained to the side of the runway. The ground in this area was at one time littered with airfield debris: spare parts, rusted guns and ammunition.

Don Baer visited in 1976:
"I was on Yap in 1976. At the time there were two Zeros to the side of the runway. They were in fair condition then."

A6M5 Model 52 Zero
Abandoned at the airfield, center section with wings.

A6M5 Model 52 Zero
Abandoned at the airfield, center section with wings.

A6M2 Model 21 Zero
Abandoned at the airfield, center section with right wing section.

B5N2 Kate
Abandoned at the airfield.

L2D Tabby
Abandoned at the airfield.

G4M Betty
Abandoned at the airfield.

75mm Anti-Aircraft Gun (Type 88)
Emplaced at the airfield

Recovered Aircraft
During 1980, two groups of Japanese restorers salvaged aircraft wrecks from the airfield. D4Y1 Judy 4316 was recovered by Nobuhiko End. Several Zeros A6M5 1493, A6M5 4708, A6M2 92717, A6M2 91518 were recovered by Nobuo Harada.

D4Y1 Judy Manufacture Number 4316 Tail "Taka"-13
Salvaged in 1988, restored displayed at Yasukuni Museum

A6M5 Zero Manufacture Number 1493
Recovered 1980, partially restored in Japan.

A6M5 Zero Manufacture Number 4708
Recovered 1980, restored to static display in Japan.

A6M2 Zero Manufacture Number 92717
Recovered 1980, cockpit only, used for parts of other restorations.

A6M2 Zero Manufacture Number 91518
Recovered 1980, restored to static display in Japan.

References
Yap's Air Campaign by Richard Dunn

Contribute Information
Do you have photos or additional information to add?

Last Updated
January 9, 2018

 

Map
Map
Fallingrain

  Discussion Forum Daily Updates Reviews Museums Interviews & Oral Histories  
 
Pacific Wrecks Inc. All rights reserved.
Donate Now Facebook Twitter YouTube Google Plus Instagram