Lingayen Airfield is located at the town of Lingayen, parallel to the beach running roughly east to west bordering Lingayen Gulf. Also known as "Lingayen Aerodrome" or "Lingayen Field".
Built prewar by the U. S. Army or possibly the Philippine Army. Used as a landing field by U. S. Army pilots flying familiarization flights over northern Luzon. A Philippine Army contingent (most likely the troops of the 21st Division, Philippine Army) was also stationed in the area.
On December 8, 1941 after the Japanese attacks on Clark and Iba some of the U. S. Army pilots landed their P-40s at Lingayen Airfield. During December 1941, occupied by the Japanese Army when they landed at Lingayen Gulf. This airfield was used by the Japanese during the occupation by both Army and Navy aircraft as part of the ferry route from Formosa and Japan.
Japanese units based at Lingayen
98th Sentai (Ki-67 Peggy)
On January 9, 1945 the U. S. Army made an amphibious landing at Lingayen Gulf and liberated Lingayen on the same day. At Lingayen Airfield, American forces captured several wrecked aircraft including Ki-67 Peggy and G4M2 Betty 12142.
Lingayen Airfield was repaired and improved, including a portion on the beach built by the 836th Engineer Aviation Battalion, and Filipino
labor, using 'sawali' (woven palm fronds) with marston
matting over top to form the surface of the runway, to keep the sand down. The repairs were completed in late February 1945 and it was immediately put into use by fighter and tactical reconnaissance squadrons, and was capable of handling B-25 and larger aircraft. Used as an emergency field for damaged aircraft returning from strikes against Formosa that were damaged or too short on fuel to reach Clark Field.
Also known as U. S. Army APO 70. During July 1945 the control tower was code named "Goatee Tower"
Japanese air Raids
January 29, 1945 a solitary plane dropped four bombs onto the runway.
Ken Barber adds:
"The Filipino matting was called 'sawali'
(woven material used for houses) and was made of woven fine split bamboo. The 38th
BG was not at Lingayen but rather at nearby MANGALDAN air field, a much bigger
facility I believe. My friend Harry Terrell was with the 38th and flew missions
Travis Smith, 41st FS P-51 pilot remembers:
"We were stationed briefly at Lingayen, but because of trouble flying the Mustangs off that strip because the matting and our tail wheels. We ended up at Clark Field, swapping sites with a P-38 outfit. They defiantly got the worst of the deal."
American units based at Lingayen during 1945
18th FG, HQ, 12th FS (P-38) Sansapor Jan 13 - Feb 27,
1945 San Jose
18th FG, 70th FS (P-38) Sansapor Jan 19 - February
26, 1945 San Jose
547th NFS (P-38, P-61) San Jose Jan
16 - Aug 13, 45 Ie Shima
71st TRG, 82nd TRS (F-6, P-40) San Jose Jan 17-20, 45 - ?
71st TRG, 110th TRS (P-40)San Jose Jan 22 - July 28, 45 Okinawa
38th BG, 822nd BS (B-25) Morotai Jan 29 - July 24, 1945Okinawa
38th BG, 823rd BS (B-25) Morotai Jan 29 - July 24, 1945 Okinawa
38th BG, 405th BS (B-25) Morotai Jan 30 - July 21, 1945 Okinawa
38th BG, 71st BS (B-25) Morotai Feb 1 - July 25, 1945 Okinawa
49th FG, 7th FS (P-38) San Jose Feb 25 - Aug 16, 1945 Okinawa
49th FG, 8th FS (P-38) San Jose Feb 27 - Aug 16, 1945 Okinawa
49th FG, 9th FS (P-38) San Jose Feb 26 - Aug 16, 1945 Okinawa
71st TRG, 17th
TRS (B-25s) San Jose April - July 29, 1945Ie Shima
35th FG, 41st FS (P-51) Mangaldan April 16 - 20, 45 Clark
35th FG, HQ Morotai/Mangaldan January 20 - April 19, 1945 Clark
35th FG, 39th FS (P-47) Mangaldan April 10 - April 21, 1945 Clark
475th FG, HQ, 431st FS (P-38) Clark April 19 - Aug 8, 45 Ie Shima
475th FG, 432nd FS (P-38) Clark April 19 - Aug 8, 45 Ie Shima
475th FG, 433nd FS (P-38) Clark April 19 - Aug 8, 45 Ie Shima
475th FG, HQ Clark April 20 - Aug 8, 45 Ie Shima
309th BW HQ San Marcelino May 1, 1945 - ?
6th PRG, 26th PRS (F-5) Biak Jan 16 - July 22, 45 Clark / Aug 6 Okinawa
Capital Compound and memorial is located behind the airstrip. The present runway uses part of the original wartime runway but can only accommodate light to medium aircraft. Airport code: RPUG.
Tony Feredo visited in 2004:
Lingayen Field was shortened after the war. Its original
length covered the grounds of the Lingayen provincial capital
and its revetments were near the road that you see now. You have to drive further down the road near the
Philippine National Police HQ. You can't miss it as
I even walked in the airstrip itself. The length reach part of the capitol. I have photos of Privateers and B-24s taking off from Lingayen as well."
Thanks to Tony Feredo for additional information.
Do you have photos or additional information to add?
January 9, 2018