Oro Province Work in Progress
I'm also begining to up the tempo in Oro Province,following
up on about 6-8 reports of wrecks,including a couple in freshwater
ponds.Another report concerns a recently located wreck where the villagers
have salvaged 7 pistols and 2 MGs.last year I got a report of dogtag
details of a MIA B-24 gunner in the same area; so I'm keen to visit.It
will take a two day boat trip however and funds are short I'll send
some photos soon.
(l to r) AA Gun over Boram, Aerial
MG, Artillery trailer and bomb trolley
Just had a brief visit to Wewak, which I always enjoy.
Iin the afternoon visiting villages on the edge of town.Located a
JAAF bomb trolley in good condition ,several Japanese dogtags, apparently
from Japanese AA positions near Boram Airfield, several Japanese rifles,
light and heavy Machine Guns etc. Also saw four sets of human remains
[probably Japanese,but one at least was as tall as me,and a mess kit
, while in a Japanese tin, contained a Knife and fork.
(l to r) Ki 43 Oscar Engine, Japanese
Heavy MG, collection of relics in village
Sunday I went out past But Airstrip to look at a
wrecked Oscar on the forest floor. Engine OK,centre section and tail
gone,but a wing and a half and the body section were there,although
bent and torn.The trip out was a good exercise in 4-wheel driving.We
went down a track closed over the wet season, forded several rivers
and crossed a swamp,pushed and shoved on several occassions, but got
through. Went back a better way.
The dog tag translates to
1 9 3 1 (serial number)
(l to r) Japanese bones and dog
About Japanese Dog Tags...
Thanks to Henry
Sakaida for this information.
Japanese dogtags usually did not have the wearer's full name...the
two kanjis ("moto" and "ban") could possibly be
a surname, but I will have to look in my Japanese surname dictionary
to see if there is such a combination. "Ban" can also mean
#, and "moto" by itself, I have no idea. You will never
be able to identify the owner of the dogtag through the serial numbers,
and especially if it came out of New Guinea. Entire units were wiped
out and all records lost. The soldiers were cut off from supplies
and fled into the jungles where they died of starvation. Some resorted
to cannabalism. Veteran foot soldiers from New Guinea were very very
John Douglas writes WWII wreck related
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