Commissioned at NAS San Diego, California. Commanded by Major William K. Pottinger at Camp Kearney, CA on March 1, 1942.
Initially equipped with SB2Us for training; then transitioned to Douglas SBD Dauntless dive bomber in November 1942.
The squadron departed the United States on October 15, 1942 on the SS Lurline with seven pilots and 57 enlisted men. Nineteen more pilots arrived at Henderson Field on Guadalcanal November 12, 1942.
On November 17, 1942 the squadron entered combat flying the TBF Avenger. Later, nine additional pilots arrived as replacements.
On March 23, 1943 lost was TBF Avenger 06091 (MIA).
On May 19 1943 thirty TBFs from VT-11 and VMSB-143 damaged the Houn Maru and force her aground. 6 48' N, 155 49E, a total loss.
On June 1, 1943 the squadron was redesignated VMTB-143.
Returned to the United States to Santa Barbara during June 1944 and redesignationed VMTB(CVS)-143.
Sent overseas again during April 1945. On V-J Day was aboard USS Gilbert Islands (CVE-107).
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