1945 in combat
Glen Wallace's War Diary 2
Editor's note: These are the pages from Glen's
diaries exactly as he wrote them at the time. He has attached
comments to add to or explain the entry. Click the stars for more
Wally, Pappert, Coumbe & Godson. 14
Jap planes splashed by these four Corsair pilots.
10 MARCH 1945
Went aboard the USS Essex. ( CV9 ) this is to be our home on
forthcoming cruise - Mog Mog Island !!
11 MARCH 1945
2015 While at the movie a suicide dive bomber went past the
flight deck and crashed into the USS Randolph ( CV -15 ) - GQ
(General Quarters)secured at 2110.
14 MARCH 1945
CAG(Commander Air Group) received memo from COMAIRPAC commending
Air Group 83 on good work in Hawaiian area. We had a group exercise
and really fouled up the works.
18 MARCH 1945.
Made strike against Kyushu. Lost three pilots, Stevens, Garner
and Sigman. (Steve was my division Leader) I shot down two Jap
planes... could only claim one... the other a probable. Was
attacked by about 25 Hamps over Tomi Taki... Scared! Pappert
and Coumbe each flamed a Zeke plus one probable for Pappert.
Made two landings aboard Essex in F4U.
19 MARCH 1945
Second day of strikes on Kyushu. We damaged a Carrier and Battleship
in Kure harbor. I was flying wing on Ham Reidy when he shot
down a Mert. Pappert, Coulmbe and I now have a new Division
Leader. Ship was under attack all day. One Kamakize nicked #2
Elevator guard rail. Danny Gray made water landing.. We lost
three Bombers and one Torpedo crew. The Wasp, Enterprize, Langley,
Intrepid and Franklin hit. The Franklin has been burning all
20 MARCH 1945
Flew CAP again today...Chased Bogies all afternoon. Saw our
AA shoot down one Mert and one F6F. The Enterprise was hit again.
21 MARCH 1945
Flew CAP. Bogies all over - mostly Bettys and Merts,, Murt got
a Mert! 42 Bettys, 12 Zekes and 5 Merts shot down by CAP. 281
planes destroyed past 4 days.
22 MARCH 1945
23 MARCH 1945
Fighter sweeps on Okinawa... Weather very bad -- solid from
200 to 12000 feet.
24 MARCH 1945
Fighter sweep... Fired rockets and strafed Yontan Field and
nearby town... AA pretty bad..
25 MARCH 1945
Ship refueled... got two letters.
26 MARCH 1945
Strike against Okinawa. Bombed and strafed submarine pens, barracks
and warehouses... Two subs sunk. (1000 pound bombs)
27 MARCH 1945
Flew TCAP, (Target Combat Air Patrol), over Kerme Shima... Strafed
boats... Marcinkoski Made water landing and was picked up by
an OS2U. (Float seaplane).
28 MARCH 1945
Strike on Minami Daito Jima... Dropped 1000# bomb on AA position.
Five planes damaged and lost on flight deck this morning. One
plane, two pilots overboard. One Marine killed. Refueled...got
29 MARCH 1945
Searched for the Jap fleet around Kyushu - didn`t find it. Kenny
King flamed by Zeros. Jap plane made run on ship while I was
strapped in plane on flight deck...Bomb near miss on USS Cabot.
Ham Reidy shot down a Zeke. We got four Marine Replacement Pilots.
Coumbe and I got checked out on 20 MM deck guns... (while on
30 MARCH 1945
Strikes on Okinawa. Bombed and strafed more sub pens and PT
boats. Gil and Harris on a 325 mile search jumped 5 Japs. shot
down two of them. I ran out of targets so dropped my belly tank
and strafed that.
31 MARCH 1945
On standby all day... Didn`t fly... The Skipper is ailing hardly
ever flys anymore. Pappert, Coumbe and I may get a new Division
Leader. TT Coleman and Maki each flamed a Jap today... Greek
strafed a horse. We lost one Bomber Pilot and two crewmen. (Two
1 APRIL 1945 (Love Day)
Strike on Okinawa in support of invading troops. Bombed, fired
rockets & strafed. Lahey went down in flames from AA. Torpedo
Skipper made a water landing & was picked up by a can. A
Jap pilot in an Oscar landed on Yonton Airfield & the Marines
shot him when he got out of the plane.
2 APRIL 1945
No strike today - refueled - No mail - Rough Sea! Two typhoons
3 APRIL 1945
Strike day. The air group shot down 17 planes - Gunner Way went
in the drink. I manned a 20 mm during condition one.
4 APRIL 1945
Strike on Okinawa. Two direct rocket hits on barracks - strafed
gun emplacement & boat houses.
5 APRIL 1945
No strikes - refueled & re-armed - NO mail. According to
latest rumor Pappert, Coumbe & I may have a new division
leader, Gunner Way. Also we are going back to the F6F squad.
along with Ham Reidy's division. Cmdr. Southerland welcomed
us back so it may not be all scuttlebutt.
6 APRIL 1945
Strike on Kikai Jima - chased Japs all over. I helped shoot
one down! The air group. Flamed 6 planes today. Lost one Bomber
& one F6F ( Berube ) Several DD's were hit by Japs.
(DD = Destroyer (also called Can which was a nick name because
they were as thin skinned as a tin can)
7 APRIL 1945
We finally found the Jap Fleet - at least part of it. Sunk a
Yamato BB- 2 CL - 4 DD's. I flew 5 1/2 hours in an F6F on one
hop. The air group shot down 10 planes. Ship under attack by
Japs all day. The Hancock hit by a Kamikaze ( 30 killed. ) We
lost all four of the Marine Replacement Pilots. One Bomber lost.
Pappert, Coumbe & I flew with El Groupo. Had a ring-side
seat for the whole show. We got direct hits in the Pacific Ocean
with 1000 lb Bombs!
8 APRIL 1945
Flew Target Combat Patrol over Okinawa. One attack made on ship
by Jap plane - he missed. It seems that Pappert, Coumbe and
I are flying for the F6F's & F4U's to. This old ---- has
got to come to a focus. Three of the four Marines were picked
9 APRIL 1945
No flying today. Re-fueled & took on ammo & new planes.
Got 22 letters ( Feb18 to March 3) Joe knaus ran ran out of
gas & went into the drink - 4 ½ hours without a belly
tank is too much! Reidy's & our division are going to adopt
a new insignia - "The Free Lancers" because we are
flying for both squadrons.
10 APRIL 1945
Strike on Minami Daito Jima. Bombed and strafed AA positions
- weather closed in this PM Danny Gray is lost and has no radio.
He must be almost out of gas now. ( 2000 )
11 APRIL 1945
Danny has not been found. Hank Graham, our exec. was flamed
by Jap today?? The ship was under attack most of the day. Two
planes dived on us. One near miss. It shook up up considerable.
Ships A.A. splashed 9 Kamikazes. Don't see how we can take 4
months of this and come out alive
12 APRIL 1945
Flew combat patrol over Okinawa - bogies all around but we didn't
get any. The air group ( F6F's & F4U's ) shot down 13 today.
Pappert, Coumbe & I are definitely in the F6F sqd. now.
At least until the ship gets in more F4U's.
13 APRIL 1945
Flew target cap at Okinawa-searched for downed pilot.I found
part of life raft. Coumbe found and exploded a Jap mine.
14 APRIL 1945
Re-fueled - got two letters & a card from my boy. Flew combat
air patrol over ship. Tallyhoed one weather balloon.
15 APRIL 1945
Flew T-cap over Okinawa - no bogies - just routine- Ham Reidy
was in a sweep over kyshu - shot down 2 planes. Clem Wear got
one too. Tomorrow we have the same thing! To hell with that
16 APRIL 1945
Started on sweep over Kyushu - got as far as Amamia O Shima
( about ½ way ) when the Skipper's plane went bad. We
fired rockets & strafed that island & I escorted him
back. Pappert & Coube went on & Pap helped shoot down
a Zeke. We lost Bouldin, Wear and Tommy Ward. Wear and Ward
went into the water & a rescue mission is out now. Bouldin
is a P.W. Reidy saw him on the ground beside his plane with
some Jap kids around him. I could only get three guns to fire
& Ham only one! Our fleet was under attack all day - 8 ships
hit - 2 DD's sunk. The Intrepid was hit. One two engined plane
was splashed just now ( 1900 ) Tommy Ward was picked up but
Wear couldn't be found. Maybe a sub got him.
17 APRIL 1945
Flew Cap - Fleet under attack most of the day - Our AA splashed
three KK"s diving on ships. Rescue mission picked up Clem
Wear, up by Kyushu & a night fighter who was shot down last
night. Two Intrepid pilots shot down a B-25 The Intrepid is
18 APRIL 1945
Re-fueled today - got two letters- One of our bombers spun in
during landing - pilot not recovered - tomorrow big day at Okinawa.
Ace, ( Lt.Rach ) was killed on take- off this morning. Today
we have been in combat one month & have lost 9 pilots in
the F4U sqd alone - 17%.
19 APRIL 1945
Flew two hops today. The first one was a strike on southern
part of Okinawa in support of the big push by ground troops.
Bombed & strafed the town of Iwa. We blew it all to hell
and set the place on fire... The second hop was a CAP over the
BB's shelling the Island. Expecting a big KK attack tomorrow.
Clem & Ward are back.
20 APRIL 1945
Strike on Southern Okinawa. Bombed, strafed & fired rockets
in the town of Inasomi. Mistook a lot of corngrinders for gun
employments. Kincaid just made 2500th landing aboard the Essex.
This air group has made over 3000 landings in past 30 days.
21 APRIL 1945
Flew "T-Cap" over ringleader base at Okinawa. The
big Jap attack we expected didn't materialize today - probably
22 APRIL 1945
Flew 5 hours air support hop... Fired rockets & strafed,
( 2000 rounds ) trenches, caves, gun employments and enemy tanks
near town of Kazamito. 5 Jap planes shot down near task force
this afternoon. Last transmission of on Jap pilot just before
being shot down was "Banzi." Tomorrow is re-fueling
day - looking for lots of mail.
23 APRIL 1945
Re-fueled and re-armed today. Pappert, Coume and I went aboard
a DD ( via Breeches Buoy ) for transportation to the USS Bougainville.
Picked up 3 F4U's... Got 14 letters.
24 APRIL 1945
Didn't fly today! Bad weather - 0 - 0- . The first time we have
failed to aviate because of weather since we started flying
out of here.
25 APRIL 1945
Bad weather today but we flew just the same. Target CAP over
Cognac Base North of Ie Shima- ceiling 300 ft. Visibility ½
Bad weather again- got in some instrument flying- bombed &
strafed trenches & caves on South Okinawa. Set three houses
on fire - looks rugged over there- saw mid-air collision between
two bombers.Pilot& Crewmen bailed out & were rescued
27 APRIL 1945
Re-fueled- re-armed- Got 4 letters- Nice weather- Everything
28 APRIL 1945
Flew CAP over Fleet- Lots of Bogies hit Okinawa. The BG
( Battle Group ) shot down 29 - we had a night attack- total
shot down - 32.
29 APRIL 1945
Under attack during afternoon- The F6F's got 3. Lost one pilot.
Heard garbled word on the German surrender. One of our hospital
ships was bombed 167 killed, wounded & missing.
30 APRIL 1945
Flew CAP oat 25000 feet over base- Routine- no Bogies, no attack.
Scuttlebutt has it we are going back to Ulitni the 14th.
1 MAY 1945
Re-fueled today - No mail.
2 MAY 1945
Flew CAP- routine, some friendly planes strafed our own troops
on Okinawa - Killed 7 Wounded 17. Bad weather!
3 MAY 1945
Didn't fly - weather very bad- most hops canceled- only CAPS
flying. Our room looks like a work shop. Everybody making watch
4 MAY 1945
Good weather - the air group shot down 38 Japs today - lost
Gibby from our squadron. One DD sunk & a couple damaged
by KK's. 207 Japs downed by us since March 18. ( 46 days) TF58
has downed over 1000 planes since April 1. ( 34 days )
5 MAY 1945
Flew air support on South Okinawa, fired rockets, bombed &
strafed trenches, artillery guns & AA Positions. They are
shooting at us more than usual lately - 5 hr hop!
6 MAY 1945
Re-fueled - got 4 letters - rumor that we won't go back to Ulithi
until end of the month.
7 MAY 1945
Shipping strike at Amimi - Dropped 1000 pounder & strafed
ships in harbor. Dropped incendiaries on town at Kikai. Quite
a bit of AA up there & bad weather don't help. Corsair cracked
up on deck- pilot hurt.
8 MAY 1945
Bad weather - nobody flew today- sea getting rough. Heard war
is over in Europe - doesn't seem to mean much out here - bet
everyone back home is getting pie-eyed. Rumor had it we will
go to Loyete the last of this month for re-provision.
9 MAY 1945
Crapped out again today- We have been making gadgets in our
room. Lost two very good friends today - Smitty was shot down
by AA over Amami. Jimmy Tuckel was killed last nite when taking
off from the Enterprise which is cruising right behind us. 0300-
The Skipper just left- Everyone ( Pap, Coumbe & I ) D.A.!!
10 MAY 1945
Refueled... got 4 letters.
11 MAY 1945
Flew Close Air Support for Marine troops on Okinawa. My plane
shot up by ground fire.
12 May 1945
Flew air support over Okinawa. Had engine failure over front
lines. Made dead-stick landing at Youtan Field.
13 MAY 1945
Slept on the ground and ate K rations. Had a bombing raid by
Japs. Checked on getting my plane fixed. Saw all the boys from
the Bunker Hill. They were going back to the states.
14 MAY 1945
Went up in the hills of North Okinawa. Saw lots of Natives and
burned out stuff. I also checked out some caves. Heard later
they were Jap soldiers in the caves. Jap planes raided us about
dark. Our AA got one but a suicide plane hit a battleship in
the harbor. Found a cot in a Marine tent to sleep on. Dust very
15 MAY 1945
Went up to the front lines. Saw lots of dead Marines and Japs...
The stink was awful. Bulldozers were covering up the Japs. Had
another bombing raid about 0200. Spent most of the night in
16 MAY 1945
It rained all night. No raid by Japs. Saw actual white woman
(nurse). Mud knee deep. Saw two planes from the Essex come in.
Jumped in a plane and joined up with them. Flew back to the
ship. Found out the Enterprise had a bad hit by a Kamikaze and
is going home... so is our Skipper.
17 MAY 1945
Flew patrol over Amami-dropped firebombs, strafed and fired
rockets on boats and AA guns. Set a plane on fire on the ground.
AA getting much worse up there.
18 MAY 1945
Flew 0500 CAP at 25,000 feet. Made strike on Amami. We lost
two torpedo planes. My good friend Boatright was flying one
of them. Rest of month will be same-o-same-o according to flight
19 MAY 1945
No fly - refueled- got lots of letters.
20 MAY 1945
Flew target CAP over Okinawa - no Bogies- Bad weather - Ens.
Jones spun in- they buried him at 1830 this evening- he was
a F4U pilot.
21 MAY 1945
Had the duty! Bad weather- Rough day! The Japs attacked the
ships around Okinawa with 35 planes & several submarines.
25 planes were shot down & some of the subs sunk. Some of
our ships were damaged but I don't know if any were sunk. Two
Jap DE's & one transport were sunk. Guess we go to Leyte
for 10 days on the 27th.
22 MAY 1945
No fly - bad weather.
23 MAY 1945
No fly- refueled- No mail. Japs spotted us & we broke off
from tankers at noon. Sent strike to Kikai in bad weather- tomorrow
we go Jap hunting.
24 MAY 1945
50 Plane sweep on Kyshu ( Japan ) Fired rockets & strafed
planes on ground at Ashuri Airfield - Two airborn Zekes splashed
- two Pelican planes went down - pilot of one recovered. Got
AA blast under my tail and cracked my back again AA pretty thick.
25 MAY 1945
Flew CAP in the worst weather I have ever flown in (4 hrs )
Ceiling ) - to 200 ft. Visibility 0 to 1/4 mile- the Japs attacked
Okinawa again - about 40 planes.
26 MAY 1945
No FLY - bad weather - big Jap attack on Okinawa today - we
aren't going to Leyte tomorrow. Jap planes landed at Yonton
& the crews got out & destroyed some planes before the
Marines killed them.
27 MAY 1945
Refueled - got Lots'a mail.
28 MAY 1945
Flew pre-dawn CAP in bad weather. Heard three Japs splashed
& someone got shot up by a "Tony" ( Jap Plane)
The Task Force has been changed from 58 to 38 with Mc Kane &
Halsey in charge instead of Mitscher & Spruance. I hear
they're rough boys. We may go to Leyte soon.
29 MAY 1945
NO fly - we are on the way to Leyte. After 79 days at sea they
finally decided to let us have 10 whole days off - anchored
off the lovely island of Leyte. We all got Cholera shots &
feel like hell. Saw our first movie in three months - it was
30 MAY 1945
No fly - standby - ships gunners target practice on drones.
Lay on flight deck & got sun burned. I hear Leyte has four
31 MAY 1945
No fly- tomorrow nobody fly. SCHEDULED FLIGHT OPERATIONS TOMORROW
X,. NONE = = = = BIG DAY OFF X ( quoting from the tickertape)
1 JUNE 1945
We dropped the hook at 0927 this morning. I missed winning the
Anchor Pool by 4 minutes. Didn't go ashore today - will make
it tomorrow - beer (cold) found out we have steamed over 33,000
miles since March 14 ( 21/2 months). Coumbe & I have been
fishing from the port-hole - didn't catch anything - also have
flown over 25,000 hrs.
2 JUNE 1945
Went ashore - Tacloban Beach & "O" Club - drank
beer all afternoon & went swimming- saw a lot of guys I
knew - received 5 packages.
3-4 JUNE 1945
Repeated above treatment
5 JUNE 1945
6 JUNE 1945
7 JUNE 1945
A P- 38 crashed into the Randolph - anchored a couple hundred
yards from us. I heard the Hornet & Bennington were beat
up off Kyushu - Stateside job- ( Halsey trying to make the headlines
again by going through typhoon)
8 JUNE 1945
Nothing new- Still loading ammo. Went to Macarata & drank
beer. Bought some beads from natives.
9-10 JUNE 1945
11 JUNE 1945
Submarine alarm. The Bennington pulled in today. She is in sad
13 JUNE 1945
More beer- went to town of Tacloban & looked the place over
then to San Antonio - caught a boat to the New Mexico &
mooched a ride back to our ship. The whole US Fleet is here
now- 8 big carriers and lots of little ones. ( Cruisers, Cans
and Subs )
14-15-16-17 JUNE 1945
Still loafing around & drinking beer. Saw lots of friends.
Expect to shove off about the 28th. Rumor has it to be an 18
day cruise but plenty rough. Maybe Tokyo
18 JUNE 1945
Air Groups 9-12-17-82 are going back to Uncle Sugar. Also the
Hornet. We are now Senior.
19 JUNE 1945
We are all set for another cruise - shoving off in the morning.
20 JUNE to 3 JULY 1945
4 JULY 1945
Headed for Tokyo! The Ticonderoga went to P.H.( Pearl Harbor)
We lost two pilots ( crashed )
9 JULY 1945
Tomorrow we hit Tokyo - looks like bad weather.
10 JULY 1945
We bombed airfields around Tokyo - no one saw a single airborne
aircraft - we lost no pilots- 210 sorties- Good weather - three
Japs splashed around task force - latest scuttlebutt, we go
home the 19th
14 JULY 1945
Struck Northern Honshu & Hokkaido - sunk 7 ferry boats &
other ships - no bogies over target- one Betty splashed over
TF. The battleships & cruisers shelled towns along the beach
all afternoon. Wonder what the Japs think about that! Weather
is cold & wet - we lost no pilots!
(TF = Task Force )
15 JULY 1945
Same targets - 8 planes hit by AA. All pilots OK.
16 JULY 1945
Re-fueled - tomorrow we hit Tokyo again - going after a Battleship.
18 JULY 1945
Still working on Tokyo - weather bad. Dave Horton was killed
and one bomber when in.
20 JULY 1945
I'll never believe scuttlebutt again - we sure as hell didn''t
go home on the 19th.
22 JULY 1945
The ungarbled word - we go home Aug. 28th - seven more strike
24 JULY 1945
Strikes again on Kure Harbor- Northern Kyushu & Southern
Honshu. Bombed cruiser. (natori class ) & carrier - airfield
& shipping. Coumbe made a water landing after dark in very
bad rain squall. Some landed on other ships - Jeeter shot down
a "Mert" today. No pilots lost!
25 JULY 1945
More of the same - Reidy & Comstock shot down a Zeke each.
We lost one bomber pilot & one F6 F ( Weisner )
28 JULY 1945
Sam Brocato, Huey Batten & W.L. Clark shot down a plane
each. Brings our total to 226. We bombed & rocketed cruiser
& cans in Kure Harbor - also a hospital ship by mistake.
Got rocket hits on carrier at Oita. The 300,000th landing was
made on the Essex. Lost no pilots.
30 JULY 1945
Hit Tokyo again -
1 AUGUST 1945 1945
We were supposed to hit Korea (310 miles) tomorrow but it was
called off due to typhoons. The ships had AA practice and one
of the DDs was hit with a 5 incher!
4 AUGUST 1945
My birthday -- spent it between Tokyo and Iwo Jima.. The Korea
deal was on again and is now off again.. Everything SNAFU.
7 AUGUST 1945
Heard of Atomic bomb being dropped on the Japs.
8 AUGUST 1945
Strikes on Japan canceled due to weather. Damn that scuttlebutt...
We didn`t go home as planned again.
9 AUGUST 1945
Strikes on Japan.. Coumbe was shot down by AA.. Bucky Harris
was killed when a 1000 pound bomb exploded on his plane in mid
air. One bomber went straight in... no survivors. Huey Batten
in an F6F and two torpedo planes ditched and pilots were picked
up by a DD. Ship was under attack all day by suicide planes..
Several shot down.. One DD hit. Same air plan for tomorrow as
today... no relief in sight.
10 AUGUST 1945
More strikes - Coumbe was picked up but Clem Wear spun in and
was killed trying to throw him a raft. We hear the Japs want
11 AUGUST 1945
No strikes.. Typhoon in area... Coumbe is back aboard.
13 AUGUST 1945
Strikes on Tokyo - 10 or 12 Japs splashed around the Fleet.
Three barrier crashes on deck.
<< Back to Diary #1
#3 1945 "It's Over" >>
Send Corrections, additions,
and input to: