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1942: Flying fortress | 1942: Honored in Hawaii | 1943: Crosses Awarded | 1943: 50 Miles Closer to Rabaul | 1944: One-Man Attack Force

New York Times
New York, New York

Contributed & transcribed by Stephen D. Williams

Friday, 7 Aug. 1942, pg. 4

Flying Fortress Over Wake Took
6 Japanese Fighters in Its Stride

Forty-Minute Battle, in Which Army Bomber
Downed Four of the Enemy's Zero and
New-Type Planes, Described by Airmen

By Telephone to THE NEW YORK TIMES.

Friday, 18 Sept. 1942, pg. 6


28 Who Died in the Battle of
Midway Are Among Those
Winning Awards


General Hale Says Americans
of Three Services Made an
'Invincible Combination'

Special Cable to THE NEW YORK TIMES.

  HICKAM FIELD, Omahu, Hawaii, Sept. 17--Major Gen. Willis H. Hale, commander of the Seventh United States Army Air Force, at a review here today presented awards honoring seventy-nine of his fliers for heroism, including combat action in the midway battle, the bombing of Wake and the later photographic flight over Wake in which a Flying Fortress commanded by Major George Glober shot down for of six Japanese fighters and accomplished its mission.
  Twenty-eight of the medals were awarded posthumously to officers and men who died in the Midway battle. These were received by members of the Honolulu Red Cross as proxies for the next of kin.
  Referring to Japan's Midway attack, whose purpose, he declared, was to "knock out" the Hawaiian Islands, General Hale said:
  "The Japs might have succeeded in their ill-starred venture of conquest had they not underestimated the precautions of our higher command and the courage and fighting ability of you brave men of our Army Air Forces. Teamed up with our Navy and Marine Corps, you made an invincible combination."
  Speaking of those who failed to return, he said:
  "Nothing less than a complete and annihilating victory over the enemy can atone for their great sacrifice."
The list of awards:
Distinguished Service Cross
  For extraordinary heroism during the Battle of Midway:
JOHNSON, Lieutenant R. H., Chicago.
MOORE, Lieutenant P. L., El Centro, Calif.
ASHLEY, Private E. D., Williamston, S. C.
JOYCE, Corporal J. D., 114 Washingtion St., Taylor, Pa.
Silver Star
  For meritorious conduct during participation in the Battle of Midway:
FRANKLIN, 2d Lieut. OLIVER R., Oahu, T. H.
WILLIAMS, 2d Lieut. WARREN C., Stockton, Ga.
GAGNON, Top Sergeant JOSEPH, Faust, N. Y.

(continued on 1st column below)
  HONOLULU, Aug. 6 -- Three Army flying officers, who headed a crew of ten that took a Flying Fortress over Wake Island last Friday [Saturday at Wake] on a special mission and knocked down four of six attacking Japanese fighters, sat in the lounge of an Air Corps rest camp at Oahu Beach today and told how they did it. It was another story of superior American flying and gunnery and demonstrated again the potency of the Flying Fortress.
  The officers did not disclose the nature of their business over the Japanese-held island 2,000 miles west of Honolulu.
    [The War Department, in reporting the incident Wednesday, said the flying Fortress was on a photographic mission.]
  The pilot of the big B-17 bomber was Major George E. Glober of San Angelo, Texas, a boyish looking officer who has been flying planes for eleven of his twenty-seven years. His navigator, Second Lieutenant Harry W. Smith, 28, of Bucksport, Me., and his copilot, Second Lieutenant Clyde B. Walker, 27, of Portland, Ore., helped him tell the story of their forty-minute running fight.
  Despite a heavy overcast and low visibility, then hit Wake Island dead center, flying at high altitude. As the B-17 went over the island the six Japanese fighter planes took off.
  Apparently the enemy was surprised or the planes would have been in the air waiting for them, Major Glober remarked. Wake lay below in a circle of clear weather with clouds all around.
  They saw two small vessels of the sampan type in the Wake lagoon and a four-engine flying boat at the landing ramp.
  Four of the six enemy fighters that climbed to meet them were Zeros. The other two were of a new type with in-line, liquid-cooled engines, resembling the German Heinkel 113 or the Messerschmitt 111. Major Glober's crew brought down two of three of the Zeros and one or both of the new planes for their total bag of four.
  As the fighters climbed Major Glober coolly flew across the island, turned back, crossed a second time and was returning on his fourth lap when the Japanese arrived and the battle began.
  Operating singly, the Japanese pulled far ahead until they had the advantage of altitude. They then turned to attack from all sides, some diving in at the Fortress, others dipping below and sweeping up to rake the big plane's belly.
  One of the new-type planes came up for a shot and met a fatal burst of fire from the Flying Fortress at
about 200 yards' range. Lieutenant Smith saw his tracers rip into the foe's motor section and the fighter spouted flame. It was last seen spinning down to the sea.
  Meanwhile, a Zero pilot manoeuvring to the rear of the Fortress and below, fired a burst of incendiaries. it was his last. A gunner got him when he was still 400 yards off.
  "A sort of mist began pouring from his engine and he dropped away like a falling leaf," said Lieutenant Walker.
  Another new-type plane challenged next, coming so close that a gunner in the B-17 did not use his sight. The gunner shot off a wing with tracers.
  "He was shot al to hell," said Lieutenant Walker. "It seems characteristic of Zeros that they disintegrate when badly hit."
  Two gunners worked as a team to bring down the fourth Japanese, a Zero. The enemy fighter met a stream of American bullets when he was 200 years off and immediately went into the fatal spin, smoke pouring from his underside.
  All the time, the Fortress, its original mission successfully accomplished, was heading homeward.
  What happened to the fifth Japanese plane the officers did not know. the sixth enemy pilot followed the Flying fortress 150 miles from Wake and there was considerable doubt that he could get back to his base.
  The other officers had high praise for Major Glober's manoeuvring. Once, said Lieutenant Walker, he picked up his microphone to ask for a turn and before he could get the microphone to his lips Major Glober had brought the big plane into perfect position.
  When the Flying Fortress landed at her mid-Pacific "Shangri La" she had only three slight wounds--a hole in the left wing, one in the stabilizer and a hit on the gun cradle in the radio cabin. How the Japanese missed so often puzzled the Fortress crew, since the action was so close that one of the enemy fighters came within fifteen years of the bomber's wake.
  Major Glober has had the same crew with him for seven months and he saw in this battle an argument for his contention that combat crews should be kept together.
  Enlisted men in the crew were Technical Sergeant C. B. Phillips of Oneida, Tenn.; Staff Sergeant H. R. Inman of Scranton, Pa.; Corporal R. A. Fries of Chambersburg, Pa.; Corporal R. L. Holliday of Milwaukee, Corporal J. D. Lillis of Williamsburg, Iowa; Sergeant J. T. Sanford of Long Island, N. Y., and Staff Sergeant E. H. Caton of New Bedford, Mass.
(continued from 3rd column above)

  MILLER, Top Sergeant ELWOOD F., Columbia, Pa.
MOSHER, Top Sergeant CARL N., Pontiac, Mich.
BRAGG, Staff Sergeant JIM L., Richwood, Va.
GALLANT, Staff Sergeant LEONARD A., Norway, Me.
WINEY, Staff Sergeant JAMES B., Toledo, Ohio.
EPLING, Sergeant WORTH A., La Grande, Ore.
GUSIC, Sergeant PERRY, Hammond, Ind.
KRANTZ, Sergeant HOWARD L., St. Georgas, Del.
ROGERS, Sergeant CECIL A., Collins, Miss.
SIDLER, Sergeant WALTER J., Sioux City, Iowa.
CHAPMAN, Pvt. 1st Cl. ROBERT D. Andalusia, Pa.
GRADY, Pvt. 2st Cl. MARTIN T., 539 West 51st St., New York.
BERRY, Private KENNETH W., Riverton, Ill.
CAVINESS, Private SANFORD L., Bolivar, Mo.
Distinguished Flying Cross
  For a dangerous mission over enemy territory:
RAMEY, Colonel ROGER M., Denton, Texas.
LANDON, Colonel TRUMAN H., Carlinville, Ill. (Los Angeles, Calif.).
PHARR, Major MARION N., Gainesville, Ga.
HENSLEY, 1st Lieut. HAROLD P., Oakland, Calif.
ZUMWALT, 1st Lieut. McLYLE G., Richmond, Texas.
PASHALL, 1st Lieut. BENJAMIN 3d, F. Denton, Texas.
SAGE, 2d Lieut. HUBERT P., Drew, Miss.
MEEHAN, Colonel ARTHUR W., Indianapolis, Ind.
WALDRON, Lieut. Col. RUSSELL L., Wellston, Ohio.
WILKINSON, Captain WARREN L., Lincolnton, N. C.
WAGNON, 1st Lieut. MANFORD K., Mathis, Texas.
BRIGHT, 1st Lieut. ROY R., Eveleth, Minn.
WARREN, 1st Lieut. THOMAS N., Macon, Ga.
Distinguished Flying Cross
  For participation in a dangerous flight form Honolulu to the Philippine Islands:
MOORE, Lieut. Col. ERNEST, Piedmont, Calif.
BLAKE, Lieut. Col. GORDON A., Charles City, Iowa.
FLICKINGER, Major DONALD D., Long Beach Calif.
Distinguished Service Cross
  For a dangerous mission over enemy territory:
GLOBER, Major G. E., Tampa, Fla.
SMITH, Lieutenant H. W., Bucksport, Me.
WALKER, Lieutenant C. B., Beverly Hills, Calif.
SANFORD, Sergeant J. T., East Quogue, L. I.
HOLLIDAY, Corporal R. L., Milwaukee, Wis.
LILLIS, Corporal J. D., Williamsburg, Iowa.
INMAN, Staff Sergeant H. R., Scranton, Pa.
FRIES, Corporal R. A., Chambersburg, Pa.
PHILLIPS, Technical Sergeant C. B., Oneida, Tenn.
CATON, Staff Sergeant E. M., New Bedford, Mass.
Soldiers Medal
For participation in removing bodies from a burning B-17:
WALTHER, Captain J. E., Rushville, Ind.
PALOMBINI, Private F. Q., Pittsburgh, Pa.
SANTO, Private C. F., Camden, N.J.
ROSE, 1st Lieut. JOHN H., Minneapolis, Minn.
QUARLES, 1st Sergeant BEN W., Teadue, Texas.
Purple Heart
PRICE, Sergeant ROBERT F., Eldora, Iowa.
WARGO, Corporal PETER, Nahanny City, Pa.
Distinguished Flying Cross
WATSON, 2d Lieut. WILLIAM S.; wife, Mrs. Alice S. Watson, Dixon, Ill.
WHITTINGTON, 2d Lieut. LEONARD H.; father, T. T. Whittington, Roscoe, Texas.
SCHAUMAN, 2d Lieut. JOHN P.; nearest of kin, Mrs. Ethel K. Schuman, Denver, Col.
MAYES, 1st Lieut. HERBERT C.; wife, Mrs. H. C. Mayes, Redwood City, Calif.
M'CALLISTER, 2d Lieut. GARRET H.; mother, Mrs. Mark E. McCallister, Shawnee, Okla.
HARGIS, 2d Lieut. WILLIAM D. Jr.; father, William D. Hargis, Striglor, Okla.
  mother, Mrs. Michael Barnicle, Fitchburg, Mass.
BATTAGLIA, Staff Sergeant SALVATORE; father, Michael Battaglia, 27-9 Monroe St., New York City, N. Y.
DECKER, Staff Sergeant RICHARD C.; mother, Mrs. Malelda Decker, Council Bluff, Iowa.
MOHON, Staff Sergeant ERNEST M. Jr.; nearest of kin, Mrs. Cola Plock, Bruni, Texas.
OWEN, Sergeant ALBERT E.; mother, Mrs. Calista Owen, Grand Island, Neb.
VIA, Sergeant JAMES E.; mother, Mrs. Minnie Pearli Via, Kansas City, Kan.
SEITZ, Corporal BERNARD G.; father, George Seitz, 207 West Elm Street, New York City.
HUFFSTICKLER, Private BENJAMIN F.; sister, Mrs. C. O. Hartsill, East Gastonia, N. C.
WALSTERS, Private ROY W.; mother, Mrs. Laura J. Walters, Nazareth, Pa.
Air Medal
PORTER, 1st Lieut. ROBERT S.; wife, Mrs. R. S. Porter, Temple, Texas.
Silver Star
AUMAN, 2d Lieut. WILLIAM R.; father, Charles B. Auman, Biscoe, N. C.
BROWN, 2d Lieut. ROBERT C.; mother, Mrs. A. L. Brown, Horatio, Ark.
KACMARCIK [sic], 2d Lieut. CHESTER J.; mother, Mrs. Anna Macmarcik, Shirley, Mass.
DURRETT, Staff Sergeant FREEBOURN E.; mother, Octa Belle Durrett, Lakeview Texas.
STAERK, Staff Sergeant MELVIN C.; wife, Mrs. Margaret Staerk, Altoona, Pa.
PLEDGER, Sergeant ROBERT E.; mother, Flore M. Pledger, Spencerport, N. Y.
HEATH, Corporal CLIFFTON C.; father, Clifton C. Heath, Arlington, Va.
McCORMICK, Corporal FLOYD J.; mother, Mrs. Helen McCormick, Prentice, Wis.
BARTON, Corporal PHILIP D.; father, Ray Barton, St. Louis, Mo.
WOOD, Corporal JAMES E., mother, Mrs. Zore E. Wood, Littlefield, Texas.
Purple Heart
PEOPLES, Master Sergeant FRED; wife, Mrs. Helen Peoples, San Antonio, Texas.
NAVE, Lieutenant JOSEPH D.; father, Purl Nave, Lima, Ohio.

Tuesday, 2 Mar. 1943, pg. 9


Group Honored for Feats in the
Aleutian Islands

  WASHINGTON, March 1 (AP)--Decorations have been awarded to fourteen naval aviation officers, the Navy reported today, for skill and daring displayed during attack and patrol missions against the Japanese in the western Aleutian Islands.
Announcement also was made of decorations of seven officers who participated in rescues at sea.
Among those who won the navy and Marine Corps medal for swimming to save persons either drowning or stranded were: Lieutenant Henry A. V. Post 27, whose mother, Mrs. Edwin M. Post, lives at 230 East Seventy-first Street, New York, and Lieutenant Edward A. Michel Jr., 30, of 610 East Seventh Street, Jamestown.
The Silver Star for gallantry in the Solomon Islands area has been awarded by the Army to Air Corps officers and personnel as follows: Major Walter Y. Lucas of Starkville, Miss.; Lieutenant Wayne W. Thompson of Seward, Neb.; Lieutenant John G. Hemans of Onondoga, Mich.; Sergeant Floyd R. Blair of Spur, Texas; Sergeant James F. Gates of Cleveland, Miss.; Corporal Clinton C. Hamilton of Brigby, N. D.; Corporal Robert A. Fries of Chambersburg, Pa.; Corporal Roger W. Ferguson of Jacksonville, Ill.; Corporal Joseph D. Lillis of Williamsburg, Iowa, and Private Patrick J. Arthur of Broken Bow, Neb.


Tuesday, 17 Aug. 1943, pg. 7

50 Miles Closer to Rabaul

  ALLIED HEADQUARTERS IN AUSTRALIA, Tuesday, Aug. 17--In occupying Vella Lavella the Allies went about fifty miles closer to the great Japanese base at Rabaul.
  Vella Lavella is about 400 miles southeast of Rabaul, Japanese military center on New Britain Island. American forces on New Georgia are about 450 miles from Rabaul.
  Occupation of Vella Lavella gives the Americans a base of operations only sixteen miles form Kolombangara Island, where the enemy has garrisons at Vila, site of a base and airdrome, and Kape Harbor.
  The Americans now are along the western shores of Vella Gulf, sea highway for enemy supply shipments coming down form the north for Vila and perhaps Bairoko Harbor, the only remaining point of New Georgia Island where the enemy is putting up an organized resistance.
  Observers here pointed out that the occupation also deprives the Japanese of a near-by base to which to withdraw in case they abandon Vila and Bairoko.
  Front dispatches described the battle for Roosevelt Ridge, on the southern approaches to Salamaua in New Guinea, as a bitterly fought contest in which the Japanese, perched on the hill crests, rolled grenades down on their attackers.
  No report was made on the progress of American troops closing in on Bairoko, on New Georgia

(continued on 3rd column)
  Island, last reported attacking a Japanese pocket of resistance four and one-half miles southwest of Bairko Harbor, from two directions.
  Supported by American and Australian artillery batteries looping a heavy rain of shells on the Japanese hill positions before Salamaua, the United States troops "strung out like beads on a thread" Sunday gained several strategic knolls after a sharp clash. The advance gave the attackers a good command of enemy defenses on the west end of Roosevelt Ridge which skirts the north end of Tambu Bay. [Roosevelt Ridge was named for Major Archibald Roosevelt, the Associated Press said.]
  Japanese casualties were said to be many times those of the Allies as the enemy sought to cling to the ridge, one of the most important positions along the Salamaua approaches.
Describing the previous fighting on Roosevelt Ridge, Pvt. Melvin Capelle, 23, of Portland, Ore., returning from the front to a rear base, said:
  "Day after day we tried again and again, and almost reached the top. It takes five hours to fight your way to the summit, sometimes climbing hand over hand. Then the Japs lob hand grenades and it is impossible to go farther."
  The bitterness of the enemy opposition was confirmed by Sgt. Harold L. Ayers, of Portland, Ore., who said:
  "Taking that ridge against those Japs dug in those pillboxes is a darned good job. Those pillboxes must be seen to be believed. I have been atop them and dropped grenades inside, but the Japs still seem to survive."
Sergeant Ayers speculated that the enemy pillboxes have a deep pit in the center with the soldiers standing around a narrow ledge so that grenades drop into the pit without harming the men.
  "But we are learning by experience and we will soon find all the answers," he added.
  The Allied forces in the Salamaua sector were saved from an enemy air attack Sunday when Airacobras, of the Fifth United States Army Air Force, intercepted a force of twelve bombers and twenty-five fighters near Lae and shot down fourteen at a rate of about one every four seconds, dispatches revealed. Eleven bombers and three fighters were destroyed in less than a minute, against a loss of three Airacobras.
  Not only was it a triumph for the Airacobra outfit, but it also marked an auspicious debut for "the Endicott Special," named for the students of Endicott Union High School, New York, who bought the fighter and presented it to the Army.
  Capt. Grant Dubishire of Williamsburg, Iowa, who led the Airacobras with "the Endicott Special," said:
  "The whole business lasted under a minute. I went in first, diving into the Jap formation with two wingmen, while the others followed in flights of three. I took to three Jap leaders. All three went down smoking.
  "The Endicott Special came through unscratched, and you can tell the Endicott kids that she's a grand little ship. She certainly made a grand debut."

Sunday, 5 Mar. 1944, pg. 11

Lone Pilot in Big Bomber
Made Attack on Rabaul

By The United Press.
  A THIRTEENTH AAF BOMBER BASE, South Pacific, March 4--A Mitchell bomber normally carries a crew of six or seven men, but Second Lieut. James Cook, 24, of Williamsburg, Iowa, took one up alone and made a one-man attack on Rabaul, Japanese base on New Britain, it was revealed today.
  Lieutenant Cook said he made the flight Jan. 14 "on the spur of the moment." He brought the giant plane home through tropic storms and without instruments or lights, which had been shot out by anti-aircraft fire.
  Because of heavy storms, eleven other bombers that had set out on another Rabaul mission turned back but Lieut. Cook climbed to 8,000 feet to pass mountains and go in for his lone-wolf attack.

Monday, 6 Mar. 1944, pg. 7


Photo of Lieutenant James E. Cook.

  Lieut. James E. Cook, Williamsburg, Iowa, took up a Mitchell bomber which normally carries a crew of six and piloted the craft through a tropical storm to loose his bombs on the Japanese base at Rabaul.
Associated Press Wirephoto

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