On the 1 October 1944, "B" Flight1 was transferred from APO 565 (Hollandia, New Guinea2) to APO 159. (Sansapor, New Guinea2) [Photo 1][Photo 2][Photo 3][Photo 4] This move was completed by air. On the 4 October 1944 the advance echelon for the flights at APO 920 [Biak Island2] departed by air for their new station at APO 926 (Morotai, P.I.2) This party consisted of 2 Officers and 1 Enlisted men. The balance of personnel at APO 920 joined this group on the 10 October 1944. [On 10 October 1944, "Headquarters", "A" and "D" flights bypassed "B" and "C" flights which remained at Middleburg Island, and moved up to Morotai to cover strikes on Palau and the Philippines as well as Ceram, Celebes, and Borneo.] The advance group had already cleared an area and had started putting up tent frames so there was no hitch in the flying schedule. This area was located approximately a half a mile from Pitoe Strip which was to be used by the ships of this organization.

he first combat casualties experienced by this Squadron occured on the 26 October 1944. One plane, type OA-10A, No., 44-33877, departed on a routine courier mission to the Philippines. Enemy action prevented the completion of this mission and caused the plane to exhaust its fuel supply. This plane was forced to crash land in the open sea 30 minutes North by Northwest of Morotai at 1920. [Aircraft was written off on 28 October 1944, per AIRCRAFT INDIVIDUAL RECORD CARD3] The members of the crew who were lost are as follows: Captain Robert D. McKenzie, ASN 0-333534, Flight Surgeon; First Lieutenant Fredric F. Hoss Jr., ASN 0-739785, Pilot; Staff Sergeant Theodore Mikosh, ASN 15041234, Engineer; Sergeant Frederick W. Fritz, ASN 36816456, Radio Operator; Sergeant Anthony J. Sadonis, ASN 33318939, Radar Operator. Also Second Lieutenant Nielson, the courier was lost in this crash. Survivors were Second Lieutenant Richard F. Finn, ASN 0-814276, Co-Pilot, and Second Lieutenant Alvin H. Haas, ASN 0-744129, Navigator. These two men were picked up at 2345 by a PT Boat.
       During this period the squadron lost 19 Officers and gained 1 enlisted man. This left the squadron strength stand at 57 officers and 226 enlisted men.
** It was not reported in the official History for October 1944, but Navigator, 2nd Lt. Walter H. Boggs died [headstone] on 29 October 1944 in Hollandia of tropical fever. (Often referred to as the "crud") A total of 184 missions totaling 1,127:10 hours were flown during this period and the rescues were made as follows:

01 October - picked up fighter pilot in Wasilile Bay area. Picked up 10 men while covering Balikpapan strike.
01 October - rescued one fighter pilot near Waigeo Island area.
03 October - rescued 2 fighter pilots while covering Ambon strikes.
07 October - rescued 1 P-38 pilot at Salababoe Island. Rescued 1 P-40 pilot at Zeben Is.
12 October - rescued 1 P-40 pilot at Misool Island.
14 October - rescued 3 P-4 pilots near Paloe Bay.
17 October - evacuated 12 Dutch natives from Waigeo Island.
20 October - rescued P-47 pilot in Menipa Island area.
22 October - rescued A-20 pilot at Amboina Bay under fire from single engine plane. Rescued 5 P-47 pilots from among small un-named islands in Waigeo Island sector.
27 October - rescued 10 members of PB4Y crew while covering Mindanao strike. Rescued 3 Japs on Misool Island. Mistaked for Australian pilots.

[Below are orders assigning Lt. Col Wallace S. Ford as the Commanding Officer of the Emergency Rescue Task Unit (P)]

SPECIAL ORDERS No. 2931,  HQ, 13th Air Force,  (19 October 1944)  

[Read the Rescue Plan discussion for the Invasion of Balikpapan, Borneo - By the 5276th Rescue Gp. - dated 25 October 1944]

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Text in brackets is not official and is used to clarify or add additional information.

1 Official Squadron rosters, orders, or documents obtained from the microfilm - Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama.
APO numbers from "Numbered Army & Air Force Post Office Locations" - 7th Edition - by Russ Carter
3 From Individual Aircraft Record Cards - Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama

4 This information came from a consolidated summary of 1944 prepared by squadron Clerk, T Sgt. Colin MacEachern


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SUMMARY 1944 | 5230th Organizational History | History of Air Sea Rescue | "Dumbo" Missions

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