Anyone familiar with the battles for Naha airfield on Okinawa? My Grandad was there and recalled the Japanese actually landing planeloads of Korean marines onto the American held airfield. Can't find any info on it besides his tales....
The seventh group consisted of five low-flying two-engine bombers, called "Sallys," that came in about 2230 from the direction of Ie Shima. Antiaircraft batteries immediately engaged them, and four planes crashed in flames near Yontan airfield. The fifth came in and made a belly landing, wheels up, on the northeast-southwest runway of Yontan. At least eight heavily armed Japanese rushed out of the plane and began tossing grenades and incendiaries into American aircraft parked along the runway. They destroyed 2 Corsairs, 4 C-54 transports, and 1 Privateer. Twenty-six other planes-1 Liberator bomber, 3 Hellcats, and 22 Corsairs-were damaged.
In the wild confusion that followed the landing of the Japanese airborne troops, two Americans were killed and eighteen injured. At 2338, forces arrived at Yontan to bolster the air-ground service units and to be on hand if enemy airborne troops made subsequent attempts to land. In addition to the thirty-three planes destroyed and damaged, two 600-drum fuel dumps containing 70,000 gallons of gasoline were ignited and destroyed by the Japanese. When a final survey could be made, it was found that ten Japanese had been killed at Yontan; three others were found dead in the plane, evidently killed
Wonder if this isn't it! Sad to say Grandad passed in '61. He was a US Navy Aviation Storekeeper attached to the marines guarding the airfield. For serving alongside the marines he was authorized to wear the Globe and Anchor device, a decoration of which he was justly proud. Said he spent a lot of time hiding in a hole while the marines protected him. Thanks for the info waitonthemildside
I have Grandad's war trophy Type 38 Arisaka w/ bayonet. It was picked up yards from the marine holes at the (Yontan?) airfield. Apparently the Japanese were forever trying to infiltrate the airfield at night. The rifle is still in firing condition and holds a respectable group considering its neglected bore.