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World War II Japanese Aircraft
at the Old Colonia Airport, Yap State
Federated States of Micronesia

Additional Sites
Plate 9: Aircraft wreckage in revetment.

Tabby

This site was visited but not recorded. It is well known, and is described by Patrick Rafranze on his “missing aircrews” Worldwide Web site.4 As Rafranze notes, the “Tabby” – the Showa/Nakajima L2D – was a Navy land-based version of the Douglas DC-3, built by the Japanese under a license from the Douglas company between 1939 and 1945, ostensibly as a civilian airliner. The wreck is in a revetment (Revetment 3) northwest of the west end of the runway, at latitude 9° 29.097′ N, longitude 138° 04.176′ E. At least the entire empennage is present, together with the left wing from its tip inward to just outboard the right engine. A bomb hole perhaps five meters deep and 15 or more meters wide indicates that the aircraft took a direct hit during one of the U.S. bombing raids.

Revetments

Two additional revetments (Revetments 1 and 2) were visited and photographed (but were too covered with vegetation to be very usefully imaged) but not recorded in detail. One is near the north end of the western taxiway, on the taxiway’s northwest side, at latitude 9° 29.358′ N, longitude 138° 04.423′ E, and contains the remnants of an unidentified aircraft. The other appears to be empty; it lies on the southeast side of the western taxiway near its midpoint, at latitude 9° 29.248′ N, longitude 138° 04.420′ E.

Gun Emplacement

A single-barrel gun emplacement was visited and photographed near Site #s 2 and 3. Although popularly thought to be an antiaircraft battery, it is reported to be a harbor gun relocated to this site after the war (presumably as a tourist attraction). The gun displays damage consistent with strafing.

Plate 10: Gun emplacement.

 

 


4   http://www.missingaircrew.com/yap/MISSINGAIRIMAGE_YAP/
        YAP_JAPANESE_CARGO_PLANE/opt/index1.asp


References Cited

Dunn, Richard L., 2006. “Yap Island: The Air Battle.” http://www.missingaircrew.com/yapsum.asp, accessed July 28, 2006.
Mikesh, Robert C., 1994. Combat and Development History of Japan’s Legendary Mitsubishi A6M Zero Fighter. MBI Publishing. ISBN 0-87938-915-X.
Nohara, Shigeru, 1983. A6M Zero in Action. Squadron/Signal Publications. ISBN 0-89747-141-5.
Tagaya, Osamu, 2001. Mitsubishi Type 1 Rikko “Betty” Units of World War 2. Osprey Publishing Ltd., ISBN 1-84176-082-X.


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