A P-40 Warhawk pursues a Japanese A6M2 Zero-sen fighter in the skies over the Hawaiian island of Oahu on 7 December 1941. In this canvas entitled Hickam Dec 7, artist Bryan Lopatic represent the action in which a handful of American pilots rose to challenge the Japanese attack.
7 December 1941Leatrice R. Arakaki and John R. Kuborn
The Air Force Story
Pacific Air Forces
Office of History
Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii
Foreword by Commander in Chief, Pacific Air Forces iii Foreword by Commander, 15th Air Base Wimg v Preface vii Chapter I - Hawaiian Air Force: Before the Attack The Commanders 1 The Personnel 6 The Aircraft 8 The Air Defense System 11 Chapter II - Assignment Paradise: Bomber Command Hickam Field 17 Chapter III - Assignment Paradise: Fighter Command Wheeler Field 39 Bellows Field 50 Chapter IV - 7 December 1941: A Day That WIll Live In Infamy The Japanese Attack 59 Radar Intercepts 69 B-17 Arrival 72 Air Force Opposition 76 Chapter V - Hell in Paradise: Bomber Command Hickam Field 81 Chapter VI - Hell in Paradise: Fighter Command Wheeler Field 111 Bellows Field 128 Chapter VII - After the Attack The Dependents 134 The Continuimg Search 136 Rumors Galore 138 The Long Night 139 The Submarine 142 Appendices Army Air Forces Units in Hawaii on 7 December 1941 147 Status of Aircraft on Oahu, Before and After the Attack 151 Hickam Field Maintenance Record 153 B-17s Arrivimg Durimg the Attack 157 Army, Army Air Forces, and Civilian Casualty List 161 Hawaiian Air Force Casualty list 177 Notes 197 Bibliography 205 Index 207
Page Charts Organization of the Hawaiian Air Force 7 The AWS on 12 Nov 41 Durimg a Simulated Enemy Attack 14 The AWS on 7 Dec 41 Durimg the Actual Enemy Attack 15 Maps The eight major islands of the Hawaiian archipelago 2 Key areas on Oahu involved in the 7 December 1941 attack 4 Hickam Field, 26 November 1941 20 Wheeler Field, 10 October 1941 42 Bellows Field in 1941 55 Japanese Aircraft Deployment, First Attack 63 Japanese Aircraft Deployment, Second Attack 68 Photographs Burned tent quarters at Wheeler Field i Damaged barracks at Hickam Field i Damaged P-40 at Bellows Field i Senior military officials at Hawaiian Department Headquarters, circa 1941 3 "Hawaiian Paradise" recruitimg cartoon 8 B-18s in formation over Oahu, 6 April 1940 9 5th Bombardment Group B-18 at Hickam Field 9 B-17 aircraft flyimg over Hickam Field, circa 1941 10 P-40 formation over Oahu, 1 August 1941 11 P-36 aircraft lined up at Wheeler Field 12 Capts Wilfred H. Tetley and Kenneth P. Bergquist with members of the radar site survey team 13 Lt Col Horace Meek Hickam 17 Keystone LB-5 bombers and Thomas Morse O-19 observation planes at Luke Field 18 Aerial view of Tracts A and B acquired for the construction of Hickam Field 19 "Pineapple Soldier" at Hickam Field, June 1942 21 Tent City at Hickam Field in 1939 22 Hickam Field's new barracks, 22 October 1940 22 Interior view of the new barracks 23 Mess hall in the center of the consolidated barracks 23 Wooden barracks of "Splinter City" at Hickam Field, 1940 25 Family quarters at Hickam Field, 1940-41 25 Hickam's water tower 26 Bishop Point dock at Hickam Field 27 Post headquarters at Hickam Field, 1940-41 28 Aircraft Mechanics Course Diploma awarded to PFC Herbert J. Kelly 29 Members of Aircraft Mechanics Graduation Class 2A 30 The Army & Navy YMCA in downtown Honolulu 32 Black Cat Cafe on Hotel Street 32 Military men with a hula girl at the Black Cat Cafe 32 Samplimg of items from the 1941 Menu of the Black Cat Cafe 33 "Crossroads of the Pacific" sign at Kau Kau Corner on Kalakaua Avenue 34 Popular Waikiki Theater in 1941 34 Waikiki area and Diamond Head on 18 January 1934 34 The Snake Ranch (enlisted men's beer hall) 35 Joe Brimm, Hickam Field artist 36 Front cover of Hickam Highlights (Vol 9, Nr 23, 14 November 1942) 37 Maj Sheldon Harley Wheeler (1889-1921) 39 Wheeler Field as part of Schofield Barracks (circa 1922-23) 40 Wheeler Field 40 Engineerimg buildimgs and parachute shop at Wheeler Field 43 Wheeler Field flight line 43 Fire station at Wheeler Field 43 PFC Edward J. White in Sheet Metal Shop at Wheeler Field 45 Thanksgivimg feast in Final Assembly Hangar at Wheeler Field 46 Thanksgivimg dinner menu, 21 November 1940 46 Dance in consolidated mess at Wheeler Field 47 Members of the 46th Pursuit Squadron's championship basketball team 48 Tent City along the Wheeler Field flight line 49 Cpl William H. Roach, 45th Pursuit Squadron 49 2d Lt Franklin Barney Bellows 50 Aerial view of Bellows Field, 27 October 1941 51 Tent area at Bellows Field 52 Headquarters buildimg at Bellows 52 Operations shack at Bellows at the bottom of "Headquarters Hill" 53 86th Observation Squadron's O-47B aircraft at Bellows Field 54 Main gate at Bellows Field 57 O-49 aircraft at Bellows Field 57 Japanese carrier Akagi 60 Nakajima B5N (Kate) bomber 60 Mitsubishi A6M2 (Zero) fighter launchimg from carrier deck 60 Wheeler Field in 1941 64 Burnimg hangars and aircraft at Wheeler Field 65 Bomb crater in front yard of family quarters on Wheeler 65 Nakajima B5N (Kate) bomber flyimg over Hickam's burnimg flight line 66 B-24A destroyed by the Japanese durimg the attack 67 Oscilloscope display at Opana radar site 70 Pvt Joseph LaRue Lockard 70 Temporary Information Center on top of Buildimg 307 at Fort Shafter 70 Two Aichi D3A (Val) dive bombers over Hickam Field 74 Wreckage of Capt Raymond T. Swenson's B-17C at Hickam Field 74 Closeup view of front half of burned B-17C 75 Lts Harry W. Brown, Philip M. Rasmussen, Kenneth M. Taylor, George S. Welch, and 1st Lt Lewis M. Sanders downed nine Japanese planes durimg the attack 78 Japanese plane shot down by Lt George Welch 79 Hawaiian Air Depot buildimgs and the hangar line under attack at Hickam Field 81 B-18 wreckage on the Hickam flight line 82 Smoke pourimg from Hickam Field's Hawaiian Air Depot shops 84 Capt Roland D. Boyer and Pvt Elliott C. Mitchell Jr. near wrecked Hangar 11 at Hickam Field 84 Closeup view of destroyed Hangar 11 85 Aircraft wreckage inside Hickam Field hangar 85 Hangar Avenue 85 Hickam Field's big barracks burnimg from the Japanese attack 86 Burnimg fires devastate Hickam Field's consolidated barracks 87 Gun emplacement on parade ground at Hickam Field in front of burnimg barracks 88 Old Glory continues to wave over Hickam Field 88 Damaged post exchange at Hickam Field 89 Complete devastation inside the big barracks at Hickam Field 89 Wimg L of Hickam Field's big barracks devastated by the attack 92 Sunlight streams through the splintered mess hall roof where bombs entered 93 Wall-to-wall debris covers the floor of the mess hall 93 Members of Hawaiian Air Force's Headquarters Squadron, 17th Tow Target Squadron, and 23d Materiel Squadron watch Japanese bombers headimg toward Pearl Harbor 94 Russell J. Tener and Bill Enos guard a damaged PX warehouse 95 A burnimg mangled truck parked on F Street 96 Blood-stained stretchers awaitimg the next load of casualties 97 Hickam's small new 40-bed hospital 98 One of the more than 200 men killed on Army Air Forces installations on Oahu 100 Flight line from courtyard between heavily damaged wimgs of Hickam's barracks 101 Hickam Field personnel man a gun emplacement set up in a bomb crater 102 PFC Raymond Perry and Cpl Howard Marquardt man a hastily constructed gun emplacement in front of Hangar 5 102 Smoke pours from burnimg aircraft and buildimgs at Hickam Field 104 B-18 wreckage on the Hickam flight line 104 Broken water main, upended car and tilted lamp post on Hickam's 6th Street 104 Hickam's wrecked fire station 106 Honolulu Fire Department pumper drawimg water from bomb crater 107 Firemen battlimg oil flames at Hickam 107 Douglas A-20 in flight 109 Wrecked planes on Wheeler's flight line, Hangar 2, and tent quarters 112 Splintered buildimg filled with bags of cement 112 Badly damaged barracks of the 6th Pursuit Squadron 113 Wheeler's Hangar 1, devastated by the Japanese attack 114 A severely damaged P-36 sits in the rubble of Hangar 1 at Wheeler 114 Flames in Wheeler's Hangar 3 116 Blazimg fires in the twisted remains of Wheeler's Hangar 3 116 Skeleton of Wheeler's Hangar 3 after the flames died and the smoke cleared 117 Total devastation in Wheeler's Hangar 3 117 Tent quarters along Wheeler's hangar line 118 Hangar row at Wheeler Field, with Hangar 3 and the burnt remains of tents 119 Resourceful crews remove parts from a demolished P-40 120 Aircraft wreckage on Wheeler's flight line 120 Searchimg a heap of wrecked planes at Wheeler for salvageable parts 120 All that remained of the lineup of P-40s on the Wheeler flight line 122 Wrecked P-40Bs sit in front of an equally wrecked Hangar 3 at Wheeler Field 122 Wheeler personnel inspect the remains of a buildimg site 123 Bullet-riddled Army staff car at Wheeler Field 124 Wheeler personnel man a .30-caliber machine gun set up behind the barracks 126 Wheeler Field chapel in 1941 126 Chaplain Alvin A. Katt and others after a memorial service for a P-40 pilot 127 Machine-gunned tent area at Bellows Field 128 A burnt-out fuel truck at Bellows Field 129 A P-40 riddled by machine-gun fire at Bellows Field 130 A 38th Reconnaissance Squadron B-17C belly landimg on Bellows airstrip 131 Lts George S. Welch and Kenneth M. Taylor wearimg the Distimguished Service Cross 134 Presentation of Silver Star and Purple Heart decorations at Wheeler 135 Maj Charles Stewart congratulates Pvt William L. Burt and PFC Raymond F. McBriarty, for their award of the Silver Star 135 A Japanese two-man midget submarine, grounded on the coral reef off Bellows 143 Basic Personnel Record for Prisoner of War Kazuo Sakamaki (POW No. 1) 144 Group portrait of the nine midget submariners killed durimg the attack 145 The Japanese midget submarine which was dragged to shore at Bellows 146