Mission No. 39.... 500th Bomb Group.... No. Z Sq 42...Flown 7 April, 1945

Pilot from Navigator
Go ahead
We should be turning now.
Roger, we're beginning to turn

Radar from Navigator
Fighter coming in at two o'clock. She's coming in. She's low, but she's coming in... toward our formation.
Can't you see anything?
Seem to have lost him. I can't see him myself

Bombardier from Navigator
Go ahead.
Are we on our own?
Yes and no. From now on I may have to make alterations of course to keep from running up on those men in front of us. I'm afraid I"ll have to throw it a little wide, navigator, as those ships in front are throwing it wide and if I cut it short, I'll run over them.
That's a good picture,radar, a good scope picture.
A .51 just got another fighter over here on our left. He's going down, spinning away.
Can you make out the IP?
Roger, it should be about eight o'clock.

Pilot from Navigator
Are we on our own? Don't want to miss the radar aiming point.
OK Navigator, we'll do the best we can.
Good radar picture
P-51 on side of me on the left
Good deal
Ships, capital ships in Yokohama harbor.
Will make a note
Notice the white lines.
Those are phosphorus bombs-two of them-there's a third.
How about that vapor trail you were talking about?
Should be turning soon.
There's Yokohama
There are a few ships in Yokohama Harbor.
IP is at nine o'clock Two planes ahead-three coming in-a Jap, get him!
One coming in at ten o'clock, low, eight o'clock, nine o'clock level
Eleven o'clock low
Can you make out the target area.
Will have to turn in.
Fighter coming in low at ten o'clock
We're streaming oil. Am feathering No. 1 Twin engine outside right.
Are you taking over?
One coming in at nine o'clock
Ten o'clock high
Four o'clock low
Two o'clock
What the hell are WE doing here?
Four o'clock high
Shut off the gas on No. 1
We still have about 65 gallons of oil on the gauge for No. 1
Fighter at twelve o'clock level.
Come on baby, give me a kiss
Can you see him?
One fighter coming in at about five o'clock
Fighter at nine o'clock, hit him.
Fighter low.
Look at those P-51's Two of them way high, Come on down and give us a hand.
That damn phosphorus
They hit the tail
Are you OK, Dietz?
Anything serious?
Fighter at nine o'clock level, coming in.
There's the target
Nine o'clock high come on 51's
They got one, Z square 40 something.
One bomb fell already when the doors opened.
Got one fighter out there. Have you got the doors open?
31 is dropping
Bombs away!
Close doors.
Plane coming in, two o"clock
Got one.
Coming in from the lower left
One coming in at two o'clock
One o'clock low
Two o'clock level

B-29 flaming away below us.
51'a - I suppose they are.
Nine o'clock coming in high.
We got him---(a lot of excitement at this point, everyone trying to speak at the same time.) Got that son of a bitch.
Ten o'clock low
Another one at seven thirty.
Ten o'clock level.
Four o'clock high
Nine o'clock, ambitious.
One coming underneath
Having a nice dog fight.
Look at those phosphorus bombs.
Nine o'clock high.
Something's leaking out of NO. 2
Nine o'clock high
It must be moisture.
Engineer you're going to have to cut No. 2
It's all right, going all right.
Things don't look too bad.
Nine o'clock high
One at about ten o/clock over Z square 56
One o'clock high. One o'clock high coming in level.
Get him. You got him right along side of the engine.
You got him!
Good boy.
Look at #1 engine on 49.
49-He's got fire on it.
How is he?
No. 1 is on fire.
Fighter coming after him.
Keep watch on no. 9
Fighter coming in at seven o'clock.
49 look like he's got a fire, smoke coming out pretty bad.

[Interphone is out.}

No. 1 coming all right?

[Interphone now working]

Five and six o'clock right behind.
Let him have it.
Think he may be a 51
One at nine o'clock low. I believe he's pulling out and leaving.
Fighter coming up at four o'clock low
Nine o'clock coming up level
One at eight thirty
What the hell is that?
Coming in at two o"clock, fighter coming in.
One at nine o'clock low.
Can't get him.
One o'clock
No. 49 seems to have his fire out, but it's smoking a little bit.
Got a little hole in our right aileron.
A LITTLE hole?
Four fighters out here.
There's a fighter out here at nine o'clock low.
We will be out to sea soon gentlemen
That won't be too soon for me.
Nine o'clock low.

Looks like a Tony.
One at two o'clock level, a little high. Coming in at four o'clock Fighter coming up from the rear. Don"t see him.
Four o'clock
Three over here on the right, too faraway , can't get them
Fighter low at two o'clock.
Wonder where the P-51"s got to.
There are some fighters following us not making a pass. Will jump out at sea
Nine o'clock.
Following us coming up at five o'clock low.
One at two o'clock a little low.

Here they come, seven o'clock-going back.
Turn on the fan, I'm getting sick from the heat.
Coming in at the tail
Looks like phosphorus at three o'clock level.
Looks like something was hit---it made a big flash.
Here he come five o'clock, coming in.
Can't see him.
He's way out there.
Fighter coming in at two o'clock.
Still following us.
P-51 moving in on us.
Something coming from the front. That's a twin engine job. A beautiful Irving
He's laying out there for us.
He tried to ram 56 up there
Keep your eyes open.
Two o'clock low.
Is that a 29 squadron out there?
It better be.
See that formation at ten o'clock - B-29 it is.
Roger I see it.
I hope---
Let's hold that a while.
Two o'clock level, looks like he's coming in.
Coming right into him.
49 still in trouble.
Two fighters above.
Right out in ground
Coming in at twelve thirty.
Watch for a ram.
Where did they go?
Saw them coming out of the clouds.

Don Hetrick - Left Gunner

What happened to 56?
Can't find it.
What about 53, can you see him?
He's to our left. I believe it is him.
That was 47 that went down.
Did 47 get hit?
I was busy at the time I didn't see it, maybe one of the blister gunners saw it.
Who was flying that?
Lt. King
Oh, damn it!
How are you doing radar?
I think he must have fainted.
Fainted hell, I was so scared I couldn't talk.
The Japs have a 150 mile limit out here.
I was thinking what might happen. Gad, I was scared.
Squadron on the left side.
Got the numbers.
48, 50, 54, 43
How many on the right?
One, that I can see.
Which one is 49?
49 below us, 1200 yards.
Three ships behind us all together.
Throw on automatic lean.
Is that 53 behind us also?
I believe it is.
No, I saw him feather No.1
50 is just behind us.
Wait a minute, he will put his headset on.
Engineer, there's a flak hole on the top of the wing.
Transfer all the gas out of No. 1 to No. 3 engine.
Engineer from Pilot, you got on automatic lean engineer?
Use your bearing off that point now.
Navigator - OK read
After 25 miles, 117 degrees.
50 turning back
Are we depressurized?
I don't know.
Did any see the bombs hit?
I saw some hit, I know about where.
I just wondered if they hit the target.
Pilot to radio operator.
Putting his headset on, sir.
This is the radio operator.
Is that dictaphone still on, Agee?
Yes sir, I think it is.
Turn the damn thing off will you?


The Plane - Supine Sue - Z Square 42



Many thanks to John Saxon for sharing all this information with us. You can reach John at: johnbsaxon@postbox.net