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picture of ditched A6M2 Model 21 Zero at Visale, Guadalcanal

Discussion in 'Air War in the Pacific' started by emu, May 20, 2011.

  1. emu

    emu Member

    May 13, 2011
    Likes Received:
    This picture is of a Zero that ditched on the reef out the front of Visale Catholic Mission station sometime, I guess in late August or September 1942.

    The mission was still operational then

    The story goes that the Zero was hit in a dogfight over Savo Island which would be about six or seven miles north north east of Visale. A Catholic nun, Sr Evangeline, was at the clinic when she heard the noise. The pilot was taken out of the wreck, badly burned and unconscious. He was accommodated and treated in the clinic for a few days before he thanked them and left to rejoin his pals further west.

    A few days later Commander Ishimoto, a Japanese who was well known to people at Visale as he had worked as a carpenter in Tulagi, came to see the Bishop there and asked for the use of the mission station as a staging point for his troops. The Bishop did not reply directly but organized the evacuation of Visale. The missionaries, who had been on parole, moved around the coast to Tangarare and the japanese took over at Visale using the buildings generally and the cathedral as a hospital.

    This was duly noted by the coast watchers Snowy Rhoades and Leif Schroader who called in an airstrike on the mission station flattening the buildings. The only remnants are the steps up to the Bishops house and the plinths for the statues of Mary and Joseph. The statues have been moved to Holy Cross cathedral where they remain at the front of the church. The statue of Mary has been gouged by shrapnel

    View attachment 13247 .

    Attached Files:

  2. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

    Jan 5, 2009
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    Outstanding story and pictures. Keep up the good work.

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