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This was a radar search for enemy shipping mission involving 5 planes from the 6th Bomb Group:

Following the Truk mission the Sixth flew a series of three radar search missions on the 11th, 12th and 14th of February in cooperation with the Navy to determine the amount and type of Jap shipping between Tinian and the Empire.  This was in preparation for the Navy’s carrier-based strikes.  Observations were made visually and by radar.

Lt Bernard A. Casaurang and crew of the 39th Squadron crashed into the ocean about forty-five minutes after takeoff on the 12 February mission.  Crew members of other ships in the formation observed the plane lose No. 4 engine and fire break out on the starboard side. They also saw the ship explode as it struck the water.  Dumbo search planes found only small bits of wreckage near the scene.  This was the Sixth’s first combat loss.


[Pirate’s Log, p. 29]



20th Af Mission 32


Date: 12 February 1945
Code Name:Sea Search # 2
Target:60 miles each side 135 degrees 00' east - 148 degrees 00' east longitude, 30 degrees 00' north latitude
Participating Units:  313th BW
Number of A/C Airborne: 10
% A/C Bombing Primary:80% (8 A/C)
Type of Bombs and Fuzes:
Tons of Bombs Dropped:
Time Over Primary:121643K - 122030K (Estimated)
Altitude of Attack:2,000 ft.
Weather Over Target:1/10 - 10/10
Total A/C Lost:1
Resume of Mission:Repeat of Mission Number 30 due to incomplete coverage. Two early returns. One aircraft caught fire, exploded and crashed northwest of Tinian. AA meager and accurate from CL or DD at 30 degrees 35' N - 144 degrees 00' E. No enemy air opposition. Two enemy patrol or torpedo boats, two unidentified submarines, unidentified convoy of 12-15 ships, one enemy DD and an unidentified convoy of eleven ships observed during this mission. All but 20% of assigned area was covered. No bomb load. Average gas reserve unavailable.