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11 edition of Torpedo Squadron Four: A Cockpit View of World War II -- Ebook found in the catalog.

Torpedo Squadron Four: A Cockpit View of World War II -- Ebook

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Published by Doc45 Publications in Las Cruces, New Mexico .
Written in English


About the Edition

This is the sole personal account emerging from World War II of a carrier-based Torpedo Bomber pilot. Thomas served on combat duty with Torpedo Squadron 4 (VT-4) for 25 months, beginning in February, 1943. During this period, he was assigned to three aircraft carriers: the USS RANGER, USS BUNKER HILL, and USS ESSEX. On the RANGER he served in the Atlantic Theater; on the BUNKER HILL and ESSEX, he served the Pacific Theater. Air Group 4, of which Torpedo 4 was one component, was the only air group that served in both theaters of the war.

While on the RANGER, he participated in OPERATION LEADER, the most significant attack on Northern Europe by a US carrier during the war. OPERATION LEADER was a strike against German shipping and shore installations along the fjords south of Bodo, Norway. This operation was a complete surprise to the German defensive forces and destroyed 23,000 tons of shipping, damaged 4 other ships, and killed about 200 German troops.

During LEADER, while attacking a freight barge carrying 40 tons of ammunition, Thomas’ plane was hit by anti-aircraft fire. The engine began burning and it appeared the plane was going down. Thomas ordered his crew of two to bail out and had just opened the cockpit and was climbing out when his turret gunner yelled, “Don’t jump, don’t jump.” The other crewman had accidentally opened his parachute in the belly of the plane. With bailing no longer possible, Thomas considered his options and decided their best chance was to fly the plane toward the carrier as far as it would go. Surprisingly, in spite of the considerable engine damage, the plane made it back to the RANGER, where Thomas crash-landed. That landing was his 13th official carrier landing.

In the Pacific, Thomas participated in the numerous actions against Japanese targets in the Philippines, including strikes on Ormoc Bay, Cavite, Manilla, Santa Cruz, San Fernando, Lingayen, Mindoro, Clark Field and Aparri.

Following these actions, Thomas’ squadron made strikes on Formosa, French Indo-China, Saigon, Pescadores, Hainan, Amami O Shima, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, and Japan. The attack on Japan was the first attack on Japan from an aircraft carrier since the “Doolittle Raid.”

While on the ESSEX, just after Thomas had returned from a strike on Santa Cruz, the ship was hit by a Kamikaze piloted by Yoshinori Yamaguchi, Yoshino Special Attack Corps. Yamaguchi was flying a Yokosuba D4Y3 dive bomber. The Kamikaze attack killed 16 crewman and wounded 44.

On December 28, 1944, the Bombing Four (VB-4) component of Air Group 4 was replaced by two Marine squadrons, VMF-124 and VMF-213. Flying F4U Corsairs, these squadrons were the first carrier-based Marines of the war. Although they had trained for carrier operations, and were carrier qualified, the initial carrier deployment was costly, with two Marine pilots and three F4Us lost in the first two-day shakedown.

Returning from a strike on Hainan, off the Chinese coast, Thomas’ plane ran out of fuel. After a harrowing water landing, Thomas and squadron photographer Montague succeeded in inflating and launching one rubber boat and his crewman Gress another. After a long day in pre-Typhoon weather with 40 foot swells, the three were rescued by the USS SULLIVANS.

On March 1, 1945, Air Group 4 made its last strike of the war. The pilots and crew of all planes approached this strike on Okinawa with notable nervousness, no one wanting to lose their life or be taken POW on a last mission. Sadly, one Torpedo Bomber and one F6F Fighter where shot down by Ack Ack, costing three men their lives.

In recounting the events in this book, Thomas draws upon his daily journal, his letters home, and extensive interviews and research conducted over 40 years with fellow pilots and crewman. The book cites 20 interviews and 5 combat journals, and contains 209 photos documenting the ships, planes, men, and combat actions of Torpedo Squadron 4. Many of the photographs were collected by Thomas during the war and include gun photo shots, recon photos, and, remarkably, a picture of the tail of Thomas’ Torpedo plane as it sinks in the China Sea following his water landing.

Thomas was awarded 3 Distinguished Flying Crosses, 2 Air Medals, and 2 Presidential Citations for his combat actions in WWII. He retired from the Navy Reserve with the rank of Lieutenant Commander.

Paperback, 280 pages, 209 pictures.

The Physical Object
FormatE-book
ID Numbers
Open LibraryOL24995186M
ISBN 10978-0-9828709-2-1

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Torpedo Squadron 4: A Cockpit View of World War II by Gerald W. Thomas. Jun Posted by Rebecca. out of 5 Stars $ Lulu (ebook): $ us the entire gamut of what it was like to be a torpedo bomber pilot from that first desire to fly till the end of the war. Excerpt: The sudden loss of a cockpit hatch was demoralizing to our crew. Written by the Air Ministry and first published in , this account provides a vivid description of the RAF Coastal Command operations during World War II. A must-read of intrinsic historical value and importance for all avid readers of British Military History.

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Torpedo Squadron Four: A Cockpit View of World War II -- Ebook Download PDF EPUB FB2

Thomas, in the only combat account of World War II Torpedo Bomber pilot ever published, relates his 25 months of service with Torpedo Squadron 4 (VT-4) on the USS RANGER, USS BUNKER HILL, and USS ESSEX. Thomas served in both the Atlantic and Pacific Theaters.4/5().

I was a Combat Aircrewman in Night Torpedo Squad the second one, and the book brought back many memories of our preparation to get into the war.

I spent almost two years in training and just as we were ready to "Go To Tokyo", the war ended so we saw no action but had trained for it.4/5(). The book cites 20 interviews and 5 combat journals, and contains photos documenting the ships, planes, men, and combat actions of Torpedo Squadron 4.

Many of the photographs were collected by Thomas during the war and include gun photo shots, recon photos, and, remarkably, a picture of the tail of Thomas' Torpedo plane as it sinks in the. Torpedo Squadron Four - A Cockpit View of World War II eBook: Thomas, Gerald W., David Thomas: : Kindle Store4/5().

Torpedo Squadron Four – A Cockpit View of World War II. By Gerald W. Thomas This is the sole personal account emerging from World War II of a carrier-based Torpedo Bomber pilot.

Thomas served on combat duty with Torpedo Squadron 4 (VT-4) for 25 months, beginning in February, BHIZ8SWJZH4B ~ eBook ^ Torpedo Squadron Four - A Cockpit View of World War II Torpedo Squadron Four - A Cockpit View of World War II Filesize: MB Reviews It in a single of the best book.

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After training, he was assigned as a pilot to Torpedo Squadron VT Following World War II, he earned a Ph.D in Range Management, and after stints as professor at Texas A&M University and Dean of Agriculture at Texas Tech University, he became president of New Mexico State University.

He retired after serving as president for 14 years. Torpedo Squadron Four – Photo Supplement. By Gerald W. Thomas In preparing my memoir, Torpedo Squadron Four: A Cockpit View of World War II, I had a difficult time selecting the photos for the book because I had many photos I eventually included were just 30% of the photos I had collected over 40 years relating to Air Group 4, Torpedo 4, the.

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The Big E participated in nearly every major engagement of the war against Japan and earned a total of twenty battle stars.3/5(2). The book cites 20 interviews and 5 combat journals, and contains photos documenting the ships, planes, men, and combat actions of Torpedo Squadron 4.

Many of the photographs were collected by Thomas during the war and include gun photo shots, recon photos, and, remarkably, a picture of the tail of Thomas’ Torpedo plane as it sinks in the Reviews: View: DOWNLOAD NOW» In the Cockpit II: Inside History-Making Aircraft of World War II provides close-up access to the instrument panels, controls, and crew stations of 34 legendary World War II aircraft in the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum's impressive collection.

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The true story of the World War II Pacific naval battle that pitted the USS Intrepid’s naval aviators against Japan’s superbattleship Musashi during the Battle of Leyte Gulf. Octo As World War II raged, six young American bombers from Torpedo Squadron 18 were sent on a search-and-destroy mission in the Sibuyan Sea.