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Liveblogging World War II: June 5, 1942

Midway 1942 : Documents : Commander, Scouting Squadron FIVE. Action Report:



From: Commander, Bombing Squadron FIVE.(Temporarily designed as VS-5)

To  : Commanding Officer U.S.S. ENTERPRISE.

Via : Commander, ENTERPRISE Air Group….

(a) U.S. Navy Regulations, Article 712….

June 5, 1942.

At 1700 seven planes of the squadron took off (1 dud) as a part of an attack group whose mission was to search and attack a damaged enemy CV thought to bear about 315° (T), distance about 240 miles. Planes were armed with one 500-lb. bomb, fused for 1/1OO sec.   The attack group departed from our task force at 1730 and searched out on track 324, a distance of 265 miles. A scouting line was formed by 9 planes of VS-6 and 7 planes of VS-5. At 1927 the scouting line was called in and the attack group rendezvoused for return. At this time a report of contact with one unidentified vessel was heard on the radio (presumably from the HORNET Air Group). The attack group immediately started to climb for altitude and course was set to 215° (T) in hopes of contacting the objective. This course was held for about 35 miles, then a left turn was made to 125°. At 1950 a CL or destroyer leader was sighted bearing broad on the starboard bow distance about 15 miles in latitude 33-00 N, longitude 176-40 E, on course 215, speed 12 knots. The attack group continued to climb and maneuvered for position ahead of ship at about 10,500 feet. After considering the length of the search and the amount of gas remaining in the scouting planes after the climb, it was decided to attack this target. The CL immediately increased speed to about 28 knots and commenced a relatively weak and inaccurate anti-aircraft fire upon sighting the attack group. The attack was started at 2003, the CL maneuvering violently by making "S" turns. She put up a large volume of automatic fire. One possible hit was scored and 2 near misses. (no dudes)

5-S-15, Lt. Adams, pilot, and Karrel, J. J., ARM1c, failed to return. Cowden, H. R., ARM2c, saw a plane land in the water astern of the CL. One other plane had the cockpit hood hit by an explosive bullet. The squadron proceeded to the Enterprise by sections, arriving about 2200.