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Didn't know how to categorize this so I'm stowing it here. Has anybody ever landed, docked, been stationed, or washed up on Wake Island? On my first flight over the Pacific in 1969, (on Braniff Airways), we landed on Wake to refuel. From where I sat it looked like a spec on the water as we approached. It also seemed we had just enough runway to come to a stop. We were allowed off the Boeing 707 to stretch and look around. I changed into whites during the stopover there. It was hot and bright, and would seem like an unpleasant place to be stationed. Anybody who had to live and work there should be awarded a medal.
I landed on wake island on the way to the states from Japan in 1954 in a 4 engine prop driven commercial plane and like you said it didn't seem like enough runway. The only hero's there would be those that defended it and those who took it back from the Japanese, Ron Brabbin
I was with a small Seabee det on our way to Nam and landed to refuel in 1972 we were in a Navy C118 island hopped all the way from Hawaii to Nam and back again. Then landed there again in a civilian DC10 to refuel on our way to Guam for our deployment out of Gulfport. Been to Guam three times almost made a fourth deployment in 93 but got lucky and transferred out of NMCB 1 to Pax River Naval Air Station
Thank you David, Ron, and Gery. I was thinking nobody from here, had never even been there. I, in my later life learned how horrific the battle for Wake Island was in the early days of WWII and how hard the Marines fought with limited aircraft, and what weapons they had to delay the Japanese flotilla, and also the bombardments they endured.
I walked on sacred ground when we landed there back then. Even tho I was only 19 years old at that time, I remembered from world history class in high school, that something tremendous had happened there. But, as you know, 1969 was a time of fear and war that our military and country were in the middle of and there was little time to walk and learn of our past battles. I'm just glad I was able to briefly visit that small historic atoll in the vast Pacific Ocean. Even tho it was just for a short stopover, I think I'll always remember it.
in the battle for wake a lot of civilian construction workers were executed by the Japanese also some of the marines were executed and buried by the beach. Did you ever see the old movie "Wake Island "with Brian Donlevey and William Bendix? Ron
Was reading about the battle for Wake, the Japanese executed 98 prisoners and hurriedly buried them, one prisoner escaped and scratched a message on a rock,(it is still there) he was captured and beheaded. I think they were all civilians construction workers. I think wake was once a Pan American airlines stop over.
I saw it. many times. but i was told it didn't tell the true story of what happened there
Hi Adrian, I worked on a small Tanker delivering JP-5 She is the TransPacific, there to Wake Island.Yes, the mooring there was a nightmare since we did a 4 point mooring both on the Bow and Stern, with both Anchors let go. We made fast to anchor Bouys. Mind you, this is only less than 800 Yards from shore, and you can hear and see the waves breaking in the beach. Enough to put hair on your chest. Thats' if the surf was not too rough for the approach to begin with, otherwise, canex, try tomorrow. We spent 3 days discharging the cargo on a floating hose. Anyway, we were invited ashore to visit this desolate atoll to whom one would think God forgotten about.The Island is probably riddled with artifacts, like Iwo Jima, but its very hot, and miserable, oh and windy, of course. Its has the airstrip there, a small exchange and club, with Thai Nationals working there.Lots of Pine trees. Oh yeah, and the sunken wreck of the Jacpb Stoner nearby where we moored. I was glad to leave, and worked going that for 3 years, from 2007 to 2010.
You're right about the civilian construction workers, that is why the Seabees were formed. During WWII the Seabees were the oldest, the first ones that were taken were in their late 20's and older and all were journeyman level or higher. Master carpenters, electricians, plumbers, welders, mechanics, and equipment operators.
on my first flight to the PI I flew on MAC and we stopped there to refuel in the middle of the night. when the door opened the heat was like a blast furnace.
Another island I got to visit that was a WWII battle was Tinian. While on deployment to Guam 92 - 93 have way through our deployment we shut down our projects and spent a week having a mini FEX "field exercise" there. The end of the island that we were at night you could look across the water and see the lights over on Saipan. One time during our stay then had the Air Force practice doing low level resupply runs and on one of the runways they came in low and pushed a plait out the back of a C-130 which had food loaded on it and I guess the parachute didn't open up right and the palette landed up side down and they had milk, eggs, etc spread all down the runway. What a good job the Air Force did for us that day........hehehehe no wonder we use to call them Club Med
I In Jan.1957,I flew in a 4 prop US Air Force piston driven aircraft from Frisco..( Treasure Island ) Cal. at about 2100 and later dropped in at Wake to re-fuel,and was escorted to the mess hall for chow,and then boarded the aircraft to resume my flight to Subic Bay.Much later,my tin can steamed into Midway Island,which kinda reminded me of Wake & Kwajalein...hot,humid,but thankfully windy.
Landed on Wake when heading to my first tour of duty in Japan in 1962 from Hawaii.
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