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Captain Allen, Brooke E.

On 2 July 1962 the then Major General Brooke E. Allen gave an interview to Gordon W. Prange, an historian of the events of 7 December 1941 at Pearl Harbor. Allen told him that he was at Hickam Field on Saturday, 6 December and that he was roused from sleep on Sunday morning by the Japanese attack. He gathered a scratch crew and boarded a B-17 Flying Fortress. They readied its guns for firing and attempted to start the engines, but one of the four would not go. Allen taxied the aircraft while still attempting to start engine No. 1. Before they could arm with bombs to hit back at their attackers the B-17 was shot up by a Japanese aircraft and rendered useless. Allen found another and, at about 1130, was ready to go. He and 'Blondie' Saunders were soon airborne and attempting to find a reported Japanese aircraft carrier some 35 miles south of Barber's Point. Saunders was obliged to return to base but Allen continued to search to the west, where he sighted the American carrier Enterprise and, assuming her to be Japanese, started a bombing run. He recognized his error in time. His return to Hickam was hazardous as the defenders were firing at anything that flew.

See also: B-17 Flying Fortress; Enterprise; Hickam Field

You can find out more about Capt. Allen in the following Osprey books:

CAMPAIGN 62 Pearl Harbor 1941; MEN-AT-ARMS 342 US Army in WWII (1) The Pacific