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Farthing, William F.

The commander of Hickam Field, south-east of Pearl Harbor and base of 18th Bombardment Wing, 5th and 11th Heavy Bombardment Groups, was Colonel Farthing. His responsibility was the maintenance and good order of the field itself rather than its defense against an enemy and his men were armed with pistols. On 7 December he was in the control tower early, waiting the arrival of a flight of B-17s from the mainland scheduled for 0600 hours. They were delayed, and Farthing saw the first aircraft of the Japanese attack hit ships in the harbor before coming on to strafe the airfield.

See also: B-17; Hickam Field; Pearl Harbor

Home > Encyclopedia > Finn, John W.

Colonel Finn, John W.

Kaneohe Naval Air Station, now Kaneohe Bay Marine Corps Air Station, was situated on the north-western extreme of the peninsula which encloses the bay on the eastern shore of Oahu, north-east of Honolulu. The station was among the first targets attacked by the Japanese. At 0748 5th and 6th Fighter Combat Units strafed the PBYCatalinas both in the water and on the warm-up platform. John W. Finn was in charge of the machine guns and set up .30 and .50 weapons on the warm-up platform. When the Second Attack Wave came at about 0900, he maintained a vigorous fire. Horizontal bombing Kates of 5th Attack Unit and, about 15 minutes later, Zeros of 3rd Fighter Combat Unit attacked and the leader of the latter, Lieutenant Fusata Iida, was shot down, probably by Finn. In spite of sustaining several wounds, Finn continued to fight and desisted only when expressly ordered to have his injuries treated.

See also: 5th Attack Unit; 3rd Figher Combat Unit; 5th Fighter Combat Unit; 6th Fighter Combat Unit; Kaneohe Naval Air Station; Kate; PBY; Peterson, Robert; Second Attack Wave; Zero