History[edit | edit source]
Allocated to VMF-211 as 211-F-8, BuNo 4022 was among the aircraft arriving at Wake Island in early December 1941, only to receive unspecified damage to it's port elevator. This was replaced on 14 December by the port elevator from BuNo 4019, after the latter was grounded due to damage incurred while sinking the Destroyer Kisaragi on 11 December. Flown by Captain Herbert C. Freuler on its only sortie on 22 December 1941, BuNo 4022 was used to destroy three Japanese aircraft - the F4F was damaged by the explosion of the third kill, and by an attacking A6M Zero from the carrier Hiryu. Wounded in the shoulder, Freuler managed to crash-land on Wake. Captured by the Japanese shortly afterwards,  BuNo 4022's subsequent fate is unknown.[N 2]
Notes[edit | edit source]
- Screenshot from a computer game, depicting BuNo 4022 after shooting down a Nakajima B5N "Kate" torpedo bomber during the battle of Wake Island. (Note the jettisoned canopy near the B5N's right wingtip, as the pilot attempts to bail out).
- Freuler was also captured, but survived the war. He was awarded the Navy Cross for his actions on Wake, and a Prisoner of War Medal for nearly four years in captivity.
Sources[edit | edit source]
- Cressman, Robert. "A Magnificent Fight": The Battle for Wake Island. Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1557501408