Entry #35

“July 6 – Had two raids, they hit strip and also camp area causing several casualties. Night fighter P-61 shot down a Jap, sure was a pretty night.” 

Alright so first off I would liked to apologize that I have not been posting as often as I should be. This month for me is going to be very busy, so if I don’t post for several days at a time, I apologize. I will try and keep up with it to the best of my ability. Let’s get into it.

I imagine this day was very hard for him because of the “several casualties” caused. I’d imagine he saw the dead bodies and destruction.

Alright so let’s talk about the part where he said “Night fighter P-61 shot down a Jap, sure was a pretty night.” So night fighters are air crafts designed to be used during the night or times where visibility is poor (rain, fog, etc). The one he mentioned, the “P-61” is more formally known as the Northrop P-61 Black Widow. This was the first U.S. plane designed to be a night fighter and the first one to utilize radar. It’s crew was comprised of three people, and it’s first flight was in May of 1942. Only two years prior to when my grandpa joined.

The part where he says “shot down a Jap, sure was a pretty night.” This is interesting because when my grandfather was alive he seemed like someone who was against killing, as he was very religious. But this part leads me to believe that while in the war he had the typical mentality of a young person serving during that time. To me it’s interesting at least (I’m not saying it’s wrong or right in any way, just talking about what he wrote).

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Here is what a Northrop P-61 Black Widow looks like:

NORTHROP P-61 BLACK WIDOW

Some of them are green and some of them are black, but this is what the base design looked like. Also please note that we do not own this image, here is the source for it, you can also go to this link for more information about this plane:

http://www.aviation-history.com/northrop/p61.html