Clark Field The Birthplace of the Kamikaze


Battle of Leyte Gulf

A marker, naming the birthplace of the Kamikaze is located two miles north of the town of Mabalacat on MacArthur Highway, along Clark's eastern perimeter. During the war, the American liberators thought that these suicide planes were flying from Northern Luzon, but in their postwar interrogations, Japanese airmen insisted that the attacks had originated at Clark Field. This fact subsequently was confirmed: two Kamikaze pilots had flown circuitous routes to avoid U.S. fighter patrols, and thus had left the impression that the attacks came from Northern Luzon.

During the course of the American re-invasion of the Philippines, the Japanese conducted extensive counter air operations from Clark Field. Japanese Kamikaze pilots also operated from an airstrip just north of Clark, near Mabalacat, Pampanga, against allied shipping. During the liberation of the Philippines, Americans extensively bombed Clark, thus, for the second time in only a few years, the base came under heavy attack.

Post-war investigations revealed that from the beginning of Allied air attacks on Clark, Nichols, and Nielson fields in October 1944 until February 1945, 1,505 Japanese aircraft were put out of action on the ground. At Clark, the heavy bomber attacks had caused the Japanese to disperse repair shops, storage areas, and maintenance units, scattering them as far as Bamban. Sometimes, parts were hidden or even buried, often becoming inaccessible later. One captured Japanese aircraft needed only one of the carburetors buried at Mabalacat to be ready for flight. In fact, when Allied troops captured Mabalacat, they found over 200 aircraft engines, some of which had never been uncrated.

Gary Sinese makes a moving tribute to WWII veteran L. G. Staples

Gary Sinese makes a moving tribute to WWII veteran

Written by Mr L. G. Staples of Akron, Ohio and spoken by Gary Sinese at a tribute to veterans. In the summer of 1942 he was nineteen years old a signalman 3rd class on the USS Astoria stationed in the south pacific.

One hot night in August we found ourselves skirmishing with the Japanese for control of Guadalcanal. At midnight my work detail was over, still wearing my work detail clothes of dungarees and a T-shirt I fell into an exhausted sleep. Two hours later I was awoken abruptly by the sound of an explosion. I jumped to my feet heart pounding and without thinking I grabbed my life belt and strapped it on. After the enemy fire ceased the men left standing helped with the wounded while others manned the guns.

I was making my way toward a gun turret when suddenly the deck disappeared, immediately I inflated my life belt weak with relief that somehow I had managed to put it on. Four agonizing hours past when I saw a ship an American destroyer.

The sailors through me a line and hauled me aboard, I was fed and transported back to the Astoria which though disabled was still afloat. The hours past it became clear that our vessels was damaged beyond help. Finally the Astoria began to roll and go under, the last thing I wanted to do was go in the water again.

Filled with dread I jumped off the sinking ship and began swimming luckily I was soon picked up by another destroyer, against all odds I had made it...

Watch the video and see how this touching story ends.

 

Gary Sinese is a big supporter of the troops in the field as well as veterans of past wars we salute you Mr Sinese.

Join Our Newsletter
Get Special Offers

Search this site