34th Fighter Squadron, with P-47 Thunderbolt fighters, in 1944 Ie Shima one of the Japanese islands of World War 2

34th Fighter Squadron Yearbook on the island of Ie Shima WW2.

A Series World War 2 Historical Exhibits.

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This is the Home page for the exhibit.
The 34th fighter Squadron Yearbook.
Also listed on this page are many links about World War Two.  Stories about WW2 Veterans in the Air, Land, Sea and Under the Sea.

Esta es la pgina de inicio para la exhibicin.
La 34 escuadrilla de combate Anuario.
Tambin figuran en esta pgina son muchos enlaces sobre la Segunda Guerra Mundial. Las historias sobre WW2 Veteranos en el aire, tierra, mar y bajo el mar.

34th Fighter Squadron, with P-47 Thunderbolt fighters, in 1944 Ie Shima
one of the Japanese islands of World War 2.

This Exhibit covers the men and their crews on this Western Pacific island named Ie Shima which is located near Okinawa in World War 2.  Start your Exhibit Tour by pressing the right arrows located throughout this series of pages.  

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This is the cover from the
34th Fighter Squadron Yearbook
Donated by Larry Jennings
Member of the 34th.

In the following pages you will
see the many photos and the history of the 34th.
August 1945


This is the cover of the 34th Fighter Squadron yearbood
Scanned by C. Jeff Dyrek

Click Here to see a picture of the
34th Fighter Squadron Emblem from Ron Arrowood.

The picture was from a hardcover version of the Yearbook.

This is the 
34th Fighter Squadron Exhibit 
Home Page

Find a 34th Squadron Member on these Readers Pages



   Exhibit Contents Page  

  "History is not merely what happened.  It's what happened in the context of what might have happened."

This is your Tour Guide 
The original exhibit contained 176 pages and 348 files, that was fifteen years ago, today is 10-15-2012
Take one of these 34th Fighter Squadron Tours
We always have families and veterans wanting help finding information about their units and their families.  If you can help, Click Here to read the questions.  We need Your Help.

Some great pictures, "Ghost of Ie Shima" by John E. Hagensieker Next Pic
The best historical account of Ie Shima's capture in World War 2, by Army.mil
Added 5-22-2010
Next Pic
The Best WW2 Story that I ever heard, from Bob Shackles
Story added 1-12-2009
Next Pic

A One Page Exhibit about the
USS Barb, WW2 Submarine.
This story tells about what it was like to be on a real submarine mission in WW2.

From Ken and Annette Cook.

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Very Rare WW2 Japanese "Propaganda Art"
Click Here are a couple of pictures from a very rare collection of Japanese "Propaganda" Aviation Art dated 1941 - 1943
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Japanese Surrender Home Page. 
The True Story of the Japanese Surrender.
Japanese Surrender Home Page
Japanese Betty Bombers
These are some great shots of the Betty Bomber Built by Japan in WW2.
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Japanese Asahigraph Magazines from WW2
Japanese Magazines in World War 2, What were they thinking about then
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Jim Walker Betty Bombers on Ie Shima Next Pic
The Japanese surrender delegation arrives
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Map of Ie Shima
A map plus aerial photos from the 40's and, now, aerial photos of Ie Shima today
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Aerial photos of Ie Shima Next Pic
Roll Call
Personnel Listing of the 34th Fighter Squadron
Click Here to Find a 34th Squadron Member today
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Our Flyers 
Photos of crews and planes, most with names, P-47 
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We All Had A Section 
Orderly Rm., Operations, intelligence, photo section, ordinance, Communications 
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Aircraft Maintenance 
Scenes of men at work, aircraft operations
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Drawings of the lifestyle in camp
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Ernie Pyle Memorial, Cemetery
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Beach scenes , Island scenes, the harbor, Japanese temple, Battle Damage
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Photo Gallery
All Photos with no captions.
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What's happening on Ie Shima in Today Next Pic
Kilroy the Legend 
What is the real story behind the Legend of Kilroy 
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Where did the song for Taps come from,  You will be shocked 
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34th Fighter Squadron History
from conception till Present 
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Photos from Noel Adair
Japanese Surrender Envoy
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Kenny Cox
The 967 Bomb Squadron.
See Kenny Cox on Ie Shima in World War 2
The Vincent Dauro Story,
318th Fighter Group
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Kermit Kelly on Ie Shima
Various photos of Ie Shima.
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Photos from Robert Magnus by Lester Magnus Next Pic
Irving Mayer I Thought I Killed Ernie Pyle Next Pic
Richard Notestine, Japanese Baka Bomb Next Pic
Ernie Pyle
The most famous War Correspondent and Combat Photographer.
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Eddie Saboo
Standing with the medals were awarded for the Atlantic Fleet Belt, Pacific Fleet Belt
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From: Timothy Lawler
To: Jeff Dyrek
Sent: Monday, October 15, 2012 10:54 AM
Subject: Hello

Ok. My Dad was there in ia shima when the Japanese flew in. he was a machine Gunner and had to keep his finger on trigger when they came off plane . If u go to google and type in "my name is Daniel Lawler sr" hi history will show up
Tim Lawler

Read about Daniel Lawler's Story Here.


The Last Surviving Pilot of the 34th Fighter Squadron in WW2 was Ward J. Derks.

Ward was also and instructor pilot and the public affairs officer for the first Thunderbirds aerobatic flight team, then called the ThunderJets aerobatic team.  Ward passed away on June 10th, 2011 and was burried at Memorial Park Cemetery in Tulsa OK.  Ward's obituary was published in the Tulsa World on 6-9-2011.    Ward Derks Obiturary Link    Ward Derks from Tulsa World


Mr. Dyrek,

  My name is Jason Repak and I am an F-16 pilot in the 34th FS.  I am doing a lot of research into the history of this fine squadron and recently came across your informative website.  I understand you have been in contact with my squadron commander Lt Colonel Valentino Bagnani who told me you were a great source of help and information concerning the 34th's history.  I noticed you have attained an original 34th 1945 yearbook and was wondering if there might be a way of attaining the original or a copy of it from you. We are trying to collect as much 34th related memorabilia as possible in hopes of putting up a permanent historical display which honors the proud veterans of this squadron.  Unfortunately, memorabilia from the WWII time period is somewhat lacking and any additions would be a huge boost to the display.  Please let me know if we can make any arrangements concerning this request.  Additionally, we are also looking for a Ram squadron patch from the same time period.  Would you know of any way we could acquire such an item?  Thanks for your time and the contribution your website makes towards this squadron's history.

Captain Jason Repak
34th Fighter Squadron


A Special Request from the 34th Fighter Squadron Today
Click Here's another great web site on the 413th Fighter Group at 413thFighterGroup.com from Wes Tyler
Dec. 5th, 2010

Ross D. Pollack
formerly LT, JAGC, USNR
My Dad, who was in the Signal Corps, told me he sheltered in one of the caves inland from Red Beach #2 from nightly Japanese bombing of the island. I believe he landed on D+3. He thought the caves were originally tombs that had been sanitized with DDT.
In order to prove his entitlement to a Bronze Star Medal he told me his CO put him in for -- but that he never received -- I'm trying to find any information regarding a communications tower that stood just west of the southern end of the easternmost airstrip constructed by US forces in 1945. A picture would be ideal. My understanding is that the current US comms tower does not date from 1945 and is not at the same location as the one I'm seeking.
Dad said his minor act of heroism occurred atop that 1945 tower during a daylight strafing run by a lone Japanese aircraft, soon after the Island was considered to have been "secured," maybe early in May of 1945.
Thanks for any assistance you can render. -- Ross

From the Webmaster:  If anyone can help Ross with this one, it would be a great help.  C. Jeff Dyrek.

Dec 7th 2010

Dear Ross;
There is no question in my mind that your dad was recommended to receive a bronze star for his action under fire on that communication tower. It's just a darn shame his Company Commander didn't follow through.
I'm sorry that I can't be of any help but I was not involved in the battles taking place on Ie Shima. We could see the tiny Island off in the distance when we arrived aboard ship and also from our view atop Shurie Ridge on Okinawa. Scuttlebutt had it that American forces on Ie Shima were also taking heavy casualties and War Department records has proved our information was correct.
I can probably help you with any information needed concerning the Island of Okinawa because the shore based forces and the landing strips [just like IeShima] were being hit by the Jap Betty Bombers some days and most nights. At Okinawa our ground radar was picking up incoming Jap planes and the ground troops would scatter in the areas that was going to be the target and no doubt this was also true on Ie Shima. The fact that one lone bomber attacked the tower you dad was working on is an indication to me this lone Jap hit them by surprise, and I have no doubt the tower would be a prime target. It took guts for your Dad to remain on mission under fire. I sincerely hope you can find someone in his outfit that can cover him but sadly, according to information I received last week from the Veterans Hospital Clinic 90% of WW2 veterans are no longer living. If time permits you may find someone who could help you by going to the VA clinics and ask the old Vets if they happened to have been on Ie Shima. If you haven't contacted the VFW or the American Legion you may want to consider asking them for help. I have your email address and I will talk to any old WW2 vets during my future trips to see if I can get you a name to contact.
Happy Trails
Bob Shackles

Dec. 8th 2010

Thanks so much for your prompt reply, Bob. I'll let you know what progress I make. My Dad proposed to my Mom by letter from his supply tent -- not far from where Ernie Pyle fell. My dad is no longer living and Needless to say, Mom was quite moved when I brought her to that spot during a visit to Ie Shima in 2002. Thanks for your service--Ross

Click Here are some questions that need to be answered about the 34th Fighter Squadron's history. 

Major Brian "Toxic" Bragg the 34th Fighter Squadrons ADO, today is asking for some information before the 34th is closed.  

1.  Where did the picture of the ram come from
2.  Why was it chosen as the mascot
3.  What significance did it have at the time that it was selected to be the Mascot, (Logo). 

Please send me a letter at the bottom of this page.  C. Jeff Dyrek, Webmaster.



A link to the original scans of this Yearbook are available here.   Thanks to Barbara Zeidlik.


Find a 34th Squadron Member, Readers Pages
email address, phone numbers and address of members today.  Also, Pictures and Stories from our readers.  You will like this.   Send me your photos.  
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Jim Walker, US Navy Veteran in Europe and in the Pacific
Fighting in both WW2 War Theaters, Fighting Criminals in Portland.  A look at the life of Jim Walker.
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John Spiegel in WW2 in Eastern India. 
Some good photos of WW2 Aircraft in Eastern India in WW2
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Take a trip on the USS Kitty Hawk  ---  1977 - 1978 Next Pic
The 413th Fighter Group
made up of the 1st, 21st and 34th Fighter Squadrons
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Click Here to See More Aviation Exhibits Next Pic
Ie Shima Links 
Learn about Ie Shima yesterday and today
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Write to the Webmaster


to the EAA (experimental aircraft association) main listingGo back to Yellow Airplane's Museum  Entrance


Dear Jeff,
I was very excited to find your website and information. I have come into possession of some photos of the peace envoy and planes very similar to the ones you have posted. Col. Isaac Simonds was there. He was my husband's uncle.  When his wife died, we got pictures. He had written some notes on the backs of some of them. Thanks to you, I now know more of the story of several of them. We also have some photos showing some of the destruction, from the air.  We have some from a visit to the base by General Partridge. He was meeting Col. Ellenger's staff. We have some showing Uncle Ike's Sqd headquarters' and Sqd. 23rd ADG. I don't know what squadron he was in, or if he was a Colonel yet at that time. If you would like to see any of our photos or possible figure out more about what some are, let me know. Thank you for your service!! We currently have one son in the US Navy and one in the National Guard  I hope to hear from you.
Sincerely, Kathy
Dear Mr. Dyrek-

My father, Seth Villa, was a member of the 34th fighter squadron D-flight on Ie Shima in WWII.  He provided you with the 34th squad yearbook on your website.

I am sad to report that yesterday, November 30, 2007, my dad died of natural causes.  Please post this on your website so his friends and members of the squad are informed of his passing.

He was a proud member of the greatest generation.  Thank you for keeping the memory of my dad and the great men in his fighter group alive on the web.   If I can find any more info of the time my dad served his country, I will forward copies to you.

Thanks again.
Craig Villa

Readington, NJ


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Allies in War
Air Force Acknowledgements

We need your help with the following subjects.
1. We are looking for information about War Correspondent Jack Singer for his nephew Jeff Hubbard.  Jack Singer was a War Correspondent for the U.S. Navy and was stationed on the USS WASP when it was sunk in 1942.  We are also looking for information about any members of the ships company. Please send me information at the bottom of this page if you have any information.

2.  Do you know anything about the Radar Picket Ships around Okinawa in WW2
3.  Are you a member or a relative of the 34th fighter squadron, Please Look Here at the Readers Page for more exhibits and stories.
4.  Major William C. Braxton Naha Air Force Base in Okinawa 1957


A letter from a WW2 Vet.

When in England at a fairly large conference,
Colin Powell was asked by the Archbishop of Canterbury if our plans for Iraq were just an example of empire building
by George Bush He answered by saying that, "Over the years, the United States has sent many of its fine young men and women into great peril to fight for freedom beyond our borders. The only amount of land we have ever asked for in return is enough to bury those that did not return."
It became very quiet in the room.

  Great site! A wonderful starting place for somebody to get 'unclassified'
info about Ieshima in WW2. No matter how I ask for it, (or which search
engine) you were ALWAYS "First Hit" on search engines regarding Ieshima
/ IEShima in WW2.
My searches speak well of your site visibility!

Mr. D. E. Dawkins

7th Air Force 
301st Fighter Wing. This table was completed thanks to info from Brian Bell
318th Fighter Group
413th Fighter Group
507th Fighter Group
19th Fighter Squadron 73rd Fighter Squadron 333rd Fighter Squadron 1st Fighter Squadron 21st Fighter Squadron 34th Fighter Squadron 463rd
Fighter Squadron
Fighter Squadron
Fighter Squadron

The 301st Fighter Wing Score Box
318th Fighter Group Victory Roll
This Fighter Group was from the 7th Air Force
which contained the 301st Fighter Wing.
The 301st Fighter Wing was made up of three Fighter Groups
each containing three Fighter Squadrons.
The 301st was made up of the 318th,  413th, 507th Fighter Groups.
The 318th was made up of the 19th, 73rd and 333rd Fighter Squadrons
The 413th was made up the 1st, 21st and 34th Fighter Squadrons
If anyone knows what squadrons made up the 507th Fighter Group
let me know at the bottom of the page.

On your website you asked if anyone could tell you which squadrons made up the 507th Fighter Group on Ie Shima.  In case you are still interested,  they were the 463th, the 464th and the 465th.  I was one of the pilots in the 465th and if I can help with any other questions about our group please let me know.   Bert Eichel      ajyee@juno.com

This is a fantastic story of the Japanese Surrender
 and a big part of Aviation History.

There was an interesting story about the Japanese surrender which involved the Betty Bombers.  The surrender wasn't just the emperor waving a white flag and calling it quits.  It wasn't just the signing of the surrender papers on the USS Missouri.  There was a long story behind the Japanese surrender and a big part of aviation history.  As a webmaster, I'm just going to tell it the way I remember reading about it so here it is, please forgive me for any mistakes.  

When Emperor Hirohito decided for the Japanese to surrender after the dropping of the Atomic Bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, he was not a popular man.  The Japanese honor dictated that the Japanese should fight to the very last person and never give up.  Hirohito knew that the people have suffered badly and that most everyone would die if the war continued and he saw fit to end the war and end this great suffering.  The Japanese generals in charge of the armies thought differently than this.  They wanted to continue the war to the very end, to the very last man, for the honor of Japan.

This is where the Betty bombers came in.  They were painted white and had large green crosses painted on them.  They were to fly to the island of Ie Shima to bring the surrender delegation and the surrender papers to the Allied forces there.   But it wasn't just a normal flight.  The few remaining Jap Zeros were scrambled and were ordered to shoot the Betty Bombers down.  The Betty Bomber pilots knew that this would happen so they flew North East instead of South East which would have been the most direct course.  Mean while the American forces sent up a squadron of B-25 Mitchell's and P-38 Lightning's to intercept the Japanese Betty Bombers and escort them safely to Ie Shima.

There were two Betty's flying on this mission and one of the members of the surrender delegation commented that he could see out of the holes in the Betty's side that were made from American cannon fire.  He was watching and noticed a group of fighter aircraft approaching.  Everyone's hearts were throbbing in fear as the fighters came closer.  Then suddenly there was a sigh of relief, the fighters were the P-38 Lightings and were there for their protection.  

The flight safely landed on the island of Ie Shima, however, one of the Betty's ran off of the runway and was damaged and unable to fly the remainder of the mission.  The picture below shows the two Betty's sitting on the ramp with a guard standing with a machine gun.   This was the most important flight of the war, but at the same time one of the least heard of. 

Once the papers were signed they had to be flown back to Japan to be finalized.  The one remaining Betty took off to complete the mission.  After a number of hours the pilot noticed that they were not going to have enough fuel to make it back to the final base because of all of the bullet holes in the fuel tank were leaking too much fuel and the consumption would be too much.  One of the members of the surrender delegation was an Olympic swimmer so he was given the documents in case they had to ditch the aircraft out to sea.  

This is exactly what happened.  The plane ran out of fuel but they were able to ditch the Betty Bomber in very shallow water.  There was only one person hurt and knocked unconscious and that was the Olympic swimmer.  The Japanese army was alerted to seek out and kill the surrender delegation so the delegation had to sneak back to Tokyo to deliver the orders back to the Emperor.  The mission was obviously successful.



An Article by the webmaster


Other Ie Shima Links
The Fightin' Furies 
The Shrine 
318th Fighter Group
Ernie Pyle's last column

USS Cabot WW II   CVL - 28   " Ernie Pyle "The Foxhole Reporter"
34th Fighter Squadron Links
34th 1966-1969 
A Great Fighter Squadron History.

P-47   LinksAbout the P-47D  by Mike FletcherP-47D Thunderbolts
P-47D ModelsP-47 BooksP-47 Movies
Military Aviation SitesLittle Friends 8th Air Force Fighter Groups by Peter Randall

Czech Pilots in WW2  A great site

Bomber Groups of World War 2

Veterans,  Read This

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Look at these links to learn what you fought for and why your friends died in tremendously terrible battles and wars.  It's time that all good veterans come to the aid of our country.


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How to Destroy America

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