Monday, May 27, 2024

80 Years Ago, Saturday 27 May 1944

On this Memorial Day 2024, please pause to reflect on the ultimate sacrifice made by the valiant men and women of our armed forces who died gaining and defending our freedom.  The military forces of United States are different than those of most of the world in that the members take an oath not to a sovereign as in the United Kingdom (where they all took a new oath to King Charles after Queen Elizabeth's passing) or to a supreme leader as they did in nazi Germany and do in today's North Korea.  That loyalty to the constitution spans the political spectrum with members of both major and many minor parties serving faithfully throughout our history.  Those we honor today include the conscientious objectors who could not bear arms account their beliefs, but still served and sacrificed as medics and corpsmen, caring for those wounded in battle.  The courage of these men an women have made it possible for us to express our opinions freely today.  They laid down their lives so that all Americans could continue to enjoy the privileges and rights guaranteed by the constitution.  Today, please take a moment to honor them and express gratitude for the freedoms that they fought and died to defend.

John C. Barry

Major, US Air Force (Retired)

Lovettsville, Virginia, 27 May 2024 



TF 77 (Rear Admiral William M. Fechteler) lands U.S. Army 41st Division (Major General Horace H. Fuller, USA) on Biak in the Schouten Islands off New Guinea, in Operation HORLICKS. Heavy and light cruisers and destroyers of TG 77.2 (Rear Admiral Victor A.C. Crutchley, RN) and TG 77.3 (Rear Admiral Russell S. Berkey) provide gunfire support.

Motor torpedo boat PT-339, damaged by grounding off Pur Pur, western New Guinea, 04°01'S, 144°41'E, is scuttled by her crew to prevent capture.

Submarine chaser SC-699 is damaged by crashing Japanese plane off western New Guinea, 01°12'S, 136°13'E.

British submarine HMS Templar sinks Japanese cargo ship Tyokai Maru in Strait of Malacca.


U.S. motor torpedo boats attack three German F-lighters in vicinity of Vada Rocks, sinking two and damaging one; PTs also attack an enemy motor vessel.


Eighth AF

923 B-17’s and B-24’s bomb marshalling yards, aircraft industries, and airfield at Ludwigshafen, Mannheim, Karlsruhe, Konz-Karthaus, Neunkirchen, Saarbrucken, Lachen/Speyerdorf, Strasbourg, and Woippy. Coastal batteries at Fecamp and Saint-Valeryen-Caux also are bombed. Opposition is heavy and 24 Heavy Bombers are lost on mission.

Ninth AF

About 690 Medium Bombers attack railroad, bridges, and marshalling yards in France. P-47’s bomb targets in NW Europe.

Twelfth AF

Medium Bombers concentrate efforts against lines of comm in Orvieto area. A-20’s bomb storage area. Fighter Bombers pound a much reduced flow of motor transport behind enemy lines and hit railroads, gun positions, bridges, and targets of opportunity in and behind battle area, hitting targets at Subiaco, Sora, Tivoli, Frosinone, Capena, and Orvieto, W of Bracciano Lake, between Sulmona and San Benedetto de Marsi, and at several other points.

Fifteenth AF

Almost 700 B-17’s and B-24’s, with P-38 and P-51 escorts, bomb marshalling yards at Avignon, Montpellier- Frejorgues, Nimes, Marseilles-Blancarde, and Marseille-SaintCharles, airfield at Salon-de-Provence, and port of Razanac.

Tenth AF

15 B-24’s bomb Pakokku and Nyaung-u.

Fourteenth AF

24 rocket-firing P-40’s hit barracks area W of Sinyang, military installations and trucks at Nanchang, and troops, trucks, barracks, and warehouse area in Puchi vicinity.

Fifth AF

Babo airfield and Biak I are pounded by 170-plus B-24’s and B-25’s. After the aerial and naval bombardment, Allied amphibious forces land on Biak in the Bosnik area, secure beachhead, and gain control of trail over ridges to inland plateau to the N. About 170 A-20’s, P-38’s, P-40’s, and B-25’s blast Wewak area.

Thirteenth AF

About 200 AAF, Marine, and Navy aircraft (Fighters, dive bombers, and B-25’s) are sent against gun positions on Hospital Pt. 160-plus aircraft bomb the targets with more than 90 tons of explosives, destroying or damaging several of the guns. Other Fighters hit targets of opportunity in Rabaul area and a barge off SW New Ireland. 4 B-24’s bomb Tobera. AAF Fighters attack beached barges in Chabai area and in Buka Passage, Aku and Nova Plantation, and bridge over Oamai R.

Seventh AF

24 B-24’s from Kwajalein and 52 B-25’s from Engebi pound Ponape.

Eleventh AF

2 bombers fly weather and armed photo recon and bomb Ushishiru I.


NEW GUINEA—TF HURRICANE, consisting largely of 41st Div ( - RCT 163), lands on Biak I. in Bosnek area after naval and air preparation. Against token resistance 186th Inf secures initial beachhead and trail over ridges to inland plateau N of Bosnek. 162d Inf starts W toward airfields, overcoming opposition in Parai Defile to reach Parai. Gen Fuller, commander of 41st Div and of TF HURRICANE, takes command ashore. Japanese air attack causes little damage. In Wakde-Sarmi area, 158th Inf continues drive on Lone Tree Hill and gains positions on it. Japanese begin series of attacks against beachhead—some 200 are committed against Toem, night 27–28.

CBI—In NCAC’s Myitkyina area, 2d Marauder Bn, reinforced by 209th Engr Combat Bn, completely spends its strength in battle just S of Charpate while endeavoring to reach Radhapur.

On Salween front, Ch force securing Huei-jen Bridge area has elements within 5 miles of Hongmoshu. Monsoon rains are restricting activities of both sides.

In China, Japanese begin second phase (TOGO) of ICHI GO operation, moving 2 divs S in region E

of Hsiang R.

ITALY—AAI: In U.S, Fifth Army’s VI Corps area, 45th and 34th Divs gain ground on left flank of corps against spotty resistance. 1st Armd Div is alerted for breakthrough attempt. 142d Inf, 36th Div, is to exploit breakthrough if it is achieved by armor. 36th Div commits 141st Inf NE of Velletri to plug gap existing between 143d Inf and 3d Div. On right flank of VI Corps, 3d Div’s 15th Inf clears Artena. TF Howze again fails to reach Highway 6 north of Artena but holds positions dominating it. 1st SSF emplaces arty on crest of hill above Artena on extreme right. 3d Div organizes Artena area for defense and repels tank-infantry counterattacks. II Corps turns over its sector and troops, except for organic units and 85th Div, to IV Corps, night 27– 28. 85th Div troops move into Sezze and hills S of Roccagorga. 350th Inf, 88th Div, seizes Roccagorga. 351st relieves 85th Div on left of 350th. FEC clears Amaseno, M. Siserno, and Castro dei Volsci.

In Br Eighth Army area, Cdn 1 Corps crosses elements over the Liri in assault boats under fire and occupies Ceprano. In 13 Corps area, elements of 78th Div start toward Ceprano to pursue enemy toward Frosinone from there. 6th Armd Div, assisted by Ind 8th Div, continues efforts to take Arce. In 10 Corps area, Italian Corps of Liberation seizes M. Cavallo from enemy rear guards. NZ 2d Div gets elements to Atina.

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