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VMB-443 Squadron Insignia

Marine Bombing Squadron Four Forty-Three

 

Naval Aviator's Wings

Unit Awards

Summary:  VMB-443 was commissioned on 15 September 1943 at Cherry Point, NC.  The squadron transferred to Peterfield Point, NC 20 October 1943 to continue training.  During mid-January 1944 flight personnel and some of ground echelon went to Boca Chica, FL for torpedo and tactics training.  Moving to El Centro, CA in February 1944, the squadron continued its training through mid-May before deploying to the Pacific.  On 18 May 1944 the ground echelon sailed aboard the MS Brastagi from San Diego, CA for Emirau.  Following their arrival on Emirau they were joined by the flight echelon on 13 August 1944.  While on Emirau, VMB-443 participated in the neutralization of the Bismarcks, flying missions against Rabaul and other bypassed Japanese installations on New Britain and New Ireland.  In August 1945 VMB-443 began movement to Malabang, Philippines, however they were not fully in place until after the war ended less than one month later.  VMB-443 was decommissioned at Miramar, CA on 30 November 1945 following the squadron's return to the United States.

Commanding Officers:

First Lieutenant Robert C. McConnell

15 Sep 1943

Major Alton D. Gould

16 Sep - 13 Oct 1943

Lieutenant Colonel Dwight M. Guillotte

14 Oct 1943 - 21 Mar 1945

Lieutenant Colonel Alton D. Gould

22 Mar - 16 Aug 1945

Major Earl E. Anderson

17 Aug - 30 Nov 1945

Awards:  American Campaign; Asiatic-Pacific Campaign w/2 bronze stars, and; World War II Victory.

Aircraft Operated Overseas:  PBJ-1C; PBJ-1D, and; PBJ-1J.

Aircraft Loses:  2 Operational; 2 Combat.

Casualties:

First Lieutenant Clifford McClinton

8 February 1944

First Lieutenant Frank Crummer Jr.

8 February 1944

Sergeant John H. Hopkins

8 February 1944

Sergeant Robert H. Tarbell

8 February 1944

Corporal Jack D. Moss

8 February 1944

Staff Sergeant John E. Decker

8 February 1944

First Lieutenant Paul N. Kezerian

10 July 1944

First Lieutenant John O'Hara

11 September 1944

First Lieutenant Henry A. Maasen

11 September 1944

Master Technical Sergeant Ralph E. Holland

11 September 1944

Technical Sergeant Robert J. Heger

11 September 1944

Sergeant Arthur Browning

11 September 1944

Sergeant Charles H. Shuler

11 September 1944

First Lieutenant Benjamin G. Kinnick

17 September 1944

First Lieutenant Dominic F. Bellanca

17 September 1944

Master Technical Sergeant Edward P. McCray

17 September 1944

Staff Sergeant Edmund S. Santomasso

17 September 1944

Staff Sergeant Arthur P. Going

17 September 1944

Corporal Jay B. Fitzpatrick

17 September 1944

First Lieutenant John L. Braden

19 September 1944

Master Technical Sergeant Gerald N. Griffin

19 September 1944

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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