Flying into Henderson Field, GuadalcanalJanuary 29, 2020 on the Solomon Islands ⋅ ☁️ 28 °C
Over the years, I have visited numerous sites of significance to US Marine Corps history. Inchon, Iwo Jima, Belleau Wood to name a few. In a few short hours, I will be landing at Henderson Field on Guadalcanal. With great reverence . . . "We all stand on the shoulders of the past generation."
By 1942, Japan’s span of control throughout Asia and the South Pacific was vast, reaching as far as, and taking control of Guadalcanal in July of 1942. That would be as far south as they would go, and they would not hold it for long. On 7 Aug 1942, the Marines entered the war in the Pacific, and made the initial landing on Guadalcanal with ~11,000 men of the 1st Marine Division under MajGen Vandergrift. Within two day, the Marines had established a beachhead, and seized control of what would soon become Henderson Field. After months of intense battles both on land and at sea, the Japanese withdrew from Guadalcanal on 7 Feb 1943, and the island was designated secure on 9 Feb. The US had established a foothold in the South Pacific, and initiated what would become the Island Hopping Campaign. This campaign would go on for the next 3 years with amphibious landings on numerous islands, ending with the seizing of Okinawa in 1945 and the subsequent dropping of the atomic bombs (from aircraft launched from Tinian, also seized by the Marines) on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Of additional significance, Maj Pappy Boyington and his Black Sheep Squadron operated out of Henderson Field in 1943, becoming one of the most famous flying squadrons of the war.Read more