Eye Witness Account (2)

There’s someone who built a model…


Pacific Paratrooper

"Koga's Zero" by Jim Reardon “Koga’s Zero” by Jim Reardon

The following is a continuation of the condensed version of Jim Reardon’s research ____

[at the time] Ensign Robert Larson, from Monticello, Iowa was the co-pilot in Lt. William Thies’ PBY crew that located the downed Japanese Zero, “We approached cautiously, walking in about a foot of water covered with grass.”   The Japanese pilot, Petty Officer Koga’s body, thoroughly strapped in, was upside down in the plane, his head barely submerged in the water.

Robert Larson Robert Larson

“We were surprised at the details of the airplane,” Larson continued.  “It was well built, with simple, unique features.  Inspection plates could be opened by pushing on a black dot with a finger.  A latch would open, and one could pull the plate out.  Wingtips folded by unlatching them and pushing them up by hand.  The pilot had a parachute and a raft.”

Koga’s body was buried nearby…

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