The early days by a man from the original Cadre furnished by the 22nd Bomb Group at Langley Field, Virginia.
I was involved with the convoy from Langley Field to Jackson, MS when the 405th squadron was originated. We picked up our B-26s at Martin in Baltimore , MD. flew to Langley Field to train our pilots and maintinence personnel and then flew back to Jackson.
Our next big operation was after the bombing of Pearl Harbor when we were sent to Savannah, GA., on 12/7/41 for 10 days and then to coastal patrol over the Everglades to 200 miles out to sea. The armament on the B-26 was a .45 caliber on the hip of our tail gunner. The B-18s were sitting back at the field with two .30 caliber machine guns and two 500 pound bombs. It was our responsibility to radio back to the field if we saw any ships.
In January '42 we shipped out of San Francisco to Melbourne, Australia and to Ballarat for 5 to 6 months, then Brisbane and later Charters Towers, Our air echelon met up with us at Charters Towers with B-25s, not B-26s.
We did some bombing from Charters Towers and Horn Island, and later flew our planes to Brisbane for 6 weeks to convert our medium bombers to strafers with 50 caliber machine guns in the nose and trained our pilots to skip bombing on the ship hull off Port Morseby.
We were assigned to 30 mile strip, and there we were surprised by a 100 plane air raid. While in Dobodura in eastern New Guinea we were involved in the Bismarck Sea Battle where the back bone of the Imperial Navy was broken and sent them back to whence they came.
Subsequently we received the B-25G and H with 75mm guns in the nose, in time to use in the New Britain Campaign.
I left Milne Bay for the states in '44 with 85 points, having served as a M/Sgt. squadron inspector in the 405th while in New Guinea and Australia. I worked on B-17s in depot overhaul and on B-29s flight line in Nebraska before being mustered out in 1945.