Born on 27 january 1920, Nagano Prefecture
Joined IJN in June 1936
Completed flight training in March '39
With Oita, Omura & Suzuka AG's prior to outbreak of War
With the Chitose AG (Air Group or "Kokutai") in 1941
Joined 4th AG in Feb. '42
First kill - 3 February '42 over Rabaul - while flying a 'Claude'
Transferred to the 2nd Sq. / Tainan AG in April '42
There he met Saburo Sakai and Toshio Ota
- they would become known as the "Cleanup Trio"
7 August '42 - best day - claimed 6 Hellcats of VF-5
Transferred to the 251st AG in November
Summer '43 - Awarded "Sword" by Admiral Jinichi Kusaka
Transferred to the 253rd AG in September
Sent to Japan in October '43 to become an instructor
- he hated his new job "baby sitting" & after many requests,
- he was reassigned to the 203rd AG in November '43
Subsequently promoted to W/O (Warrant Officer)
25 October 1944 - flew cover for the 1st Kamikaze mission
Zeros about to make the very 1st Kamikaze suicide attack
October 25th 1944 - Mabalacat Airfield, Luzon
During this attack he "saw" his own death & upon returning
- to base requested a Kamikaze mission.
He was flatly refused. Men of his calibre were not expendable
The next day, October 26th, Nishizawa boarded a transport plane
- to pick up some replacement Zeros. The transport was attacked
- by two F6F's and was shot down.
At 25 years of age, the Devil of Rabaul was dead.
Posthumously promoted to Lieutenant Junior Grade
During the war, both sides regarded Nishizawa as Japan's best fighter pilot
150 claimed by newspapers after his death
147 he told his family
102 claimed by some other sources
86 he told Group Leader Okamoto shortly before his death
He shot down one more plane after that and consequently
87 is the figure that is most accepted today