James "Pug" Southerland vs Saburo Sakai

Discussion in 'Aviation Videos' started by Hunter368, Nov 8, 2006.

  1. Hunter368

    Hunter368 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2005
    Messages:
    2,240
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    Manager
    Location:
    Winnipeg
    I just watched a very interesting TV program (called secrets of the dead) on PBS about the famous dogfight between Pug and Saburo. During that program Sakai called Pug a great pilot and was amazed how good of a pilot he was. Sakai said he had never seen anyone fly a plane like he had. Pug fought off several other Zeros in his Wildcat, shooting them down. Sakai after watching his wingmen get shot up by this Wildcat pilot decided to come into the fight and shoot this Wildcat down. After a long and prolonged fight between the two pilots where Sakai filled the Wildcat with bullets Pug reversed the favor and cut his power to his plane thus putting Sakai into his sights.

    Sakai thought he was about to die at the hands of this clever USA pilot. But no bullets hit his plane to his amazement! (apparently it is believed that his guns jammed) The USA pilot was not firing at him. After a short bit Sakai got on Pugs tail again and pulled up beside Pugs wing and saw that Pug was hurt and bleeding. Sakai showed some mercy and decided just to shoot the Wildcats engine out, hoping the pilot inside would live. Sakai did finish off the Wildcat with a well aimed burst to the engine. Pug baled out before his plane crashed.

    It was a very good show watch it you can. Here is a few links about it and pictures of Pug and Sakai.


    SECRETS OF THE DEAD . Dogfight Over Guadalcanal . Clues Evidence | PBS

    Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat "Junior" Bureau Number 5192 Tail Number F-12

    Thirteen/WNET - Online Pressroom - Press Release
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Matt308

    Matt308 Glock Perfection
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2005
    Messages:
    20,140
    Likes Received:
    54
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Occupation:
    Engineer
    Location:
    Washington State
    And he deliberately shot his engine out? Hmmm. That is amazing. I'll have to read your links as, no offense, that is mighty suspicious for a one-on-one single engine fighter battle. But there have been stranger things! Good post! :)
     
  3. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2005
    Messages:
    12,631
    Likes Received:
    309
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    That pacific wrecks website is great.

    Ive known about it for a few years and have met the "wreck hunters" at the Chino Airshows.
     
  4. Hunter368

    Hunter368 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2005
    Messages:
    2,240
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    Manager
    Location:
    Winnipeg
    It did not start as a single vs single fighter dogfight. Pug's plane was hit already from Sakai's wingmen, before Pug shot them down. Then Pug came into the fight, from what I can gather or guess it sounds like 2 Jap Zeros damaged Pug's plane (before Pug shot them down), then Sakai came in and shot Pug's Wildcat up good. Sakai talks about the battle also in his book (which is a good read), Sakai said he must of hit the Wildcat with hundreds of rounds from his rifle cal. machine guns and the Wildcat just would not go down. Good old USA steel. :lol:
     
  5. Hunter368

    Hunter368 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2005
    Messages:
    2,240
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    Manager
    Location:
    Winnipeg

    Yes it shows actual parts from Pugs plane that they found. Amazing really. That is very cool syscom that you met them. They actually found one of the locals who found Pug on the beach after he bailed out, one of them actually is still alive. They interviewed him and he was telling them how he remembers finding this wounded USA pilot on the beach. Amazing
     
  6. Matt308

    Matt308 Glock Perfection
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2005
    Messages:
    20,140
    Likes Received:
    54
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Occupation:
    Engineer
    Location:
    Washington State
    Okay. Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction.

    [Hmm. See how that's done Syscom. It's kinda cathartic.}
     
  7. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2005
    Messages:
    12,631
    Likes Received:
    309
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    what?
     
  8. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2005
    Messages:
    12,631
    Likes Received:
    309
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    I need to do one of my threads, "airfields of the PTO", for the Solomons (and Bismarks). So many airfields of historical significance.
     
  9. Matt308

    Matt308 Glock Perfection
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2005
    Messages:
    20,140
    Likes Received:
    54
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Occupation:
    Engineer
    Location:
    Washington State
    As someone who is not an expert, I would love to see that. :)
     
  10. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2005
    Messages:
    12,631
    Likes Received:
    309
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
  11. Matt308

    Matt308 Glock Perfection
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2005
    Messages:
    20,140
    Likes Received:
    54
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Occupation:
    Engineer
    Location:
    Washington State
    Interesting read Syscom. Nice thread.
     
  12. timshatz

    timshatz Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2006
    Messages:
    4,441
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    MGR
    Location:
    Phila, Pa
    Amazing that Saki took a .30 bullet through the brain and survived.

    Then he flew 550 miles to Rabaul in that condition. I had always thought the bullet just skimmed his skull but it actually blew through his brain. That is just amazing!
     
  13. Hunter368

    Hunter368 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2005
    Messages:
    2,240
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    Manager
    Location:
    Winnipeg
    Tim,

    Yes that is true. After he shot down Pug Sakai went after a USA bomber. The tailgunner shot Sakai right threw the windshield. The bullet entered on thr right hand of his face and out the back. He survived but lost his vision in that eye. Here is a few pics of his actually helmet after he was shot in the head, it is on display now. The one pic you can see how the bullet wrecked his helmet and you can see blood on the side of it. Amazing
     

    Attached Files:

  14. timshatz

    timshatz Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2006
    Messages:
    4,441
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    MGR
    Location:
    Phila, Pa
  15. Hunter368

    Hunter368 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2005
    Messages:
    2,240
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    Manager
    Location:
    Winnipeg
    Yup just one of many air combat stories from WW2 that are amazing.
     
  16. lesofprimus

    lesofprimus Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2004
    Messages:
    19,162
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    Communications
    Location:
    Long Island Native in Mississippi
    Home Page:
    Agreed, and that is one excellent piece of history right there...
     
  17. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Messages:
    7,716
    Likes Received:
    424
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Occupation:
    Manufacture Tech
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    Whats even more amazin is that Sakai shook hands with the tailgunner that hit him after the war was over. Off hand I forget his name. Still amazing, time does heal all wounds at least in this case.

    Micdrow
     
  18. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Messages:
    7,716
    Likes Received:
    424
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Occupation:
    Manufacture Tech
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    Ok found the info, In 1982 Saburo Sakai shook hands with Harold I Jones, one of the SBD gunners who wounded him. He is blind (Aka Saburo Sakai)in his right eye but has achieved 3 hole in ones playing golf.

    Talk about good aim. I have an English copy of his book Samerai, very interesting book. He even pulled a gun on one of his officers for beating on an enlisted man.

    Very interesting book,

    Micdrow
     
  19. Gnomey

    Gnomey World Travelling Doctor
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2004
    Messages:
    41,770
    Likes Received:
    518
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Doctor
    Location:
    Portsmouth / Royal Deeside, UK
    Home Page:
    Yep, great story.
     
  20. timshatz

    timshatz Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2006
    Messages:
    4,441
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    MGR
    Location:
    Phila, Pa
    I've read interviews with the guy and he definitely had his own opinions. Not typically the perspective that Pre-War and War Time Japanese are considered. Talked the talk but also walked the walk.

    Did not have a high opinion of Hirohito.
     
Loading...

Share This Page