Wednesday, December 19, 2007

30 August 1945

We left Noba at 10:30 PM for Tokyo. We flew all night and about 1500 on the 31st we sighted the Japanese coast. A little later we passed Fujiyama and passed over Yokohama Naval Base, which is in ruins. Had a little trouble locating the airfield because of some low clouds, but finally landed at Atsugi at 0600. We immediately went to work unloading equipment and set up the radio range. About 0900 we were taken up to the tower and relieved the boys that had been up there. Traffic was heavy with C-54 Sky Masters bringing occupational troops from Okinawa. We averaged one plane a minute all day. The planes land, discharge their load, and return without refueling. Majority of personnel was the 11th Airborne Infantry Division.

At 1400 the big wheels began to arrive. Gen. MacArthur’s C-54, Gen. Kenney, Gen, Spaatz*, Gen. Sutherland**, and many others came in and were driven into Yokohama which is about 9 miles away and is where they will make their HQ. We are about 20 miles from Tokyo. The field was in good condition. Jap army personnel on the field are being used as guards and drivers. A lot of Jap vehicles have been commandeered for use until we can get our own here by ship. We are saluted to death by the Japs and there has been no sign of trouble. The tower is the focal point of all activity. There are usually 3 or 4 colonels standing around up there watching the proceedings. C-54s are lined up on the ramp 25 and 30 at a time, coming and going in a continuous stream. Eating is sporadic, 10 in 1 rations being our diet, catch as catch can. We slept the first night in Operations beneath the tower. I worked from about 9 AM until 6 PM with an hour off for chow. Then worked the following afternoon and the following morning.

* Gen. Carl Spaatz commanded the U.S. Strategic Air Forces in the Pacific, with headquarters on Guam. There he supervised Richard K. Sutherland, MacArthur’s Chief of Staff

** Lt. Gen. Richard K. Sutherland, MacArthur’s Chief of Staff

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