Hakata Naval Air Group Monument
Fukuoka City, Fukuoka Prefecture
The Hakata Naval Air Group Monument used to be one of the pillars of the
gate into the Navy air base next to Hakata Bay. The monument now stands behind the Management
Office Building of Uminonakamichi Seaside Park near the marina.
The front of the monument has an engraved plaque that reads, "Remains of
Hakata Naval Air Group." The engraved metal sign on the back of the monument
gives the following history:
This area of scenic beauty with its white sand and green pine trees is
famous together with Shikanoshima as an ancient battlefield for the Battle
of Kōan during the Mongol invasion. More recently at the beginning part of the
Shōwa Era, the former Japanese Navy recognized the importance of air power.
In a period when training air groups were established in various places, an air group for seaplanes was established in 1940
here also at Saitozaki
and was called the Hakata Air Group. Subsequently, training for land-based
aircraft also was instituted here .
Young Air Group members of about 20 years of age risked their lives and
worked day and night at flight training in order to face the country's
crisis. In the spring of 1945, the Hakosaki Squadron, Kashii Squadron,
Fukuteki Squadron, and special attack squadrons were formed, and they spread
out to bases at Hitoyoshi (Kumamoto Prefecture) and Kagoshima. Also,
seaplane squadrons made sorties toward Okinawa for intercept operations. Many
young men died in battle, and the true history that they became the
foundation stone for today's peace was not made known.
The establishment of this monument will preserve forever the air base
gate of the former Hakata Naval Air Group as a place of historic interest.
With a desire for world peace, this monument will tell future generations of
the Air Group's history.
Erected on December 8, 1985
Former Air Group members and other volunteers
The engraved metal sign on the right side has a listing of contributors for
preservation of the gate and creation of the monument.
In March 1944, Hakata Naval Air Group established a detachment for training
seaplane crewmen in Amakusa, Kumamoto Prefecture. One year later Amakusa became
an independent air group from which several men died as part of attacks by the Kamikaze
Special Attack Corps during the Battle of Okinawa.
1. Training for land-based aircraft began in April
1944 soon after establishment of the Hakata Naval Air Group seaplane detachment in
Amakusa, Kumamoto Prefecture.