Only search Kamikaze Images

Takuma Naval Air Group Monument
Mitoyo City, Kagawa Prefecture

Seaplanes carried out kamikaze attacks during the Battle of Okinawa, and Type 2 Flying Boats played a key role as guide planes for the long-range kamikaze attack by Ginga bombers on Ulithi on March 11, 1945. Takuma, located in Kagawa Prefecture on the Inland Sea, served as a key air base during World War II for these planes.

The Takuma Naval Air Group stone monument, erected in 2000, has the following inscription:

Historical Spot
Takuma Naval Air Group Site
Site of Kamikaze Special Attack Corps Sorties

Although kamikaze squadrons did make sorties from Takuma, they first proceeded to Ibusuki Air Base at the southern tip of Kagoshima Prefecture and then made sorties from there in kamikaze attacks on American ships around Okinawa.

The monument stands facing the Inland Sea on one side of the street. The other side of the street directly across from the monument has three horizontal concrete tunnels built into the hill that served as air-raid shelters during the war and four other stone tablets that mainly show donor names for the monument.

The right side of the monument has a plaque that provides the following history of the Takuma Naval Air Group:

The establishment of the Takuma Naval Air Group was announced in December 1941. The sudden land purchases in the areas of Koda and Wada were a matter of vital importance to the residents. Also, the Kure Naval Munitions Division built the Takuma Supply Center in Niihama. A total of 136 homes were removed from these three areas. The hardships associated with moving were difficult beyond description. The Kure Naval Facilities Division was in charge of the construction activities, and the government and civilians worked together with the addition of local volunteer labor. The Takuma Air Group was formed on June 1, 1943, and took charge of seaplane instruction. The main planes stationed here were Type 94 Reconnaissance Seaplanes and Type 2 Flying Boats. Over two thousand servicemen from all over arrived at their new post, and intensive training took place day after day. In September 1944, the Yokohama Naval Air Group made offensive and defensive preparations for the expected battle at Okinawa, and it was decided to move its main force to Takuma. At this point in time, it became a major strategic base for seaplanes with large-size flying boats at its command. On April 25, 1945, the 5th Air Fleet combined all flying boat units in order to make preparations for the decisive battle and organized the Takuma Naval Air Group as an actual fighting unit. The Takuma Air Group's Type 2 Flying Boats had high-speed performance in addition to being equipped with large-sized radar. While repeatedly fighting to the death with American fighters, they played an active role as the eyes of the 5th Air Fleet. During Tan Operations No. 2 and 3 in which Ginga bombers assaulted the American task force at the Ulithi anchorage, Type 2 Flying Boats took part in guiding the special attack planes and in weather observation for the long-range attack route. In these operations, 27 Type 2 Flying Boats and 250 elite men were lost. On February 16, 1945, orders were announced that all smaller planes would carry out special attack training, and the Kamikaze Special Attack Corps Kotohira Suishin Squadron was formed with reconnaissance seaplanes. The Kamikaze Special Attack Corps Sakigake Squadrons, formed at the same time by the Kitaura and Kashima Naval Air Groups in Ibaraki Prefecture, advanced to Takuma Air Base. After the squadrons had intensive training, they advanced to Ibusuki Air Base in Kagoshima Prefecture and carried out taiatari (body-crashing) attacks against ships around Okinawa. The maintenance men who went ahead of the crewmen to Ibusuki devoted all their energies to preparations such as engine adjustments, fuel replenishment, and bomb installation, and they said farewell to the crewmen feeling as if their hearts would break. On April 28 and afterward on four separate days, 25 planes attacked American ships, and 57 young men lost their lives in the Okinawan skies. The Naval Arsenal's Takuma Factory supported the Takuma Air Group's fighting strength. From October 1944, the Takuma Supply Center was used, and a repair plant was built. Added to the core technicians were about 800 persons called into service such as factory workers and mobilized girl students from the Girls Technical High School, Kanonji Commercial High School, Zentsuji High School, and the Masukawa Girls Volunteer Unit. They exhausted their energies in the repairs of different types of planes. With fervent desire to make shot and damaged planes fly as soon as possible, their young strength to which they pressed on in their work allowed Type 2 Flying Boats to continue flying for decisive air battles. More than 50 years after the war's end, the land occupied by the Takuma Naval Air Group has been converted into the National Radio Technical High School and commercial factories, and the 11th Naval Arsenal area is now occupied by Takuma Junior High School. The only remains are four slides used to get planes in and out of the water and several horizontal tunnels used as air-raid shelters. We remember that we owe today's prosperity for our country to the sacrifices of these men who gave their lives in our homeland's air defense and the sacrifices of many other persons. We designate the remains of the Takuma Naval Air Group as a Takuma Town Historical Site with our earnest desire for eternal world peace and with the hope that the horrors of war will never happen again.

Photo on plaque at right side of monument.
Behind the Takuma Air Base personnel waving farewell is the Type 0
 Reconnaissance Seaplane Model 11 No. 1 plane of the
Kamikaze Special Attack Corps Kotohira Suishin Squadron
Yasuda Division, which was the first to take off from the water
toward the advance base at Ibusuki in Kagoshima Prefecture.

The Kanoya Air Base Museum has on display a restored Type 2 Flying Boat from the Takuma Naval Air Group.