On February 15, 1944, a force of B-24s, B-25s and A-20s hammered the heavily defended Japanese base at Kavieng. Several aircraft, however, were forced to ditch; three downed B-25 crews from 345th Bomb Group floating helplessly in life-rafts within a thousand yards of the beach, and the Japanese troops were in no mood to take prisoners. Their only chance of survival was the air-sea rescue PBY Catalina.
Nicolas Trudgian’s dramatic reconstruction depicts Lt. Commander Nathan Gordon’s PBY Catalina making its final take-off, the intense enemy gunfire from the shore making his mission seemingly impossible. But the young pilot got all 25 men aboard safely home, and was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for what is one of the bravest actions of the war in the Pacific.
Each print is signed by Medal of Honor recipient Nathan Gordon and THREE aircrew involved in this historic mission.
Lieutenant Commander NATHAN GORDON
Colonel WILLIAM J. CAVIOLI
AMM JOHN BRATELY
Captain ROBERT E. LEWIS