Biplane fighter aces


Lieutenant Minematsu

In February 1942 Minematsu served on the seaplane tender Kamikawa Maru flying the Mitsubishi F1M2 ‘Pete’ biplane scout.
In the middle of February Kamikawa Maru and Sagara Maru sent a detachment of F1M2s to the island of Banka to operate from Muntok.
On 16 February while flying from this detachment, Minematsu together with another pilot intercepted Dutch Glenn Martin of 3-VIG-III together with Ki27s of the 1st Sentai. The Dutch bombers were out to intercept Japanese shipping in the Moesi River on Sumatra. The F1M2s reported intercepting three or four twin-engined bomber over the shipping during the afternoon. Minematsu made six attacks, claiming one bomber probably shot down, but his own aircraft was hit many times and he was forced to alight on the sea, some 40 miles west of Muntok. The destroyer Hatsuyuki rescued him and his observer, the wrecked aircraft being set alight and sinking later. The other floatplane also made several attacks, but with no observed success. The Dutch bombers claimed three of the attackers shot down while one of the bombers didn’t return. This was Sergeant J. Bakker’s M-578 which failed to return.
Minematsu ended the war with 1 probable biplane victory.

Kill no. Date Number Type Result Plane type Serial no. Locality Unit
  16/02/42 1 Glenn Martin (a) Probable F1M2   Moesi River, Sumatra Kamikawa Maru

Biplane victories: 1 probable destroyed.
TOTAL: 1 probable destroyed.
(a) Claimed in combat with Glenn Martins of 3-VIG-III. It is possible that it was Sergeant J. Bakker’s M-578 which didn’t return from this mission.

Bloody Shambles Volume One - Christopher Shores and Brian Cull with Yasuho Izawa, 1992 Grub Street, London, ISBN 0-948817-50-X
Alexander Crawford has been most helpful, while compiling this information.