Hi everyone, I picked up the post below in another forum, it's very detailed. It again leads me to suspect that John Ford included a clip from the attack on Pearl Harbour (or somewhere else) into the Midway film. The burning double decker is not a "mock up blown apart" even if it looks hollow and the burning B-17(C or D?) in silver finish and partly dismantled is definitely not a slightly damaged B-17E flown in from Hawaii the same day. In another scene you can glimpse two E8N2 'Dave' flying in formation. This did certainly not happen during the Battle Of Midway (well, not if you can trust the very thorough book "Shattered Sword" anyway). So my belief is that Ford fleshed out his (undoubtedly genuine scenes) with some older material.
This is the post I found on forum.12oclockhigh.net/archive/index.php?t-24522.html
The J2F, the NAS hack, was destroyed on 4 June, burned out after strafing. There was also the "JFU", a mock up built of various pieces of metal and aircraft parts. That was hit by a bomb and blown apart.
There was one USAAF B-17E on the ground during the attack with a burned out engine. It was a 42nd BS (H) plane that had arrived the day before with that engine feathered and the crew was trying to fix it up and thus unable to depart prior to the attack. It was strafed, and suffered several holes and, amongst other damage, a flat tire. That was replaced and the aircraft was eventually flown back to Hawaii on three engines, but I don't recall exactly when.
There were also ten SB2U-3s on the ground during the attack, eight spares since the arrival of the SBD-2s, without crews to fly them (2046, 2048, 2052, 2054, 2055, 2056, 2058 & 2065), one that had its prop damaged during the pre dawn warm ups when a taxiing PBY hit it with its wing float (2059; both a/c became unserviceable, a spare was used during the attack) and one that returned after takeoff (2062). None of those were were destroyed either, though two (2048, 205
were damaged enough to be unfit for further combat operations until overhauled.
FYI, that aviation database noted above contains numerous errors. Assuredly no VF-6 aircraft were lost on 1 June, and several other aircraft listed have incorrect dates. I assume the individual aircraft cards were used - but they are often inaccurate, as they were filled out retroactively and the most significant reason they were was to strike aircraft off charge - exact dates for that hardly mattered as long as it was listed stricken. A much more accurate record can be found in the ComAirBatFor weekly summary reports, although even they have errors (which can be found by pulling the Aircraft Trouble Reports, if extant - the investigation done after an accident.) or combat unit reports.
Mark E. Horan"
02. August at 12:35:45