***Borrowed from Black Sheep Aces
Aces of Marine Fighting Squadron (VMF) 214***
"With 8 kills, Case was the third-highest scoring Black Sheep, and he may have been the luckiest. Like most of the experienced pilots who started in August, 1943 he only served with VMF-214 for one tour.
Twenty-two year-old First Lieutenant William N. Case had flown with Greg Boyington earlier in VMF-122. He then served a combat tour with VMF-112 and downed a Zero over Kahili when he was flying with 112. He was one of those pilots who had a sense of invincibility, which he first noticed in a head-on encounter with a Ki-61 Tony. He bore right in, seeing but heedless of the orange and black gunfire he could see coming right at him. Case never wavered, unwittingly playing 'chicken' with the Jap pilot, who pulled up at the last second. Case's first victory as a Black Sheep (his second to-date) came on Sept. 18. He latched onto a Zero that took no evasive action at all, just a long sweeping turn into a cloud. Case was so close, only 50 feet behind, that he could still see his quarry while in the cloud. He fired, but his shots bracketed the Zero, due to the wide 15-foot spread of the Corsair's guns. Finally Case realized the problem and moved the pipper off to one side, allowing three guns on one side to destroy the plane.
Flying Boyington's wing on an escort mission of Sept. 27, he scored his third victory. But he was shot up himself; enemy bullets punctured his F4U's oil reservoir, a 25-gallon tank under the engine. As the last of his oil drained out, he made an emergency landing at Vella Lavella. The Seabees there took care of him in just three hours, replacing the oil reservoir with one from another recently crashed Corsair. When he finally arrived back at Munda, several hours late, he found that his squadron mates had already split up his belongings. He didn't ask any questions, but went to the mess hall; when he got back to his tent, all his stuff had been returned.
Fortune smiled on him with a couple of credits for aerial victories. On Oct. 11, 1943, he saw a Zero about a mile away, and decided to test-fire his Corsair's guns. As did so the distance had narrowed to about 800 yards; as Case fired, the Zero flew into the stream of bullets, and went down. Three days later, he got into a dogfight and saw "something, possibly a drop tank" splash in the water. During his de-briefing, he noted that he had seen the splash from 16,000 feet. He got credit for a victory, on the reasoning that any splash seen from three miles up must have been an aircraft.
But surely, She smiled most at him on Oct. 18, his last day in combat. A short fellow, Case always raised his Corsair's seat all the way up. On this day, he lowered it a notch (the only time he ever did so). In battle, a Zero's bullet smashed into the cockpit, and just bloodied his scalp. If he had been sitting an inch higher, the bullet would have killed him. William Case survived that day, and lived for another 52 years, passing away in 1995."
Created by: Michael Harrington
Record added: Aug 17, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 40781561
REST IN HEAVENLY PEACE BILL.GOD BLESS YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE TO OUR COUNTRY|
Added: Jul. 29, 2012
You served our country faithfully. May we always cherish our freedom by honoring your memory. God bless you!|
Added: May. 28, 2011
Added: Oct. 6, 2009
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