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Hangar 37:  Gateway to the Museum

This is the second article about the Ford Island Seaplane Base, which was the first Japanese target on Dec. 7, 1941. The first article gave an overview of the base and Ford Island. In this article, we will look at Hangar 37 and its role during the Japanese attack.

Key Points

  • Hangar 37 is the entry point for guests arriving at Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor.
  • At the time of the attack, it was home to the VJ-1 utility squadron, which had nine Grumman J2F “Ducks” and nine Sikorsky JRS-1s.
  • During the attack, VJ-1 squadron members mounted machine guns in the back seats of their J2Fs and returned fire.
  • After the base’s main radio was knocked out, Hangar 37’s radio operated as the base’s radio during the attack.
  • Five JRS-1s flew out to find the Japanese fleet. They were unarmed except for a few Marines with Springfield rifles in the passenger compartment. The five pilots and one Marine received the Silver Star for their courageous efforts.
  • The JRS-1...

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