By Ron Mackay
Fleet Air Arm
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Extra info for British Carrier Aviation 1939-1945
Throughout the war Jim Queen never carried more than two grenades in it (one fragmentation and one white or color smoke phosphorus grenade). The color smoke grenades were carried by the officers and the radio operators, in case they were needed for identification from the air or to mark the front lines. In general, each trooper carried the grenade he wanted. Some liked white phosphorus grenades to burn down buildings or set fires in foxholes. For special missions, the Rangers were taught to use thermite grenades to produce extreme heat.
When the Armed Forces of the United States joined the Republic of Korea and twenty-one other countries to fight together under the United Nations banner against Communist North Korea and, later, China, it was in the wake of a rapid military draw-down of American forces after World War II. Unprepared to meet any new or emerging national security threats, American forces were plagued with deficiencies in personnel, equipment, training, and technology. Furthermore, World War II veterans and their families were ready for the peace and tranquility of civilian life.
This was a regular flight with a civilian crew, a few Marines, and some Red Cross workers. There was emergency equipment (rubber life rafts, buoys, radios) stowed on the floor in the rear. Both XOs lay down on the pile of emergency gear, which made a better bed than folded-out web aircraft seats along the inside of the fuselage. After several hours of sleep they landed at night on Wake Island, part of the Marshall Island group in the northern Pacific. This American territory had a combination military/civilian airport and was used mainly as a refueling stop and weather station.