70th Anniversary of Typhoon Ursula

Track of Typhoon Ursula 1945

Track of Typhoon Ursula 1945

On September 10, 1945, Typhoon Ursula downed a fleet of 6 US aircraft transporting liberated prisoners of war to the Philippines.  The planes were flying from Okinawa to the Philippines, as part of a larger effort to repatriate 32,000 Allied war prisoners, and attempting to skirt Ursula.  But they still encountered rough weather associated with the typhoon.  An estimate 120 servicemen, both former POWs and aircrew, were killed in the tragedy.  Another 23 servicemen on the ground were also killed by the storm.

Note:  There are misleading reports on various websites that 20 aircraft and 900 servicemen killed in this storm.  This blog post previously carried those numbers, but this update is based on :

HURRICANE HUNTING AIRCRAFT: An Illustrated History of Airborne Hurricane Reconnaissance and Research Aircraft” by David Reade