A Ltd. Edition offset-litho print 950 copies
Signed by the artist and pilot
Overall size: 30" x 24"
Image size: 23" x 19"
Limited Edition: $125 + S&H $14 U.S. / $45 International
HAWK OF HALEIWA
Sunday, December 7, 1941
“…And out of the ashes, ultimately,
Intrepid men wrought victory!
A symbol of their bravery,
And the Holy Light of Liberty,
Our flag still flies!"
Excerpt from "Pearl Harbor" by Harry Winston Brown
By 1941 the Curtiss P-36 "Hawk" was considered to be obsolete, and the Army Air Corps was replacing it with the Hawk's faster offspring, the P-40 "Warhawk", relegating the P-36 to trainer roles. Still, in the hands of a skilled and aggressive pilot like 2nd Lt. Harry W. Brown, the Hawk could be a dangerous adversary. Lt. Brown, who went on to become the first "ace" in the newly-formed all-P-38 475th Fighter Group, in New Guinea, is seen here pulling away from his second aerial victory on that Day of Infamy. Both of Lt. Brown's victories, Imperial Japanese Navy Nakajima B5N2 "Kate" carrier bombers, were over Kaena Point, on the northwest tip of Oahu, a short distance from the Army auxiliary airfield at Haleiwa, on the island's famed North Shore.
The previous afternoon, Lt. Brown and another Army fighter pilot, Johnny Dains had received their aerial-gunnery qualifications at the Haleiwa auxiliary airfield, in the new P-40E. That night they repaired to Honolulu to celebrate their new status, and by the next morning, Lt. Brown and Dains were still up, talking with one another when the first wave of Japanese aircraft swept across Wheeler Field and the Harbor. After quickly collecting their wits, a decision was made to try and reach Haleiwa, as the Japanese may have missed this field as a target. Lt. Brown and Dains piled into Brown's Convertible and headed for the gate, picking up another pilot, Lt. Bob Rogers, along the way.
Their trip from Wheeler to Haleiwa was a hair-raising affair, as one Japanese pilot had taken it upon himself to make strafing gunnery runs at Brown's speeding convertible (sometimes up to 100 miles-per-hour). This went on all the way to Haleiwa, whereupon their aerial nemesis set about shooting up the previously undiscovered aircraft parked at Haleiwa …to the great dismay and peril of the newly arrived airmen from Wheeler.
Having apparently expended his ammunition, the Japanese pilot left for parts unknown (at the time) and the intrepid young assemblage of Army aviators arose from Haleiwa to engage the enemy ….their first combat mission. It should be pointed out that Brown shot down both Japanese "Kate" bombers while flying a P-36 with only one functioning 30 cal. machine gun. As I can recall, these men included Brown, Dains, Rogers, Taylor, and Welch. Tragically for Johnny Dains, it was to be his last day to live. After returning to Haleiwa to refuel and re-arm, Dains was shot down by US ground troops, or "friendly fire" as we are calling it, now. Lt. Brown related: "I returned to Haleiwa and landed.
A servicing crew chief teasingly pointed to how I was dressed. Only then did realize that I had flown my first combat mission dressed in Pajama tops, tux trousers, house-shoes, and helmet and goggles!"
Capt. Harry Winston Brown, 433 Fighter Sqdn.475 Fighter Group Five Army pilots credited with aerial victories on 7 Dec. 1941, L to R:
L. Sanders; P. Rasmussen; K. Taylor; G. Welch; and H.W. Brown