Kashima Naval Air Group Monument
Miho Town, Ibaraki Prefecture
The Japanese Navy established the Kashima Air Group seaplane training base on
Lake Kasumigaura in 1938. Five members of
the Kashima Air Group, who belonged to the Kamikaze Special Attack Corps
2nd Sakigake Squadron, died after their two seaplanes took off from Ibusuki Air Base
in southern Kagoshima Prefecture on May 11, 1945 . Three men flew a
Type 0 Observation Seaplane (Pete), and two flew a Type 94
Reconnaissance Seaplane (Alf).
The monument erected in 1999 at the site of the former Kashima Air Base has the following
On this ground there was the Kashima Naval Air Group seaplane crewmen
training base belonging to the former Imperial Japanese Navy. Flight
training students who had finished compulsory education of that time or who
had volunteered halfway through their junior high school under the old
system of education, special reserve flight students who had volunteered
while studying at the university, flight students from the Naval Academy,
and others were trained here to be superior pilots while receiving
in various military subjects applicable to the air group.
After the air group was formed on May 11, 1938, until the war was lost on
August 15, 1945, especially after plunging into the Greater East Asia War,
the base moved in turn toward defending the Japanese mainland in order to
protect beforehand from external attacks. The air group boldly focused on the
defensive battle through patrol flights, reconnaissance flights, and
interceptor takeoffs. However, with odds against us, there were aircraft
that did not return as there were dead and wounded in aerial combat. In the
end, there were battle deaths as planes in special attack squadrons dove on
enemy warships gathered around Okinawa, and air group members during
operations died even on land from machine-gun strafing. The number of noble victims reached several
dozen just among members of this Kashima Air Group.
Though belated, we survivors collected funds and offer silent prayers to
those heroes who died in battle with burning devotion to the salvation of
this country. We build a monument here, since we must pass down these facts
to future generations while praying for the repose of their souls.
May 27, 1999
Former Kashima Naval Air Group members and other volunteers
Soon after the end of the war, Tokyo Medical and Dental University opened a
branch on the grounds of the former Kashima Air Base, but this branch closed in
the 1990s. The area surrounding the monument still has a few structures and
other remains from the former air base. Now the area has boating facilities for
1. Osuo 2005, 238.
Osuo, Kazuhiko. 2005. Tokubetsu kougekitai no kiroku (kaigun
hen) (Record of special attack corps (Navy)). Tokyo: Kojinsha.