U.S. Marine Major John L. Smith, photographed after his return to the U.S., received a Medal of Honor for his actions and service at Henderson Field during the Battle for Guadalcanal.
U.S. Marine CAPT J. J. FOSS, of VMF-121, received the Medal of Honor for outstanding heroism as a fighter pilot during the Guadalcanal campaign flying out of Henderson Field.
Cactus Air Force commander, MajGen Roy S. Geiger, poses with Capt Joseph J. Foss, the leading ace at Guadalcanal with 26 Japanese aircraft downed.
USMC Brigadier General Geiger with staff members on Guadalcanal, 1942.
MAJGEN ROY S. GEIGER, veteran Marine aviation commander, established 1st Marine Air Wing Headquarters on Guadalcanal on 3 September. His mixed, all-Service command soon became known as "Cactus Air Force", because of the code-name for the island.
U.S. Marine "Cactus Air Force" pilots at Henderson Field, mid-September, 1942.
MAJ R.E. GALER received the Medal of Honor for conspicuous heroism both as fighter pilot and commanding officer of VMF-224 at Henderson Field on Guadalcanal.
Three CAF pilots, Smith, Galer, and Carl, after receiving the Navy Cross from Admiral Nimitz, September 30, 1942.
1stLt Stanley S. Nicolay beside a Wildcat, probably just before deploying to the Pacific in 1942.
USMC Lt Col Bauer on Guadalcanal sometime before his death in combat.
Smith, Mangrum, and Carl after returning to the U.S.
USMC Captain Jefferson J. DeBlanc, awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions with the Cactus Air Force on Guadalcanal in 1942.
A U.S. F4F Wildcat at Henderson Field on Guadalcanal, August, 1942.
Watercolor depicting a dogfight between a U.S. Marine Wildcat and a Japanese Zero over Henderson Field on Guadalcanal.
Wreckage of a SBD scout-bomber, still burning after it was destroyed by a Japanese air attack on Henderson Field, Guadalcanal, 1942.
Five U.S. Army P-400s arrived at Henderson Field, the first Army personnel or aircraft to reach Guadalcanal, on 22 August, 1942.
A TBF Avenger operating out of Henderson Field, Guadalcanal, probably around August or September, 1942.
This MAG-23 F4F-4 Wildcat is being saved by bucket-brigade methods. Note bullet-pierced propeller blades. Aircraft was damaged by during Japanese air attack at Henderson Field, Guadalcanal, probably in August or September, 1942.
U.S. Marine F4F Wildcats head-out from Henderson Field, Guadalcanal, probably in August or September, 1942, to intercept incoming Japanese aircraft.
A U.S. TBF Avenger parked at Henderson Field, Guadalcanal, probably in late September or October, 1942.
Watercolor of U.S. Marine aircraft operating at Henderson Field in October, 1942.
Watercolor of Capt Joe Foss as he shoots down a Japanese Zero over Henderson Field on Guadalcanal in October 1942.
Watercolor of U.S. Marine Captain Joe Foss shooting down a Zero over Guadalcanal in October, 1942.
Cactus Air Force aircraft crowd Henderson Field, Guadalcanal in October, 1942.
U.S. Army P-400 aircraft "Short Stroke" that operated with the Cactus Air Force.
Wildcat with aircraft captain at Henderson Field.
A Japanese aircraft falls in flames over Guadalcanal after being shot-down by a Cactus Air Force fighter sometime in 1942.
Marine TBF Avenger crew of MAG-23 prepare to board their aircraft at Henderson Field.
Cactus Air Force pilots hold a standing meeting around the "duty board" at Henderson Field.
Enlisted pilots of the Tainan Kokutai pose at Rabaul in 1942. Several of these aviators would be among the top Japanese aces, including Saburo Sakai (middle row, second from left), and Hiroyoshi Nishizawa (standing, first on left). These pilots fought with Allied fighter pilots during the Battle of Guadalcanal and the Solomon Islands campaign
Lt (j.g.) Junichi Sadai of the Tainan Air Group. This 1942 photo shows the young combat leader, of such men as Sakai and Nishizawa, shortly before his death over Guadalcanal.
These A6M3s are from the Taman Air Group based at Rabaul in 1942, and several sources have identified aircraft 106 as being flown by top ace Nishizawa. Typically, these fighters carry a single centerline fuel tank.
Japanese A6M3 Zero "Hamp" at either Buka or Buin airfield during the Guadalcanal campaign.
Japanese A6M2-N float Zero fighter, operated by the "R" Area Air Force during the Guadalcanal campaign.
Japanese G4M "Betty" bombers, perhaps during the Guadalcanal campaign.
Japanese aircraft prepare to launch on a mission from an airfield at Rabaul, New Britain, sometime between August and November, 1942.
Martin Clemens, United Kingdom government representative on Guadalcanal as well as a member of the Coastwatcher's organization. His Solomon Islands police force personnel helped rescue at least six Cactus Air Force pilots during the Guadalcanal campaign.
Paul Mason (left), a coastwatcher in southern Bougainville during the Solomon Islands campaign, often gave advance notice of Japanese air strikes heading towards Guadalcanal.
Jack Read, coastwatcher stationed in northern Bougainville during the Solomon Islands campaign, often gave advance notice of Japanese air strikes heading towards Guadalcanal.
Coastwatcher Donald Kennedy (left) who was stationed on New Georgia in the Solomon Islands in 1942 and 1943, often gave advance notice of Japanese air strikes heading towards Guadalcanal.
Coastwatcher base radio station operating on Guadalcanal in October, 1942 to receive messages and warnings from other coastwatchers stationed throughout the Solomon Islands.