3 Jan 1944

Atlantic Ocean
  • In the Atlantic Ocean, the destroyer USS Somers intercepted the German blockade-runner, Weserland, and opened fire with her 5-in guns at 7,000 yards; continuing to fire until the German vessel stopped, exploded scuttling charges, and sank with the loss of five lives and her precious cargo of rubber from Japan. 133 survivors were rescued. ww2dbase [Conclusion of the Battle of the Atlantic | AC]
Australian New Guinea
  • US Marine Corps ace pilot Major Greg "Pappy" Boyington, flying a F4U Corsair fighter, was shot down by Japanese Navy pilot Captain Masajiro Kawato, flying a Zero fighter, over Rabaul, New Britain. Boyington's wingman, Captain George Ashmun, was also shot down. ww2dbase [Rabaul, New Britain | CPC]
  • 28 F4U and 16 F6F fighters were launched from Torokina Airfield on Bougainville at 0630 hours for a fighter sweep mission over Rabaul, New Britain; some of these fighters returned to base shortly after launch due to mechanical problems. 70 A6M fighters rose to defend Rabaul. ww2dbase [New Guinea-Papua Campaign, Phase 3 | Rabaul, New Britain | CPC]
Germany Italy
  • In Italy, General Bernard Montgomery received orders to return to Britain for his new role as the commander of British troops in the Allied Expeditionary Force. ww2dbase [Bernard Montgomery | TH]
  • US Fifth Army began its offensive against the Gustav Line in Italy. ww2dbase [Advance to the Gustav Line | TH]
United States
  • While anchored off Ambrose Light about 10 miles east of Sandy Hook, New Jersey, United States at the entrance to New York Harbor, the destroyer USS Turner suffered several magazine explosions attributed to faulty Mousetrap contact fuses. The Turner sank at 0827 hours and 138 crewmen were lost. Nearby ships picked up the survivors, landing the injured to the hospital at Sandy Hook. A United States Coast Guard Sikorsky HNS-1 helicopter flown by Lieutenant Commander Frank A. Erickson delivered two cases of blood plasma from New York to Sandy Hook; it was the first time that a rotary wing aircraft had been used in a life-saving operation. ww2dbase [Mousetrap Anti-Submarine Rocket | Sandy Hook, New Jersey | AC, CPC]
US Pacific Islands Photo(s) dated 3 Jan 1944
USS Princeton off Seattle, Washington, United States, 3 Jan 1944, 2 of 2USS Princeton off Seattle, Washington, United States, 3 Jan 1944, 1 of 2USNR Chief Quartermaster L. J. Russell teaching navigation to African-American sailors Charles W. Divers, Royal H. Gooden, Lewis F. Blanton, and Calvin Bell, Norfolk, Virginia, United States, 3 Jan 19Lieutenant General Bernard Freyberg, commanding officer of Indian and New Zealand Division at Cassino, Italy, 3 Jan 1944
See all photos dated 3 Jan 1944

3 Jan 1944 Interactive Map

Timeline Section Founder: Thomas Houlihan
Contributors: Alan Chanter, C. Peter Chen, Thomas Houlihan, Hugh Martyr, David Stubblebine
Special Thanks: Rory Curtis

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Famous WW2 Quote
"I have returned. By the grace of Almighty God, our forces stand again on Philippine soil."

General Douglas MacArthur at Leyte, 17 Oct 1944

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