Seizo Katsumata

Given NameSeizo


ww2dbaseRear Admiral Seizo Katsumata was a Japanese naval aviation officer. Between 8 Dec 1941 and 30 Sep 1942, he was an instructor at the Naval Mechanical and Engineering School. After a long hospitalization due to illness, he became the commanding officer for various air groups from Apr 1943 until Oct 1945. From Jul 1945 and on, he was the commanding officer of the 101st Air Flotilla, which was organized to centralize air ferrying in order to reduce pilot attrition. After the war, he was interrogated by Lieutenant Commander R. P. Aikin of the United States Naval Reserves in Tokyo on 25 Oct 1945, with particular interest in Katsumata's experience with the 101st Air Flotilla. Aikin commented that Katsumata's knowledge on pilot attrition was limited, but Katsumata did provide insight that the lack of training of pilots was a leading cause of attrition. The lack of training was generally blamed on the shortage of fuel available toward the end of the war, in which period many pilots were sent to front line duties with only a minimum amount of flight experience. He added that

"It is true that we saw the gasoline shortage coming in 1943 and at the same time increased our pilot training program. We hoped that someway we could get adequate gasoline supplies. The necessity for obtaining trained pilots was so great that we increased our training program in the face of an impending fuel shortage."

ww2dbaseKatsumata also revealed that Japanese Navy's air arm was ready to accept 50% attrition rate for all flight personnel after 1943, particularly after the heavy losses at Guadalcanal and Rabaul.

ww2dbaseSource: Interrogations of Japanese Officials.

Last Major Revision: Feb 2007

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