Kiyoharu Kawada file photo [20255]

Yong-U Roh

Given NameYong-U
Died29 May 1945
CountryJapan, Korea


ww2dbaseRoh Yong-U was born in Japanese-occupied Korea. He was given the Japanese name Kiyoharu Kawada. After studying law at Keijo University in Keijo (Gyeongseong, now Seoul), he joined the Japanese Army and volunteered for the aviation arm in Jul 1943. Between Oct 1943 and Mar 1944, he studied flight at Tachiarai Airfield in Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan. He was assigned to a squadron in Japanese 5th Air Army upon graduation. Although he had privately expressed disapproval for suicide tactics, that was what he did when attempting to stop a formation of US B-29 Superfortress bombers on 29 May 1945, en route to bomb Yokohama, Japan. Over Shizuoka Prefecture, near the Oi River, he rammed his Ki-45 Toryu heavy fighter into the B-29 bomber with serial number 42-24894, causing it to crash near Kawane Village (9 crew members were killed, 2 bailed out and would be captured and executed). Roh/Kawada was posthumously promoted to the rank of captain, jumping two grades from second lieutenant, for his sacrifice. His ashes were held at Yutenji Temple in Tokyo, Japan, worshiped as a martyr, until 16 Jun 2005, when they were finally returned to his relatives in Korea.


Last Major Revision: Mar 2014

Yong-U Roh Timeline

29 May 1945 Japanese pilto Second Lieutenant Kiyoharu Kawada (Roh Yong-U) rammed his Ki-45 Toryu heavy fighter into an attacking US B-29 Superfortress bomber (serial 42-24894) over Oi River, Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan, destroying the bomber but also sacrificing himself.
16 Jun 2005 The ashes of Kiyoharu Kawada (Roh Yong-U) were returned to Korea.


Portrait of Kiyoharu Kawada (born Roh Yong-U), student of Keijo University in Keijo (Gyeongseong, now Seoul), occupied Korea, date unknownEthnic Korean pilot Kiyoharu Kawada (born Roh Yong-U) of the Japanese Army, date unknown

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More on Yong-U Roh
Associated Aircraft:
» Ki-45 Toryu

Yong-U Roh Photo Gallery
Portrait of Kiyoharu Kawada (born Roh Yong-U), student of Keijo University in Keijo (Gyeongseong, now Seoul), occupied Korea, date unknown
See all 2 photographs of Yong-U Roh

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