Aces of VF-17 "Jolly Rogers"

Pirates of the Pacific by Mark Karvon
Pirates of the Pacific by Mark Karvon *

Blackburn's Irregulars

In their five months of action in the Solomon's, the Jolly Rogers shot down 8 Japanese planes for every Corsair lost. In only 76 days of fighting, they flew 8,577 combat hours, destroyed 154 planes (and 5 ships) while losing only 13 pilots themselves. The squadron had 13 aces, more than any other naval unit. As the tide of the war in the Pacific turned, VF-17 was there, doing more than their share to destroy and demoralize the Japanese military machine.


Ira Kepford Ira Cassius Kepford 16
Roger Hedrick "Rog"

Roger Richards Hedrick
Tommy Blackburn "Tommy" 

John Thomas Blackburn

11 / 5 / 3

John Malcolm Smith
(3 / 3/ 1 with VF17)

10 / 3 / 1

Fighting 17 by Wade Meyers
Fighting 17 by Wade Meyers *

Bob Coats Robert Charles Coats (ace in a day)

9.33 / 3 / 0
Oc Chenoweth "Oc"

Oscar Ivan Chenoweth

Clement Dexter Gile
Earl May 8
Teeth Burriss "Teeth"

* Howard McClain Burriss       
(MIA 31jan44)

Paul Cordray 7
Dan Cunningham Daniel Gerald Cunningham 7
Butch Davenport "Butch"

Merle William Davenport
Robert Mims 6
Fred Streig "Jim" Frederick James Streig 5.5
Harry "Dirty Eddie" March "Dirty Eddie"

Harry A. March Jr.

The Jolly Rogers by Nicolas Trudgian
The Jolly Rogers by Nicolas Trudgian *




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