On January 25, 1943 Capt. Joe Foss led his "Flying Circus" squadron along with four P-38 Lightning's against a superior Japanese force of over 100 aircraft in defense of Henderson Field on Guadalcanal. Foreseeing the attack Foss flew out to meet the approaching enemy. Playing hide-and-seek in the cloud the flight was able to confuse the Japanese into believing they were outnumbered by the American force, eventually giving up and heading back up the slot to their home bases on Bougainville and Munda.
As the flight returned to Henderson filed all eyes were skyward as the defenders returned. Twelve had gone up to meet the Japanese and twelve returned!