While serving his last combat tour at Guadalcanal, Capt. Herbert H. "Trigger" Long was assigned to VMF-122 squadron. On 7 July 1943, during a fighter sweep, he encountered a formation of Japanese Mitsubishi G4M "Betty" bombers over New Georgia Island in the Solomons. Capt. Long picked a Betty out of the formation and began firing. The Betty's tailgunner fired back at Capt. Long's F4U-1 Corsair. "Trigger" quickly maneuvered into position behind the bomber and neutralized the tailgunner. He then concentrated his attack on the bomber's right engine, pounding away at it with .50 caliber machine gun fire.
The Japanese pilot broke formation and began a deadly game of "hide and seek", darting in and out of the clouds trying to lose Capt. Long on his tail. As he gave chase through the clouds, Capt. Long spotted the Betty just as it ditched in the island's shallow waters. Capt. Long circled again to confirm his 4th victory.
While serving on Guadalcanal with VMF-121 and VMF-122, Capt. Long was credited with 6 kills. Later with Air Group 84 and VMF-451 aboard the U.S.S. Bunker Hill, he added 4 more kills to his record. Major Long was also credited with 3 direct hits with 5" HVAR rockets on the Japanese Aircraft Carrier Ryuho at the Japanese Naval Base at Kure. Col. Long flew 143 missions in Wildcat and Corsair aircraft. He finished the war with 10 victories. After the war he continued to serve, including duty in Vietnam. In 1968, Herbert H. Long retired from the United States Marine Corps as a Colonel.