2nd Lieutenant Jackson R. Bohannon O-762894 US Army Air Forces was born in 1925 in McMinn County, Tennessee. He was the son of Jackson F. and Edna E. Black Bohannon. His siblings were James G., Sadie B., Alta I., Norman H., Arnold, and Raymond V.
2Lt Bohannon was a Bombardier assigned to the 358th Bomber Squadron, 303rd Bomber Group, Heavy, flying B-17s out of Molesworth England. He was killed in action on 28th of September 1944, and is interred at J,9,12 Netherlands American Cemetery, Margraten, the Netherlands.
From the 303rd Bomber Group Web site:
303rd BG H Combat Mission No. 248
28 September 1944
Target Krupp Grusonwerke A.G., Magdeburg, Germany
Twenty-eight 303rd BGH aircraft plus two borrowed PFF aircraft took off to attack the Krupp Grusonwerke A.G. at Magdeburg, Germany. The secondary target, to be bombed if PFF means were used, was the Magdeburg railroad marshalling yards. Last resort targets were airdromes at Gardelegen, Quedlinberg and Giessen.
Eleven B-17Gs failed to return. They were lost to enemy aircraft after a persistent attack of an estimated 40 FW-190s and ME-109s. After a bomber was hit, the enemy pilots continued their attack and followed it down. Attacks were chiefly from five to seven o’clock, from low to level and were concentrated on the low Squadron. Friendly fighters arrived to engage the enemy and, during the course of dogfights, sporadic attacks were made. Some crews reported that these attacks were made singly and others felt they were made by as many as six abreast. The tactics utilized by the enemy pilots demonstrated that they were determined, efficient, and experienced.
Aircraft #43-38206 Silver Fox, 358BS, piloted by 1Lt. William P. Lay, was burning from the waist back when first seen to be in trouble. About 20 seconds later, it burst into flames all over, turned on its back, and fell straight down. No parachutes were seen. Lt. Lay, 2Lt. David A. Grenier, 2Lt. Robert M. Lasker, 2Lt. Jackson R. Bohannon, Pvt. Fred E.Kane, Sgt. Henry F. Gillespie, Sgt. Donald T. Hasper and Sgt. Richard J. Chaltraw were all killed in the crash. SSgt.
Ray A. Miller ENG was the only survivor. He made the following report:
“After our ship caught fire and co-pilot 2Lt. David A. Grenier and I were ready to bail out, I noticed that he had been severely wounded on the left shoulder. He then motioned to me to bail out and instead I fastened his chute to him and threw him overboard. Then I heard a terrific explosion and did not remember anything until just before hitting the ground. This is all the
information I can give concerning Lt. Grenier.”
In crew picture below he is in upper right corner.
Daily Post-Athenian, March 19, 1945
Mrs. Mildred (Kinser) Bohannon this morning received the Purple Heart medal, which was posthumously awarded to her husband, Lieutenant Jackson R. Bohannon of the Army Air Corps. The medal was accompanied by a letter from Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson stating that the medal was awarded under the direction of the President as a tangible expression of the nation’s gratitude for Lt. Bohannon’s gallantry and devotion. A few weeks ago Mrs. Bohannon had received a message from the War Department confirming the death of her husband, Lt. Jackson Ross Bohannon, who has been reported killed in action over Magdeburg, Germany on September 28th, 1944.
Lt. Bohannon, 19-year old son of Mr. and Mrs. J.F. Bohannon of Athens, was a Flying Fortress Bombardier and had been overseas four months of his twenty months service. He had been awarded the Air Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster for “meritorious achievement over enemy occupied territory,” and was on his sixteenth mission at the time of his reported death.
Lt. Bohannon was a member of the First Baptist Church of Athens. He was a member of the Boy Scouts and was a former carrier for the Daily Post-Athenian. Graduating as an honor student from McMinn High School, he was attending Tennessee Wesleyan College when he volunteered for service in the Army Air Corps in November 1942. He was called for training in February 1943 and received his wings and commission as a navigator-bombardier from Carlsbad Army Air Field December 24, 1943.
Lt. Bohannon was married to Miss Mildred Kinser, desk editor at the Daily Post-Athenian and daughter of Mrs. Ethel Kinser of Athens, on May 10, 1944 in Ardmore, Okla. Lt. Bohannon left the latter part of May for foreign duty, going by plane to a base in England.
Survivors are his wife, Mrs. Mildred Bohannon; parents, Mr. and Jrs. J.F. Bohannon of Athens; two sisters, Mrs. Ralph Barnett and Mrs. James Stephens, both of Athens; four brothers, Seaman Arnold Bohannon with the US Navy stationed in the South Pacific, Gordon of San Francisco, Calif., Howard of Athens and Vincent Bohannon at home.
- Rank: Second Lieutenant
- Date of death: 28 September 1944
- County: McMinn
- Service Branch: Army/Army Air Forces
- Division/Assignment: 358th Bomber Squadron, 303rd Bomber Group, Heavy
- Theater: Europe
- Conflict: World War II
- Awards: Purple Heart, Air Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster
- Burial/Memorial Location: Netherlands American Cemetery, Margraten, Netherlands
- Location In Memorial: Pillar XV, Middle Panel
- Contact us to sponsor Jackson R. Bohannon
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