Aircraft B-24H with serial number 44-41842 was on a strike mission to Sibu in Borneo.
Statement from 1st Lt Thomas R. Pappas:
Aircraft #44-41842 was flying the number six position in the Squadron formation. My airplane, #698, was flying in the number five position. At approximately 0945, I saw airplane #842 slide under the formation and start to turn around. A message to the Group Leader was intercepted that #842 had lost an engine and was returning to base. Shortly after #842 left the formation, another message was intercepted that he had lost another engine and would have to bail out. I turned around and could see smoke rising from to a height of 3,000 feet. Reducing our altitude, we orbited the area of the crashed plane and sighted eight survivors, six in rafts and two more to whom we dropped rafts. We called the Rescue Catalina, turned on the emergency IFF and continued searching the area for other survivors unsuccessfully until after the Rescue Catalina had picked up the eight survivors we had sighted. I then returned to base jettisoning bombs safe in the water at 09-45N, 123-12E.
Rescue Catalina 47 was dispatched to scene immediately. Other rescue craft from Zamboanga and Palawan were dispatched, making a total of five aircraft searching the area. After rescued of eight survivors had been effected by Cat 47, rescue craft 105 remained on search, result nil. Survivors were brought to Moret Strip, Zamboanga; then returned to Samar, 19 May 1945. Further search of area for possible survivors was being conducted by 13th Air Force Air-Sea Rescue Squadron.
Pilot, 2nd Lt Edward F. Winthers
Co-Pilot, 2nd Lt Gordon A. Schmidt
Navigator, 2nd Lt Norbert Perl
Bombardier, 2nd Lt Robert J. Thebault
Engineer, S/Sgt Robert M. Shannon
Assistant Engineer, PFC Donald L. Dipboye
Radio Operator, Sgt Robert M. Henry
Assistant Radio Operator, S/Sgt Kenneth L. Mowles
Gunner, S/Sgt Edward J. Ebbets
Gunner, S/Sgt James A. Golmon Jr.
Passenger, 1st Lt William R. Silvers
Memorialized at Manila American Cemetery, Philippines
- Rank: Staff Sergeant
- Date of death: 18 May 1945
- County: Hamilton
- Service Branch: Army/Army Air Forces
- Division/Assignment: 72nd Bomber Squadron, 5th Bomber Group, Heavy
- Theater: Pacific
- Conflict: World War II
- Awards: Air Medal, Purple Heart
- Burial/Memorial Location: Manila American Cemetery, Fort Bonifacio, Manila, Philippines
- Location In Memorial: Pillar XII, Top Panel
- Contact us to sponsor Robert M. Shannon
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