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  A-20A "Abijah Gooch" Serial Number 40-155  
5th AF
3rd BG
89th BS

Former Assignments:
18 Squadron

Pilot  2nd Lt. Francis C. Pruitt, O-442230 (MIA / KIA) LA
 2nd Lt. Cornelius F. O'Leary, O-649101 (MIA / KIA) MA
 SSgt Roger S. Martin, 11014927 (MIA / KIA) NH
 S/Sgt Roland C. Noyes, Jr., 18010733 (MIA / KIA) TX
MIA  November 16, 1942
MACR  none

Aircraft History
Built by Douglas. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as A-20A Havoc serial number 40-155. Disassembled and shipped overseas to Australia and reassembled.

Wartime History
On June 12, 1942 one of four A-20A's that arrived at Fairbairn Airfield near Canberra and assigned to the Netherlands East Indies Air Force (NEIAF) to 18 Squadron. Two days later, they were withdrawn in favor of B-25 Mitchell bombers.

Instead, returned to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) and flown via Brisbane to Charters Towers Airfield. Assigned to the 5th Air Force, 3rd Bombardment Group (3rd BG), 89th Bombardment Squadron (89th BS). Nicknamed "Abijah Gooch".

Mission History
On November 16, 1942 took off from Cairns Airfield pilot 2nd Lt. Francis C. Pruitt on a flight bound for Port Moresby. This aircraft failed to arrive and the crew were declared Missing In Action (MIA).

The entire crew was declared dead the day of the mission. Since the flight was deemed non-combat, none of the crew members earned the Purple Heart, posthumously. All are memorialized at Manila American Cemetery on the tablets of the missing. Noyes also has a memorial marker at Old City Cemetery in Galveston, TX.

USAF Serial Number Search Results - A-20A Havoc 40-155
"155 (3rd BG, 89th BS, 'Abijah Gooch') lost somewhere between Australian and New Guinea Nov 16, 1942"
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Francis C. Pruitt
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Cornelius F. O'Leary
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Roger S. Martin
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Roland C. Noyes, Jr.
FindAGrave - 1Lt Francis C Pruitt (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - 2Lt Cornelius F O'Leary (tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - SSgt Roger S Martin (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - SSgt Roland C Noyes Jr. (tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - Roland C Noyes Jr. (memorial marker photo)

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Last Updated
December 22, 2020


Tech Info

4 Missing
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