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Jeff Johnson 1997
John Laird 2003
|Pilot 2nd Lt Raymond W. Price (KIA, BR) Columbus, OH
Crew 2nd Lt Thomas L. McConnell, O-736281 (KIA, BR) Wichita, KS
Crew 2nd Lt Arnold H. Recknagel, O-667430 (KIA, BR) MI
Crew 2nd Lt Louis Z. Orihuela (KIA, BR) Tampa, FL
Crew 2nd Lt James L. Taylor (KIA, BR)
Crew TSgt Dayle C. Potter, 16028767 (KIA, BR) IL
Crew Sgt Emery E. Jacaway, 16054655 (KIA, BR) IL
Radio/Gunner Sgt Warren S. Ryan (KIA, BR) Milwaukee, WI
Crew SSgt Delvan E. Hazelrigg, 424th BS (KIA, BR) Macon, IL
Crew Pvt William Rothman (KIA, BR) NY
Crew Pvt Peter J. Tenorella (KIA, BR)
Crashed July 10, 1943
Built by Consolidated at San Diego using funds F-1, order number AC-24620 at a cost of $297,627.00. Constructors Number 1723. On April 14, 1943, delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as B-24D-80-CO Liberator Serial Number 42-40646. Ferried overseas via Hickam Field then across the Pacific to the South Pacific.
Assigned to the 13th Air Force, 5th Bombardment Group, 72nd Bombardment Squadron. Later, assigned to the 307th Bombardment Group, 424th Bombardment Squadron. Possibly, this B-24 was nicknamed "Alley Cat".
On July 10, 1943 took off from Carney Field (Bomber 2) on Guadalcanal on a bombing mission against Kahili on Bougainville. Returning from the mission, an American radar operator at Cape Esperance reported a large plane was tracked four miles inland then disappeared. For reasons unknown, this B-24 crashed onto a ridge inland from Cape Esperance, killing the entire crew on impact. This B-24 was officially condemned on December 1, 1943.
The next morning, Fred and Ed McConnell of the 424th Bombardment Squadron searched from an altitude of 1,500' and spotted the wreckage of a B-24 in a ravine inland from Yenton Point on Cape Esperance. The position of the crash indicated that the bomber was approaching from the sea (flying north to south).
Recovery of Remains
"While I was at the Vila War Museum, the curator, told of us a 'B-17' that had recently been found. He offered to take us there for $50. As it was a long hike, we set out early the next morning. We started on a grassy plain and started up a jungle trail alongside a small stream at the base of the ridge.
The first thing we saw was a crumpled supercharger from one of the engines about 2500 feet away from the main crash site. It appeared that the rains had flushed a number of parts down the ridge and some pieces had been thrown clear on the initial impact. As we hiked up a 50 to 70 degree incline for the next hour, we saw various pieces of fuselage. We then ran across one of the landing gear.
We finally reached the site and saw a large piece of fuselage, the waist section, pointed straight down into the ground. There was numerous live .50 cal rounds scattered about. You could still make out the American star on the port side. A little further away was a number of bent propeller blades and the tail section. On this tail section in yellow letters about 5 inches high was the number '240640'.
After rummaging around, we found a single .50 cal machine gun in a very rusted state without the barrel. Sections of wing and the elevators were also about. It was a great experience and the highlight of my sail across the South Pacific."
During the 2003, RAMSI operations, Australian
Defense Force soldiers visited the crash site. They recovered one 50 caliber
machine gun from the site and transported it to GBR at Honiara. Later, it was donated to the Solomon
During the 2003, RAMSI operations, Australian Defense Force soldiers visited the crash site. They recovered one 50 caliber machine gun from the site and transported it to GBR at Honiara. Later, it was donated to the Solomon Islands Museum.
Three of the crew are buried at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (Punchbowl). McConnell at section B, site 1195. Recknagel at section B, site 652. Jacaway at section N, site 65.
Price is buried at Green Lawn Cemetery in Columbus, OH. He also has a memorial marker at Mount Calvary Cemetery in Columbus, OH at HC-H-6 1/2.
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