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  B-24D-115-CO Liberator Serial Number 42-40934  
5th AF
43rd BG
403rd BS

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USAAF October 11, 1943

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USAAF c1943
Pilot  Captain Hughie R. "Slim" Bonner, O-789366 (MIA / KIA) Coffeeville, MS
Co-Pilot  2nd Lt Royal R. Baumgartner, O-532939 (MIA / KIA) Philadelphia, PA
Navigator  2nd Lt Edward B. Tucker, O-804901 (MIA / KIA) College Park, GA
Bombardier  2nd Lt Angelo J. Lavalle, O-669332 (MIA / KIA) Jamestown, NY
Engineer  TSgt Michael P. Elphingstone, 18064900 (MIA / KIA) Dallas, TX
Gunner  SSgt Ross D. Burd, 17038346 (MIA / KIA) Elk Horn, IA
Radio  SSgt Elbert L. Hutto, 18061874 (MIA / KIA) Goose Creek, TX
Asst Radio  SSgt Coleman P. Butler Jr., 17020670 (MIA / KIA) Kansas City, KS
Asst Engineer  SSgt Robert P. Moeller, 17038163 (MIA / KIA) Walthill, NE
Gunner  SSgt Lloyd R. Tamblingson, 36276498 (MIA / KIA) Milwaukee, WI

Crashed  October 13, 1943
MACR  808

Aircraft History
Built by Consolidated. Delivered to the U. S. Army. Ferried overseas via Hickam Field across the Pacific to Australia.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 5th Air Force, 43rd Bombardment Group, 403rd Bombardment Squadron. No known nose art or nickname. When lost, engines R1830-42 serial numbers 42-87669, 42-87346, 42-62741 and 42-87535. Weapon serial numbers not noted in MACR.

Mission History
On October 13, 1943 took off from 7-Mile Drome near Port Moresby on a bombing mission against Rabaul. This aircraft was last seen entering a weather front forty miles off Kiriwina. Crashed on reef in the Amphlett Island Group, all were killed in the crash. When this bomber failed to return, the crew were officially declared Missing In Action (MIA).

An aerial search was conducted by three planes but failed to find any trace of this bomber.

The entire crew was officially declared dead the day of the mission. All are memorialized on the tablets of the missing at Manila American Cemetery.

Bonner has a memorial marker at Oak Hill Cemetery in Water Valley, MS.
Baumgartner has a memorial marker at Saint Pauls Blue Church Cemetery in Coopersburg, PA at section L.
Tucker has a memorial marker at Christ Church Episcopal Cemetery at Saint Simons Island, GA.
Lavalle has a memorial marker at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Chautauqua County, NY.
Moeller has a memorial marker at Hillcrest Cemetery in Decatur, NB at section 2.

Yseldah Applegate (niece Hughie Bonner):
"It is feared they collided with a P-38 in the soup weather."

Barb Maslonka (niece of Robert Moeller)

Missing Air Crew Report 808 (MACR 808)
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Hughie R. Bonner
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Royal R. Baumgartner
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Edward B. Tucker
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Angelo J. Lavalle
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Michael P. Elphingstone
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Ross D. Burd
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Elbert L. Hutto
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Coleman P. Butler Jr.
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Robert P. Moeller
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Lloyd R. Tamblingson
FindAGrave - Capt Hughie R Bonner (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Capt Hughie R. "Slim" Bonner (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - 2Lt Royal R Baumgartner (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Royal Raham Baumgartner (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - 2Lt Edward B Tucker (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Edward B Tucker (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - 2Lt Angelo J Lavalle (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Lieut Angelo J. LaValle (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - TSgt Michael P Elphingstone (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - SSgt Ross D Burd (tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - SSgt Elbert L Hutto (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Sgt Coleman P Butler, Jr (tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - SSgt Robert P Moeller (tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - SSgt Robert P. Moeller (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - SSgt Lloyd R Tamblingson (tablets of the missing)
Ken’s Men Against The Empire page 240 (map)
PNG Museum Aircraft Status Card - B-24D Liberator 42-40934
Thanks to Herb Christianson for additional information

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Last Updated
February 14, 2020


Tech Information

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