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  B-24J-15-CO Liberator Serial Number 42-73148  
USAAF
13th AF
5th BG
72nd BS

Pilot  1st Lt. William C. Robison, O-736368 (MIA / KIA) Luzerne County, PA
Co-Pilot  1st Lt. Walter C. Botts, O-676614 (MIA / KIA) KY
Navigator  1st Lt. Robert H. Smith, O-667445 (MIA / KIA) Terre Haute, IN
Bombardier  1st Lt. Robert C. Heddrick, O-671357 (MIA / KIA) Queens, NY
Engineer  Sgt John McIntyre, 32434292 (MIA / KIA) Westchester County, NY
Asst. Engineer  SSgt Kenneth H. Winham, 18133906 (MIA / KIA) LA
Radio  Sgt Jack Dolsky, 16124052 (MIA / KIA) Chicago, IL
Asst. Radio  SSgt Vincent R. Brady, 10100436 (MIA / KIA) HI
Gunner  SSgt Albion T. Huffman, 38121812 (MIA / KIA)
Gunner  SSgt Michael Thomas, 35210565 (MIA / KIA)
MIA  April 2, 1944
MACR  14289

Aircraft History
Built by Consolidated at San Diego. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as B-24J-15-CO Liberator Serial Number 42-73148. Ferried overseas via Hickam Field to the South Pacific.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 13th Air Force, 5th Bombardment Group, 72nd Bombardment Squadron. No known nickname or nose art. Also known as #148 for the last three digits of the serial number. When lost, engines serial numbers and weapon serial number not noted in Missing Air Crew Report 14289 (MACR 14289).

Mission History
On April 2, 1944 took off thirty minutes late from Nissan Airfield (Green Island) (APO 717, Unit 1) at 8:15am piloted by 1st Lt. William C. Robison on a bombing mission against Truk. Prior to take off, this crew was scheduled to fly #232 until a fuel truck accidentally collided with it damaging the wing. Instead, the crew transfered to this bomber and took off 30 minutes late. It was presumed this B-24 flew to the northwest to catchup with the rest of the formation which experienced a severe weather front between Green Island Atoll and Truk. After take off, this bomber was never seen again and was reported as Missing In Action (MIA).

Search
Returning from the mission, the other B-24s were instructed to drop down to 1,000' to search for any downed bombers or air crews, but nil sightings were made. Afterwards, U. S. Navy (USN) aircraft searched the general area for any lost aircraft with nil results.

Memorials
The entire crew was officially declared dead on February 5, 1946. All are memorialized at Manila American Cemetery on the tablets of the missing.

Robison earned the Air Medal with four Oak Leaf Clusters and Purple Heart, posthumously.

Botts earned the Air Medal and Purple Heart, posthumously. He also has a memorial marker at Winchester Cemetery in Winchester, KY at section E, Lot 134, Grave 4.

Smith earned the Air Medal with four Oak Leaf Clusters and Purple Heart, posthumously. He also has a memorial marker at Memory Garden Cemetery in Rockville, IN.

Heddrick earned the Air Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster and Purple Heart, posthumously.

McIntyre earned the Air Medal with four Oak Leaf Clusters , Purple Heart, posthumously.

Winham earned the Air Medal with six Oak Leaf Clusters, Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster, posthumously. He also has a memorial marker at Rocky Mount Cemetery in Rocky Mount, LA. Previously, on June 16, 1943 he survived the ditching of B-24D 42-40250 and was rescued.

Dolsky earned the Air Medal with five Oak Leaf Clusters and Purple Heart, posthumously.

Brady earned the Air Medal with five Oak Leaf Clusters and Purple Heart, posthumously.

Huffman earned the Air Medal with four Oak Leaf Clusters and Purple Heart, posthumously.

Thomas earned the Air Medal and Purple Heart, posthumously.

References
USAF Serial Number Search Results - B-24J-15-CO Liberator 42-73148
"73148 (5th BG) lost Apr 2, 1945. MACR 14289. The MACR actually lists the serial number as being 42-70148, which was a P-63."
Missing Air Crew Report 14289 (MACR 14289) created March 8, 1945
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - William C. Robison

American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Walter C. Botts
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Robert H. Smith

American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Robert C. Heddrick
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - John McIntyre
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Kenneth H. Winham
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Jack Dolsky
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Vincent R. Brady

American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Albion T. Huffman

American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Michael Thomas

FindAGrave - 1Lt William C Robison (tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - 1Lt Walter C Botts (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Lieut Walter C. Botts (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - 1Lt Robert Hargett Smith (obituary, tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - 1LT Robert Hargett Smith (obituary, memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - 1Lt Robert C Heddrick (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Sgt John McIntyre (tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - SSgt Kenneth H Winham (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - SSGT Kenneth H Winham (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - Sgt Jack Dolsky (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - SSgt Vincent R Brady (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Albion T. Huffman (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Michael Thomas (tablets of the missing)

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Last Updated
October 8, 2018

 

Tech Information
B-24

Map
Map
April 2, 1944

MIA
MIA
10 Missing
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