November 8, 1944
|Pilot 1st Lt. Walter A. Scalese, O-697377 (MIA / KIA / BR) Windber, PA
Co-Pilot 2nd Lt. Stephen Fuda, O-764278 (MIA / KIA / BR) Stamford, CT
Navigator F/O Joseph E. Novakovits, T-124379 (MIA / KIA) Bethlehem, PA
Bombardier 2nd Lt. Paul H. Phillips, O-703067 (MIA / KIA) Logan, WV
Engineer TSgt Charles H. Neville, 15020222 (MIA / KIA / BR) Evansville, IN
Asst Engineer SSgt George J. Kacoyannakis, 12025464 (MIA / KIA / BR) Tyrone, NY
Radio TSgt Chester E. Matz, 13081336 (MIA / KIA / BR) Wilkes Barre, PA
Asst Radio SSgt John T. Stough, 33669803 (MIA / KIA / BR) Jeanette, PA
Gunner SSgt Robert L. Dyson, 15171268 (MIA / KIA / BR) Dennison, OH
Gunner SSgt Michael P. Falcone, 33829746 (MIA / KIA / BR) Bangor, PA
Crashed November 8, 1944 at 10:10am
Built by Consolidated. Assigned to the 13th Air Force, 307th Bombardment Group, 371st Bombardment Squadron. No known nose art or nickname. This bomber had a natural aluminum finish with the unit's circular "Lone Rangers" unit insignia painted on the tail.
When lost, engines R-1830-65A serial numbers BP-444463, BP-444523, BP-444142 and BP-444109. Weapon serial numbers not noted in Missing Air Crew Report (MACR) 10456.
Took off from Kornasoren Airfield on Noemfoor Island on a bombing mission Alicante Airfield on Negros. Over the target, the bombers were intercepted by enemy aircraft. This B-24 was hit by cannon fire that caused the right wing to buckle upward and left side of the tail to break away. A photograph captured the moment when the bomber was hit. Afterwards, the
tail fell and the bomber crash onto the northern tip of Negros killing the entire crew. The crash was observed by Sgt Marvin M. Kottke aboard another bomber.
The photograph of the damaged bomber was released by the Associated Press (AP) on December 11, 1944 with the caption: "OVER THE PHILIPPINES - This picture was made at the moment of impact when a Japanese Zero crashed into a Liberator Bomber of the 13th AF over the Philippines. The bombers were intercepted by enemy planes en route to a Negros Island airstrip. Both planes exploded and fell to the ground. Note wing broken off and tilting upward revealing US star insignia. (AP Wire photo from USAAF)"
Afterwards, no search was conducted over the area due to intense enemy interception, but all crews on subsequent missions were instructed to be on the alert for any indication or sign from the downed crew.
The entire crew was officially declared dead the day of the mission. After the liberation of Negros, the remains of the crew were located and recovered. Postwar, the entire crew was buried at Winchester National Cemetery in a group burial at section 88, site 4105C.
Missing Air Crew Report (MACR) 10456
The Long Rangers page 165
Thanks to Jim McCabe / 307th Bomb Group Association for additional information
FindAGrave - Walter A Scalese (grave photo)
FindAGrave - Stephen Fuda (grave photo)
FindAGrave - Joseph E Novakovits (grave photo)
Paul H Phillips (grave photo)
FindAGrave - Charles Hugh Neville (grave photo)
FindAGrave - Sgt George J Kacoyannakis (grave photo)
FindAGrave - Chester E Matz (grave photo)
FindAGrave - John Turney Stough (grave photo)
FindAGrave - Robert L. Dyson (grave photo)
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May 22, 2017