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|Pilot 1st Lt William C. Mackey, O-439668 (MIA / KIA) Troy, NY
Co-Pilot 2/Lt James W. McCann, O-742753 (MIA / KIA) Oakland, CA
Turret Gunner S/Sgt Harold J. Corbridge, 16051472 (MIA / KIA) Decatur, IL
Waist Gunner Sgt Thomas E. Priddy, 35208711 (MIA / KIA) Kanawha Falls, WV
MIA November 2, 1943 at 1:53pm
Built by North American in Inglewood, California. Constructors Number 82-5633. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as B-25C Mitchell serial number 41-12998.
Assigned to the 5th Air Force, 3rd Bombardment Group, 8th Bombardment Squadron. Nicknamed "Tugboat Annie". When lost, engines R-2600-13 serial numbers 41-30593 and 41-39851. Weapon serial numbers noted in Missing Air Crew Report 1633 (MACR 1633).
On November 2, 1943 took off from Horanda Drome near Dobodura piloted by 1st Lt William C. Mackey on a bombing mission against Rabaul.
Over the target, this B-25 was flying in the no. 2 position in the element and attacked enemy ships in Simpson Harbor. Hit by enemy gun fire, the right engine caught fire as this B-25 flew low over the water. Other bombers in the formation observed to pull up to 75' to 100' then nosed downward in an apparent attempt to ditch, impacting into the Blanche Bay north of Kokopo. Accounts from observers in other B-25s on the mission provide slightly conflicting accounts of the crash.
F/O Hobart R. Rankin via MACR 1633 page 17
"I first noticed a B-25 on our left as we were passing over Raluana Point and it was afire, the flame coming from the right engine. It was one of our ships but I could not distinguish the letter on the tail. The ship leveled off about ten feet off the water as though an attempt at a crash landing was to be made, then it pulled up to about one hundred fee, apparently still under control. Again it started down as if to level off but the right wing dipped suddenly and the plane plunged into the water about a thirty degree dive. The plane completely disintegrated as it struck the water. No fire was observed on the water after the crash which occurred northwest of Rapopo, about three quarters of a mile off shore and about three miles northwest."
F/O Abraham E. Shook via MACR 1633 page 18
Mackey earned the Silver Star with Oak Leaf Cluster and Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster, posthumously.
Nov 2, 1943
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