|Pilot 1st Lt. Richard P. Schumacher, O-732585 (MIA / KIA) Austin, MN
Co-Pilot 2nd Lt William A. Daniels, O-667955 (MIA / KIA) New Orleans, LA
Radio S/Sgt Robert R. McCabe, 36249198 (MIA / KIA) Hammond, WI
Gunner T/Sgt Owen C. Remillard 16046639 (MIA / KIA) Denver, CO
Observer 2nd Lt Alton W. Howard Jr., O-666671 (MIA / KIA) Mexico City, Mexico
Crashed September 2, 1943 at 10:00am
Built by North American. Delivered to the U. S. Army. Ferried overseas via Hawaii to Australia.
Assigned to the 5th Air Force, 38th Bombardment Group, 71st Bombardment Squadron. No known nose art or nickname. When lost, engines R-2600-13 serial numbers 41-29197 and 41-28853.
On September 2, 1943 took off from 17 Mile Drome (Durand) near Port Moresby on "Strike 244H" against Japanese shipping in Wewak Harbor as the second B-25 in the first flight. Over the target, this B-25 was damaged by anti-aircraft fire and reportedly crashed two to five miles offshore from Wewak Harbor.
On September 2, 1943 took off from 17 Mile Drome (Durand) near Port Moresby at 7:00am armed with two 1,000 pound bombs on "Strike 244H" against Japanese shipping in Wewak Harbor off Wewak. The 405th Bombardment Squadron was leading the attack, and proceeded to Marilinan and circled for thirty minutes before rendezvousing with escorting P-38 Lightnings then proceeded up the Ramu Valley bound for Wewak. South of the Prince Alexander Range, the B-25 formation split into two plane elements for bombing and strafing runs.
After the 405th Bombardment Squadron completed their runs, the 71st Bombardment Squadron arrived and experienced heavy anti-aircraft fire and attacks by enemy fighters. This B-25 was part of the first flight, second element with Lt. Friend strafed a "Sugar Charlie" (Japanese merchant vessel) anchored and being unloaded at a jetty off Wewak Point then released their bombs on a "Fox Able" anchored a few hundred yards north. All the bombs missed, but were deemed to be near misses that damaged the vessel.
This B-25 was intercepted by fighters during the attack and was last seen by seen with its right propeller feathered and losing altitude. A B-25 piloted by Major Howard Paquin's of the second flight pulled alongside to offer protection, but it continued to lose altitude and tried to pull up, but stalled, went over on its back and hit the water with great impact. No survivors were seen to leave the aircraft.
When this B-25 failed to return, it was officially declared Missing In Action (MIA). Also lost were B-25D 41-30255 (MIA), B-25D 41-30319 (MIA) and P-38H 42-66563 (MIA).
Last seen by Major Howard Paquin, who writes in MACR 4508:
"I did not see any of the crew emerge from the plane and do not believe there were any survivors. The high speed of my plane and turmoil of the water made it impossible to ascertain whether #247 sank immediately or not."
The MACR 4508 states only:
"Although Missing Aircraft Reports were not required by this Air Force at the time subject officer became missing in action, it s desired that one be prepared and attached to this correspondence when it is returned in as much as the report is specifically requested by the Commanding General, Army Air Forces [Kenney]."
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.
McCabe has a memorial marker at Saint Mary's Cemetery in Hammond, WI.
Remillard has a memorial marker at Mount Olivet Cemetery Wheat Ridge in Jefferson County Colorado at Section 15, Block 1.
Missing Air Crew Report (MACR) 4508
38th Bombardment Group Official History, page 165-175
(172) "All during the bombing and strafing run, the enemy fighters were pressing home thier attacks and the plane piloted by Lt. Schumacher was seen to turn upside down and then plunge into the water."
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Richard P. Schumacher
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - William A. Daniels
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Robert R. McCabe
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Owen C. Remillard
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Alton W. Howard Jr.
FindAGrave - Lieut William Allen Daniels
FindAGrave - Robert R McCabe (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - TSgt Owen C Remillard (tablets of the missing)
Owen C Remillard (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - 2Lt Alton W Howard, Jr (photo, tablets of the missing)
PNG Museum Aircraft Status Card - B-25D Mitchell 41-30247
Tuluvu's Air War, Chapter 5 by Richard Dunn
Thanks to Richard Dunn and Edward Rogers for additional information
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October 16, 2020