Charles W. Wolfendale
B-25 Mitchell Pilot 42nd Bomb Group, 100th Bomb Squadron
Charles William Wolfendale was born on April 1, 1919 to parent George Wolfendale and Ruth (Marrinich) Wolfendale in Lynn, Essex County, Massachusetts. He graduated high school and attended four years of college and was employed as an office clerk.
On September 29, 1941 enlisted in the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as an aviation cadet with serial number 11032018. Assigned to the 42nd Bombardment Group (42nd BG), 106th Bombardment Squadron (106th BS), 100th Bombardment Squadron (100th BS) as a Lieutenant.
In January 1944 he began flying combat missions as a B-25 Mitchell co-pilot and pilot in the South Pacific (SOPAC).
On January 13, 1944 Lt. Wolfendale took off as co-pilot on a B-25 Mitchell from the 390th Bomb Squadron on a strike against supply areas at Bonis on northern Bougainville. Afterwards, promoted to the rank of Captain and served as group S-3 (operations officer) and Commanding Officer (C. O.) of the 100th Bombardment Squadron.
On June 28, 1944 took off piloting B-25 Mitchell armed with 250 pound bombs leading the 100th BS on a strike against Erventa Island with bombardier Frank Unetic. The formation of 22 B-25s from the 390th BS and 100th BS hit the target with rock fragments flying up to 600'
On September 3, 1944 took off piloting B-25H
Mitchell 43-4513 and was damaged over southern New Britain and force landed at Talasea Airfield on West New Britain. He and the crew survived the landing unhurt.
During 1944-1945 Wolfendale flew combat missions in the B-25 Mitchell over the northern Solomon Islands, Bougainville, New Britain, Netherlands East Indies (NEI) and the Philippines.
In total, he flew 95 combat missions, the highest of any pilot in the 42nd Bomb Group until grounded by Colonel Harvey who commented: "Anyone with 95 missions ought to stay on the ground." Wolfendale was later promoted to the rank of Major and rotated back to the United States.
Wolfendale became part of the U. S. Air Force (USAF) and was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. Assigned to the 306th Bomb Wing (306th BW), 306th Air Refueling Squadron (306th ARS) based at MacDill AFB. On November 9, 1951 took off piloting KC-97E Stratofreighter 51-0198 and was killed in the crash.
He is buried at St. Joseph's Cemetery in Lynn, MA.
NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - Charles W. Wolfendale
The Crusaders A History of the 42nd Bombardment Group (M) pages 60, 80, 96, 98, 119, 140, 150, 155, 157, 172, 196 (photo captioned Charles R. [sic W.] Wolfendale)
FindAGrave - Charles William Wolfendale
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