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  B-25J-30/32-NC Mitchell Serial Number 44-31361  
13th AF
42nd BG
70th BS

Pilot  Captain Morton H. Estrin, O-1287161 (MIA / KIA) Trenton, NJ
Co-Pilot  2nd Lt Gustaf L. Tangring, O-788280 (MIA / KIA) Sweden
Navigator  1st Lt Leon Resnick, O-706546 (MIA / KIA) Russia
Engineer  Sgt Chester C. Dougherty, Jr, 39410626 (MIA / KIA) Oakdale, CA
Radio  Sgt Daniel B. Ginn, 34842867 (MIA / KIA) NC
MIA  August 16, 1945
MACR  14927

Aircraft History
Built by North American Aviation (NAA) at Air Force Plant NC at Fairfax Field near Kansas City, KS. Constructors Number 108-37436. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as B-25J Mitchell serial number 44-31361. Ferried overseas via Hickam Field across the Pacific to the South West Pacific Area (SWPA).

Wartime History
Assigned to the 13th Air Force (13th AF), 42nd Bombardment Group (42nd BG) "The Crusaders", 70th Bombardment Squadron (70th BS). No known nose art or nickname. When lost, engines R-2600-29 serial numbers unknown. Armed with .50 caliber machine guns maker and serial numbers unknown.

Mission History
On August 16, 1945 took off from Biak (APO 920) pilot Captain Morton H. Estrin on an administrative flight bound for Morotai (APO 926). The last contact with this aircraft was assumed to be the control tower at Biak thirty minutes after take off. The crew was ferrying a new bomber to the squadron. Possibly, this aircraft took off from Morotai (APO 926) on a flight bound for Biak (APO 920).

Another pilot flying fifteen minutes ahead experienced a dense overcast 20 minutes out of Biak with thunderstorms over the entire area and scattered storms near Morotai that required climbing to 10,000' to avoid. When this aircraft failed to return it was officially listed as Missing In Action (MIA) and was presumed lost somewhere along the flight route between Biak and Morotai.

After being declared missing, seven B-25s from the group with experienced navigators for more complete coverage and efficient plotting took off from Biak on search missions without results.

The entire crew was officially declared dead the day of the mission. None of the crew earned the Purple Heart, posthumously as the flight was deemed non-combat. The entire crew is memorialized at Manila American Cemetery on the tablets of the missing.

Both Estrin and Resnick previously earned the Air Medal. Resnick also has a memorial marker at Mount Lebanon Cemetery in Collingdale, PA.

NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - Morton H. Estrin

NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - Gustaf L. Tangring

NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - Leon Resnick
NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - Chester C. Dougherty, Jr
NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - Daniel B. Ginn
USAF Serial Number Search Results - B-25J-30/32-NC Mitchell 44-31361
"31361 (42nd BG) lost Aug 16, 1945, South Pacific"
Missing Air Crew Report 14927 (MACR 14927) created August 23, 1945 page 2 states the point of departure was APO 920 (Biak) and destination was APO 926 (Morotai) yet the narrative on page 3 states it departed Morotai bound for Biak also that another pilot flying fifteen minutes ahead experienced a dense overcast with thunderstorms over the entire area.
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Morton H. Estrin
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Gustaf L. Tangring
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Leon Resnick
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Chester C. Dougherty Jr.
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Daniel B. Ginn
FindAGrave - Capt Morton H Estrin, Jr (tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - 2Lt Gustaf L Tangring (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - 1Lt Leon Resnick (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Leon Resnick (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - Sgt Chester C Dougherty, Jr (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Sgt Daniel Baker Ginn (tablets of the missing photo)

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Last Updated
February 18, 2020


Tech Info

5 Missing
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