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8th PRS Dec 31, 1942
Frank Prist c1943
8th PRS April 13, 1943
|Pilot 1st Lt. Edward G. Gammon, Jr. (survived) Prince Edward County, VA
Co-Pilot P/O Henry Douglas Dargie, O51840, RAAF (survived) Wellington Mills, WA
Navigator Lt. Robert B. Linsley (survived)
Bombardier TSgt Michael J. Bauman, Jr. (survived)
Engineer SSgt James A. Malone (survived)
Radio SSgt Hubert Newell, Jr. (survived)
Force Landed November 2, 1942
Built by Martin in Baltimore, Maryland. At the factory, painted with olive drab upper surfaces and gray lower surfaces. Delivered to the U.S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as B-26 Marauder serial number 40-1493. Disassembled and shipped overseas across the Pacific to Melbourne. Reassembled by Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation (CAC).
On May 15, 1942 assigned to the 5th Air Force (5th AF), 22nd Bombardment Group (22nd BG) "Red Raiders", 33rd Bombardment Squadron (33rd BS). This B-26 was flown from Melbourne northward to Antil Plains Airfield were it became a replacement aircraft for the squadron.
On May 24, 1942 took off from Garbutt Field at Townsville piloted by 2nd Lt. Carl G. King bound for 7 Mile Drome near Port Moresby to stage for a bombing mission but aborted the flight due to mechanical problems.
Afterwards, assigned to pilot 1st Lt. Edward G. Gammon, Jr. with crew chief Hart as a replacement aircraft for B-26 "Georgia Peach" 40-1415 that had mechanical problems. This B-26 had a scoreboard on the left side of the nose with nose art and the tip of the tail had a yellow tip.
During the remainer of 1942 operated from bases in northern Queensland including Antil Plains Airfield, Woodstock Airfield, Iron Range Airfield and Garbutt Field. For combat flown northward to fly missions from 7 Mile Drome and later 14 Mile Drome near Port Moresby.
On June 16, 1942 took off from 7 Mile Drome near Port Moresby piloted by 1st Lt. Edward G. Gammon, Jr. with co-pilot P/O Henry Douglas Dargie, RAAF as one of ten B-26 on a bombing mission against Lae. Over the target, intercepted by A6M2 Zeros from the Tainan Kokutai. Gunners aboard this bomber claimed one Zero shot down. This was the bomber's first combat mission.
On July 4, 1942 took off piloted by Nickels on a bombing mission against Lae.
On July 23, 1942 took off piloted by Gammon on a mission against Japanese shipping off Buna.
On July 24, 1942 took off piloted by Gammon on a mission against Buna.
On August 2, 1942 took off piloted by Kahle on a mission against Buna.
On August 9, 1942 took off piloted by Gammon on a mission against Salamaua.
On August 17, 1942 one of ten B-26 Marauders parked at 7 Mile Drome near Port Moresby fully fueled and armed with 500 pound bombs. Without any advanced warning, a Japanese air raid against 7 Mile Drome by G4M1 Betty bombers from the 4th Kokutai and Misawa Kokutai escorted by A6M2 Zeros from Tainan Kokutai. To avoid being caught on the ground, this B-26 took off piloted by 1st Lt. Edward G. Gammon, co-pilot Sgt Henry Douglas Dargie (RAAF), navigator Lt. Robert B. Linsley, bombardier TSgt Michael J. Bauman, Jr., engineer SSgt James A. Malone and radio operator SSgt Hubert Newell, Jr. As the Japanese bombs began to explode, this B-26 was hit by shrapnel that damaged the left propeller and caused an oil leak, knocked out the radio and injured Newell and Malone. Also, B-26 "Wabash Cannonball" 40-1499 managed to take off as the Japanese bombs began exploding and escaped. Flying at low altitude to avoid being intercepted by the Zeros, this bomber overflew 12 Mile Drome. After the all clear, this bomber returned to land at 7 Mile Drome and the right tire failed and caused B-26 to swerve but managed to land safely. Inspected on the ground, the rear fuselage and tail was riddled by 193 holes caused by shrapnel.
Afterwards, this B-26 was flown to Woodstock Airfield for temporary repairs then Garbutt Field at Townsville to the 4th Air Depot for six weeks of overhaul and extensive repairs that lasted approximately six weeks.
On October 29, 1942 flown to 14 Mile Drome near Port Moresby one of nine B-26s on stand by for combat operations. Unofficially, known as "Ole' 93" for the last two digits of the serial number. The left side of the nose had the nose art of the 33rd squadron motif.
On November 2, 1942 took off from 14 Mile Drome near Port Moresby piloted by 1st Lt. Edward G. Gammon, co-pilot Sgt Henry Douglas Dargie (RAAF) as one of ten B-26s on a search mission for a Japanese convoy. After searching for four hours, they failed to find the vessels and returned to base. On the base leg to land at 14 Mile Drome, the right engine ran out of fuel and the left engine ran out of fuel on the final approach. With the runway obstructed by other B-26s, Gammon raised his landing gear and unsuccessfully tried to jettison his bomb load but managed to make a wheels up landing. Gammon was knocked unconscious and co-pilot Sgt Dargie sustained back injures with the rest of the crew sustaining minor injuries. In only six months of service, this B-26 flew twelve combat missions including six bombing missions.
This B-26 was stripped of usable parts then abandoned at 14 Mile Drome (Schwimmer). Afterwards, parts of the bomber remained near the runway including the left wing and left engine nacelle and tail section with the stabalizers removed until at least April 13, 1943. Ultimate fate unknown likely scrapped or otherwise disappeared.
Keith Hopper adds:
"40-1493 crashed Laloki due fuel exhaustion, Nov 2, 1942. I believe this is the B-26, in the background, of the photo of Ken Sparks examining wing damage to P-38F 42-12652. Also, I believe the photo of the wing of this aircraft with Alex Guerry sunbathing."
Newell passed away March 4, 1988 at age 66. He is buried at Yankee Springs Cemetery in Hastings, MI.
Dargie passed away on July 1, 2001 at age 84 or 85. He is buried at Karrakatta Cemetery and Crematorium in Karrakatta, WA at Lance Howard Memorial Gardens-Wall 23-0033.
Bauman passed away on March 5, 2008 at age 88. He is buried at Southlawn Cemetery in South Bend, IN at Section M Lot 44-4.
NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - Edward G. Gammon, Jr.
WW2 Nominal Roll - Henry Douglas Dargie, O51840
NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - Robert B. Linsley
NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - Michael J. Bauman, Jr.
NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - Hubert Newell
USAF Serial Number Search Results - B-26 Marauder 40-1493
"1493 (22nd BG) crashed due to fuel exhaustion at Loloki, PNG Nov 2, 1942."
FindAGrave - Henry Douglas Dargie (grave)
FindAGrave - Michael J. Bauman, Jr. (grave photos)
FindAGrave - Hubert Newell Jr (grave photos)
Revenge of the Red Raiders (2006) pages 109 (June 16, 1942 mission), 129-131 (August 17, 1942 air raid and damage), 132 (photo tail damage August 17, 1942), 149-150 (photo November 2, 1943 crash), 303 (artwork profile #13), 500 (33rd BS - 40-1493), 551-552 (description profile #13), 617 (index)
Thanks to Keith Hopper for additional information
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