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  B-29-75-BW Superfortress Serial Number 44-70017  
USAAF
20th AF
19th BG
28th BS

Pilot  1st Lt Kenneth W. Clewett, O-730011 (KIA, BR)
Co-Pilot  2nd Lt Charles G. Agne, T-5940 (KIA, BR)
Navigator  2nd Lt Vernon W. Lilley, O-2068790 (KIA, BR)
Bombardier  2nd Lt Elton V. Kime, O-761371 (POW, executed July 12, 1945, BR)
Engineer  Sgt Jack E. Russell, 17033331 (KIA, BR) IA
Radar  2nd Lt Keith H. Carrier, O-2073049 (POW, executed July 12, 1945, BR)
Radio  Pvt Howard W. Bowker, 11018716 (KIA, BR)
Central Firearms Control  Sgt Arthur V. Keller, 35147127 (KIA, BR)
Gunner  Sgt George R. Graziadei, Jr., 12240110 (POW, executed July 12, 1945, BR)
Gunner  Sgt Joseph R. Shelton, 38518313 (POW, executed July 12, 1945, BR)
Gunner  Sgt John E. Gallo, 12228292 (KIA, BR)
Crashed  May 14, 1945
MACR  14428

Aircraft History
Built by Boeing. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as B-29-75-BW Superfortress serial number 44-70017. Ferried overseas to North Field on Guam Island.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 20th Air Force (20th AF), 19th Bombardment Group (19th BG), 28th Bombardment Squadron (28th BS). No known nickname or nose art. When lost, engines R-3350-23A serial numbers DW208212, DW208736, DW208698, DW208187. Armed with .50 caliber machine guns makers unknown serial numbers 1971958, 1971936, 1972225, 1971853, 1972166, 1099699, 73413, 1972274, 1971673, 1971638, 1971594, 1971723.

Mission History
On May 14, 1945 took off from North Field on Guam Island piloted by 1st Lt Kenneth W. Clewett armed with incendiary bombs (Mission 174) on a bombing mission against the urban area north of Nagoya in Japan. The formation included a total of 472 B-29 Superfortress bombers.

Over the target, hit by anti-aircraft fire causing a fire in the no. 2 engine and cause this bomber to fall off on the left wing and descend 3,000' in a large arc, then straightened out for a few seconds before it disinterested into two large flaming pieces. Two parachutes were seen to open before last seen in in the smoke cloud over Nagoya. When this bomber failed to return it was officially listed as Missing In Action (MIA). In total, eleven bombers were lost including this bomber.

Fates of the Crew
In fact, seven of the crew were killed in the crash: Clewett, Agne, Lilley, Russell, Bowker, Keller, Gallo. The body of one crew member fell in front of Nishi-ku Kodama-cho Kodama Fire Department. Another fell in a public school yard. Two other bodies were also found and buried at a local temple.

Four of the crew were captured and became Prisoners Of War (POW): Kime, Carrier, Granziadel, and Shelton. All four were moved to Tokai Army Headquarters for interrogation. Afterwards, put on trial in a military court and sentenced to death due to undiscriminating bombing. On July 12, 1945 all four were beheaded at Obatagahara rifle range in Nagoya.

Recovery of Remains
Postwar, the remains of the crew were recovered and transported to the United States for permanent burial. Only Russell and Keller were individually identified. The remains of the rest of the crew were buried in a group burial.

Memorials
Seven of the crew were killed in the crash: Clewett, Agne, Lilley, Russell, Bowker, Keller, Gallo.

Clewett, Agne, Lilley, Bowker and Gallo are buried in a group burial at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery at section 82, site 166.

Clewett also has a memorial marker at Paradise Cemetery in Paradise, CA.

Russell was buried at Plot Q Row 0 Grave 811 at Honolulu Cemetery (Punchbowl).

Keller is buried at Springdale Cemetery in Madison, IN at west ½, lot 494, Spring Grove (Veterans Monument).

On November 21, 1949 four crew executed Kime, Carrier, Granziadel, and Shelton were buried in a group burial at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery at section 82, site 1E.

References
USAF Serial Number Search Results - B-29-75-BW Superfortress 44-70017
"70017 (19th BG, 28th BS) crashed after disintegrated in midair over Nagoya, Japan May 14, 1945 while on mission to Nagoya MACR 14428. All 11 crew killed."
Missing Air Crew Report 14428 (MACR 14428) created May 16, 1945
FindAGrave - 1LT Kenneth Walter Clewett (photo, Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery group burial)
FindAGrave - 1LT Kenneth Walter Clewett (memorial marker)
FindAGrave - Charles Gordon Agne (Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery group burial photo)
FindAGrave - Charles Gordon “Gordon” Agne (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - 2LT Vernon Wesley Lilley (photo, group burial photo)
FindAGrave - 2LT Elton Vance Kime (group burial photo)
FindAGrave - SSGT Jack E Russell (grave photo)
FindAGrave - 2LT Keith H Carrier (group burial photo)
FindAGrave - PFC Howard W Bowker (group burial photo)
FindAGrave - Sgt Arthur V. Keller (grave photo)
FindAGrave - CPL George R Graziadei, Jr (group burial photo)
FindAGrave - SGT Joseph R Shelton (group burial photo, interment card)
FindAGrave - SGT John E Gallo (group burial photo)

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Last Updated
July 11, 2020

 

Tech Info
B-29
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