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Air Transport Command
|Pilot 1st Lt. Paul W. Drew, O-376182 1551st AAFBU (MIA / KIA) Sacramento, CA
Engineer Cpl Earnest J. Bauer, 32757555 1551st AAFBU (MIA / KIA) Paulsboro, NJ
Radio Sgt Ralph E. Beirdneau, 39554075 1551st AAFBU (MIA / KIA) Los Angles, CA
Radio Cpl Harry D. Paige, Jr., 11115773 1551st AAFBU (MIA / KIA) Quincy, MA
Passenger 1st Lt. Paul C. Crouch, O-869966 68th Airways and Communications SG (MIA / KIA) Barstow, TX
Passenger 1Lt Gordon A. Johnson, O-870244 68th Airways and Communications SG (MIA / KIA) Minneapolis, MN
Passenger 2nd Lt. Robert L. Flicker, O-872333 91st AAFBU (MIA / KIA) Kingston, NY
Passenger 2nd Lt. Milton M. Tittler, O-871854 91st AAFBU (MIA / KIA) New York, NY
Passenger 2nd Lt. Ralph J. Greco, O-871649 68th Airways and Communications SG (MIA / KIA) Brooklyn, NY
Passenger S/Sgt Robert P. Eisele, 15324588 91st AAFBU (MIA / KIA) Barberton, OH
Engineer Sgt Clyde Allen Walker, 39325795 1551st AAFBU (MIA / KIA) La Grande, OR
Passenger Cpl Carl A. Spangler, 13098504 68th Airways and Communications SG (MIA / KIA) Philadelphia, PA
MIA June 21, 1945 at 4:35am
Built by Canadian Vickers Limited in Montreal, Canada as the Model CL-1 a license built version of Consolidated Aircraft Corporation Model 28-5A. Constructors Number CV561. Delivered to the U. S. Navy (USN) as PBV-1A Catalina 68014. Assigned to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as OA-10A Catalina serial number 44-34050. Ferried overseas to the South West Pacific Area (SWPA).
Assigned to the Air Transport Command (ATC), Pacific Division, Pacific Wing. No known nickname or nickname. When lost, engines R-1830-92 serial numbers: CP 360275 and CP 360265.
On June 21, 1945 took off from Mokerang Airfield on Los Negros at 3:30am to conduct tests with distance measuring equipment for COMAIR Admiralties. Aboard were four crew (pilot, engineer and two radio operators) plus seven passengers (five AACS officers and two AACS enlisted men from the 68th Airways and Communications Service Group and 91st Army Air Force Base Unit and 1551st Army Air Force Base Unit). This aircraft was last reported position by radio was 110 miles south of Los Negros at roughly Lat 3 47' S Long 147 12' E.
When this PBY failed to return, a search mission for it was launched using five C-47s, two OA-10s and numerous fighters. No visible signs of wreckage nor any trace was found. The search was officially abandoned June 25, 1945 at midnight. Originally listed as missing in action; six months later declared KNB (killed No Body).
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.
Drew has a memorial marker at Conant Cemetery in Jaffrey, NH. Drew is also memorialized on his parent's grave at Buttzville Methodist Episcopal Cemetery in Buttzville, NJ.
Jean Paige Hamilton (sister) adds:
"Harry Paige was my brother. Several years ago I attempted to get copies of service records, etc., from National Military Personnel Records and was told that all personnel records were lost in fire in St. Louis. The crew photo I believe is his crew in the Pacific, but I have no way of knowing for sure. Do you know anyone in the photograph?"
Margie Schwartz adds:
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