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  OA-10 Catalina Serial Number 44-34050  
Air Transport Command
Pacific Division
Pacific Wing
1551st AAFBU

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
MACR  14670

Aircraft History
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).

Wartime History
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.

Mission History
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:
"They were out on a navigation mission to test some new DME (distance measuring equipment) with members of other units when they went down."

Navy Serial Number Search Results - Canadian Vickers PBV-1A Catalina 68014
USAF Serial Number Search Results - OA-10A Catalina 44-34050
"34050 (MSN CV561) MIA 6/21/1945, SW Pacific"
Missing Air Crew Report 14670 (MACR 14670)
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Paul W. Drew
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Earnest J. Bauer
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Ralph E. Beirdneau
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Harry D. Paige, Jr.
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Paul C. Crouch
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Gordon A. Johnson
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Robert L. Flicker
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Milton M. Tittler
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) -
Ralph J. Greco
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) -
Robert P. Eisele
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) -
Clyde Allen Walker
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) -
Carl A. Spangler
FindAGrave -
1Lt Paul W Drew (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Paul W Drew (memorial marker - parent's grave)
FindAGrave - Paul Wesley Drew (memorial marker)
FindAGrave - Corp Earnest J Bauer (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Sgt Ralph E Beirdneau (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Corp Harry D Paige, Jr
FindAGrave - 1Lt Paul C Crouch (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave -
1Lt Gordon A Johnson (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - 2Lt Robert L Flicker (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - 2Lt Milton M Tittler
FindAGrave - 2Lt Ralph J Greco (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - SSgt Robert P Eisele
FindAGrave - Sgt Clyde A Walker (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Corp Carl A Spangler

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Last Updated
August 12, 2020


Tech Info

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