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|Pilot 2nd Lt. William K. Hootman, O-779477 (MIA / KIA) Glasford, IL
MIA June 26, 1945
Built by Lockheed Aircraft Corporation (LAC) in Burbank. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as P-38 Lightning model and serial number unknown. Disassembled and shipped overseas and reassembled.
Assigned to the 13th Air Force (13th AF), 347th Fighter Group (347th FG), 68th Fighter Squadron (68th FS). No known nose art or nickname.
On June 26, 1945 took off from Puerto Princesa Airfield piloted by 2nd Lt. William K. Hootman on a mission over Balikpapan on southeast Borneo. Over the target, this P-38 crashed into a ridge between targets area no. 15 and no. 20 according to mission report. When this aircraft failed to return it was officially listed as Missing In Action (MIA).
Postwar, the wreckage was intact on the ridge but it was never investigated.
Hootman was officially declared dead the day of the mission. He earned the Air Medal and Purple Heart, posthumously. American Campaign Medal, Pacific Campaign Medal with Two Battle Stars, Army Good Conduct Medal, WWII Victory Medal. He is memorialized at Manila American Cemetery on the tablets of the missing. He also has a memorial marker at Kingston Mines Cemetery in Glasford, IL.
Mark Hurley (nephew)
"I want to find his remains to bring home."
NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - William K. Hootman
NARA Records of World War II Prisoners of War does not list William K. Hootman as an official Prisoner Of War (POW) of the Japanese but this list is not always accurate for individuals captured in forward areas.
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - William K. Hootman
FindAGrave - 2Lt William K “Bill” Hootman (photo, tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - William K. Hootman (photo, memorial marker)
Thanks to Mark Hurley for additional information
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