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  P-39N-5-BE Airacobra Serial Number 42-190??  
USAAF
13th AF
18th FG
12th FS

PacificWrecks.com
USAAF c1942
Pilot  2nd Lt. Jack B. Eddy, O-739261 (MIA / KIA) Stambaugh, MI
Crashed  August 18, 1943
MACR  540

Aircraft History
Built by Bell in Buffalo, New York. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as P-39N-5-BE Airacobra serial number unknown, possibly 42-190?? (last two digits unclear could be 32, 34, 92, 02). Disassembled and shipped overseas to the South Pacific (SOPAC) and reassembled.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 13th Air Force (13th AF), 18th Fighter Group (18th FG), 12th Fighter Squadron (12th FS). No known nose art or nickname. When lost, engine serial number 42-97462. Armed with four .30 caliber machine guns, two .50 caliber machine guns and 37mm cannon maker and serial numbers unknown.

Mission History
On August 18, 1943 took off from Segi Airfield on New Georgia piloted by 2nd Lt. Jack B. Eddy on a patrol mission bound for Vella Lavella. The weather was ceiling and visibility unlimited. This aircraft was last seen at 8:00am roughly ten miles off the southeast of Vella Lavella at the start of air combat with enemy fighters. When this aircraft failed to return it was officially listed as Missing In Action (MIA).

Missing Air Crew Report 540 (MACR 540) statement by Captain Theron J. Graves, page 6:
"1. Captain Theron J. Graves, 12th Fight Squadron, Reported on the 18th August, 1943 approximately 0755. Our flight of three P-39's were on patrol over Vella La Vella when 'bogies' were called in by Cracker Sage [sp?]. I immediately saw the planes and dropped my belly tank. I looked back and checked on my flight as to belly tanks and Lt. Eddy was straggling about twice the distance he should have been We started climbing and the rate of climb was so fast that I only checked on my element leader who was in perfect formation during the entire contact. I didn't really miss Lt. Eddy until I had started into my dive. I haven't any idea what happened to him, because if he had been anywhere close to our formation he would have been OK. After making my dive I made a steep chandelle and back towards the engagement and there were no planes in sight.
2. An F4U pilot (Marine stationed at Munda at the time) said he saw a parachute floating down (alt. about 2 or 3,000 feet) approximately the same place contact was made."

Memorials
Eddy was officially declared dead the day of the mission. He earned the Air Medal and Purple Heart, posthumously. Eddy is memorialized at Manila American Cemetery on the tablets of the missing. He also has a memorial marker at

References
Note, the serial number of this aircraft is difficult to read in the MACR 540. This aircraft was P-39N-5-BE Airacobra serial number 42-190, last two digits unclear, could be: 42-19002, 42-19032, 42-19034, 42-19092.
NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - Jack B. Eddy
USAF Serial Number Search Results - P-39N-5-BE Airacobra 42-19002
"19002 (12th FS, 18th FG) lost Aug 18, 1943, Solomon Islands. MACR 540"
Missing Air Crew Report 540 (MACR 540) created August 25, 1943
Diary of Myron Pedersen, 339th Fighter Squadron (339th FS) September 2, 1943 via Mike Pedersen (son)
"Sept 2 [1943] - Capt Stratton [MIA August 30, 1943], Eddy [MIA August 18, 1943], and Joe Hill [MIA August 25, 1943] - all shot down over Kahili in P-39's. Stratton was best 39 pilot I have yet seen fly."
Iron River Reporter "Lt. Eddy Gets Posthumous Air Award" August 29, 1944
"Stambaugh-Among six Michigan officers and enlisted men missing in action or killed with the army air forces during the present war whose next of kin have been presented awards for outstanding records made by their men in the line of duty is 2nd Lt. Jack B. Eddy, son of Mr. and Mrs. William H. Eddy of this city. Awards were presented Saturday, August 26 at a special ceremony at Selfridge Field, Mich. William H. Eddy, father of Lt. Eddy, attended the ceremony, held at 2 p.m. in front of base headquarters, and received the posthumous award of the Air Medal for “meritorious achievement while participating in eight flights over the Solomon Islands from 6 to 18 August 1943.” The complete citation read: “Pursuant to General Orders, Headquarters, United States Army Forces in the South Pacific Area, 1944, the Air Medal was awarded to 2nd Lt. Jack B. Eddy for meritorious achievement while participating in eight aerial flights over the Solomon Islands from 6 to 18 August 1943. Lieutenant Eddy was lost while on a patrol mission near …. His service as a fighter pilot was marked by a high degree of courage and skill in combat flying. “Lt. Eddy having made the supreme sacrifice in defense of his country, presentation of the Air Medal is made to his father, Mr. William H. Eddy, Stambaugh, Michigan."
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Jack B. Eddy
FindAGrave - 2Lt Jack B Eddy (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - 2LT Jack B. Eddy (photo, memorial marker photo, obituary)

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Last Updated
March 20, 2020

 

Tech Info
P-39

MIA
MIA
1 Missing
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