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  SB2C-1 Helldiver Bureau Number 01169  
USS Yorktown (CV-10)

Pilot  Ensign Owen M. Hintz, O-290489, USNR (MIA / KIA) IA
Gunner  AR2C Lloyd R. Woellhof, 6286511 (POW, executed August 5, 1944) KS

Crashed  July 4, 1944

Aircraft History
Built by Curtiss. Delivered to the U. S. Navy (USN) as SB2C-1 Helldiver Bureau Number 01169.

Wartime History
Assigned to USS Yorktown(CV-10) to Bombing Squadron 1 (VB-1). No known nose art or nickname.

Mission History
On July 4, 1944 took off from USS Yorktown CV-10 piloted by Ensign Owen M. Hintz roughly sixty-six miles off Chi Chi Jima on a dive bombing mission against Chi Chi Jima Harbor. Over the target, hit by anti-aircraft fire and crashed. Woellhof bailed out and survived.

Fates of the Crew
Pilot Hintz died in the crash and remains listed as Missing In Action (MIA).

Woellhof was captured by the Japanese and became a prisoner of war (POW) on Chi Chi Jima until General Yoshio Tachibana ordered him to be killed. On August 6, 1944 Woellhof was taken to a rifle range and tied to a tree. Under orders from Lt. Col. Kikuji Ito, Japanese Army soldiers used him for bayonet practice while he was still alive. Afterwards, Ito personally beheaded Woellhof and his body was buried. On August 16, 1945 the Japanese exhumed Woellhof's body, cremated his remains and disposed of the ashes to remove the evidence of his demise.

Hintz was officially declared dead on February 4, 1946. He earned the Air Medal and Purple Heart, posthumously (unclear if awarded). Hintz is memorialized at National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (Punchbowl) on the courts of the missing, court 3. He also has a memorial marker at Woodlawn Cemetery in Oelwein, IA at block 5, lot 079.

Woellhof was officially declared dead on August 5, 1944. He earned the Purple Heart, posthumously. Woellhof is memorialized at National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (Punchbowl) on the courts of the missing, court 2. He also has a memorial marker at Greenwood Cemetery in Clay Center, KA at the cenotaph.

Navy Serial Number Search Results - SB2C-1C Helldiver 01169
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Owen M. Hintz
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Lloyd R. Woellhof
FindAGrave - Owen Marsten Hintz (memorial marker)
FindAGrave - Lloyd Richard Woellhof (photo)
FindAGrave - SMN Lloyd Richard "Dick" Woellhof (photo, courts of the missing)
FindAGrave - Lloyd Richard "Dick" Woellhof (memorial marker, photo)
Flyboys (2004) by James Bradley tells the story of this aircrew

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Last Updated
June 29, 2019


Tech Info

1 Missing
1 Prisoner

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