5th BG c1944
|Pilot 2nd Lt. Wills Finks, O-696349 (survived)
Co-Pilot 2nd Lt. Jack S. Scott, O-765328 (survived)
Navigator Harold A. Haugrud, O-707913 (MIA / KIA) Pelican Rapids, MN
Bombardier 2nd Lt. Carl P. Swadley, O-752965 (MIA / KIA) TX
Engineer SSgt Mangus R. Schuldt, 39558691 (survived)
Asst Engineer Sgt Charles Tashjian, 31258464 (survived)
Radio SSgt Anthony A. Marisi, 32797423 (survived)
Asst Radio Sgt Joe P. Carlisle, 20816281 (survived)
Gunner Cpl James H. Cook, 38511816 (survived)
Gunner Cpl Forest W. Harris, 37502843 (MIA / KIA) KS
Photographer Sgt Ralph R. Kincaid, 37476544 (MIA / KIA) NE
Crashed June 17, 1944 at 1600
Built by Consolidated at San Diego. Delivered to the U. S. Army. Ferried overseas via Hawaii to the Pacific.
Assigned to the 13th Air Force, 5th Bombardment Group, 31st Bombardment Squadron. Nicknamed "Dropsnoot". When lost, engines R-1830-43 serial numbers 42-41246, 41-. Weapon serial numbers unavailable.
Took off from Momote Airfield in the first element, no. 3 position on a bombing mission against Eten Island inside Truk Lagoon. At 10:40am, twenty-five minutes from the target, Finks reported that he was returning to base due to a fuel shortage. Finks called for a bearing at 1530 and was given a course of 95 degrees, but was not heard from again. Last seen in the Hermit Island (north of New Guinea), roughly 250km northeast of the mouth of the Sepik River.
Fates of the Crew
At approximately 16;00, the entire crew bailed out in the span of four minutes over Mingo Island, when the engines began to cut out out of fuel. All parachutes opened and they landed in an area approximately two miles wide into rough seas with whitecaps roughly six miles south-east of Jalun Island.
Several of the crew could not swim and likely drown at sea: Haugrud,
Swadley, Harris and Kincaid.
The rest of the crew aided each other and reached Hermet Island. Three days later, they located friendly natives who provide them food and shelter. Together, the crew searched the outer atoll area for the four missing men using a native canoe.
Fourteen days after bailing out, (other sources state 9 days later) the crew was rescued by a PBY Catalina, that sighted them the day before. Afterwards, the Catalina searched the entire atoll for the missing crew members, without success, then returned to base in the Admiralties. The surviving crew were debriefed and returned to duty.
The four missing crew members were officially declared dead the day of the mission. Each is memorialized on the tablets of the missing at Manila American Cemetery.
Haugrud has a memorial marker at Pelican Rapids Veteran's Memorial in Pelican Rapids, Michigan. Swadley has a memorial marker at Southland Cemetery in Grand Prairie, Texas.
PNG Museum Aircraft Status Card - B-24D Liberator 42-41246
FIndAGrave - Harold A Haugrud (grave photo)
FindAGrave - Carl Page Swadley (grave photo)
FindAGrave - Ralph Roland Kincaid
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April 19, 2014