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  B-24D-20-CO "Temptation" Serial Number 41-24129  
USAAF
14th AF
308th BG
373rd BS

Click For Enlargement
Click For Enlargement
373rd BS c1943

Pilot  1st Lt. William A. Rutledge, O-373011 (KIA, BR) Sharpsburg, IA
Co-Pilot  2nd Lt. Don Boyd Smith, O-793188 (POW, survived)
Navigator  2nd Lt. Robert F. Powers (POW, survived) OK
Bombardier  2nd Lt. Richard G. Warren, O-728525 (MIA / KIA) NJ
Engineer  S/Sgt Robert L. Corbin, 35112852 (MIA / KIA) IN
Radio  Sgt Donald M. Slemmons, 36331069 (KIA, BR)
Asst Radio  S/Sgt Arvid J. Stomberg, 36324975 (MIA / KIA) IL
Asst Engineer  S/Sgt Wilbur H. Willis, 6392822 (MIA / KIA) NC
Tail Gunner  S/Sgt Jay N. Hawe (POW, survived)
Observer  2nd Lt. Cheng C. Wang, Chinese Air Force (fate unknown)

Crashed  September 15, 1943
MACR  12001

Aircraft History
Built by Consolidated at San Diego. Constructor Number 1864. Delivered to the U. S. Army.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 14th Air Force, 308th Bombardment Group, 373rd Bombardment Squadron. Nicknamed "Temptation" with the nose art of a reclining nude woman with her hands behind her hair and one leg bent. Below the bombardier nose window was "Warren" indicating the position of 2nd Lt. Richard G. Warren.

When lost, engines R-1830-43 serial numbers a) 42-41851 b) 42-42218 c) 42-43960 and d) 42-43013. Weapon serial numbers not noted in Missing Air Crew Report 12001.

Mission History
On September 15, 1943 one of five B-24s that took off from Yangkai Airfield at 1:05pm on a bombing mission against a cement plant north of Haiphong near Hanoi. Aboard was a Chinese Air Force (CAF) observer, 2nd Lt. Cheng C. Wang

While on the bomb run at 12,000', the bombers were intercepted by 50+ fighters.

This bomber was hit over the target by fighters, causing an engine to be feathered an engine and flew along with the formation for a few minutes and then turned north. Most of the crew bailed out and were strafed in their parachutes, and some were never seen again.

Also lost were B-24D "Mohawk" 41-24129 and B-24D "Daisy Mae" 41-24218.

Fates of the Crew
Pilot Rutledge bailed out, but is believed to have been killed in his parachute by strafing fighters, his body was found by the Japanese shot in the head. Stomberg bailed out and broke his ankle on landing, picked up by the French and taken to the hospital at Hanoi, along with Quarant and Manella crew members from B-24D "Mohawk" 41-24129.

Powers bailed out and landed near Slemmons, who died of internal injuries from an improperly fitted parachute and died of his wounded at 22:00. Warren was wounded in the leg and bailed out and was slightly wounded, but was not seen again. Corbin was wounded and unconscious, but alive. Smith bailed out and was picked up by the French. Smith pulled his chute and dropped him out the bomb bay, this was the last time he was seen. Eillis parachuted out apparently unhurt, but was never seen again.

The surviving crew were held as POWs and Powers, Hawe and Smith were liberated at the end of the war from Malaya POW Camp Malay 6-104 and returned to the United States.

Memorials
The following crew members are listed on the tablets of the missing at Manila American Cemetery Stomberg and Warren. Stomberg was officially declared dead on May 14, 1946. Warren and Corbin were officially declared dead on January 12, 1946.

Arvid Stomberg was declared dead on May 14, 1946.
Willis is buried at Plot O Row 0 Grave 125 at National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (Punchbowl).
Rutledge was buried on August 26, 1949 at Lexington Cemetery in Bedford, Iowa.

References
Missing Air Crew Report 12001 (MACR 12001)
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Arvid Stomberg
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Richard G. Warren
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Robert L. Corbin
FindAGrave - Lieut William Allen Rutledge (photos, grave photo)
FindAGrave - SSgt Arvid Stomberg
NARA World War II Prisoners of War Data File - Don Boyd Smith
NARA World War II Prisoners of War Data File - Robert F. Powers
NARA World War II Prisoners of War Data File - Jay N. Hawe

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Last Updated
January 5, 2018

 

Tech Information
B-24


MIA
MIA / POW
3 Missing
3 Prisoners
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