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  B-24J-170-CO Liberator Serial Number 44-40598  
USAAF
13th AF
307th BG
372nd BS

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307th BG c1944

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Justin Taylan Dec 11, 2005

Pilot  2nd Lt. Gerald D. Coleman, O-806220 (MIA / KIA) Idabel, OK
Co-Pilot  2nd Lt. John E., Jurica Jr., O-813010 (MIA / KIA) Freeland, PA
Navigator  2nd Lt. Martin B. Unger, O-814450 (MIA / KIA) New York, NY
Bombardier  2nd Lt. James F. Lind, O-754917 (MIA / KIA) Los Angeles, CA
Engineer  T/Sgt Robert P. Wagoner, 35283528 (MIA / KIA) Bison, KS
Radio  T/Sgt James R. Hurd, 13121851 (MIA / KIA) Martinsville, VA
Asst. Radio  T/Sgt John R. McCullough, 39293812 (MIA / KIA) Covina, CA
Gunner  T/Sgt Romeo Tetreault, 20113352 (MIA / KIA) New Bedford, MA
Gunner  T/Sgt Bill J. Williams, 17038239 (MIA / KIA) Grand Island, NE

MIA  June 25, 1944
MACR  10023

Aircraft History
Built by Consolidated at San Diego. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as B-24J-170-CO Liberator serial number 44-40598 with a natural aluminum finish. Ferried overseas via Hickam Field to the South Pacific.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 13th Air Force, 307th Bombardment Group, 372nd Bombardment Squadron. No known nose art or nickname. This B-24 was lost on its first combat mission.

Mission History
On June 25, 1944 took off from Mokerang Airfield on Los Negros Island on a bombing mission over Yap. Over the target, this B-24 was shot down by A6M Zeros and crashed approximately three to five miles off the southern tip of Yap. When this B-24 failed to return from the mission it was officially listed as Missing In Action (MIA).

Search
For the next four days, USS Albacore (SS-218) on "lifeguard" duty off Yap, and searched for the Coleman’s crew without success.

Memorials
The entire crew was officially declared dead the day of the mission. Each crew member earned the Purple Heart, posthumously. All are memorialized on the tablets of the missing at Manila American Cemetery.

Wagoner also has a memorial marker at Wauseon Union Cemetery in Wauseon, OH.

Relatives
Patrick Ranfranz (nephew of McCullough):
"My uncle, T/Sgt John R. McCullough, was the assistant radio operator on the Coleman B-24 Crew and declared missing and non-recoverable on 25 June 1944. The plane went down approximately three to five miles southeast of the southern tip of Yap. My wife and I traveled to Yap Island in October 2005 to search for my uncle's missing B-24 from the 307th BG. Although we did not find the bomber on this trip, we located numerous American crash sites and conducted a lot of interviews with Yapese elders. We plan to return to Yap next year to continue the search."

References
USAF Serial Number Search Results - B-24J-170-CO Liberator 44-40598
"40598 (307th BG) lost Jun 25, 1944. MACR 10023"
Missing Air Crew Report 10023 (MACR 10023) created June 27, 1944
USS Albacore, War Patrol Report No. 9
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Gerald D. Coleman

American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - John E., Jurica Jr.
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Martin B. Unger
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - James F. Lind
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Robert P. Wagoner
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - James R. Hurd
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - John R. McCullough
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Romeo Tetreault
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Bill J. Williams
FindAGrave - 2Lt Gerald D Coleman (photos, tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - 2Lt John E Jurica, Jr (tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - 2Lt Martin B Unger (photo, tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - 2Lt James F Lind (photos, tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - TSgt Robert P Wagoner (photo, tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - Robert P. Woagner (memorial marker)
FindAGrave - TSgt James R Hurd (photo, tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Sgt John R McCullough (photo, tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - SSgt Romeo Tetreault (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - SSgt Bill J Williams (tablets of the missing)
MissingAirCrew.com - The Coleman Crew Plane (B-24J)
Missing Air Crew Project, Yap Island Search Trip, October 2005
Thanks to Patrick Ranfranz / MissingAirCrew.com for additional information

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Last Updated
January 5, 2018

 

Tech Info
B-24

MIA
MIA
9 Missing

Map
Map
June 25, 1944

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