|Pilot Captain Lyle E. Anacker, O-662853 (MIA / KIA) WI
Co-Pilot 2nd Lt. David E. Koenig, O-668012 (MIA / KIA) OH
Bomb / Nav 2nd Lt. Jerome A. Migliacci, O-797043 (survived) Trenton, NJ
Engineer S/Sgt George M. Hardy, Jr., 20221040 (WIA, KIA / MIA) NJ
Radio S/Sgt Millard Svec, 36602086 (MIA / KIA) IL
Tail Gunner Sgt Robert T. Henderson, 13022773 (survived) Edri, PA
Crashed October 18, 1943
Built by North American as a model D-5. Delivered to the U. S. Army. Ferried overseas via Hawaii to Australia.
Assigned to the 345th Bombardment Group, 500th Bombardment Squadron during March 1943. Piloted by Naigle with crew chief Cheney. Nicknamed "SNAFU / MFUTU" with the nose art of a surprised Japanese caricature. Converted to a strafer variant (B-25D-1) at the 4th Air Depot at Garbutt Field near Townsville. When lost, engines R-2600-13 serial numbers 41-28603 and 41-28564.
On October 18, 1943 took off from Dobodura piloted by Anacker on a bombing mission against Rabaul without fighter escort. Over the target, this B-25 plus B-25D "Tondelayo" 41-30669 and B-25D "Sorry Satchul" 41-30056 attacked a 6,000 ton ship off Vunapope. Intercepted by enemy fighters on the return flight, gunner claimed five shot down before being damaged. On fire, this B-25 ditched off Cape Kwoi.
Fates of the Crew
Four of the crew survived, but only two made it ashore: Migliacci and Henderson. They sucessfully linked up with friendly natives and were taken to coastwatchers and lived with them for six months. On March 26, 1944 both were rescued by PT Boat.
The four missing members of the crew were officially declared dead the day of the mission. All are memorialized on the tabelts of the missing at Manila American Cemetery.
E&E Report No. 43 - Lt. Migliacci and SSgt Henderson March 28, 1944 pages 1 - 7
PNG Museum Aircraft Status Card - B-25D Mitchell 41-30054
Warpath Across The Pacific pages 49, 70-71, 73-74, 366, 391
Are you a relative or associated with any person mentioned?
Do you have photos or additional information to add?
January 5, 2018