|Pilot 1st Lt. Gordon J. Schmeisser, O-728029 (MIA / KIA) WI
Radio-Observer 2nd Lt. Theodore E. Kara, O-869592 (MIA / KIA) OH
Gunner Sgt Vernon A. Patterson, 38447259 (MIA / KIA) AR
Radio Sgt Isaac D. Leslie, 35260111 (MIA / KIA) OH
MIA August 5, 1944
Built by North American in Inglewood, California. Assigned to the U.S. Army. Ferried overseas to New Guinea.
Assigned to the 5th Air Force, 308th Bombardment Wing, 418th Night Fighter Squadron. No known nickname or nose art. When lost, engine R-2600-13 serial numbers 43-2309 and 43-23741.
On August 2, 3 and 4 this B-25 flew combat missions from Owi Airfield then was flown to Mokmer Drone on August 5, 1944. Next, at 7:10pm, took off from Mokmer Drone on Biak Island on a night intruder mission scheduled to arrive over Laha at 22:00. Other sources list the mission as a reconnaissance from Biak and Ambon. After take off, there was no radio contact or sightings of this bomber.
A second B-25 piloted by Lt. Harrington scheduled to take off afterwards aborted the mission due to bad weather over the target area and turned back 70 miles from the target and returned to base.
The next morning, Air-Sea Rescue was notified of the missing B-25. On August 7, two Catalinas: Daylight 12 and 12 searched the area of the mission but reported nil findings. Afterwards, two or three Catalinas searched several areas without results: McCluer Gulf, Ceram Sea, Seleman Bay and Geelvink Bay.
The entire crew was officially declared on February 14, 1946. All are memorialized on the tablets of missing Manila American Cemetery.
Missing Air Crew Report 8784 (MACR 8784)
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February 4, 2018