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  B-26 "Sourpuss" Serial Number 40-1532  
USAAF
5th AF
22nd BG
33rd BS

Former Assignments
408th BS

Click For Enlargement
AWM July 27, 1942

Aircraft History
Built by Martin. Delivered to the U. S. Army as B-26 Marauder serial number 40-1532.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 5th Air Force, 22nd Bombardment Group, 408th Bombardment Squadron. Nicknamed "Sourpuss". Also known as "Old Sourpuss". Named by regular pilot Larson when his fiancée returned his ring with a "Dear John" letter declining marriage.

Later, assigned to the 33rd Bombardment Squadron.

On August 17, 1942 one of ten B-26 Marauders parked at 7 Mile Drome near Port Moresby fully fueled and armed with 500 pound bombs. On the ground, there was no advanced warning of a Japanese air raid against 7 Mile Drome by G4M1 Betty bombers from the 4th Kokutai and Misawa Kokutai escorted by A6M2 Zeros from the Tainan Kokutai.

Standing nearby was the regular crew including pilot Captain Larson, bombardier SSgt Al Catallo, engineer Sgt Stanley Lincoln plus Cpl Charles Cavill and George V. McMannamy. When the alert sounded, the crew started the engines and was taxing towards the runway before a Japanese bomb exploded off the right wing, riddling the nose with shrapnel, smashing the perspex glass and damaging the nose wheel.

Aboard, Larson was injured by shrapnel in his left elbow and right arm and was aided by Catallo who was in the co-pilot's seat and himself wounded by perspex glass. Also, Cavill was injured in his heel. The crew managed to escape and hail a jeep to the nearest hospital. Larson's elbow injury resulted in him being transfered to the United States for additional medical treatment and ended his flying career.

On October 10, 1942, this B-26 suffered tail damage on the ground when pushed off a taxiway. At Garbutt Field near Townsville during March 1943, the tail section from crashed B-26 "Kansas Comet / Bunagoon" 40-1403 was attached to the tail of this aircraft.

Operated from 7 Mile Drome (Jackson) near Port Moresby flying combat missions in New Guinea.

During January 1944 this B-26 was scrapped at Brisbane.

References
Some sources list this bomber's nickname as either "Old Sourpuss" or "Sourpus"
USAF Serial Number Search Results - B-26 Marauder 40-1532
Revenge of the Red Raiders page 129-132, 143 (photo), 496, 517 (photo)

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Last Updated
May 13, 2018

 

Tech Info
B-26
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