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  B-29-45-BW Superfortress Serial Number 42-24767  
20th AF
498th BG
873rd BS

Pilot  1st Lt. William F. Beyhan, O-682772 (MIA / KIA) NM
Co-Pilot  2nd Lt. Norman F. Holdridge, O-827650 (MIA / KIA) MA
Navigator  2nd Lt. Charles N. Jones, O-702188 (MIA / KIA) CA
Bombardier  2nd Lt. Charles E. Parlette, O-698473 (MIA / KIA) OH
Engineer  1st Lt. Charley A. Bride, O-864471 (MIA / KIA) CA
Radio  Sgt Thomas A. Waldron, 31090119 (MIA / KIA) MA
CFC Gunner
 SSgt Frank E. Murphy Jr., 13108096 (MIA / KIA) PA
Left Gunner  SSgt Roy J. Crawford, 6687849 (MIA / KIA) PA
Right Gunner Sgt Stewart B. Johnson, 16123347 (MIA / KIA) IL
 Sgt Einar Nelson, 17154726 (MIA / KIA) ND
Tail Gunner  Stanley J. Woch, 6907073 (MIA / KIA) NY

Crashed  January 27, 1945
MACR  11621

Aircraft History
Built by Boeing. Constructor Number 4428. Assigned to the 20th Air Force, 498th Bombardment Group, 873rd Bombardment Squadron. No known nickname or nose art. When lost, engine and weapon serial numbers not noted in Missing Air Crew Report 11621 (MACR 11621).

Mission History
On January 27, 1945 took off from Isley Field on Saipan on a bombing mission against Nakajima Aircraft Factory in Musashino, a western suburb of Tokyo. Inbound to the target, the formation experienced poor weather, intense flak and fighters attacked the formation.

Over the target, this B-29 was likely rammed by a Ki-45 Nick twin engine fighter, likely Ki-45 Nick 4067 piloted by Kobayashi over Funabashi Chiba. Damaged, this B-29 ditched roughly 100 miles north of Iwo Jima. The entire crew was killed in the crash. When this B-29 failed to return, it was officially declared Missing In Action (MIA).

The entire crew was officially declared dead on January 28, 1946. The entire crew is memorialized on the courts of the missing at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (Punchbowl). Beyhan, Holdridge, Jones, Murphy, Crawford, Nelson and Parlette at court 7. Woch and Waldron at court 5.

Holdridge also has a memorial marker at Pine Hill Cemetery in Dover, NH at section 3, lot 1276.

Missing Air Crew Report 11621 (MACR 11621)
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - William F. Beyhan
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Norman F. Holdridge
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Charles N. Jones
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Charles E. Parlette
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Charley A. Bride
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Thomas A. Waldron
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Frank E. Murphy Jr.
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Roy J. Crawford
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Stewart B. Johnson
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Einar Nelson
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Stanley J. Woch
FindAGrave - 1Lt William F Beyhan (courts of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Lieut Norman F Holdridge (courts of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Norman F. Holdridge (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave -
FindAGrave -
FindAGrave -
FindAGrave -
FindAGrave - SSgt Stanley J Woch (tablets of the missing photo)
B-29 “Haley’s Comet” 42-24616 was not rammed by a Ki-45 Nick, but was shot by fighters over Target 357 and crashed at Shisui, Imba, on 27 January 1945 by Koji Takaki , February 9, 2011
Thanks to Koji Takaki for additional information

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Last Updated
February 4, 2018


Tech Info

11 Missing

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