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  B-29-50-BW "Country Gentleman" Serial Number 42-24793  
USAAF
20th AF
505th BG
482nd BS

Aircraft Commander  1st Lt. Edward T. Kelby, O-826194 (rescued) Tuscaloosa, AL
Co-Pilot  1st Lt. Louis J. Koutnik, O-778145 (rescued) Nampa, ID
Navigator  1st Lt. Philip B. Peterson, O-698338 (rescued) Galena, IL
Bombardier  1st Lt. Frederick A. Dimit, O-773312 (rescued) Bartlesville, OK
Radio  SSgt Bernard G. Marich, 16008934 (rescued) Chicago, IL
Engineer  MSgt John E. Rhodes, 16041107 (MIA / KIA) Altamont, IL
Radar  SSgt Walter K. Eisele, 33874614 (rescued) Columbia, PA
Central Fire Control  SSgt Alfred W. Chin, 19188106 (MIA / KIA) San Francisco, CA
Right Waist Gunner  Sgt Paul W. Deutsch, 12017948 (MIA / KIA) New York, NY
Left Waist Gunner  Sgt William H. Davis, 32185535 (MIA / KIA) Elizabeth, NJ
Tail Gunner  Sgt Joseph A. Cerone, 42060991 (MIA / KIA)
New York, NY
MIA  May 14, 1945 at 16:00
MACR 14429

Aircraft History
Built by Boeing at Wichita, Kansas. Assigned to the 20th Air Force, 499th Bombardment Group, 878th Bombardment Squadron. Nicknamed "Country Gentleman". When lost engines R-3350-23-A serial numbers DW203786, DW202101, 43-149757, DW203229. Weapon serial numbers noted in MACR.

Mission History
Mission 174. One of 472 B-29s that took off from Tinian on an incendiary bombing mission against the urban area north of Nagoya. Due to lack of fuel, observed to ditch off Iwo Jima. The ditching was observed by another B-29 that circled and saw crew taking to life rafts and reported it to a nearby destroyer and made fixes on the position.

Fates of the Crew
Air & Sea Rescue was notified and a ship (PBY Catalina?) was sent to the crash site. Six were rescued.

Memorials
The missing and dead crew members are memorialized on the tablets of the missing at National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (Punchbowl).

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Last Updated
February 4, 2018

 

Tech Info
B-29
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