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  C-46D-10-CU Commando Serial Number 44-77767  
5th AF
403rd TCG
63rd TCS

Pilot  1st Lt. Dean W. Gordon, O-769423 (MIA / KIA, BR) River Falls, WI
Co-Pilot  2nd Lt. Harvey E. Meitner, O-770715 (MIA / KIA, BR) Waterloo, WI
Co-Pilot  F/O Leslie H. Latham, T-7620 (MIA / KIA, BR) Stockton, CA
Navigator  2nd Lt. Edward L. Seebon, O-2078704 (MIA / KIA) Fostoria, OH
Crew Chief  SSgt Robert E. Beasley, 37137706 (MIA / KIA) St. Louis, MS
Radio  Sgt Casimir J. Kaplan, 32460015 (MIA / KIA) Bayonne, NJ
Mail Clerk  Cpl Don C. Tang, 39862104 (MIA / KIA) Glendale, AZ
Passenger  TSgt Paul J. Tyler (MIA / KIA) Salem, OR

Crashed  July 17, 1945
MACR  14767

Aircraft History
Built by Curtiss-Wright. When lost, engines R2800-75 serial numbers FF-084624 and FF-087135. No known nickname or nose art.

Mission History
Took off from Palawan Airfield (APO 705) on a transportation and mail run transporting cargo to Nichols Field (APO 75). At take off, weather conditions were diminishing to 1,000' ceiling a APO 75 with heavy rain along the route. Wind was 20 knots requiring solid instrument flying above 1,000'. One hour and 20 minutes after takeoff a message was received at Nichols Field giving the ETA. This aircraft failed to arrive and was listed as Missing In Action (MIA).

At 6:00pm, Air Sea Rescue Service (ASRS) began searching for this aircraft, searching the entire path of the mission. On July 19 seven aircraft were used to search. On July 20 three aircraft were used. On June 21, this aircraft was discovered on the "northeast side of a peak on the northwestern tip of Mindoro Island, where it had crashed".

Later, this crash site was located and remains recovered.

The entire crew was officially declared dead the day of the mission. After the recovery of remains, the crew were transported to the United States for permanent burial.

Three of the crew Gordon, Meitner and Latham are buried in a group burial at Fort McPherson Cemetery at plot R, 0, 3. The others are buried nearby.

John "Mighty" Meitner (son of Harvey E. Meitner)
"I am now decided to make an effort to get a Purple Heart awarded for my father 1 Lt. Harvey E. Meitner. Don't know if this will ever help you with anything, but..... Now I must report to you that the Army (in June of 1949) did recover the remains of the six men in that plane, transport them to the US, and they are buried in two "communal" graves at Ft. McPherson."

FindAGrave - Dean W Gordon (grave photo)
FindAGrave - Harvey E Meitner (photo, grave photo)
FindAGrave - Leslie H Latham (grave photo)

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Last Updated
August 10, 2019


Tech InfoC-46

7 Missing
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