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  F4F-4 Wildcat Bureau Number 11789  
USMC
VMF-111

Pilot  1st Lt. David K. Allen (KIA, BR) Glen Elder, KS
Crashed  April 14, 1943


Aircraft History
Built by Grumman Corporation in Bethpage, New York as a model G-36 with manually operated folding wings. Delivered to the U. S. Navy (USN) as F4F-4 Wildcat bureau number 11789.

Wartime History
Assigned to the U. S. Marine Corps (USMC) to squadron VMF-111 "Devil Dogs". No known nickname or nose art.

Mission History
On April 14, 1943 took off Tafuna Airfield (Tutuila, Pago Pago Airport) on Tutuila Island (Tuituila) piloted by 1st Lt. David K. Allen on a routine flight. After take off this Wildcat crashed, killing the pilot on impact.

Recovery of Remains
After the crash, his body was recovered and his squadron mates were bearers at his funeral, including 1st Samuel B. Folsom. He was buried in a civilian cemetery on Tutuila Island. The grave was marked with the bent propeller from his crashed Wildcat. Postwar, his remains were exhumed and transported to the United States for permanent burial.

Memorials
Allen was officially declared dead the day of the mission. Allen was permanently buried at Glenwood Cemetery in Glen Elder, Kansas.

References
FindAGrave - David K Allen (grave photo)
Newspaper article "Hero of Air Battle Dies on Routine Job" June 10, 1943 states Allen was a veteran of the Guadalcanal campaign and was credited with destroying a Japanese seaplane.
Navy Serial Number Search Results F4F-F Wildcat 11789

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Last Updated
April 11, 2018

 

Tech Info
Wildcat

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