|Pilot 1st Lt. Dean E. Jacobson, O-677043 (MIA / KIA) SD
Crashed March 30, 1944
Built by Lockheed Aircraft Corporation (LAC) in Burbank, California. Delivered to the U.S. Army. Disassembled and shipped overseas and reassembled.
Assigned to the 5th Air Force, 475th Fighter Group, 431st Fighter Squadron. Assigned to Captain Franklin H. Monk.
Nicknamed "Petty Pretty" by Monk with the nose art of a Varga girl. Nose number 118 painted in white on the nose with vertical stabilizers and spinners painted yellow. Right engine cowl "Doris" and the left engine cowl "Florence".
Later, transfered to the 8th Fighter Group, 35th Fighter Squadron. When lost, engines V-1710-91 serial number 42-93648 and V-1710-89 serial number 42-30722. Weapon serial numbers listed in MACR.
Took off from Nadzab No. 4 Airfield (Newton Field) APO 713, Unit #1 at 06:23 on a cross country mission bound for Milne Bay. Weather was 3/10 low overcast at 5,000' at 6:00am and 3/10 low overcast at 300' at 07:00. Last seen by Sgt Solomon Goldstein, 301st Airdrome Squadron who was on duty in the control tower, who observed this P-38 take off, gain altitude and proceed on course.
After this aircraft was reported missing, several search missions were flown, all with nil results. On April 4, 1944 Australian Aircraft Warning Wireless was requested to have their spotters at Sialum, Kulungtufu, Mape River and Finschafen advised, but no sightings were reported.
On April 5, 1944 two PBY Catalinas from USS Half Moon (AVP-26) searched from Lae to Milne Bay, without result. The next day, searching was impossible due to bad weather. On April 7, 1944 OA-10 Catalina's searched south of the Alexander Range and along the coast towards Milne Bay without result.
Finally, on April 9, 1944 a U.S. Army L-4 Cub searched a 100 mile radius while ten other Cubs from Goodenough also searched, without result as there was a weather front from Kokoda to Milne Bay.
Jacobson was officially declared dead on January 23, 1946. He is memorialized on the tablets of the missing at Manila American Cemetery.
PNG Museum Aircraft Status Card - P-38H Lightning 42-66746
35th Fighter Squadron History, Frame 601
475th Fighter Group - Aircraft Listing
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September 26, 2018