|Pilot 2nd Lt. Henry R. Peebles, O-832873 (MIA / KIA) SC
MIA May 10, 1945 at 9:35am
Built by North American in Inglewood, California. Constructors Number 122-31183. Delivered to the U. S. Army. Disassembled and shipped overseas to the Central Pacific and reassembled.
Assigned to the 7th Air Force, 21st Fighter Group, 46th Fighter Squadron. No known nickname or nose art. When lost, engine V-1650-7 serial number V-328757. Weapon serial numbers noted in Missing Air Crew Report 14407 (MACR 14407).
On May 10, 1945 took off from Motoyama No. 1 (Chidori, Central Field) on Iwo Jima, flying as "Red 4" on a dive bombing mission against Chi Chi Jima.
Visibility was 50% cloud cover with visibility 15 miles.
Diving down through an overcast from 10,000' this P-51 was never seen again. A big explosion was seen east of the target impacting a bluff above the sea. This was assumed to be a bomb, but could have been this aircraft crashing on land or the sea. When this aircraft failed to return, this aircraft was declared Missing In Action (MIA).
Afterwards, "Josephine flight" of other P-51s orbited the island at 2,000' searching for any sign of the crash, and across the island at 1,000' and 7,000'. Also, "Dumbo 8" (B-17H Flying Fortress) searched the island and found nothing.
Peebles was officially declared dead on May 11, 1946 and is memorialized on the tablets of the missing at Honolulu Cemetery (Punchbowl) on court 7.
Missing Air Crew Report 14407 (MACR 14407) created May 10, 1945
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) Henry R. Peebles
2Lt Henry R Peebles (aircraft photo, tablets of the missing photo)
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January 5, 2018