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2 March 1945 Mission #249 Target: Magdeburg

The oil refining facilities in the north part of the city were scheduled for attack, if visual weather existed, or the marshalling yards in the city proper, if radar bombing was required. At 0315 and 0430 hours, (21) aircrews were briefed and all began take-off on schedule at 0700 hours. Two squadrons were put up - one to fly high right off of the 44th Bomb Group and the other High right on the 491st. Over the target, the Group bombers released with the 44th on the oil refinery with (36) percent of the weapons impacting within 2000 feet of the MPI. The other squadron with the 491st had to make a run on the marshalling yard by H2X with results not observed. The Group released a total of (198) 500# GPs on these target areas. Lieutenant Barnesí crew, leading the squadron flying with the 44th, hit the oil complex aiming point with pin-point accuracy. A tragic accident spoiled an otherwise perfect mission when one of the Groupís ships was accidentally shot down by one of the other formation B-24s during a test firing of the .50 calibers. The tragedy occurred about (10) miles southeast of Dummer Lake in northwest Germany, the favorite German Air Force fighter rendezvous point of earlier days. The ship was #302 flown by Lieutenant W. G. Blakeleyís crew and was last seen at 1151 hours, position 5238N-0845E, spiralling down with (2) chutes being observed. No enemy fighters were seen on the mission but flak was moderately heavy at times and fairly accurate. One B-24 came home with battle damage as the force landed back at base around 1330 hours. One ship additionally was not accounted for. It was learned later that 2/Lt Downs, in ship #346, had landed at Manston with left waist gunner S/Sgt Cinquina killed by flak.

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MISSING AIR CREW REPORT SECTION

Missing Aircrew Report: #12854
Aircraft: #42-51302 (No Nickname) "N" 22nd Mission

AIRCREW: BLAKELEY     *     SQUADRON: 576th

CREW POSITIONS AND STATUS:

P   2/LT  Blakeley, Willis G.    KIA
CP  2/LT  Schoelerman, Harold A. KlA
N   2/LT  Walker, Charles S.     KIA
NG  S/SGT Talley, Edgar R.       KIA
R/O S/SGT Spades, Richard J.     POW
EnG PFC   Amodeo, Frank A.       KIA
WG  S/SGT Flesey, Robert J.      POW
WG  S/SGT Law, John L.           POW
TG  S/SGT Rubenstein, Stanley J. POW
S-27S/SGT Halpern, Herbert M.    POW*
*German radio voice interpreter.

MISSION LOSS CIRCUMSTANCES: An after-mission report concerning the loss of this aircraft and crew was collaborated on by S/Sgts. Joseph G. Coffman and Robert E. Ruigh "... tracers were seen going into A/C 42-51302. The fire appeared in the cockpit and the plane peeled off seeming to be under control. Went down in a slow wide circle into the clouds trailing smoke. A total of five (5) chutes were seen." A very close evaluation of this loss subsequently pointed out the fact that this plane and crew had been subjected to a grave mistake in the Ďtest firingí of .50 caliber guns in one of the Groupís B24s by a "runaway" weapon which was not controlled before itís projectiles had struck the Blakeley crew aircraft in the forward compartments of the fuselage. This unintentional and tragic mishap occurred from the test firing of weapons from ship #42-29476. German Report #KU3773, Hqs Air Base Detmold, reported the crash site of the Blakeley ship as (9) kilometers northwest of Lucbbicke, northeast of Osnabruck in the Dummer Lake area at 1200 hours. This report and later supplements thereto cited (5) members found dead at the crash location, and (5) others taken prisoner in the area. 

INDIVIDUAL ACCOUNTS OF CREWMEN:  Sgt. Spades, the Radio Operator, rendered this Casualty Questionnaire report after repatriation from POW status: that Blakeley, Schoelerman, Amodeo (Pilot, CoPilot and Engineer respectively) were in the flight deck just before he left the ship, and they were not injured; and Navigator Walker and Nose Gunner Talley were in the nose compartment at that time, condition unknown. He indicated that according to the Germans later these men were found dead in their relative positions in the crashed plane. This crew member also reported in his account that Law, Halpern, Flesey, and Rubenstein bailed out of the waist hatch, while he exited through the bomb bay. He also noted that the Engineer, Pfc Amodeo, was last seen close to going into the bomb bay area and appeared ready to bail out. There were no other available facts by any others concerning the shipís or specific crew memberís final situations involved with this unfortunate happening. The MACR remarks on this emergency stated: "Hit by tracers from runaway tail guns of A/C 42-29476 which was flying lead of the High Right Element in the Squadron".

BURIAL RECORDS: German records indicate the deceased members were buried in the village cemetery at Oldendorf. U.S. National Overseas Cemetery records reflect the following re-interments: In the ARDENNES Cemetery near Liege; Blakeley, (Grave D-18-19), awarded an Air Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, and the Purple Heart posthumously; Schoelerman (Grave A-20-16), awarded an Air Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster; and Walker (Grave D-l8-18), also awarded an Air Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster. No record is indicated that the latter two members, Schoelerman and Walker, were ever awarded a Purple Heart, posthumously. No records exist in this MACR concerning the re-burials of Talley and Amodeo.

NEXT OF KIN DATA IN WWII: Blakeley (Wife, Juanita A., 723 SW Liberty Street, Portales, New Mexico); Schoelerman (Wife, Doris E., RFD #1, Moneta, Iowa); Walker (Mother, Mary E., 1069 Warren Avenue, Brockton, Massachusetts); Talley (Mother, Myra E P.,14 10th Avenue, Alexander City, Alabama); Spades (Mother, Pearl I., Black Rock, Arkansas); Amodeo (Mother, Elizabeth, 25 Midland Avenue, Brant City, New York); Flesey (Mother, Margaret, 193 Fairview Avenue, Jersey City, New Jersey); Law (Mother, Susie C., RFD #1, Eastman, Georgia); Rubenstein (Father, Depot Hotel, Alton, Illinois); Halpern (Sister, Miss Sophie, 710 Bristol Street, Brooklyn, New York).



CASUALTIES NOT LISTED IN MACR

S/S Cinquina, Enrico A. (LW) 578th KlA

S/Sgt Cinquina was the left waist gunner on the aircrew of 2/Lt Downs, flying in B24J #44-40436, Call Letter "P-Bar," nicknamed "NANCY." This ship had to leave the Group's formation early in the mission and bombed a Target of Opportunity, a canal facility at 5238N-1012E, dropping its bombs at 1023 hours. Passing by Calais around 1318 hours at 4500 feet altitude, the ship was hit by AA fire. A piece of flak hit S/Sgt Cinquina's jugular vein and he died before the ship could land at Manston. There is no record available on S/Sgt Cinquina's interment. (Note: This ship was usually flown by the "Mad Roosian," Lt Tokarsky, and many pilots could never get it "trimmed up" to fly straight and level due to some minor problem with riggings of the controls.)

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CREW LOADING LISTS - MISSION #249


2 Mar 1945 576th Sqdn.
A/C 340

P DePalma, F.T. 1st Lt.
CP Austin, G.E. 1st Lt.
N Oppenheim, R. F/O
B Margarones, J.J. 2nd Lt.
R Corbosiero, J.L. T/Sgt.
E Betterini, A. S/Sgt.
RW Mowery, H.J. S/Sgt.
LW Bryan, C.F. S/Sgt.
TG Ferdinando, A.P. S/Sgt.
RCM Malone, H.Q. Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 576th Sqdn.
A/C 659

P Peterson, T.W. 1st Lt.
CP Rohe, J.M. 1st Lt.
N Damerst, W.A. 2nd Lt.
B Lawson, R.F. 1st Lt.
R Green, C.M. T/Sgt.
E Bruney, G.L. T/Sgt.
RW Mitchell, D.F. Pvt.
LW Hankins, T.E. S/Sgt.
TG Hoffman, G.A. S/Sgt.
PN Sullivan, P.A. 1st Lt.

2 Mar 1945 576th Sqdn.
A/C 476

P Harcus, R.W. 2nd Lt.
CP Thompson, J.R. 2nd Lt.
N Adler, M.N. 2nd Lt.
B Brennan, R.W. S/Sgt.
R Shanley, J.V. T/Sgt.
E Thomas, E. T/Sgt.
RW Hamment, R.E. S/Sgt.
LW Marshall, L.C. S/Sgt.
TG Rosenberg, J.E. S/Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 576th Sqdn.
A/C 302

P Blakeley, W.G. 2nd Lt.
CP Schoelerman, H.A. 2nd Lt.
N Walker, C.S. 2nd Lt.
B Rubenstein, S. S/Sgt.
R Spades, R.J. S/Sgt.
E Amodeo, F.A. Pfc.
RW Talley, E.R. S/Sgt.
LW Flesey, R.J. Sgt.
TG Law J.L. Sgt.
S-27 Halpern, H.M. S/Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 576th Sqdn.
A/C 409

P Wolak, S. 2nd Lt.
CP Willett, C.E. 2nd Lt.
N Longenecker, J.R. 2nd Lt.
B Kutner, J.M. 2nd Lt.
R Murphy, R.C. S/Sgt.
E Bobish, A. T/Sgt.
RW Ruigh, R.E. S/Sgt.
LW Czop, J.A. S/Sgt.
TG Schick, F.W. S/Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 576th Sqdn.
A/C 650

P Crowell, R.K. 2nd Lt.
CP Berkley, J.B. 2nd Lt.
N Byrnes, W.B. 2nd Lt.
B Colquhoun, R.N. S/Sgt.
R Waggener, L.R. T/Sgt.
E Hough, J.F. M/Sgt.
RW Tracy, R.D. S/Sgt.
LW Anastos, G. S/Sgt.
TG Moffa, A.J. S/Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 576th Sqdn.
A/C 194

P Jones, T.A. 1st Lt.
CP McFarland, J.D. 1st Lt.
N Vealey, S.L. 2nd Lt.
B Malley, J.P. S/Sgt.
R Isebrands, T.E. T/Sgt.
E Glover, B.E. T/Sgt.
RW Coffman, J.G. S/Sgt.
LW McAtee, J.R. S/Sgt.
TG Woerth, J.B. S/Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 576th Sqdn.
A/C 916 (Kelly did not
receive mission credit but
rest of crew did)

P Kelly, J.B. 1st Lt.
CP Vaughan, D. F/O
N Coleman, A.D. 2nd Lt.
B D'Ambrosio, M.J. S/Sgt.
R McElroy, V.E. Sgt.
E Yost, D.A. Sgt.
RW Zielke, W.P. Sgt.
LW Poremba, S.J. Sgt.
TG Reardon, D.J. Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 577th Sqdn.
A/C 875

P Harding, W.A. 1st Lt.
CP Morrow, E.T. 2nd Lt.
N Parrish, J.D. 2nd Lt.
B Fisher, J.G. Sgt.
R Dollar, W.H. Sgt.
E Butler, C.E. Sgt.
RW Silliman, E. Sgt.
LW Smith, R.L. Jr. Sgt.
TG Neumann, H.J. Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 577th Sqdn.
A/C 079

P Prater, W.K. 2nd Lt.
CP Levin, R.J. 2nd Lt.
N Pilcher, W.L. 2nd Lt.
NG Venuti, L.C. Sgt.
R Killian, C.J. Sgt.
E Lawrence, L.J. Sgt.
RW Kegler, S.D. Sgt.
LW Healey, J. Sgt.
TG Deshantz, D. Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 577th Sqdn.
A/C 590

P Inman, C.E. 1st Lt.
CP Ondrasek, J.G. 2nd Lt.
N Lange, E.A. 2nd Lt.
B Rees, R.R. 2nd Lt.
R Flake, R.M. Jr. T/Sgt.
E Kamholz, E.J. T/Sgt.
RW Finkelstein, B. S/Sgt.
LW Evans, H.D. S/Sgt.
TG Gafin, B. S/Sgt.
RCM Allen, P. S/Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 578th Sqdn.
A/C 436

P Downs, H.E. 2nd Lt.
CP Bickham, T.E. 2nd Lt.
N McKay, R.P. 1st Lt.
B Oakes, H.W. 2nd Lt.
R Spicketts, J.G. S/Sgt.
E Lim, D.P. S/Sgt.
RW Crane, T.P. S/Sgt.
LW Cinquina, E.A. S/Sgt.
TG Weatherman, H.W. S/Sgt.
NG Sorensen, A.C. 1st Lt.

2 Mar 1945 578th Sqdn.
A/C 838

P Cerrato, V.H. 1st Lt.
CP Addison, A.E. 2nd Lt.
N Marcelli, A.F. 2nd Lt.
B Ramos, R.W. Jr. 2nd Lt.
R Ewell, A.J. S/Sgt.
E Lee, R.M. T/Sgt.
RW Burrell, M.L. S/Sgt.
LW Lamson, P.M. S/Sgt.
TG Warwick, F.W. Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 578th Sqdn.
A/C 446

P Vaden, J.C. 2nd Lt.
CP Tichenor, N.K. 2nd Lt.
N Vrable, E.G. 2nd Lt.
B Sieg, R.J. 2nd Lt.
R Crockett, J.G. Sgt.
E Perry, C.E.O. Sgt.
RW Wojtowicz, C.T. Sgt.
LW Beaton, S.O. Sgt.
TG Smith, C.W. Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 578th Sqdn.
A/C 249

P Case, W.D. 2nd Lt.
CP Griffin, R.E. 2nd Lt.
N Gullick, C.H. 2nd Lt.
B McCoy, F.W. S/Sgt.
R Black, C.B. S/Sgt.
E Kidd, J.L. S/Sgt.
RW Chanson, M.C. S/Sgt.
LW Johnson, R.L. S/Sgt.
TG Lutes, M.A. S/Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 578th Sqdn.
A/C 313

P Adsit, B.D. 2nd Lt.
CP Weber, M. F/O
N Wedgeworth, Q.R. 2nd Lt.
B Timmons, K.L. S/Sgt.
R Close, H.R. S/Sgt.
E McDonald, R.C. S/Sgt.
RW Ritty, P.M. S/Sgt.
LW Anderson, W.G. S/Sgt.
TG Taylor, H.T. S/Sgt.
RCM Cauchon, L.V. S/Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 578th Sqdn.
A/C 511

P Hoover, J.A. 2nd Lt.
CP Douglass, G.E. 2nd Lt.
N Fetter, G.R. F/O
B Janak, E.G. S/Sgt.
R Affinito, L.J. S/Sgt.
E Marlowe, J.D. T/Sgt.
RW Fitzgerald, T.R. S/Sgt.
LW Gayda, F.M. S/Sgt.
TG Jones, L.A. S/Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 578th Sqdn.
A/C 804

P Mayer, E.H. 1st Lt.
CP Fligge, S.G. 2nd Lt.
N Burros, R.S. 2nd Lt.
B Crosby, P.E. 2nd Lt.
R Hatfield, H.C. T/Sgt.
E Fickel, S.A. T/Sgt.
RW Gibson, C.P. S/Sgt.
LW Robinson, M.M. S/Sgt.
TG Fulton, C.E. S/Sgt.
RCM Lambert, E.C. S/Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 578th Sqdn.
A/C 205

P Vickers, R.E. 2nd Lt.
CP Schwarzer, D.E. 2nd Lt.
N Roberts, K.E. 2nd Lt.
B Henthorn, W.N. S/Sgt.
R Costanzo, N.T. S/Sgt.
E Krutys, E.V. T/Sgt.
RW Nock, W.H.E. Jr. S/Sgt.
LW Damuth, T.A. S/Sgt.
TG Leinweber, R.L. Sgt.

2 Mar 1945 579th Sqdn.
A/C 958

P Beder, J. 1st Lt.
CP Samsell, J.A. 1st Lt.
N Matishowski, J. 1st Lt.
B Murray, J.G. 1st Lt.
R Murgatroyd, R.S. T/Sgt.
E Morley, J.P. T/Sgt.
RW Carr, R.P. S/Sgt.
LW Roever, C.H. S/Sgt.
TG Schodrof, R.H. S/Sgt.
PN Shumaker, M.C. 2nd Lt.
NV McDevitt, J.P. 2nd Lt.

2 Mar 1945 579th Sqdn.
A/C 788

P Barnes, W.B. 1st Lt.
CP McCormick, J.J. 2nd Lt.
N Dieruff, R.C. 1st Lt.
B Edmond, R.E. 1st Lt.
R Benson, L.R. T/Sgt.
E Wilson, W.W. T/Sgt.
RW Braman, J.L. S/Sgt.
LW McGuire, E.P. S/Sgt.
TG Harvell, J.E. S/Sgt.
MN Kopecky, R.H. 2nd Lt.
PN Czyzewicz, C.H. 2nd Lt.




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