9th AF Patch

416th Bombardment Group (L)

Missing Air Crew Report 14314

March 23, 1945, Friday




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Aircraft Serial Number (Type): 43-22307 (Douglas A-26B-15-DT Invader)

9th AF; 416th Bomb Gp; 670th Bomb Sq

Mission # 249; Box: II; Flight: 2; Position: 3; A/C Fuselage Code: F6-N

Reason: Enemy anti-aircraft

Damage: Crash Landing, Battle damage

Point Of Departure: A-69 Laon/Athies, France

Location: Between Dinslaken, Germany And Rhine River

Duty Name Rank S/N Status
Pilot Ford, Russell 2Lt O-835177 MIA, RTD
Gunner Tharp, Freeland Madison S/Sgt 18136021 MIA, KIA

A/C was Forced down. Lost as a result of Enemy Anti-Aircraft. Aircraft received direct hit over target and was forced down near Huls, Germany.

Lt Ford's plane was hit by flak on the first run over the target. He broke away from the formation and headed for friendly territory, still carrying his 1,000-pound bombs on single engine, escorted by P-47's. At about 4,000 feet, his other engine stopped. With his bomb bays full of bombs and without any power, he glided his plane to the ground for a crash landing. He was only slightly injured in the landing. His gunner, Staff Sergeant Freeland W. Tharp, bailed out without an order form the pilot over enemy territory and is now MIA.
(416th BG History 1945)

See Mission # 249 for additional details