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342nd Fighter Squadron, "Scourgers", New Guinea Edition

Discussion in 'Book Swap' started by Letum, Aug 8, 2015.

  1. Biak

    Biak Adjutant Patron  

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    In the 342nd squadron history the only mention I've found is:

    "We lost another pilot on the 19th when four planes were patrolling a convoy east of Leyte. While over the area the #4 man F/O James D. Larimore broke formation and then called in that he was going to bail out. No one in the flight could see any parachute however nor any trace of his plane. They searched the area for a half-hour but could see nothing. F/O Larimore has not been heard from since and it is difficult to surmise what happened."

    I'll keep looking for more information and checked Fold3 for a MACR of F/L Larimore.
     
  2. TD-Tommy776

    TD-Tommy776 Man of Constant Sorrow

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    Location:
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    Here is the 4 page MACR 42-75920 regarding the loss of F/O Jame D. Larimore.

    Larimore_MACR_42-75920_Pg1.jpg Larimore_MACR_42-75920_Pg2.jpg Larimore_MACR_42-75920_Pg3.jpg Larimore_MACR_42-75920_Pg4.jpg
     
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  3. Mark Wilson

    Mark Wilson New Member

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    Btw
    Baik, i really appreciate your help Btw, i found this single posted page from the yearbook referenced in this thread showing his name (although the spelling is shown with 2 r's)
    Also found this
    James Dale Larimore (1920-1944) - Find A Grave...
     

    Attached Files:

  4. Mark Wilson

    Mark Wilson New Member

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    Thanks to Tommy and Biak for all the help!!! I am so thankful there are people like those on this forum that are so willing to help like this. This report is just what I needed.
     
  5. WallaceG

    WallaceG New Member

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    mwallace13,
    Was just researching my father, Lt. Wallace, and found this thread.
     
  6. Chris Wilson

    Chris Wilson New Member

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    Sir,
    I noticed this forum while I was looking for information on my Grandmother's Uncle. He was a P-47 pilot in the 342nd. I was wondering if the 342nd history mentioned of him. Lt Charles L Nickell. He was lost on 11 Apr '45. Any information or guidance would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Chris Wilson
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2020
  7. Biak

    Biak Adjutant Patron  

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    Hi Chris, and welcome.

    I took a quick look and so far I've found the mission report of April 11,1945 ;

    A. Mission 101-D-15 DROOPY 11-2 (2-1481), 11 April 1945, 342 Fitron 8 P 51's.
    B. Bomb ans strafe CARABAO Island.
    C. Takeoff 1330/I TOT 1400/I -1430/I at 6,000 feet to minimum altitude.
    Landed 7 planes at 1440/I ; 1 plane did not return.
    D. Ref. Luzon 1:50,000, Sheet 3253-1

    Fifteen bombs scored hits over most of the island and one fell in water off shore. Strafed entire island with one pass. Nil results observed other than bomb explosions and strafing hits.Our Loss : One plane, hit by A/A crashed in water about 500 yards to West of CALUNGPANG. Pilot, Lt. NICKELL, presumed killed in crash. Nil survivor sighted.

    E-F. Nil

    G. Several flashes of medium or light A/A observed during bomb run at (36.2-26.0) and other side of island
    at (36.4-26.0), at time plane crashed as described in para D. Nil tracers or bursts were seen.

    H-I. Nil

    J. CAVU.

    K. 1st Lt. CHARLES L. NICKELL, 0-810404, reported lost in paragraph "D" above. After bomb run, plane started to pull out at 2,000 feet then rolled over and went straight into sea on its back. Nil survivor sighted but another flight stayed to lead nearby surface craft to investigate possible activity.
    L. 16 x 500 lb GP inst. nose and .025 sec. tail fuses.Estimated 1,000 x .50 caliber expended.


    I'll try to get you the Missing Aircrew Report also.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2020
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  8. Chris Wilson

    Chris Wilson New Member

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    Thank you so much for this report. In letters he mentioned he was over 400- combat hours and over 100 combat sorties and was with the squadron I think from 43-45. Based on this I am hoping there may be more info in your records. In one letter to his sister he mentions getting credit for a downed airplane. I was hoping to find that report also. Anything you find is greatly appreciated. All I currently have on him is photocopied pages from the leather bound 342nd yearbook from 1944 and some letters home and 2 newspaper clippings. A few years back I was able to visit the Manilla National Cemetery and pay my respects at his name on the memorial wall. I am a retired Air Force pilot myself and find this information very interesting!
     
  9. Biak

    Biak Adjutant Patron  

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    You're welcome and by the way; don't call me Sir! "Hey You" will suffice. :D Now since you mentioned you are a retired Air Force pilot ;

    Welcome to the forum Sir! Much respect and admiration.

    I checked on Fold3 and haven't had any luck finding a MACR of your grand uncle. BUT, I did dig up this on the 342nd Unit history, ( which you can order a Cd from :
    Air Force Historical Research Agency

    1st Lt.Charles L. Nickell, of Centerville, Tennesse, had been with the outfit since January 1944 and had proven his flying skills to an extent worthy of appointing him Flight Leader. He had flown a total of 198 combat missions and destroyed one enemy plane. He received the Air Medal and three Oak Leaf clusters.

    At 198 combat missions I'm sure he had several hundred hours of combat hours. My uncle flew 225 and had just over 800 hours. Many missions were flow as cover for bombers near the China border and as he said " 8 hours and 15 minutes give or take a few seconds". That long in a P51 always got a 'nip' of the flight Surgeons Whiskey before exiting the aircraft.

    I believe the 342nd flew more bombing and strafing missions than the 341st, so shorter duration but more flights.
    The unit history I ordered several years ago has an immense amount of information but as usual the pages that would help are barely legible. I am going to reorder again but this time request Squadron by Squadron instead of asking for "everything you've got on the 348th FG.

    I just found another snippet ; page 106

    From KEARBY'S THUNDERBOLTS The 348th fighter Group in World War II by John C. Stanaway

    May 27 1944
    Lt. Charles Nickell also gained confimation for one Oscar to give the 342nd Squadron a total of five victories for the V Fighter Command's only claims that day.


    Others will chip-in here with advice and answers shortly I'm sure.

    Rog
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2020
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  10. Panyko Daughter

    Panyko Daughter New Member

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    My father, Michael J Panyko, was the Crew Chief for Col. Neel Kearby and his name is painted on Fiery Ginger. Looking for any photos or references to him. Thanks!
     
  11. Biak

    Biak Adjutant Patron  

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    I took a quick look through the 342nd sqd history and haven't found a mention yet but I'll keep looking.

    edit:
    Found your father was in the 341st squadron with a reference in John Stanaway's book "Kearby's Thunderbolts".
    Kearby transferred 'Fiery Ginger' to the 341st squadron in the Fall of 1943 due to an apparent conflict with the crew chief of his plane in the 342nd.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2020
  12. Biak

    Biak Adjutant Patron  

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    Chris, I found 2nd Lt. Charles L. Nickell was assigned to the 342nd in January 1944. On the AFHRA CD's the 342 sqd history microfilm reel # AO779 and AO778.
    The 348th History can be ordered from AFHRA file B0302 & B0302A which may have more. The CD I have has a couple thousand pages but several are too difficult to read. Possibly if a 'new' scan' will produce a better copy.

    Rog
     
  13. Panyko Daughter

    Panyko Daughter New Member

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    Thank you for that info. All my research thus far led only to the 342nd. I was considering purchasing the "Kearby's Thunderbolts" book so this is very helpful.
     
  14. Biak

    Biak Adjutant Patron  

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    You're very welcome. I remember my uncle telling me that Kearby kept his plane is his squadron, the 341st, and it was nice to find a confirmation in Stanaway's book. I read through the 341st sqd history yesterday to see if I could find anything more on your father but haven't had much luck so far. I still have the 348th group history to go through.
    If you have any information such as the dates he was in the service or locations I might be able to find more.

    Just let us know what we can do to help.
     

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