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B-26 "Wabash Cannonball" 40-1499 South Pacific

Discussion in 'Allied Bomber Planes' started by Tipnring, Jun 16, 2020.

  1. Tipnring

    Tipnring Active Member

    Jul 18, 2019
    Likes Received:
    Northeast Florida
    I found these newspaper articles (below) on the B-26 "Wabash Cannonball" 40-1499 & crew in South Pacific.

    On June 10, 1942 assigned to the 5th Air Force (5th AF), 22nd Bombardment Group (22nd BG), Headquarters Squadron (HQ). Nicknamed "Wabash Cannonball" below was Japanese kanji. Squadron Number 20 was painted in yellow on the nose. Assigned to pilot 1st Lt. Leon G. Lewis with crew chiefs Schmigel and Thrower.

    On August 17, 1942 one of ten B-26 Marauders parked at 7 Mile Drome near Port Moresby fully fueled and armed with 500 pound bombs. On the ground, there was no advanced warning of a Japanese air raid against 7 Mile Drome by G4M1 Betty bombers from the 4th Kokutai and Misawa Kokutai escorted by A6M2 Zeros from the Tainan Kokutai.

    In attempting to take off to avoid being hit on the ground, B-26 40-1493 plus this bomber piloted by 1st Lt. Leon G. Lewis managed to take off as the bombs began exploding. This B-26 was hit by shrapnel from the exploding bombs, knocking out the hydraulic system. Flying at low altitude to avoid being intercepted, this B-26 force landed at 12 Mile Drome and came to rest at the end of the runway with the nose impacted into the tree line. Aboard, the crew were unhurt.

    Pacific Wrecks


    18 Jul 1943, 43 - The Baltimore Sun at Newspapers.com
    The Baltimore Sun
    Baltimore, Maryland
    18 Jul 1943, Sun • Page 43


    The Dayton Herald
    Dayton, Ohio

    16 Nov 1942, Mon • Page 8
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2020

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