CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 1 "...Circa 1944-1945...Left to right, front row: Tail Turret McKeon, J. P., AOM3/c, Co-pilot Evans, H. W., Lt. (jg), Commander Bales, R. C., Lt. Cmdr., USN, Co-Pilot Fox, R. L., Lt. (jg), Bombardier Fees, E. F., ACOM. Rear Row: Bow Turret Guthrie, B. D., Jr., AMMF2/c, Stbd Waist Turret Ballard, J. O., S1/c, Plane Captain Suhl, R. I., AMMF1/c, 1st Radioman Wagner, W. J., ACRM, Fwd Upper Deck Turret Atkin, E., Jr., ARM3/c, 1st Ordnanceman Gainer, W. R., AOM1/c, Aft Upper Deck Turret Thayer, R. N., S1/c...(Crew 1 (my Great Uncles acft)..." Contributed by CPO Curt Brownlow, USCG email@example.com [E-Mail Updated 18APR99 | 17APR99]
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 4 "...Circa 1944-1945...Left to right, front row: 1st Radioman Smith, M. F., ACRM, Co-pilot Baker, M. C., Ensign, Commander Holt, J. W. Lieut., USN, Co-pilot Urban, F. J., Ensign, Plane Captain Hutchison, J. B., Jr., AMMF1/c...Rear row: Bombardier Busse, A. H., Jr., AOMB1/c, Aft Upper Deck Turret Benuzzi, L. G., S1/c, Tail Turret Loeser, E. M., Jr., AMMF2/c, Bow Turret Banda, L. J., AMMF3/c, Fwd Upper Deck Turret Klause, J. C., ARM2/c, 1st Ordnanceman Babb, H. B., AOM2/c, Stbd Waist Turret Middleton, J. L., ARM3/c...(Crew 4 Elwood Stades Uncle Adolph Henry Busse Jr acft)..." Contributed by CPO Curt Brownlow, USCG firstname.lastname@example.org [E-Mail Updated 18APR99 | 17APR99]
VPB-119 Crew 4 "...This scan was produced from a photo provided me by Mr. Mel McIntosh (VPB-119, crew 12). It shows art work and the title, "Holt's Patches" on the starboard side of BuNo 59413. 59413 plane was the primary plane of Lt. John W. Holt and crew #4 of VPB-119. For some reason Holt and crew #4 were not flying 59413 when they went on a mission over Hainan on 1 May 1945 and failed to return. 59413 was still active with the squadron on VJ Day, Sept. 3, 1945..." Contributed by Dave Deatherage (Son of Paul Deatherage - VPB-119 Crew 4) email@example.com [04AUG2005]
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 9B "...VPB-119 Crew 9B Enlisted Personnel - Clark Field, Philippines - 1945 provided by Stuart Hellman, son of Gordon Hellman. Standing Left to Right: AOM2 Gordon "Gordy" HELLMAN, AMM1 Melvin R. "Slim" LYBARGER, AMM3 Robert C. "Bob" LEE, Unknown Female (USO?) and ARM3/c William R. "Rip" ROHR. Kneeling Left to Right: ARM2 Lathan G. "Lanny" POOLE, AOM3 Charles HANANEL, AOM2 Arthur N. "Knobby" JESUS, AMM2 Clifford Jr. "Joe" WENNEN and AMM3 Fred J. "Wash" WASHBURN...." Contributed by Dave Deatherage (Son of Paul Deatherage - VPB-119 Crew 4) firstname.lastname@example.org [29JAN2007]Crew 14
The photograph above was sent to me by Stuart Hellman, son of Gordon Hellman (pictured standing, 1st on the left). It is a photo of the enlisted personnel of crew 9B of VPB-119, taken in 1945 while the unit was operating out of Clark Field, Luzon.
There a couple of interesting things about the photo; not the least of which is the mystery woman in the picture; it doesn't appear that she is wearing any insignia or rank so, she's probably not military. The best guess I've heard is that she may be with a USO group visiting the troops.
Of more interest, VP-wise, the plane they are standing in front of, BuNo 59403, was the primary aircraft of VPB-119 crew #13, commanded by Lt. (jg) Walter Vogelsang. Vogelsang was one of the top pilots for the squadron and wracked up scores on a considerable amount of enemy shipping and ground targets. In the photo, you can see the talley in the trophy flags painted on the side of his cockpit.
BuNo 59403 survived the war and was still active with the squadron after VJ day but sadly, Vogelsang and his crew were shot down over Hainan Island, China in May of 1945. They are all interred in a common grave at Arlington National Cemetery.
Stuart didn't have the names of the crew in the picture but, I started comparing faces in this photo with the official photo published in the squadron tour book and was able to come up with what I believe to be the correct IDs for the crew.
The following list shows their names, rating, and home towns :
Standing Left to Right: AOM2 Gordon "Gordy" HELLMAN (Chicago, Illinois), AMM1 Melvin R. "Slim" LYBARGER (Irondale, Missouri), AMM3 Robert C. "Bob" LEE (Sunset Beach, California), Unknown Female (USO?) and ARM3/c William R. "Rip" ROHR (Spanaway, Washington).
Kneeling Left to Right: ARM2 Lathan G. "Lanny" POOLE (Crocket Texas), AOM3 Charles HANANEL (New York, New York), AOM2 Arthur N. "Knobby" JESUS (New Bedford, Mass.), AMM2 Clifford Jr. "Joe" WENNEN (Colorado Springs, Colorado) and AMM3 Fred J. "Wash" WASHBURN (Mara, Minnesota).
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 14 "...Crew photo from the VPB-119 cruise book (probably taken in December 1944)..." Contributed by Dave Deatherage (Son of Paul Deatherage - VPB-119 Crew 4) email@example.com [30JUL2008]
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 14 "...Enlisted men of Crew #14 (date unknown)..." Contributed by Dave Deatherage (Son of Paul Deatherage - VPB-119 Crew 4) firstname.lastname@example.org [30JUL2008]
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 14 "...Crew #14 of Navy Patrol Bombing Squadron VPB-119 was commanded by Lt. Wm. H. 'Snuffey' Schedler. Their plane was this PB4Y-2 'Privateer' patrol bomber with the moniker, "Snuffy's Snpiers". They flew combat missions out of Clark Airfield, Luzon, Philippine Islands from March, 1945 until they were relieved on August 3, 1945..." WebSite: FLICKR http://flickr.com/ [14JUL2008]
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 15 "...VPB-119 Crew 15 - Circa 1945..." Contributed by Dave Deatherage (Son of Paul Deatherage - VPB-119 Crew 4) email@example.com [26FEB2007]
CREWs: VP-119 Crew 11 "...Enlisted Members of Crew #16, US Navy Patrol Bombing Squadron VPB119. Photo taken at Clark Field, Luzon, Philippine Islands, sometime between March and June, 1945 (The tents were being replaced by quonset huts starting in June of '45). Names, rating, and home towns: Edward ('Eddie') J. Mersch, ARM 2c - Lockland, Ohio, Oscar ('Ozzy') M. Semones, AOM 1c - Portsmouth, Virginia, Andrew Korntved, AMMF 2c - Greenwood, Wisconsin, William ('Hot Rock') J.Hadfield, AOMB 1c - Camden, New Jersey, Julian E. Pruitt Jr, ARM 3c - Abbeyville, South Carolina, Richard ('Robbie') O. Robbins, ARM 3c - Aberdeen, Washington, Garland ('Zink') C. Loveless, AMMF 1c - Sacramento, California and Lawro ('Pants') R. Palumbo, ARM 1c - Middleton, Connecticut..." WebSite: Flickr http://www.flickr.com/ [16SEP2009]
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 19 "...PB4Y-2 Bomber #59413, "Holt's Patches" and VPB-119 Crew #19 commanded by LT(jg) Harry Evans (Evans is center man on front row). W413 was the primary plane of my dad's crew (#4) but, crew #19 had their picture taken with W413 as the background. This is a Navy PB4Y-2 'Privateer" bomber, Bureau No. 59413. The squadron was NavyPatrol Bombing Squadron VPB-119 which operated out of Clark Airfield, Luzon in the Philippines fram March, 1945 throught the end of the War..." WebSite: FLICKR http://flickr.com/ [14JUL2008]
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 20 "...Crew #20, VPB-119 taken in from on PB4Y-2 BU: 59413 at Clark Field, Luzon in April, 1945. The Commander, LT(jg) John H. 'Jack' Fette, was fairly active through the duration of the war as indicated by several entries of his missions in the unit's war diaries. Fette survived the war but, became one of the first casualties of the cold war shoot downs by the Russians; ( see VP-26 Mishaps, circa 1950's : http://www.vpnavy.com/vp26_mishap.html )..." Contributed by Dave Deatherage (Son of Paul Deatherage - VPB-119 Crew 4) firstname.lastname@example.org [22JUL2005]
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 22 "...Here's some information that solved a mystery regarding Aviation Machinist Mate 1st class Robert LeRoy Smith who served with squadron VPB-119, flying out of Clark Field, Luzon, Philippines in 1945..." Contributed by Dave Deatherage (Son of Paul Deatherage - VPB-119 Crew 4) email@example.com [05JUL2022]
VPB-119 Crew 22 "...Smith was plane captain of Crew #22, commanded by LCDR H.D. Allen..."
VPB-119 Crew 22 Smith Circa 1945
I was searching the internet for Robert Smith's home town - the squadron roster shows Cherryvale, Kansas but his parents are buried in a cemetery in Montrose, Iowa. Doing a bit more searching I found Robert's grave in the same cemetery - he had died September 3, 1951 and his head stone shows his military service as an Aviation Cadet with the 3535th Bomb Training Wing (US Air Force). (SEE: https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/144258925/robert-l-smith)
He obviously switched from the Navy to the Air Force and I thought that maybe he had died due to some mishap during training. In 1951 the 3535th training wing had squadrons station at Chanute Air Force Base, Rantoul, Illinois; I did some searches for accidents, crashes, or other possible causes to try to learn what had happened to Smith. Eventually, stumbled upon a newspaper report of an auto collision near Emden, Illinois which identified Robert Lerory Smith, Tech Sgt. as deceased - he was only 28 years old.
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 22 "...My Father, Myrle W. Peacock, served with VPB-119 Crew-22. Dad passed away 4/23/2009. This photograph was from Dad's collection..." Contributed by Cecile Nessler firstname.lastname@example.org [04AUG2011]
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 26 "...My uncle, Carl Frederick Mehlenluck, served with VPB-119 (Dragon Patrol) as a waist gunner with Crew-26..." Contributed by Carl S. Mehlenluck email@example.com [24SEP2011]
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 34 "...The attached images are front & back of a picture of VPB119, Crew #34, Lt.(jg) Ralph Cook as PPC. The photo was taken in September, 1945. Six of the crew in the photo were lost during a Typhoon reconnaissance on Oct. 1, 1945. A 7th man, Lt(jg) Oscar L. Smith (not shown) was also lost. According to the VA grave locator data base, the crew remains are interred in a common grave at the Zachary Taylor National Cemetery, Lousiville, KY; so, obviously there was a recovery but, I have found no information that describes when or where the wreckage was found..." Contributed by Dave Deatherage (Son of Paul Deatherage - VPB-119 Crew 4) firstname.lastname@example.org [11APR2007]
CREWs: VPB-119 Crew 44 "...Before he passed away, LT S.S. "Bud" Aichele sent me the photos of VPB-119 crews that he took in late 1945. This photograph is that of Crew #44, LT William D. Regan, PPC. Below the photo is a scan of the narrative of their loss from the squadron's command history file. In January, 1946, the squadron was operating out of Guiuan Airfield, Samar, Philippine Islands performing weather reconnaisance, shipping lane patrols, and air/sea rescue missions. On 12 January, LT Regan and Crew #44 failed to return from a search patrol for a missing Army C-47. Their wreck site was located two days later. F. C. Hauris, AOM3c was the only survivor. LT Aichele identified the Crew 44 members in his photo as follows: Standing (Left to Right): D.E. Rogers, AMM3c; R.H. Barton, ARM3c; Ens. C.R. Embry; LT W.D. Regan; Ens. W.A. Bright; E.E. Scott, AMM3c and E.W. Graf, AOM3c. Front (Left to Right): E.J. Boutain, AOM1c; J.J. Provost, ARM3c; H.R. Labonte, ARM2c; F.C. Hauris, AOM3c and R.M. Silva, ARM3c..." Contributed by Dave Deatherage (Son of Paul Deatherage - VPB-119 Crew 4) email@example.com [22FEB2009]
CREWs: VPB-119 Crews "...The attached photo is a VPB-119 group photo that was taken after war's end. These men are crews which, over time, replaced the original 19 'plank owner' crews and continued the squadron up until its redesignation in late 1946. These would be crews #20 thru #44. After the Japanese surrender, VPB-119 continued operations out of Clark Field, Luzon until the end of October, 1945 when they transferred to Puerto Princessa, Palawan Island. Their stay on Palawan was breif and by 16 December, 1945 they had relocated again to Guiuan Airstrip, Samar Island. In June, 1946 the VPB-119 moved to NS Sangley Point, Philippines and by November, 1946 they had been redesignated as VP-HL-9..." Contributed by Dave Deatherage (Son of Paul Deatherage - VPB-119 Crew 4) firstname.lastname@example.org [19OCT2007]
"VP-119 Summary Page"