MISHAPs: 01 DEC 44 A/C: PBM-3D Location: GULF OF LEYTE Strike: Yes BUNO: :45288: Cause: FORCE LANDED & HIT REEF Contributed by Terry email@example.com [16MAR98]
MISHAPs: 07 DEC 44 A/C: PBM-3D Location: GULF OF LEYTE Strike: Yes BUNO: :45220 Cause: TAKE OFF ACCIDENT Contributed by Terry firstname.lastname@example.org [16MAR98]
MISHAPs: 03 JUN 45 A/C: PBM-5 Location: Straits of Makassar (Java Sea) Strike: Yes BUNO: 59062
"...I have been in touch with 4 families that have relatives who were involved with the downing of my great uncle John Igoe's plane from VPB-20 in June 1945. This includes the great niece (from Australia) of one of the Australian Z Special Unit members who lost his life in a secret rescue operation flown in by VPB-20 to try and locate and rescue the surviving downed airmen...." Contributed Jim Carter email@example.com [15DEC2005]
"...I've attached a couple for you. First two are of my great Uncle John. VPB-20 Crew #110 USS Pocomoke (AV-9). Killed in action as per story you posted. John Igoe '42 (Taken at Chicago Navy Pier while at AMM school). John Igoe '44 or '45 (Already wearing his Combat Aircrew wings). Downed PBM5 Buno 59062 VPB-20 Crew #110 Taken from one of the other rescue places of VPB20 out of TawiTawi and the USS Pocomoke. VPB-20 destroyed the plane when no further survivors were located. Plane made a forced emergency beach landing near the village of Tanahmeja, Island of Celebes (now Sulawisi), Dutch East Indies..." Contributed Jim Carter firstname.lastname@example.org [10NOV2005]
"...Mishap History..." Contributed Jim Carter email@example.com [10NOV2005]
03 JUN 45
Martin PBM-5 Mariner
Bureau Number (BuNo: 59062)
VPB-20 Crew #110 assigned to the Seaplane Tender USS Pocomoke (AV-9)
Their plane took off from Tawi-Tawi on what was thought would be a 12 to 14 hour Patrol mission. Normally they were rescuing downed aviators themselves and/or scouting for enemy subs and ships. The first 10 hours had been very successful as they made a few strafing runs on enemy ground installations along the east coast of Borneo, changed course and flew East over the Straits of Makassar (Java Sea) where they sighted three Japanese ships two transports and an escort.
There was a greater than normal amount of crew members [usually PBMs had crews of about 9-12] - they had 14. One died of wounds received while in flight, 3 died in gun battle with Japanese troops, 9 were captured and later executed. 3 escaped. The pilot was LT(jg) Deland Joseph CROZE (buried in Honolulu, Oahu, Hawaii), others on board were Ensign Marshall Henry HICKS, Ensign Lewis Albert WHEELER, ARM3c Edward Adley CALHOUN, AOM3c Kenneth James CROW, ARM2c Owen Douglas HULS, AMM2c Robert Bernard JEZEWSKI (buried next to Lt. Croze in Hawaii), AOM3c Charles Watson MOOREFIELD, AERM2c Donald Milton PELL, AOM3c Joe Harvey GARCIA, AOM3c Dale A. HUNT, AMM1c John Patrick IGOE (my great uncle - buried in Long Island, NY), Daulton C. "Stephie" STEPHENSON and AMM3c Broadus "Lyle" BUMPAS.
Being the only American plane in the area, they took on the three ships by themselves and the attack began. The first two runs were successful hitting and sinking the two transports. However, on the third run, the plane was hit hard with the escort's anti-aircraft fire and included holes in the fuel tank. The plane was heavily damaged. The hydraulic lines at the waist guns were broken and caught fire. BUMPAS was firing from the starboard waste guns and Ensign HICKS (the co-pilot) was taking photos from the same side when a 20 mm shell exploded behind them. This started the fire. All inter communications were knocked out and JEZEWSKI lost his right leg. The plane would not hold altitude and the pilots were having trouble keeping it just 100 ft. above the water. They and made a forced landing on a beach near the village of Tanahmeja, Island of Celebes (now Sulawisi), Dutch East Indies which was thought to be in "friendly territory".
CALHOUN or HULS radioed the base at Tawi-Tawi and requested rescue plane. All special equipment (save for one radio) was destroyed and all papers thrown overboard while still out over the water. A few hours after the landing, Ensign WHEELER died from loss of blood due to wounds received in the air from enemy fire. The survivors stayed the night on the beach with their plane. The plan was to split up in different directions to avoid the enemy and then to reunite at the northern tip of the island. The next morning a Japanese platoon surprised the remaining crew. A terrific gun battle took place that lasted almost the whole day. My Uncle John (IGOE), PELL and MOOREFIELD were killed. That night, HULS, HUNT, STEPHENSON & BUMPUS escaped out to sea on a log. HULS returned for food & water, was captured and executed. HUNT, STEPHENSON & BUMPAS went back out on the log and were at some point picked up by a rescue plane.
An article handed out at one of the USS Pocomoke (AV-9) Reunions written by a Clark Duane Roush of Livonia, Michigan. (No Date.) It tells that Mr. Roush (as First Pilot) and LT Morgan L. Saylor (as PPC?) found and picked up the three survivors of the downed PBM. "
no signs of the rest of the crew on the enemy-held island. Nor did the survivors know where they were." The Squadron commander, LCDR Robert W. Harper called on the Australian Allied Intelligence Bureau (A.I.B.). The Australian Z Special Unit members were sent in to try and learn the fates of the crewmembers and hopefully rescue them.
HUNT suffered a shark bite prior to being rescued and had to have his right arm amputated. The following morning, the Japanese returned with reinforcements and took the remaining crew as POW's. They were all later executed.
My uncle John (IGOE) and a few of the others were not a regular part of Crew 110. JEZEWSKI and one of the others were actually aviation mechanics from the USS Pocomoke (AV-9). That day, they were just "along for the ride" (My mother recalls that she heard he and his crewmates had been put together for a few missions. Something to do with the Squadron split in two locations.) He had only been in VPB-20 for about one month or so. He and "Lyle" BUMPAS were transferred in from VPB-100, and prior to that had been in VPB-98/Crew 46.
Any light that anyone you may be able to shed on ANY one of the Crew, the plane, the ship, etc. Will be greatly appreciated. I realize that you may not know anything of what I write or that you may have not met any of the Crew - but, if you do, please share even the smallest bit of information. The smallest bit of information may prove to be a big piece of the puzzle.
I've read many responses from the gropu who have helped others in their quest for information. Even if you are not able to assist me I wish to say THANK YOU ALL for your service to our Country. God keep you safe and bless you.
Jim Carter firstname.lastname@example.org [05NOV2005]
MISHAPs: 03 NOV 48 A/C: PB4Y-2 Location: Last know position 56N 161-30W last sighted 160T, 10 miles from Port Muller, Kodiak, Alaska Strike: Yes BUNO: 59685 Deaths: 12/MISSING Cause: Unknown "...Crew missing: Pilot LT P. R. Parker, ENS H. R. Herdon, Mid. W. R. Musgrove, ADC R. W. Trenton, ADC F. E. Barden, AD2 N. M. Holland, AD3 J. D. Somers, ALC Wm. G. Coleman, AO2 L. O. Askildson, AOC B. W. Eichron, AO3 Wm. N. Clark, and SA J. A. Wooley..." Contributed by Terry email@example.com [Updated 29DEC2000 | 16MAR98]
"...My Father, AO2 Lloyd O. Askildson, was a crew member on a VP-20 PB4Y that disappeared on November 3, 1948. I was not born yet, and in his last letter to my mother, he indicated that he knew she was pregnant. I would like to share information with family members of the other 11 crew members who died that day..." Contributed by Lynn Gunderson firstname.lastname@example.org [22NOV2012]
"...My Great-Uncle, LT Paul R. Parker, was a VP-20 PB4Y-2 pilot during WWII. He was last stationed at NAS Kodiak, Alaska after the war. His plane was reported missing on November 3, 1948 during what was called a routine training mission. Thanks...Jason Parsons email@example.com [06JAN2004]
"...As with the previous update, ADC Franklin E. (Eddie) Barden is my grandfather..." Contributed by Terry Pitts firstname.lastname@example.org [18AUG2003 | 26APR2003]
As with the previous update, ADC Franklin E. (Eddie) Barden is my grandfather. He used the name Eddie with family and loved ones, and Ed with his contemporaries. Prior to being in VP-20, he was part of the landing crew for the Hindenburg, stationed in Lakehurst NJ at the time of its demise, then he was stationed on the USS Honolulu when Pearl Harbor was attacked. He survived both incidents without a scratch. He then went on to be part of the dirigible crews patrolling the Oregon coast during WWII, stationed in Tillamook, Oregon.
These photographs show the crew of the doomed aircraft, and a blow up of the text in the lower-left corner. All the men in it (save two as they were replaced by others) went down with the plane. The photograph was taken in Kodiak, Alaska, on 10-29-1948. It shows Patrol Squadron 20, Crew 8.
Mishap Crew Photo
Here are the names of the crew:
Back Row - Left to Right:
Robert W. Eichorn, AOC (ACC?), First Ordnanceman.Front Row - Left to Right:
Lloyd O. Askildson, AO2, Second Radioman.
William L. Nevares, AL1 (ALL?), First Radioman. (Not aboard - a Chief Coleman instead).
James A. Wooley, SA, Third Ordnanceman.
Joseph D. Somers, AD3, Second Mech.
Milton L. Russell, AO2, Second Ordnanceman. (Not aboard - a Bill Clark, AO2 Instead).
Norman M. Holland, AD2, First Mech.
Franklin E. Barden, ADC, Plane Captain.
Robert W. Trenton, ADC, Navigator.If anybody out there has any information about this incident, or how to contact any of the family members of any of the crew, I'd sure like to hear from you. Please contact me.
Harold R. Herndon, ENS, Co-Pilot.
Paul R. Parker, LT, Patrol Plane Commander.
William R. Musgrove, MIDN, Navigator.
"VP-20 Summary Page"