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Mission: Returning to France (A-35) Chateaudun.

Date: 19
th November 1944

Unit: 439
th Troop Carrier Group / 92nd Squadron. U.S.A.A.F.

Type: Douglas C- 47 (Dakota).

Serial No: 43-15046.

Coded: J8. Tail letter "Y"

Location: Near Falmer Village, N of Brighton, East Sussex, England.

Pilot: 1
st/Lt. Donald Q Reid. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Navigator: T/Sgt. Walter J James. U.S.A.A.F. Severe burns.

Sgt. Bryce D Hacking. U.S.A.A.F. Burns and other injuries.

Sgt. Orazio R Toglia. U.S.A.A.F. Burns and other injuries.

Cpl. Eric Ackerman. U.S.A.A.F. Burns and other injuries.


Pilot: 1st Lt. Roy L Gritz. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Navigator: 1st Lt. Stanley E Lis. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Pilot: 2nd Lt. Russell W Barron. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Crew Chief: T/Sgt. John H Young. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Crew Chief: T/Sgt. Howard F White. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Glider Mech. S/Sgt. Donald S Horstick. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Instr. Specialist: S/Sgt. James H Holly. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Crew Chief: S/Sgt. Arthur M Hackett. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Cook: Sgt. Barbato C D'Andrea. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Engineer: Sgt. Joseph H Alba. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Glider Mech: Sgt. Jake E Hesser. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Baker: Sgt. Felix R Sobkowiak. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Engineer: Sgt. William Hickson. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Glider Mech: Sgt. Sherman W Miller. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Glider Mech: Sgt. Harold F Mills. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Transport: Cpl. Richard M Jones. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Engineer: Cpl. Paul A Kokko. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Engineer: Cpl. Charles W Evenick. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Refuel. Unit: Pfc. Byron G Peacock. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Transport: Pvt. Roland P Lariviere. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Engineer: Pvt. Frank R Mixer. U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Unidentified Group Headquar U.S.A.A.F. Killed.

Unidentified Frenchman. Killed.

Unidentified Frenchman. Badly injured.

Douglas C – 47 (Dakota).


This aircraft crashed killing not only the pilot 1st/Lt. Reid, but 21 other members of the 92nd Transport Squadron. In addition 6 were injured, 2 of whom died the same day, at the Royal Sussex County Hospital, Brighton. A Frenchman was also killed in the crash, another Frenchman who was badly injured managed to reach Falmer Village and give the alarm. Also amongst the dead was a man from Group Headquarters who was not named. The C -47 was returning to airfield A - 35 (Chateaudun, France) taking personnel on board back to France having had leave in England. The aircraft burst into flames after crashing, and wreckage was strewn over a wide area. A.R.P. workers ran 2 miles to the scene of the crash and rendered what assistance they could. The disaster was investigated and it appears that the aircraft was flying at a minimum altitude with minimum visibility, and in attempting to descend after clearing a 645ft. hill, the aircraft was probably forced into the ground by turbulent weather. The aircraft also carried 13 Type B-4 bags and personal equipment. The aircraft was believed not to have been overloaded.



The sad remains of C - 47 43-15046


Nine of those killed listed below are buried at Cambridge American Cemetery. It is believed the the other U.S.A.A.F. airmen were taken home to the U.S.A.

1st Lt. Donald Q Reid. 0-686365. U.S.A.A.F. Plot D. Row 7. Grave 54.

S/Sgt. James H Holly. 14181678 U.S.A.A.F. Plot D. Row 3. Grave 92.

Sgt. Barbato C D'Andrea. 32786797 U.S.A.A.F. Plot F. Row 1. Grave 24.

T/Sgt. John H Young. 36318413. U.S.A.A.F. Plot D. Row 2. Grave 42.

Sgt. William Hickson. 14160860 U.S.A.A.F. Plot G. Row 1. Grave 8.

1st Lt. Roy L Gritz. 0-806834 U.S.A.A.F. Plot D. Row 5. Grave 82.

Sgt. Harold F Mills. 37521806 U.S.A.A.F. Plot D. Row 2. Grave 92.

Cpl. Richard M Jones. 19182575 U.S.A.A.F. Plot D. Row 7. Grave 92.

Pvt. Roland P Lariviere. 31285413 U.S.A.A.F. Plot D. Row 6. Grave 92.

Researched and compiled by David King and Melvin Brownless, with special thanks to Steve Hall. Updated August 2014.
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