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Yap Island Mission Loss—10 August 1944

The following plane was lost on 10 August 1944 on a mission to Yap Island. I would greatly appreciate anyone's help to locate additional information regarding the information listed below.Submit additional information, updates, newpaper articles, pictures, and supporting documents to: pat@missingaircrew.com

Date: Plane Type: Unit: Crew Names: Supporting Documents:
10 August 1944 B-24 13th AF, 307th BG, & 371nd BS Two crew members were captured on Yap near the mouth of the harbor (Mooney & Gilbert). All other crew members MIA/KIA:
  1. Don A. Anthony
  2. Robert D. Baker
  3. William C. Galton
  4. James H. Cuddy
  5. Donld E. Carlson
  6. Ernest R. Mayo
  7. Richard J. O'Brien
  8. Norman C. Echols
  9. Henry J. Hartman
  10. Reynold B. Mooney (Captured)
  11. Hilary Gilbert Jr. (Captured)
Aircraft # 44-40571

MACR #8638
(pdf file 14 MB)
 
Consolidated Mission Report No. 307-315
(pdf file 601 KB)

Declassified ULTRA Docuemnt. Japanese Messages about Yap POWs

Japanese Interviews about flyers lost over Yap
(pdf file 4.2 MB)

Description

Anthony Crew
Click to Enlarge
Anthony Crew Picture
Lt. Don Anthony (371st) and crew failed to return from Yap on August 10th. the plane was last seen entering a front thirty minutes before reaching target. Lt. Anthony, contacted the squadron leader, but the message was a garbled. A gunner from another squadron reported heaqring the following message: "Am going down in flames over the target." Radio Tokyo reported on August 11th, "The Japanese garrison on Yap Island shot down one enemy plane from an enemy formation of nineteen heavy boombers which raided the island yesterday." All searches for the missing crew and plane were negative. It is presumed that Lt. Anthony either dropped below the overcast and was hit by A/A fire or was jumped by the few remaining Japanese fighters while alone.

Sgt. Hilary Gilbert was rescued from the Lt. Kizer Crew crash on 15 July 1944 and shot down a second time with the Anthony crew on 10 August 1944

Sgt. Hilary Gilbert was rescued on 17 July 1944 after going down with the Kizer crew on a mission to Yap. He was shot down a second time less then a month later with the Anthony crew on 10 August 1944. He was captured by the Japanese near the mouth of the Yap harbor with Sgt. Reyond B. Mooney after bailing out of the Anthony B-24. On 11 August 1944 the two captured flyers left Yap on board the Special Sub chaser #27 under the command of Ensign Miyake Hito. On August 13 they reached Palau. On August 19 the POWs were put on the Japanese cruiser Kinu at Palau to be transferred to Manila by way of Cebu. The Kinu was likely sunk by American subs as it approached Manila.

Anthony Crew with the Frenisi B-24 on its 98th Mission

The Anthony Crew flew the famous 307th Bomb Group Frenisi B-24 on it's 98th mission. On page 9 of the document below it mentions the Anthony crew.

  • June 29, 1944. Lt. Anthony flew her and returned to base with a flat tire. He made a beautiful landing this 98th mission and was able to fly again.
Anthony Crew 307th Bomb Group
Anthony Crew 307th Bomb Group

Declassified ULTRA Documents Provided Anwsers about Fate of Sgt. Reynold B. Mooney and Sgt. Hilary Gilber Captured on Yap

The following information was located by Mark Swank. Mark Swank lives in the Washington, D.C. area and is currently employed with Northrop Grumman IT as a Senior IT Database Consultant at the Defense Intelligence Agency. He currently supports both the MissingAirCrew (www.missingaircrew.com) and BentProp (www.bentprop.org) Projects to research, locate and repatriate MIAs from World War II through his research at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).

The following information is found within the messages that were intercepted:

  • Sgt. Reynold B. Mooney and Sgt. Hilary Gilbert from the Anthony Crew (307th Bomb Group) shot down over Yap on August 10, 1944 were transferred from Yap to Palau and then put aboard the Japanese cruiser KINU on 19 August 1944 at Palau for transfer to Manila via Cebu.

The Japanese cruiser KINU with Sgt. Reynold B. Mooney and Sgt. Hilary Gilbert from the 307th Bomb group was sunk near Manila an American submarine.

Richard J OBrien Picture

The family of Richard J OBrien supplied the following picture:

WRichard J OBrien , Anthony Crew 307th Bomb Group

William C. Galton Information & Pictures

The family of William Galton supplied the following information:
    William, a.k.a. Bill, was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Landon Galton of 152 Central Avenue, Madison. Bill's brother Landon (Lanny) lives in Madison and a sister, Natalie Eloise Barbato, is living in the shore area. Bill was born on March 4, 1921, in Summit and attended Canajoharie School in New York and Lehigh University in Pennsylvania. He entered the service in 1942, and trained at Muroc Air Field in California, and in April 1944 transferred to Hamilton Field, California. Trained as a bombardier and navigator, Bill was assigned to the Pacific Theatre of operations in April 1944. Bill was promoted to the rank of 2nd Lieutenant and while serving as a navigator on an Army bomber, his plane was lost over the Yap Islands on August 19, 1944. After just two years in the service, 2nd Lt. William C. Galton's ambition of pursuing a career in engineering came to an abrupt end. Bill's body was never recovered and remains "lost at sea". His nephew Bruce Galton, a Councilman in the Borough of Madison, said, "My grandfather often told the story that on the day Uncle Bill was lost, he was on the way to work when Mr. Galton felt he had lost something. He checked his pockets but still felt something was missing. That evening, the Galton's were notified William Galton was 'missing in act action.'"
William C. Galton, Anthony Crew 307th Bomb Group

Did a Japanese Kamikaze Ram the Anthony B-24?

The following excerpt was found in an out of print book titled, RISE OF THE KAMIKAZE SPIRIT. It provides an overview of an American B-24 that was rammed over Yap by a Japanese pilot by the name of Kanno. The B-24 was likely rammed in August 1944 therefore it could be referring to the loss of the Don A. Anthony crew on 10 August 1944.

    RISE OF THE KAMIKAZE SPIRIT:

    He there engaged in combat with an American B-24 and, after several ineffective gunning passes, decided to ram the stalwart bomber. Figuring that the usual head-on ramming attack might prove fatal only to his own fighter plane, Kanno decided to destroy the big plane by shearing off its rudder with his propeller. He knew that in an approach from the rear he stood little chance of success against the bomber's concentrated gun power, and that his plane would probably be shot down before there was any chance to ram. He resolved, accordingly, to strike at the rudder by way of a head-on approach. The difficulty of this maneuver lay in keeping clear of his target's propellers and yet getting close enough to shear off its rudder.

    His first and second passes failed, but he managed both times to pull clear of the B-24's deadly gunfire. On the third try he came in still closer, following straight down the body of the bomber, until his propeller gnawed into the huge plane's rudder with a shuddering crash. The shock of the impact caused Kanno to black out momentarily, and when he regained consciousness he found his plane in a tight spin which compressed him into a corner of the cockpit. Still stunned, he responded automatically and pushed forward on the control lever while pressing slowly, ever so slowly, on the foot pedal until his plane pulled out of the spin and regained level flight. He watched the B-24 crash into the sea and then managed to bring his badly damaged plane back to Yap.

    By late August, Kanno was in the Philippines with the 201st Air Group in time to volunteer for skip-bombing training. In my…

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