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decwriter

Marauder DFC with a name twist

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I bought this DFC knowing it had the proper format when it came to engraving styles, but the name was a little tricky. NARA doesn’t reflect a member with this name in their enlistment records, so I chalked it up to a misspelling and moved on, realizing I had my homework cut out for me. My initial thought was this aviator was a 389th BG member because the roster in the bomb group book at the end of the war had a member with this identical spelling. I queried the seller to see if they had any additional information on this flier as I was coming up empty. They stated they did, but were busy with other things and when time permitted, they would contact me.

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There are only two NARA entries to research with this name with identical spelling, one in NY and one in NJ. Both became fliers, but I didn’t get an assist until some documents were offered to me from the seller of the DFC. I purchased those and received some B-26 pictures, photos of Europe and other places, pictures of the flier standing by a B-26 and sitting in a B-26, and a mission list, but there were no ASNs or officer numbers in any of the paperwork. The one odd thing I noticed was the flier’s personal mission list, listing 51 missions and his name, matched the DFC. Here are a few pics of the bombardier and one aircraft he flew quite a few missions on.

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Then with a little preliminary research, I pinned down an aviator in one of the pictures who served with the 322nd Bomb Group, a B-26 outfit. I sent a request to the B26.com folks and waited. I received a response and a request from that researcher. He notified me that this Lt. flew a mission on 13 June 1944 on B-26B-25-MA Marauder “Flak Bait” and part of it was on display at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. He asked if I had any pictures of any B-26s the Lt. flew on and if I could send them his way. I sent a few photos and asked if he had an officer number for this flier, as it would help with my research. He replied that he had located one from a citation in the 322nd BG records and sent it my way. This helped out a lot. At least I could bounce this number off a NARA request and see what transpired.

 

When the USAAF award cards came online, I was able to search and locate his DFC General Order. I had previously sent a NARA request for his records before I located the DFC award card. Oddly enough, the medal, award card and the mission list have the same name spelled with an ‘a’. Here’s the award card.

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The official records I received from NARA had the spelling with an ‘e’ so anything directly related with flying used ‘a’ and all other paperwork used ’e.’ Here are his discharge documents as an Aviation Cadet and at the end of the war.

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I sent a request for the citation and it sealed the deal on the spelling regarding the DFC. While I appreciate all DFCs and AMs to fliers, I really like single-event decorations that pinpoint an action associated with the earning of the decoration. Here’s the citation and close up of the engraving.

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donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif


donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

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