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James Oliver Combest

Military

Assigned to 407BS, 92BG, 8AF USAAF. Took off from Goose Bay in YB-40 42-5732 en route to Meeks Field, Iceland but there was a severe storm in that area. Aiming toward an alternate base while dealing with the storm, the plane was running out of fuel. Pilot made a crash landing at Brenish on the Isle of Lewis, UK. 7-May-43 RTD

Killed on 28-Jun-43 mission to Saint Nazaire, aboard B-17 piloted by Lt Stafford W Webb; Hit in abdomen by large chunk of flak, no 1st aid possible, died within 30 seconds of being hit. Killed in Action (KIA)

Awards: PH.

Service

People

  • Paul Casey

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    Assigned to 326BS, 92BG, 8AF USAAF. Shot down in B-17 42-29981 Plane ditched in North Sea. All crew rescued. 26-Jul-43. RTD Pilot of B-17 42-5801, lost on the Bochum mission, 12-Aug-43. Prisoner of War (POW). MACR 656. Awards: POW, WWII Victory, EAME.

  • Stafford Webb

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    A 1941 graduate of Denison University, Stafford Webb had signed his draft registration card on 16 October 1940 in Greensboro, NC. He received his degree in library science from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Orange County, NC and served...

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Units served with

  • 8th Air Force

    8th Air Force

    Command

  • 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few

    92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few

    Group
    The 92nd Group's 327th Bomb Squadron was the only Eighth Air Force squadron to fly YB-40s in combat. YB-40s were B-17s modified to fly as a heavily armed escort for other bombers. They were flown on missions between May and June 1943. Between May 1943...

  • 407th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 42-5732

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    (YB-40) Delivered Tulsa 29/10/42; Biggs 15/3/43; Orlando 29/4/43; Presque Is 3/5/43 Assigned Keck Prov BG; Assigned 327BS/92BG Alconbury, t/o Goose Bay for Meeks Fd, where pilot found poor weather and decided to press on for UK, and low on gas, crash...

Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 69

    28 June 1943
    The primary specific target for this mission are the lock gates at St. Nazaire, France to be attacked by two separate formations and also another force is despatched to bomb the German airfield at Beaumon Le Roger, France. A formation of 120 B-17s of...

Associated Place

  • Podington

    Military site : airfield
    Built originally to accommodate two RAF bomber squadrons, the first USAAF unit to occupy the base was the 15th Bomb Squadron in September 1942. Podington was then used as a satellite for nearby Chelveston. Work to lengthen the runways, although this...

Events

Event Location Date
Born Casey County, KY 11 July 1916

Son of Thomas Marion and Susan Armilda 'Susie' [Holder] Combest.

Enlisted Kalamazoo, MI 23 January 1942
Based Podington May 1943 – 28 June 1943

Assigned to 407BS, 92BG, 8AF USAAF.

Died Saint Nazaire 28 June 1943

Killed on 28-Jun-43 mission to Saint Nazaire, aboard B-17 piloted by Lt Stafford W Webb; Hit in abdomen by large chunk of flak. Killed in Action (KIA)

Buried Cambridge American Cemetery and Memorial, Coton, UK 29 June 1943

Interred
Cambridge American Cemetery and Memorial Coton, South Cambridgeshire District, Cambridge

Buried Mill Springs National Cemetery, Nancy, KY 1948

Re-Interred
Mill Springs National Cemetery
Nancy,
Pulaski County, KY
Pllot D, 0, 791-B

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
17 March 2019 15:59:57 Al_Skiff Changes to events and person associations
Sources

https://www.fold3.com/image/310763878?rec=299482792
https://www.fold3.com/record/84382970-james-o-combest
https://www.fold3.com/page/84382970-james-o-combest/facts
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/512058/james-oliver-combest

Date Contributor Update
17 March 2019 15:51:15 Al_Skiff Changes to middlename, service number, biography, events, unit associations, place associations and mission associations
Sources

https://www.fold3.com/image/310763878?rec=299482792
https://www.fold3.com/record/84382970-james-o-combest
https://www.fold3.com/page/84382970-james-o-combest/facts
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/512058/james-oliver-combest

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:14:47 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / Losses of the 8th & 9th AFs Vol. I by Bishop & Hey p. 501-2

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