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John T Swais


John T Swais served as a pilot with the 401st Bomb Squadron of the 91st Bomb Group.

Before the war he had been a college football star back home in Oklahoma.

Swais was Killed in Action (KIA) on 26 February 1943 in B-17 41-24447 'Kickapoo'. The aircraft was attacked by German fighters and crashed into North Sea.


Units served with

  • 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars

    91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars

    The 91st Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated at Harding Field, Louisiana on 15-April-1942 and went to MacDill Field, Florida for the first phase of training from 16-May-1942 to 25-June-1942. The Group was then assigned to 2nd Air Force at Walla...

  • 401st Bomb Squadron


  • 41-24447 Kickapoo

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Assigned 401BS/91BG [LL-H] Bangor 29-Aug-42; Bassingbourn 1-Oct-42; Missing in Action 11m Wilhelmshafen 26-Feb-44. Flak hit caused fire in #4, crashed North Sea. 10 Killed in Action, Missing Air Crew Report 4830. KICKAPOO. ...


  • VIII Bomber Command 37

    26 February 1943
    After 10 days of weather related delays of the bomber offensive, a mission is organised with the port facilities of Emden, Germany as the primary target. However, Emden is obscured by cloud cover and all formations divert to attack the port facilities...

Associated Place

  • Bassingbourn

    Military site : airfield
    Now home to a museum all about the aifield and its USAAF residents ( , Bassingbourn opened in 1938 as part of the RAF's pre-war expansion programme. The RAF continued to use it until late in 1942 when its long...


Event Location Date
Born Sulphur Springs, TX 75482, USA 1919
Enlisted Oklahoma City, OK, USA 29 April 1941
Killed in Action (KIA) North Sea 26 February 1943
Commemorated Cambridge American Cemetery and Memorial, Madingley Road, Coton, Cambridgeshire CB23 7PH, UK 1945

Commemorated on the Wall of the Missing, Cambridge American Cemetery.


Date Contributor Update
20 September 2016 16:22:41 Lucy May Changes to biography

Correspondence with John T Swais' great niece, Susan Brooks.

Date Contributor Update
21 July 2016 17:09:32 Lucy May Changes to events

Changed place of birth from Tulsa OK to Sulphur Springs TX after correspondence with a relative, Susan Brooks.

See also:
NARA enlistment record:

Date Contributor Update
31 May 2015 23:58:24 Lee8thbuff Changes to service number, biography, awards, events, place associations and mission associations

Lee Cunningham 31-May-2015. Added decorations and Commemoration event per American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) records; made connections to Place and Mission wihtin existing website data; Edited Summary Biography based on "Losses of the 8th & 9th AIr Forces", Stan Bishop & John A. Hey, MBE; Corrected SN per Missing Air Crew Report (MACR) 4830.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:16:43 AAM AAM ingest

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 3575 / MACR 3575 / 4830, Losses of the 8th and 9th AFs Vol. 1 by Bishop and Hey p. 80, Ragged Irregulars of Bassingbourn by Havelaar p. 25 and Roll of Honor Appendix 4 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database