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Howard Joseph LaLonde Jr

Military

Assigned to 389BG, 8AF. Detached to 415BS, 98BG, 9AF. 26 x combat missions. Navigator of B-24 Liberator 41-11817 'Stinger' participated in the 1-Aug-43 Ploesti oil refinery raid returning safely to Libya with only one crew member WIA. Regular A/C was 42-40776 “Old Blister Butt”.

Awards: DFC (OLC), AM (5OLC), WWII Victory, EAME.

Service

People

  • Andrew Opsata

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 389th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 389BG, 8AF, detached to 514BS, 98BG, 9AF USAAF. 27 x combat missions. Pilot of B-24 Liberator 41-11817 'Stinger' participated in the 1st Aug 43 Ploesti oil refinery raid returning safely to Libya with only one crew member WIA. ...

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Units served with

  • 9th Air Force
  • 389th Bomb Group

    389th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 389th Bomb Group, known in more familiar terms as "the Sky Scorpions", flew strategic bombing missions in B-24 Liberators from Hethel, England. They also sent detachments to join bases in North Africa at Benghazi No. 10, Libya, between 3 July 1943...

  • 98th Bomb Group

    98th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 98th trained for bombardment missions with B-24 Liberators during the first half of 1942. ...

  • 415th Bomb Squadron

    415th Bomb Squadron

    Squadron
    Established as a B-24 Liberator reconnaissance squadron in early 1942. Engaged initially in antisubmarine patrols over the Gulf of Mexico; redesignated as a heavy bomb squadron and trained by Third Air Force. Deployed to Egypt in June 1942 over South...

Aircraft

  • 41-11817 'Stinger'

    B-24 Liberator
    The B-24D Liberator, # 41-11817 'Stinger' participated in the 1st Aug 43 Ploesti oil refinery raid returning safely to Libya with only one crew member WIA. On Operation Tidal Wave, 'STINGER''s pilot was Lt. Andrew Opsata. And it's navigator was Maj...

  • 42-40776 'Old Blister Butt' 'Widow'

    B-24 Liberator
    B-24D Liberator #42-40776 'H' 'Old Blister Butt' 564th BS, 389th BG, 8th AF, flew on 1st Aug 43 Ploesti oil refinery raid piloted by Robert L Wright, returning safely to Libya. ...

Missions

  • Operation Tidal Wave

    1 August 1943
    Operation TIDAL WAVE. B24D Liberators attack the oil refineries at Ploesti, Romania. The bombers flew low to avoid radar detection and dropped time delayed bombs. Out of the 177 B-24s that took part in the raid 167 managed to attack their targets. 57 B...

Associated Place

  • Hethel

    Military site : airfield
    Construction of Hethel airfield began in 1941, and was finished in late 1942. The number of hardstandings was increased from the planned 36 to 50 in 1942, in order to accommodate a full heavy bomb group. The 320th Bomb Group occupied the base for ten...

Events

Event Location Date
Born Cleveland, OH 3 August 1918

Son of Howard J Sr and Adelaide LaLonde.

Enlisted Cleveland, OH 4 August 1941

Cleveland, Ohio

Assigned Benghazi, Libya 1943

Assigned to 415BS, 98BG, 9AF.

Survived Ploesti Ploiești, Romania 1 August 1943

Navigator of B-24 Liberator 41-11817 'Stinger' participated in the 1-Aug-43 Ploesti oil refinery raid returning safely to Libya with only one crewmember WIA.

Died 6 August 1975
Buried Calvary Cemetery Springfield, Clark County, OH 9 August 1975

Calvary Cemetery
Springfield,
Clark County, Ohio

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
29 January 2021 14:21:06 Al_Skiff Changes to middlename, suffix, nickname, service number, highest rank, biography, awards, events, unit associations, place associations and aircraft associations
Sources

https://www.fold3.com/image/679863361
https://www.fold3.com/record/88573228/world-war-ii-army-enlistment-recor...
https://wandpoperationtidalwave.wordpress.com/
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/184013626/howard-j-lalonde

Date Contributor Update
17 April 2020 19:38:01 jmoore43 Changes to unit associations
Sources

Added connections to the 415 BS & 98 BG mentioned in the events section.

Date Contributor Update
17 April 2020 19:34:48 jmoore43 Changes to biography
Sources

Added a "-" to the A/C serial number in the "Summary biography" to aid clarity & consistency.

Date Contributor Update
30 March 2015 18:36:26 Al_Skiff Created entry with surname, firstname, nationality, highest rank, role, biography, events, unit associations, aircraft associations, mission associations and media associations
Sources

USAAF Photo.

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