David Reece Cartmill

Military ROLL OF HONOUR
Portrait of David Reece Cartmill during his training in the United States, c. 1942

Object Number - HU 140544 - David Reece Cartmill during his training in the United States, c. 1942

Technical Sergeant David Reece Cartmill (1920-1943) of Portland, Oregon enlisted in the US Army Air Forces in March 1942 and was assigned to the 548th Bomb Squadron, 385th Bomb Group. He arrived with the unit at at Great Ashfield, Suffolk in June 1943, and served as a flight engineer and top turret gunner on B-17 Flying Fortresses.

Cartmill was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross on 3 November 1943 for shooting down two enemy aircraft in the course of 15 combat missions. Cartmill was killed in action ten days later on his 18th combat mission on 13 November 1943. On route to Bremen, Cartmill's B-17 Flying Fortress (serial number 42-30717) nicknamed 'Man O'War' suffered a mid-air-collision with another B-17 and descended into a flat spin before exploding, one of the surviving members of his crew reported 'Sgt Cartmill never had time to leave his position before the aircraft exploded.'

News of Cartmill's award of the DFC reached his family in late November 1943, at the same time they learned he was missing in action. Cartmill was posthumously awarded the Silver Star on 13 January 1944, though his family never received the decoration.

Cartmill's effects were donated to IWM by his brother Fred (1925-2006) in 1999, Fred served with the US Navy 1943-1946.

Awards: SS, DFC, AM (OLC), PH.

Connections

See how this entry relates to other items in the archive by exploring the connections below.

Units served with

The insignia of the 385th Bomb Group.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment

People

  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 385th Bomb Group 548th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Pilot
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 385th Bomb Group 548th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Second Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Navigator
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 385th Bomb Group 548th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Second Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Bombardier
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 385th Bomb Group 548th Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: 37303242
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
  • Role/Job: waist gunner
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 385th Bomb Group 548th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
  • Role/Job: Tail Gunner

Aircraft

  • Aircraft Type: B-17 Flying Fortress
  • Nicknames: Man O War
  • Unit: 385th Bomb Group 548th Bomb Squadron
  • Aircraft Type: B-17 Flying Fortress
  • Nicknames: The Souse Familly
  • Unit: 385th Bomb Group 548th Bomb Squadron

Missions

Places

Events

Event Location Date Description

Born

Chicago, IL 27 June 1920 Son of David Morton and Theresa Marie 'Tressey' [Kraemer] Cartmill.

Enlisted

Presidio Of Monterey, CA 12 March 1942 Presidio Of Monterey, California

Died

Oldenburg 13 November 1943 Failed to Return (FTR) Bremen in B-17 42-30717 'Man O War' 13-Nov-43; mid air collision Killed in Action (KIA) MACR 1402
Portland, Oregon

Buried

River View Cemetery Portland, Multnomah County, OR River View Cemetery Portland, Multnomah County, Oregon

Based

Great Ashfield 13 November 1943 Assigned to 548BS, 385BG, 8AF USAAF.

Revisions

Date15 Nov 2021 14:37:32
ContributorEmily
Sources

Press clippings and information provided by Frederick J Cartmill from IWM object file for Reece Cartmill's collection

Date16 Feb 2021 22:11:47
ContributorMarla
Sources

Family records

Date27 Sep 2014 18:22:16
ContributorAAM
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 1402 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

David Reece Cartmill: Gallery (1 items)