Memorial page for the seven airmen of the 109th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron who were recorded as Killed or Missing In Action at the war's end. Their names are Lieutenant Stone, Lieutenant Fesselemyer [spelt 'Fesselmyer' on image], Lieutenant Curtis, Lieutenant Rowell, Lieutenant Rakow, Lieutenant Olson and Lieutenant Lee.
Howard Rowell served as a pilot with the 109th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron.
On 9 June 1944 he flew a reconnaissance mission from Middle Wallop to the Cherbourg Peninsula. He was flying P-51B 43-12401.
Lieutenant Detlef J Keller recorded the following statement about the mission:
"On 9 June 1944 at approximately 2025 hours, after flying on instruments across the Channle, we, Lt Rowell and myself, hit landfall at Varsville, France. Swinging left down the beach with myself on the right and flying on the deck, due to low ceiling and rain, we flew for some time. Visibility was poor because of the rain pounding on the windshield."
"All of a sudden I noticed Barrage Balloons above us. At once I notified Lt Rowell of this fact. In exact words I said, 'Stinky, look out for the Barrage Balloons'. I received no reply. At this time they, (some of the merchant-men), commenced firing. I saw Lt Rowell break to the left as I broke to the right. Rowell said 'Keller, fire your flares. (Colors of the Day)."
"This was the last I heard or saw of Lt Rowell. It is my personal opinion that it would have been impossible for Lt Rowell to have flown through the terrific Naval AckAck Barrage without being hit."
He was reported as Missing in Action and his name is recorded on the Tablets of the Missing at Cambridge American Cemetery. The date of death recorded on the tablets is a year and a day after he went missing, as was customary.
Units served with
The four Squadrons of the 67th Recon Group (12th Observation - later Reconnaissance Squadron; 107th Observation - later Reconnaissance Squadron; 109th Observation - later Reconnaissance Squadron and 153rd Observation - later Reconnaissance Squadron)...
Military site : airfield
Planned as an RAF bomber station with a grass airfield, concrete perimeter track and hardstandings, Middle Wallop opened as a training base in April 1940, before construction was complete. Used as an RAF day-fighter and night-fighter base during 1940...
Entered service from this state.
|Missing in Action (MIA)
||9 June 1944
Commemorated on the Tablets of the Missing