SASSER, JAMES EMORY, Second Lieutenant, # 0-678437, USAAF

 

James E. Sasser was born on 29 July 1919 in Larel, Kentucky, to Milton Bradley Sasser (1880-1971) and Nettie (Hale) Sasser (1877-1966). Siblings were William Payton Sasser (1902-1985), Ernest Edwin Sasser (1911-1911), Vernon Sasser (1912-1912), Olive “Ollie” (Sasser) Hale (1913-1994), and Arnold R. Sasser (1915-1917). He was married to Mary R. (Hopkins) Sasser on 13 January 1943 in Hidalgo, Texas. She was living in Corbin, Kentucky, when he died.

 

He enlisted in the USAAF in Lexington, Kentucky, on 23 March 1942. After enlisting, he completed flight instruction through advanced schools and was assigned to fly the C-87 Express Liberator. He was multi-engine rated and earned his commission and pilot wings. He was sent overseas to India. On 10 September 1943 a C-87 (B-24 cargo variant, Express Liberator), # 41-11908, assigned to 10th Air Force, 22nd Transport Group, 77th Transport Squadron, Jorhat, India, departed the airfield at 0557 IST on a cargo mission through the Himalayan mountain range (the Hump) to Kunming, China. It crashed enroute and was never found. It crashed near Njawntawng, Hukwang River Valley, Burma. He is remembered on the tablets of the missing in the Manila American Cemetery & Memorial, Philippines. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal.

 

His father, born 10 June 1880, served in the U.S. Army, Private, 2nd Kentucky Infantry Regiment, Co. A, during the Spanish-American War. He died 14 March 1971 and is buried in the A.R. Dyche Memorial Park, London, Laurel Co., Kentucky.

HICKS, NORMAN IVORY, JR., Second Lieutenant, # 0-797003, USAAF

 

Norman I. Hicks was born on 15 April 1915 in Raleigh, Wake Co., North Carolina, to Norman T. Hicks (1888-1956) and Beulah Ann (Ferrell) Hicks (1895-1971). A sibling was Gertrude A. (Hicks) Davis (1916-1988).

 

He registered for the WWII draft, resided at 15 S. Boylan Ave., Raleigh, NC, employed by the State of North Carolina as theater manager, and described himself as 5’11”, 150 lbs, with brown hair and eyes. He enlisted in the USAAF at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, on 24 March 1942. After enlisting, he completed navigator instruction through advanced schools and was assigned to navigate the C-87 Express Liberator. He earned his commission and wings at Coral Gables, Florida. He was sent overseas to India. On 10 September 1943 a C-87 (B-24 cargo variant, Express Liberator), # 41-11908, assigned to 10th Air Force, 22nd Transport Group, 77th Transport Squadron, Jorhat, India, departed the airfield at 0557 IST on a cargo mission through the Himalayan mountain range (the Hump) to Kunming, China. It crashed enroute and was never found. It crashed near Njawntawng, Hukwang River Valley, Burma. He is remembered on the tablets of the missing in the Manila American Cemetery & Memorial, Philippines. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal.