CANNON, CARL KASMARK, Sergeant, # 13097820, USAAF

 

Carl K. Cannon was born on 29 July 1918 in Buffalo, Erie Co., New York, to Joseph Aloysuis Cannon (1890-1929) and Celestine S. (Kasmark) Cannon (1885-1967). In 1950 he resided at 5925 Whitsett Ave., North Hollywood, CA.

 

He registered for the WWII draft on 16 October 1940, resided at 1818 N. Broad St., Philadelphia, PA, employed by the Philadelphia Inquirer, and described himself as 5’7 & 1/2”, 140 lbs, with brown hair and eyes. It was noted that he refused to disclose his full middle name. He enlisted in the USAAF in Philadelphia, PA, on 20 July 1942. He was trained as an aerial photographer. He was sent overseas to India. On 10 January 1944 a B25D, # 41-30438, assigned to 14th Air Force, Detached 11th Bomb Squadron (Medium), departed Suichwan, China, on a combat mission to Middle Yangtze, Kiukiang, China, and was seen to crash at 29° 41’ North & 115° 56’ East. 1stLt Jack H. Potter, 0-794447, reported that Lt.Col. Wells was flight leader and 2ndLt Skelton was flying # 2 position. The mission was low level. They approached from the South and up the river, strafing and bombing river craft encountered. At Kiukiang, they saw two large boats anchored by the North bank. Lt. Skelton attacked the nearest but turned to the left toward the city before closing to bombing range. He made a 360 degree right turn and bombed the dock. There was a large explosion. Potter next saw Skelton leaving Kiukiang on a southerly heading, trailing smoke, and in a climbing left turn. Skelton’s B-25 began losing altitude with its left wing down. There appeared to be no recovery attempt and it crashed about 5 miles South of the town. It burst into flames and exploded on impact. It skidded along then a 2nd explosion occurred. 2ndLt Robert S. Thompson, 0-796455, reported that Skelton and Potter began a run on the 2 ships, which were destroyers, Skelton made a sharp left turn toward town. He made a right turn and flew past the destroyers. He climbed to about 1,000’, made a 180 degree left turn and dove to about 500’ and released bombs. There was a terrific explosion. Skelton made a right turn over town, losing altitude. He skidded on the ground, but the B-25 burst into flames about 2-3 miles out of the town. 2ndLt Albert J. Vavrick, 0-7971-4, reported added that there was a lot of anti-aircraft fire and a large formation of enemy fighters. After recovery of crew remains, those of Skelton, Schmidt, and Miller, were indistinguishable. They were buried in a group ceremony in the Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia, on 18 July 1949 (Sec. 34, Grave 4996-4997). He was honorably discharged 27 May 1946 at the Dibble General Hospital, Menlo Park, CA. He died suddenly on 22 April 1954 and was buried in the Woodlawn Cemetery, Las Vegas, Clark Co., Nevada. He was awarded the Purple Heart with an Oak Leaf Cluster.