42-27527         P47 (MACR 13008)

 

On 12 March 1945, a P-47D-23, “Lenz-Lease,” # 42-27527, assigned to 1st Air Commando Group, 5th Fighter Squadron, dparted its airfield on a patrol mission over Meiktila, Burma. It was seen to crash by Capt. Paul A. Oram, 0-795071, at about 1510 hours 3 miles NE of Meiktila. The pilot was 2ndLt Charles H. Hess Jr., # 0-714917.

 

Capt. Oram reported that the P-47 was at about 200’ altitude and was struck by ground fire. It headed south and gradually lost altitude. Fuel was streaming out. It bellied in at about 170 MPH. It bounced once and burst into flames, settled to the ground and skidded about 100 yards while in flames. The pilot crawled out of the P-47 with his flight suit smoldering. He took off all clothing except socks, shoes and shorts. He walked away from the P-47 to the South about 100 yards then West about a mile. He seemed dazed.

 

HESS, CHARLES H., JR., Second Lieutenant, # 0-714917, USAAF

 

Charles H. Hess, Jr. enlisted in the USAAF in Illinois. He completed flight instruction through advanced schools and earned his commission and pilot wings. He was sent overseas to India. On 12 March 1945, a P-47D-23, “Lenz-Lease,” # 42-27527, assigned to 1st Air Commando Group, 5th Fighter Squadron, dparted its airfield on a patrol mission over Meiktila, Burma. It was seen to crash by Capt. Paul A. Oram, 0-795071, at about 1510 hours 3 miles NE of Meiktila. Capt. Oram reported that the P-47 was at about 200’ altitude and was struck by ground fire. It headed south and gradually lost altitude. Fuel was streaming out. It bellied in at about 170 MPH. It bounced once and burst into flames, settled to the ground and skidded about 100 yards while in flames. The pilot crawled out of the P-47 with his flight suit smoldering. He took off all clothing except socks, shoes and shorts. He walked away from the P-47 to the South about 100 yards then West about a mile. He seemed dazed.

He is remembered on the memorial wall of the missing in the Manila American Cemetery & Memorial, Philippines. He was awarded the Air Medal and the Purple Heart. Inadequate data to honor this veteran and his family properly.

P-47s of 1st Air Commando