In a second interview, Wiland said the wings were sheared off and the fuselage slid under brush. The plane’s nose was not buried. Wiland and Cook tried to follow the river but had to stop overnight. After some time, Wiland saw the prints of an American boot. He more or less followed a trail for another day and a half. This led him to the Rehkau Ga-Ratja trail, and he walked for 2 more days. He collapsed and was found by the Nagas, which included the headman of Hatja. They took him across a log bridge to a small shelter. He was treated and given clothes there. A search team led by Capt. Alpert got there and took Wiland out by stretcher. Wiland was reached by Capt. Alpert, Lt. Scano and Cpl. Collins on 9 June.

 

Searches were conducted by land and air June 11th through the 15th . Further searches were conducted June 16th through the 25th.  On 12 August, 1600 hours, a search was flown with Wiland aboard. Searches were conducted through 25 February 1945. The wreckage was not found. The remainder of the souls on board are MIA.

WILAND, JOSEPH SAMUEL, First Lieutenant, # 0-796255, USAAF

 

Joseph S. Wiland was born in 1919 to Lawrence C. Wiland (1887-1973) and Gail E. (Swineford) Wiland (1892-1975) (married 14 December 1910). Siblings included Edna Pauline (Wiland) Gilchrist (1911-1987), Lawrence Eugene Wiland (1912-1987), Grace E. (Wiland) Oster (1914-1988) and Paul Nephi Wiland (1916-1993). He was married to Vivian L. Wiland (1918-2013).

 

He enlisted in the USAAF at Fort Hayes, Columbus, Ohio, on 3 July 1940. He was trained extensively as a pilot and rated for multi-engine aircraft. He was sent overseas to India. On 25 May 1944, a C-47 (Skytrain), # 42-32868, assigned to 10th Air Force, 443rd Troop Carrier Group, 2nd Troop Carrier Squadron, departed the airfield at Dinjan, Assam, India, to fly to Tingkawk Sakan, Burma, on an air supply mission. Weather was IFR conditions, visibility zero. Searches were conducted on land and in air for several months. The wreckage and some crewmen and passengers were never found. He was honorably separated 12 December 1945. He died 11 October 1996 in Hillsborough, Florida. He is buried in the Florida National Cemetery, Bushnell, Florida (Sec. 316, Grave 51).

COOK, AUGUSTUS L., Second Lieutenant, # 0-737002, USAAF

 

Augustus L. Cook was born on 1919 in Houston, Perry, Arknsas, to Elmo William Cook (1897-1968) and Catherine Mary Elizabeth (Caldwell) Cook (1899-1986), both teachers. Siblings included James Elmo Cook (1921-1984).

 

He enlisted in the USAAF on 20 December 1940 with one year of college completed. In time, he was selected for flight training, completed flight school, and was rated in multi-engine aircraft. He earned his commission and pilot wings. He was sent overseas to India. On 25 May 1944, a C-47 (Skytrain), # 42-32868, assigned to 10th Air Force, 443rd Troop Carrier Group, 2nd Troop Carrier Squadron, departed the airfield at Dinjan, Assam, India, to fly to Tingkawk Sakan, Burma, on an air supply mission. 2ndLt Cook was the co-pilot. Weather was IFR conditions, visibility zero. Searches were conducted on land and in air for several months. The wreckage and some crewmen and passengers were never found. The pilot, injured and delirious, was found nearly two weeks later on a trail far from the crash site and survived after lengthy medical care and treatment. He is remembered on the monument at the Manila American Cemetery & Memorial, Philippines.