The weather report was poor to bad for the route. A radio contact with the airfield at Chabua was that the C-46A crew was uncertain of its position and was given a heading. No further contact. On 5 September 1944, it was reported that the C-46A crashed, found by a ground search party, and the crew were killed. The search report said: a ground party started into the jungle on 23 August ro check on unidentified aircraft wreckage. On 24 August the party reached the wreck. Capt. Varnhagen flew over the site and pin-pointed the wreckage, dropping food to the ground party. On 26 August, a telephone report was made to the Intelligence Office, Rescue Unit, 1333rd Air Base Unit, by Capt. Varnhagen. The wreckage was found South from Marherita, Assam, India, near a village, Fhangyak, on a map. The C-46A was identified and serial numbers on parts corroborated the identity. An altitude of 3,500 feet was necessary to clear the ridge where it crashed. Its course was 180º and it crashed into the ridge about 200 yards below the summit. It was accordion compacted and parts scattered for 50 yards. It broke into 3 sections, the nose and one engine were furtherest south; the center section was the fuselage; and, the tail section was north. Two bodies were found driven from the cockpit into the tail and burned. They were in small unidentifiable fragments. No evidence pointed to the third body. It was not found. A .45 caliber pistol (M-1911A), # 898737, was found. A notebook belonging to one of the pilots was found. His remains were recovered and buried in Saint Mary’s Cemetery, Covington, Kentucky. He had been awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal with an Oak Leaf Cluster.

 

His father, born 15 April 1896, served in WW I in the U.S. Army, a Corporal. He died 24 March 1968 and is buried in Saint Marys Cemetery, Fort Mitchell, Kenton Co., Kentucky.

 

His paternal uncle, Michael P. Devine, born 6 December 1893, served during WW I, a Private, 47th Aero Squadron. He registered for the WWI draft on 5 June 1917, a machinist for the U.S. Motor Car Co., Covington, Kentucky. He died 6 December 1949 and is buried in the Saint Marys Cemetery, Fort Mitchell, Kenton Co., Kentucky. He first trained at Fort Thomas, Kentucky, enlisting 9 October 1917. He was assigned to the 78th Aero Squadron. He was assigned to the 490th Aero Squadron to 15 April 1918; the 1108th Aero Squadron to 12 December 1918; the 1101st Aero Squadron to 18 January 1919; the 4th Air Park Air Station to 26 May 1919 and the 47th Aero Squadron to honorable discharge 11 July 1919.

 

His sister, Martha Y. Devine, born 31 March 1926, entered the U.S. Army (# 178386) nurse training program at the Good Samaritan Hospial, on 1 September 1944 with expected completion 1 March 1947. After the war ended, she stayed there for an inspirational career and was a founding member of the Charles F. Kettering Memorial Hospital. She died 19 May 2009 and is buried in the Calvary Cemetery, Kettering, Ohio.

490th Aero Squadron, Hicks Field, Fort Worth, Texas - RAF Training

David A. Devine (Sr.), CPL

Michael P. Devine, PVT