NORMAND, JOHN, JR., Staff Sergeant, # 35582790, USAAF
John Normand, Jr., was born on 2 June 1920 in Texas to John Normand (1892-1970) (TX) and Daisy (Millard) Normand (1899-1984) (LA) (married 9 January 1917 in Nueces, Texas). Siblings included Virginia (Norman) Stonecipher (1918-2008). He completed one year of college. In 1935 the family lived in Hammond, Lake Co., IN, and in 1940 in Schererville, Lake Co., IN. He was married to Maxine Mabel (Haddix) McNeese nee Normand (1922-2015). They married 11 March 1941 in Lake County, Indiana.
He enlisted 21 January 1943 in Indianapolis, Indiana. He was trained in the maintenance and operation of the radio equipment on the B-29 Superfortress and earned his crewman wings. On 21 November 1944, a B-29, # 42-6278, “Acid Test,” of the 20th Air Force, 462nd Bomb Group, 770th Bomb Squadron, Piardoba, India, departed the airfield at Kulainglai, China, on a bombing mission to Omura, Japan. It was fired upon by enemy aircraft over the target aircraft assembly plant at Omura, Japan, at about 0802 hours. Capt. Abranovic reported that they had just left the target and were making a right turn when a B-29 was reported spinning to the ground from an altitude of about 22,000 feet. Lt.Col. Sullivan reported that B-29 #278 was out of control and entered a spin after a fighter attack over Omura, Japan, and that it passed under his B-29. Capt. Johnson reported that an enemy fighter attacked and #278 went out of control, turning to the left and nearly colliding with # 389. He saw the B-29 to their left going down in a vertical spin to the right. His gunners reported the B-29 still spinning at about 5,000 feet below them before sight of it was lost. No parachutes were seen. However, SSgt. Normand was able to parachute or was thrown clear of the aircraft or a section of the aircraft crashed onto an island, before it was lost. He died that same day. His remains were recovered from the Japan area and temporarily buried. His remains were recovered from the Manila American Cemetery & Memorial, Philippines, and buried in the New Albany National Cemetery, New Albany, Indiana, on 8 June 1951 (Sec. F, Grave 3580). He was awarded the Air Medal with an Oak Leaf Cluster and the Purple Heart.