VANNOY, EDWARD LESLIE, JR., Major, # 0-396493, USAAF
Edward L. Vannoy, Jr., was born in 1917 in Denton, Texas, to Edward L. Vannoy (1871-1956) and Minnie Nelia (Davis) Vannoy (1876-1926) (married in 1896). Siblings included Viola Valeah (Vannoy) Smith (1897-1995), Roy Hugh Vannoy (1899-1978), and Cleo Harvey Vannoy (1907-1955) (killed in an airplane crash). His father was a jeweler and his brothers, Roy H. and Cleo H., were jewelers. He graduated from Denton H.S. and completed two years of college. The Bexar Co., Texas, Court of Criminal Appealed noted Appellate Case No. 21705 (unknown for what – likely local law enforcement’s dislike of the aviation cadets resulting in an arrest). He was married to Bobbie Jo Vannoy, Box 324, League City, Galveston Co., Texas.
In 1940, he had enlisted in the USAAF and was an aviation cadet at Randolph Field, San Antonio, Bexar Co., Texas. He completed all flight training phases and was rated as a multi-engine pilot. He earned his commission and wings. On 14 October 1944, a B-29, # 42-6280, “Klank-Klank,” assigned to 20th Air Force, Dudhkundi, India, 444th Bomb Group, 678h Bomb Squadron, with Major Vannoy as the pilot, departed Kwanghang, China, on a bombing mission to Okayma, Taiwan, and was “lost due to unknown reasons.” All died in the crash of the B-29 Superfortress. 42-6280 was believed to have been seen when the formation was coming together at Sui-Ning (30-29 N – 105-36 E) at about 0700. The formation entered an overcast and 42-6280 was not seen again. B-29, 42-6202 landed at Liangshan, believes he heard 42-6280 calling Liangshan when 42-6202 was circling Liangshan before landing at about 1600. His remains, with the unidentifiable remains of the crew, were recovered from China and all were buried in a two-casket group ceremony in the Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery, Lemay, Missouri, on 29 November 1949 (Sec. 79, Site 426 C & D). He was awarded the Purple Heart.