He enlisted in the USAAF in Newark, New Jersey, on 21 February 1942. He began flight training in Kansas and completed advanced flight training in New Mexico and Texas and earned his commission and pilot wings. He was selected for the B-29 Superfortress. He and his crew departed for China in August 1944. On 7 December 1944, B-29, # 42-6299, “Humpin’ Honey,” of 20th Air Force, Pardoba India, 462nd Bomb Group, 770th Bomb Squadro, departed the airfield at Kuinglai, China, on a bombing mission to Mukden, Manchuria. Over the target, at 0122 Zulu, an enemy aircraft crashed head-long into the B-29, killing all but two of the crew on board (MACR 10125). SSgt Beckwith reported that the first unusual condition that was noticed in the B-29 was the disappearance of about 20 feet of the left wing. The B-29 seemed to fly straight and level for a while then started to spin to the left. SSgt Huss, Sgt Ruddy and Beckwith prepared to leave the gunners compartment to bail out. During this, Beckwith called on the interphone to the pilot to inform him of the damage to the left wing. There was no acknowledgment or answer. After the spin began, the alarm bell started to ring. Before he was able to completely fasten his parachute, he passed out from lack of oxygen. Before, he passed out, Sgt Ruddy entered the radar compartment. When Beckwith regained consciousness, he was out of the B-29 in a free fall at about 4,000 feet altitude. Only his arms were through the parachute straps, not his legs. He did not believe he had time to fasten the chest and leg straps so he pulled the rip cord and stayed with the parachute. After the parachute opened, he noticed that parts of the B-29 falling around him. He believes he saw the tail section hit the ground. They landed near a Japanese guard house, so did not have any chance to practice escape and evasion. He is remembered on the memorial wall of the Manila American Memorial Cemetery & Mausoleum, Philippines. After recover from China, his remains are buried in Arlington National Cemetery (Sec. M, Site 327-B). He was awarded the Air Medal and the Purple Heart.

KREMER, JOSEPH DALE, Second Lieutenant, # 0-811671, USAAF

 

Joseph D. Kremer was born on 25 December 1920 in Cooley, Apache, Arizona, to Peter Henry Kremer (1885-1965) and Julia Ann (Savage) Kremer (1890-1981). Siblings included Henry Warren Kremer (1919-1993), Donald William Kremer (1922-1970), Julia Rose (Kremer) Metz (1924-1984), Helen (Krember) Hookey (1927-    ), and Melvin Merrell Kremer (1933-    ).

 

He enlisted in the U.S. Army National Guard on 16 September 1940. He was eventually plced on active duty and trained as a navigator on the B-29 Superfortress. He and his crew departed for China in August 1944. On 7 December 1944, B-29, # 42-6299, “Humpin’ Honey,” of 20th Air Force, Pardoba India, 462nd Bomb Group, 770th Bomb Squadro, departed the airfield at Kuinglai, China, on a bombing mission to Mukden, Manchuria. Over the target, at 0122 Zulu, an enemy aircraft crashed head-long into the B-29, killing all but two of the crew on board (MACR 10125).