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SCHLEICHER, JAMES LEE, Captain, # 0-439684, USAAF

 

James L. Schleicher was born on 18 February 1921 in Nashville, Tennessee, to Edward Watson Schleicher (1898-1986) (TN) and Mary Florence (Coble) Schleicher (1900-1976) (KS). Siblings included John Edward Schleicher (1919-1989), Edna Ruth (Schleicher) Rawls (1923-2004), Donald Frank Schleicher (1925-1983), Dorothy Jean (Schleicher) Spalding (1928-2005) and Katherine Dolores (Schleicher) (1936-2013).

 

He enlisted in the USAAF as an aviation cadet at Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia, on 16 August 1941. He had completed two years of college. He was selected after basic flight training to be trained to pilot the new B-29 Superfortress. He earned his commission and pilot wings. On 26 June 1944, a B-29, #42-6323, nicknamed “Eileen,” assigned to 20th Air Force, 444th Bomb Group, 678th Bomb Squadron, crashed on takeoff from the airfield at Chabua, India. The aircraft was a total loss and all of the crew were killed. Some were deemed “killed during an operational flight.” Once the crew remains were recovered, they were buried in the airfield cemetery at Kalaikunda, India. After his remains were recovered from India, burial was in the Nashville National Cemetery, Nashville, Tennessee (Sec. Off, Grave 49).