42-27533         P47

 

On 19 February 1945, a P-47D-23RA, “Weenie Waggin,” # 42-27533, assigned to 1st Air Commando Group, 5th Fighter Squadron, departed its advance airfield on a mission to strafe Thazi, Burma. It was last contacted by radio in the vicinity of Yamethin at about 0945 hours. The pilot was 1stLt Frank S. Byrne Jr., 0-692133, who was killed in action. He was last sighted by 1stLt Marion C. Ball, 0-692129, and 2ndLt James A. Knight, 0-714938. A hand drawn map accompanies the MACR.

 

BYRNE, FRANK S., JR., First Lieutenant, # 0-692133, USAAF

 

Francis “Frank” S. Byrne Jr. was born in 1923 in Queens Co., New York to Frank S. Byrne (1893-    ) (NYPD Lieutenant) and Katherine (Segrave) Byrne (1896-1945) (married 27 May 1921, Bronx, NY). Siblings included Katherine Byrne (1927-    ).

 

Frank S. Byrne Jr. enlisted in the USAAF 5 November 1942 and completed flight instruction through advanced schools to fly the Republic Aircraft P-47 Thunderbolt. He earned his commission and wings on 1 October 1943. He was sent overseas to India. On 19 February 1945, a P-47D-23RA, “Weenie Waggin,” # 42-27533, assigned to 1st Air Commando Group, 5th Fighter Squadron, departed its advance airfield on a mission to strafe Thazi, Burma. It was last contacted by radio in the vicinity of Yamethin at about 0945 hours. After recover of his remains from the USAAF military cemetery at Barrackpore, India, his remains were buried in the Mount Saint Mary Cemetery, Flushing, Queens Co., New York (Sec. 10, Row 42, Grave 54). He was last sighted by 1stLt Marion C. Ball, 0-692129, and 2ndLt James A. Knight, 0-714938. A hand drawn map accompanies the MACR. After recover of his remains from the USAAF military cemetery at Barrackpore, India, his remains were buried with his family in the Mount Saint Mary Cemetery, Flushing, Queens Co., New York.

 

Daily News (NY – 9 March 1945): The last letter Police Lieutenant Frank S. Byrne received from his son, Lieut. Frank Byrne Jr., said that the 22-year-old [P-47] pilot was “having a lot of fun” in the Burma area. Now Lieut. Byrne, of the Gates Avenue station, Brooklyn, has been notified that his son has been missing in action over Burma since February 19th. Frank Jr., his father said, had been on 100 missions. He was a member of a fighter squadron in the First Air Commando Group. The flier, whose home is at 3901 207th St., Bayside, Queens, was in his first year at St. John’s University when he joined the air corps November 5th, 1942. He was commissioned October 1st 1943 and was promoted to First Lieutenant overseas. NYPD Lt. Byrne of Bayside, Queens, NY.