On 10 October 1944, a C-47 A, # 43-15812, “Frivolous Sal,” assigned to 10th Air Force, 3rd Combat Cargo Group, 10th Combat Cargo Squadron, departed the airfield at Dinjan, India, on a secret mission to Myitkyina, Burma. It was last contacted by radio on departure from Warzup, Burma, with Cpl. Clarence H. Newcomb, # 33297100, and its destination from Warzup was Myitkyina. The crew were:
Pilot 1stLt Edward L. Winston 0-806949
Co-Pilot 2ndLt Richard U. Reusch 0-768668
Aerial Engineer TSgt Hiram T. Hovick 33194728
Radio Operator Cpl Maurice P. McKay 19169536
It was on a combat mission. Its cargo was unknown to clerical staff. From 10th Combat Cargo Squadron commander to 10th Air Force, dated 12 December 1944: The demolished C-47A was found on 7 November 1944 by a ground party from Headquarters, Air Jungle Rescue Unit, Tingkawk Sakan, Burma. The C-47Z was completely demolished from the center of the fuselage to the nose. The tail was intact, and the serial number was plainly visible. The rest was gutted by fire. “The pilot, co-pilot and engineer were burned to the point of near cremation.” Nothing was found of the radio operator, Cpl. Maurice P. McKay. A map in the MACR file shows that the crash was just North of the Thi Seingon River between the villages of We ban and Kweindwa, near a tributary of the Seingon River. It was off course, probably taking evasive action from a threat.
The next-of-kin were listed as:
Winston Mr. & Mrs. Lewis E. Winston, parents, 701 Main St, Blackburg, VA
Reusch Mary E. (Reusch) Schwankl, S, 391 Beacon St, Saint Paul, Minn.
Hovick Margaret B. Hovick, W, 641 W. 4th St, Long Beach, CA
McKay Marion B. McKay, F, Rte 1, Box 317, Troutdale, OR