43-23956         P40

 

On 21 December 1944, a P-40N-20CU, # 43-23956, assigned to 14th Air Force, 5th Fighter Group, 29th Fighter Squadron, departed the airfield at Chihkiang, China, with other fighters on a parafragging and strafing mission to Hengyang, China. The fighters crashed after enemy attacked and Capt. Rogers’ fighter was seen to crash at about 0930 Z about 20 miles SW of Hengyang. The pilot was Capt. Hugh C. Rogers, # 0-461113, the flight leader of the fighter flight. A witness was 2ndLt Richard K. Spencer, 0-766748. 2ndLt Spencer reported: Before a strafing pass at a village, he saw smoke trailing Capt. Roger’s fighter as Capt. Rogers completed strafing the village. Capt. Rogers called and said he was hit and was going to crash land or bail out. He headed for some rice paddies. He dropped a smoking belly tank and dropped his bombs. The fighter stopped smoking after dropping the belly tank. He crash- landed. The fighter was torn up badly. While circling, Spencer saw Capt. Rogers run from the fighter with blood on his head and neck. Spencer circled for 20 minutes then shot up the crashed fighter. Chinese guerillas reported that Capt. Rogers was taken from Chinese by the enemy (Japanese) and that he was taken to Nanking, China.

 

ROGERS, HUGH CORBIN, Captain, # 0-461113, USAAF

 

Hugh C. Rogers was born on 26 October 1921 in Timmonsville, Florence Co., South Carolina to Asa Lloyd Rogers (1894-1946) (SC) and Delphia Olivia (Epps) Rogers (1898-1989) (NC). Siblings were Sarah Elizabeth (Rogers) Davidson (1918-2001) and James Ladson Rogers (1920-1924) and half-sibling Gloria Rogers (1935-2000). On 7 November 1942, he married P. Medora Field (Dowdle) Jackson nee Rogers (1921-2016) and they had a daughter, Sarah Frances “Sally” Rogers. He graduated from The Citadel in 1942, four years after graduating from Florence High School.

 

He began service with the U.S. Army Enigineers Corps on 30 June 1942 but transferred to the USAAF in August 1942. He completed flight instruction at Maxwell Field, Alabama and Camden Airfield, South Carolina, Macon, Georgia, Spence Field, Georgia, and Fort Myers, Florida. He was sent overseas as a trained fighter pilot to 14th Air Force in China. On 21 December 1944, a P-40N-20CU, # 43-23956, assigned to 14th Air Force, 5th Fighter Group, 29th Fighter Squadron, departed the airfield at Chihkiang, China, with other fighters on a parafragging and strafing mission to Hengyang, China. The fighters crashed after enemy attacked and Capt. Rogers’ fighter was seen to crash at about 0930 Z about 20 miles SW of Hengyang. The pilot was Capt. Hugh C. Rogers, # 0-461113, the flight leader of the fighter flight. A witness was 2ndLt Richard K. Spencer, 0-766748.

2ndLt Spencer reported: Before a strafing pass at a village, he saw smoke trailing Capt. Roger’s fighter as Capt. Rogers completed strafing the village. Capt. Rogers called and said he was hit and was going to crash land or bail out. He headed for some rice paddies. He dropped a smoking belly tank and dropped his bombs. The fighter stopped smoking after dropping the belly tank. He crash- landed. The fighter was torn up badly. While circling, Spencer saw Capt. Rogers run from the fighter with blood on his head and neck. Spencer circled for 20 minutes then shot up the crashed fighter. Chinese guerillas reported that Capt. Rogers was taken from Chinese by the enemy (Japanese) and that he was taken to Nanking, China. He was declared legally deceased on 27 March 1946 by Public Law. His remains are missing. He is remembered on the memorial wall at the Manila American Cemetery & Memorial, Philippines. A memorial marker was placed in the Byrd Cemetery, Timmonsville, Florence Co., South Carolina. He was awarded the Air Medal and the Purple Heart.