43-24149         P40

 

On 6 August 1944, a P-40N-21CU, # 43-24149, assigned to 14th Air Force, 23rd Fighter Group, 118th Tactical Reconnaisance Squadron, departed the Kweilin airfield on a combat mission. The figter was last contacted by radio near Kweilin at about 1930Z. The pilot was 1stLt Ernest W. Swanson, # 0-689913. Those last in contact with him were Maj. Ira B. Jones III, 0-789325 and Capt. Raymond V. Darby, 0-727969. Capt. Darby descended through the overcasts above Kweilin safely and landed after noting two fires about a mile apart about 10 miles north of the airfield. Maj. Jones was the flight leader of 7 P-40s on a night flight that descended over the airfield at Kweilin through overcasts at 10,000 to 6,000 feet and another at 6,500 to 5,000. 1stLt Swanson was killed in a crash.

 

SWANSON, ERNEST WERNER, First Lieutenant, # 0-689913, USAAF

 

Ernest W. Swanson was born on 19 October 1915 in Wisconsin to Axel Gottfried Swanson (1882-1945) (Svensson – Sweden – arrived U.S. in 1904 – naturalized 1934) and Bertha Swanson (1891-1964) (Illinois). Siblings included Harry Walter Swanson (1912-1993), Gertrude L. (Johnson) Swanson (1918-    ), and Evelyn Mae (Swanson) Osborn (1921-2007). Her husband was William H. Osborn (1917-2012), former USAAF, Sergeant, WW II service. In 1930 his father was a baker.

 

He enlisted in the USAAF on 14 August 1940 in Madison, Wisconsin. He was trained as a fighter pilot and earned his commission and wings. He was sent overseas to 14th Air Force in China. On 6 August 1944, a P-40N-21CU, # 43-24149, assigned to 14th Air Force, 23rd Fighter Group, 118th Tactical Reconnaisance Squadron, departed the Kweilin airfield on a combat mission. The fighter was last contacted by radio near Kweilin at about 1930Z. The pilot was 1stLt Ernest W. Swanson, # 0-689913. Those last in contact with him were Maj. Ira B. Jones III, 0-789325 and Capt. Raymond V. Darby, 0-727969. Capt. Darby descended through the overcasts above Kweilin safely and landed after noting two fires about a mile apart about 10 miles north of the airfield. Maj. Jones was the flight leader of 7 P-40s on a night flight that descended over the airfield at Kweilin through overcasts at 10,000 to 6,000 feet and another at 6,500 to 5,000. 1stLt Swanson was killed in the crash. His remains were recovered and buried in Roselawn Memorial Park, Monona, Dane Co., Wisconsin.

Curtiss P-40 Warhawk