KLAUS, JOSEPH B., Staff Sergeant, # 6958946, USAAF

 

Joseph B. Klaus was trained in the repair and maintenance of the mechanics of the B-25 Mitchell and earned his crewman wings. On 4 March 1944, B-25H, # 43-4259, assigned to 10th Air Force, 5318 P.A.U., departed the air base at Hailkandi, India, on a combat mission to the Irrawady River. At about 1530 hours, near Tagaung, Burma, it was last sighted making a low gunner attack on the target when the left wing hit trees and caused it to crash. The B-25H seemed to mush when he pulled up and struck trees and part of the wing came off. The B-25H climbed a little and then the left wing went down and the B-25H crashed into some woods, cart-wheeling about 100 yards then exploded. The crew was killed. The remains of the crew were recovered by Graves Registration from the cemetery in Hawaii. Unable to distinguish the remains from each other, a single casket burial was arranged for 1stLt Dillard, SSgt Klaus, TSgt Postlewait, and PFC Winn, in the Zachary Taylor National Cemetery, Louisville, Kentucky, on 29 September 1949 (Section E, Grave 172-173. The family placed a marker honoring him in Richfield City Cemetery, Richfield, Sevier, tan.

POSTLEWAIT, WILLIAM HENRY, Technical Sergeant, # 7025559, USAAF

 

William H. Postlewait was born on 11 December 1915 in Valier, Jefferson County, Pennsylvania to Fitz John Postlewait (1872-1934) and Edna Alice (Mauk) Postlewait (1885-1911). Siblings include Allen Postlewait (1904-1984), Andrew B. Postlewait , Kenneth Postlewait (1912-1979) and Cordelia “Cordie” Cecil Postlewait (1908-1911). He graduated from Punxsutawney High School in 1933.

 

He enlisted in June, 1940, and after training as a radio operator and armorer (responsible for te maintenance and function of all radio and interphone equipement and weapons on the B-25 Mitchell), he was sent overseas to India in November, 1943. On 4 March 1944, B-25H, # 43-4259, assigned to 10th Air Force, 5318 P.A.U., departed the air base at Hailkandi, India, on a combat mission to the Irrawady River. At about 1530 hours, near Tagaung, Burma, it was last sighted making a low gunner attack on the target when the left wing hit trees and caused it to crash. The B-25H seemed to mush when he pulled up and struck trees and part of the wing came off. The B-25H climbed a little and then the left wing went down and the B-25H crashed into some woods, cart-wheeling about 100 yards then exploded. The crew was killed. The remains of the crew were recovered by Graves Registration from the cemetery in Hawaii. Unable to distinguish the remains from each other, a single casket burial was arranged for 1stLt Dillard, SSgt Klaus, TSgt Postlewait, and PFC Winn, in the Zachary Taylor National Cemetery, Louisville, Kentucky, on 29 September 1949 (Section E, Grave 172-173.