43-4360

 

On 13 May 1944 B-25H, # 43-4360, assigned 14th Air Force, 341st Bomb Group, 491st Bomb Squadron, Yangkai, China, departed the ai field at Yangkai on a combat mission to Yunnanyi, China. It was last sighted at about 1246 hours at 24º, 43’ North - 100º, 27’ East. It was returning from mission, flew into weather but not seen agan after clearing weather. All were killed in action. The crew was comprised of:

                                       Pilot                                         1stLt Vernon R. Gauvain                     0-677708

                                       Co-Pilot                                   2ndLt George W. Roe                          0-752447

                                       Navigator/Bombardier            2ndLt Morris L. Eldridge                     0-744263

                                       Engineer                                  Sgt William W. Priest                           32483398

                                       Radio Operator                        SSgt Robert B. Flansburg                    36566664

                                       Armorer                                   Sgt Floyd H. Johnson                           14124836

                                       (All enlisted men served as gunners)

It was last seen by: Capt. Ronald D. Shirlaw, 0-794451 and 1stLt Gene E. Lefebvre, 0-733433.

Capt. Shirlaw reported: The formation of 2 ships left target at Lungling and flew east on course of 78º. About 100 miles east of Lungling, they entered an overcast and emerged after 3-4 minutes. Altitude was 12,500 feet. 

Next-of-kin were listed as:

                                       Gauvain           Mrs Rose L. Gauvain, ##### Minnesota Ave, St. Louis, MO

                                       Roe                  Mr George W. Roe, Gillette, Wyoming

                                       Eldridge           Mr Alfred Eldridge, Rte 1, Fort Townsend, WA

                                       Flansburg         Mrs Alice Flansburg, 149 W. Philadelphia, Detroit, Mich.

                                       Priest               Mrs ______ Priest, East Atlantic Ave, Stratford, NJ

                                       Johnson           Mrs Florence L Johnson, 91 Wesley St, _____burg, South Carolina

A Graves Registration team was unable to recover the remains of the crew. A memorial marker for 1stLt Gauvain was placed in the Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery, Section M, Site 3.

GAUVAIN, VERNON RAYMOND, First Lieutenant, # 0-677708, USAAF

 

Vernon R. Gauvain was born 15 January 1921 in Missouri to Raymond Louis Gauvain (1895-1970) and Rose A. Gauvain (1900-1970), Siblings included Marvin Louis Gauvain (1924-2012), Russell Gauvain (1927-1988), Betty J. Gauvain (    -1978), and Donald Gauvain (1932-1996).

 

He registered for the WW II draft while working for the National Candy Company. He described himself as 5’10”, 150 lbs, with brown hair and blue eyes. He enlisted in the USAAF on 3 April 1942 in St. Louis, MO. He completed flight training and was rated for multi-engine aircraft and earned his commission and wings. On 13 May 1944 B-25H, # 43-4360, assigned 14th Air Force, 341st Bomb Group, 491st Bomb Squadron, Yangkai, China, departed the air field at Yangkai on a combat mission to Yunnanyi, China. It was last sighted at about 1246 hours at 24º, 43’ North - 100º, 27’ East. It was returning from mission, flew into weather but not seen agan after clearing weather. All were killed in action. He is remembered at the Manila American Cemetery & Memorial, Philippines. A memorial marker was placed in the Jefferson National Cemetery, where his brother is buried.