The Consolidated Aviation B-24J Liberator bomber, Tail # 42-73312, left its base in Panagarb, India, on 27 November 1943 on a bombing mission to the Insein, Burma, enemy workshops. The crew was comprised of:
Pilot 2ndLt Newton J. Kellam 0-802926
Co-Pilot 2ndLt Fred K. Schmall 0-684782
Navigator 2ndLt John O. Marcello 0-602655
Bombardier 2ndLt George E. Harmon 0-678464
Engineer SSgt Perry Marshall 14156113
Radio Operator SSgt Thomas E. Seneff 33290016
Asst. Engineer Sgt Charles W. Perry 141564141
Asst. Radio Op. Sgt Norman E. Albinson 13176804
Armorer Gunner Sgt William H. Thomas 17175086
Armorer Gunner Sgt Don Z. Davis 17162249
The father of 2ndLt Harmon wrote 10th Air Force saying that, in a round-about way, they heard the crew and his son were POWs of the Japanese. The response included a quted radio broadcast heard on 13 December 1943 - London - "The American crew of a B-24 planewho left Florida on November 6th to fly to India ended their journay of many thousands of miles in Burma as prisoners of the Japanese, according to the Japanese News Agency today, 26 days after leaving Florida, the 10 members of the crew including Lieutenant Newton C. [sic] Kellam bailed out after engine trouble had developed over Burma. They flew by way of South America, Egypt and Arabia, says the Tokyo report." It appears likely one or more crew members provided disinformation to their enemy captors.
The conclusion of the MACR investigation was that, according to the witness statement, the aircraft was downed in enemy held territory and are believed to be POWs. It notes the Japanese are routinely dilatory and unreliable as to informing the U.S. of the status of missing personnel.