On 18 January 1944, a C-47A Skytrain troop carrier, 42-100696, assigned to 10th Air Force, 1st Carrier Group, 2nd Troop Carrier Squadron, departed Dinjan, India, on a food packet drop mission to Burma. It was last contacted at 1137 hours by radio. All aboard were killed in the crash in Burma. The crew was comprised of:
Pilot Capt. Joseph W. Downey 0-729145 KIA
Co-Pilot 2ndLt Robert N. Ridge 0-680079 KIA
Navigator 2ndLt Irving (NMI) Israel 0-814071 KIA
Radio Operator MSgt Glenn G. Meyer 17030221 QMC KIA
Drop Crew Pvt Joseph A. Homachek 33303876 KIA
Drop Crew Pvt Alfred (NMI) Pippen 37374530 KIA
Drop Crew Tech.5thGrd Millard H. Proctor 35488269 QMC KIA
Passenger Seaman 1st Class Arthur Meehan 633-06-69 (USN)
Passenger TSgt William F. Krautwald 36050760
It was last contacted by radio by Cpl Harold J. Peterson, 33276274. A statement by Capt. Donald G Prout, Asst. Operations Officer, said: On 19 January 1944 I went as a passenger on a B-25 to search for four missing planes, one photo ship and our three transports, numbers C-47 41-19476, C-47A 42-100615, and C-47A 42-100696. After finding no trace of the photo ship we proceeded to the area where reports indicated our transports may be located. One village had a message saying a plan was six miles in the direction indicated by an arrow. We looked over the area but found no trace of any of the ships. We were forced to return due to a lack of fuel of escorting fighters.
A radiogram received re “C-47A, 42-100696, pilot, Captain Downey, Joseph W., 0-729145, 2nd Troop Carrier Squadron, APO 487, reported missing on Form – 10th USAF 129 on 19 January 1944. Received radiogram from agents of the U.S. Army Experimental Station read as follows: NIGHT OF 19TH OUR MAN RETURNED FROM CRASHED DC-3 AT NY 6851 THIS PLANE NUMBER 42100696 HAS ONE PORTION OF WING AND TAIL REMAINING AND CONTAINS SIX BURNED BODIES WHICH CANNOT BE IDENTIFIED ALSO POSSIBLE TWO MORE ARE CONTAINED IN THE REMAINS. PLANE CONTAINED TINNED MILK ROCK SALT ONE ROLL SUPER XXRAY 35 MM FILM POSSIBLY ALREADY EXPOSED ALSO ANOTHER ROLL OF UNEXPOSED SUPER XXRAY MAGAZINE TYPE 16 MM FILM FOR V-KODAK AND FILM FOR SPEED GRAPHIC CMERA WERE ONLY MATERIALS SECURED FROM WRECKAGE. BRITISH OFFICER WILL LIKELY REACH WRECKAGE TOMORROW. AT PRESENT ARE SENDING PARTY TO SECURE ALL POSSIBLE EVIDENCE PHOTOGRAPHS AND DISPOSITION OF REMAINS. REPORT RECEIVED HERE STATES THAT SOME CARGO FROM PLANES THROWN OVERBOARD NORTH OF KAJITU CONTAINED GASOLINE IN DRUMS WITH CHINESE MARKINGS.