OLSON, JEROME LAMBERT, First Lieutenant, # 0-665102, USAAF
Jerome L. Olson was born on 16 June 1919 in Oak Park, Illinois, to Raymond Roy Olson (1888-1939) and Margaret M. (Crowley) Olson (1884-1968) (married 20 January 1912, Chicago, IL). Siblings were Raymond Roy Olson Jr. (1913-2000), Margaret Mary (Olson) Snow (1915-2007).
He graduated from Oak Park River Forest High School, Oak Park, Illinois.
He registered for the WWII draft on 16 October 1940, resided at 1103 W. Illinois St., Urbana, Champaigne Co., IL, self employed with a restaurant, and described himself as 5’10”, 145 lbs, with brown hair and blue eyes. He enlisted in the USAAF as an aviation cadet at Chanute Field, Illinois, on 19 January 1942. After enlisting in the USAAF, he completed flight instruction through advanced schools and was multi-engine rated. He earned his commission and pilot wings. He was sent overseas to India. On 17 March 1945 a Douglas C-54 Skymaster, # 42-72418, assigned to 10th Air Force, 1345th AAF Base Unit, Kurmitola, India, departed the airfield at Chanyi, China, on a return flight to Kurmitola through the Himalayan mountain range (the Hump). On 3 June 1945, the 1345th AAF Base Unit, Bengel, reported that the crew was killed in action. The Mohanbari Search & Rescue Squadron said that a ground search party located the wreckage of the C-54 and the remains of what appeared to be three bodies. Natives reported no survivors. Evidence was found identifying Capt. Harris. The C-54 crashed into the mountainside near Tengchung, China. Engines were buried three feet in the ground by the impact and wreckage was strewn over a 500-yard area. Remains were buried at the wreckage site. After recovery from China, the crew remains were indistinguishable, and the crew was buried in a group ceremony and grave in the Fort Leavenworth National Cemetery, Fort Leavenworth, Leavenworth Co., Kansas (Sec. 2, Grave 259).
His brother, Raymond R. Olson Jr., born 31 August 1913, served in the U.S. Army, Technician 5th Grade, from 6 November 1941 to 9 December 1945. He died 26 April 2000 and is buried in the Lakeside Cemetery, Herman, Minnesota.