He registered for the WWII draft on 16 October 1940, employed by the Aggie Theater, resided at 419 W. 3rd St., Stllwater, Payne Co., Oklahoma, and described himself as 5’10”, 150 lbs, with brown hair and eyes. He enlisted in the USAAF in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, on 25 March 1942. He completed flight instruction through advanced school and was assigned to fly the Curtiss P-40 Warhawk. He earned his commission and fighter pilot wings. He was sent overseas through India to China. On 20 January 1945 a Curtiss P-40N-20CU Warhawk, # 43-23372, assigned 14th Air Force, 51st Fighter Group, 26th Fighter Squadron, Kunming, China, departed the airfield at Yunnanyi, China, on a flight to Kunming, China. Last contact by radio was at about 1500 Zulu between Yunnanyi and Kunming. Capt. Joseph E. Hearn, 0-803381, was in charge of the search. Aircraft from the 26th Fighter Squadron, the 21st Photo Reconnaissance Squadron and the 19th Liaison Squadron searched all of 21 January 1945. The Chinese guerilla and army net was alerted. 2ndLt John H. Jobson reported that at about 1500 hours, Capt. Burton radioed him for the flight to “Hose Nose,” meaning to wait for him so he could join them. No further contact was made. He is remembered on the tablets of the missing but is buried in the Manila American Cemetery & Memorial, Philippines. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal, and the Chinese Order of Yun Hoi, Cloud & Banner Medal, also known as the Order of the Resplendent Banner is a military award of the Republic of China. It was instituted on June 15, 1935 and is awarded in nine grades for contributions to national security

43-24960         MACR 14773


On 18 July 1945 a North American Aircraft P-51C-10 Mustang, # 43-24960, assigned 14th Air Force, 23rd Fighter Group, 74th Fighter Squadron, Luliang, China, departed the airfield at Tuhshan, China, on a combat fighter sweep over Hsingan, China. The P-51 crashed and burned at about 1300 Zulu about 8 miles southwest of Chuanhsien, China. The pilot was 2ndLt John A. Oparowski, # 0-889969.


Maj. Floyd Finberg reported that 2ndLt Oparowski was his wingman on a four-fighter flight. At 1200 hours the flight reached its secondary target, the road northeast of Chaunsien, China. The bombed with fragmentation bombs and strafed buildings in the vicinity of Huangshapu, China. 2ndLt Oparowski called and said his windshield was covered with oil; at about 1,000’ heading west of Huangshapu. After no contact, Maj. Finberg saw a fire with black smoke about 5 miles west of Huangshapu. He overflew the wreckage and was sure it was 2ndLt Oparowski’s aircraft. He saw explosions of ammunition. He saw no parachute.


OPAROWSKI, JOHN ANTHONY, Second Lieutenant, # 0-889969, USAAF


John A. Oparoski was born on 15 May 1924 in Chicopee, Hampden Co., Massachusetts to John Frank Oparowski (1894-1953) and Mary Elizabeth (Stokwicz) Opawroski (1899-1973). Siblings were Julia Oparowski (1918-1920),  Helen B. (Opawroski) Wachala (1920-    ), Dorothy Elizabeth (Opawroski) Danczak (1921-2006),   Living with them in 1930 was his maternal grandmother, Elizabeth Stokwicz (