43-27810         MACR 14553


On 30 May 1945 a B-25J, # 43-27810, assigned 14th Air Force, 341st Bomb Group, 490th Bomb Squadron, Hengchung, China, departed the airfield on a low-level bombing and strafing mission over the Sincheng railroad bridge. It was seen to crash by 2ndLt Frank D. Browning, 0-716339, at about 1140 Zulu 1 mile south of the Sincheng railroad yards (34° 13’ North & 113° 48’ East). The crew was:

                                             Pilot                             1stLt Robert A. Hansen                        0-831172

                                             Co-Pilot                       2ndLt Emile A. Larrecou Jr.                 0-1552539

                                             Navigator                    2ndLt Leslie R. Durkee Jr.                    0-717404 (Burke)

                                             Crew Chief                  Sgt Joseph M. Hinds                            31150598

                                             Radio Operator            Cpl Chester F. Rouillard Jr.                  38407244

                                             Armorer                       Sgt Paul H. Van Wart                           11082263

                                                                  (Enlisted servicemen also worked as gunners)

2ndLt Browning reported that he was navigator on another B-25 (tail # 588), was about 4-5 miles north of the target. B-25 tail # 810 had dropped his bombs. Saw him strafing a line of 12-15 railroad cars in the railyard, several miles north of Quang Tri. He completed the run, turned left, leveled out and flew straight then went into the ground at about 1145 hrs Zulu 1-2 miles southeast of the line of railroad cars. The B-25 slid along the ground. He saw no damage to the B-25 before he hit the ground. Stayed overhead to 1200 hrs but could not see the B-25 again. Visibility was 6-8 miles with some dust. Very slight surface winds. 1stLt John Thomson, 0-700821, reported on return from a mission on 31 May 1945, searched where 43-27810 was reported down. Found the B-25 at 1115 hours Zulu at 34° 22’ North & 113° 46’ East. He was at 6,000’ and took photographs. The B-25 was about 1,500’ east of the Sincheng railroad yards, lying north of a row of trees on the edge of a gully. The B-25 was severely damaged, fuselage visible and faces north. The wings and engine nacelles appear destroyed and considerable wreckage is strewn about. It appears that the B-25 slid on its belly from the southwest to where it stopped. There were no visible signs of activity at the wreckage.

The next-of-kin were listed as:

                                Hansen            Ralph E. Hansen, F, 8908 Hollis Court Blvd, Queens Village, NY

                                Larrecou          Patricia E. Larrecou, W, 1535 26th Ave., San Francisco, CA

                                Durkee            (aka Burke) Marion U. Durkee, M, 24 Bristol Ave., Swampscott, Mass.

                                Hinds               Thomas J. Hinds, F, 11 Cushman St., Portland, Maine

                                Van Wart         Abigail Frances Van Wart, M, 239 Central St., Auburndale, Mass.

                                Rouillard          Pauline F. Rouillard, M, 36 Home St., Malden, Mass.