RUFINI, GIOCONDO ALBIN, Second Lieutenant, # 0-701309, USAAF
Giocondo A. Rufini was born on 5 August 1924 in Rome, Italy, to Germano Rufini (1896-1960) and Agostina Cerzano Rufini (1898-1992). Siblings included Pio Thomas Rufini (1923- ) (Rome, Italy), George Thomas Rufini (1927-1976) (PA), Foy Thomas Rufini (1928-1997) (PA).
He registered for the WW II draft on 11 December 1942, resided at 457 W. 17th St., Erie, Erie Co., Pennsylvania, was a student at Gannon College, and described himself as 6’2”, 160 lbs, with brown hair and eyes. He had a mole on his left cheek. After enlisting in the USAAF, he completed school as a navigator on the B-24 Liberator. He earned his commission and pilot wings. He was sent overseas to India in June 1944. On 16 November 1944, a B-24J, # 44-41451, “Love Sugar Oboe,” assigned to 14th Air Force, 308th Bomb Group, 375th Bomb Squadron, departed the aifield at Chengkung, China, on a combat & reconnaissance sweep over the South China Sea. It was last known to be in the vicinity of Mengtaz, China, at about 0230 Z (friendly territory). He is remembered on the memorial wall of the missing in the Manila American Cemetery & Memorial, Philippines.
His brother, Pio T. Rufini, born 23 June 1923, served in the U.S. Army from 1 April 1943 to 2 March 1946. His brother, Foy T. Rufini, born 4 December 1928, served in the U.S. Army from 2 October 1952 to 13 October 1960. He died on 19 July 1997 and is buried in the Laurel Hill Cemetery, Millcreek Township, Erie Co., PA.