5 mi. east of Howe Brook, ME – May 24, 1942

 5 miles east of Howe Brook, Maine – May 24, 1942

     On Sunday, May 24, 1942, a U.S. Army C-40D aircraft, (Ser. No. 42-22249) crashed  5 miles east of Howe Brook, Maine while on a transport mission from Bolling Field in Washington, D.C., to Montreal, Canada, to Presque Isle, Maine.   The plane dove in at a steep angle, (Estimated by investigators to be 75 degrees.) with such force that debris was thrown up to 1,000 feet ahead of the impact. 

     Due to the total destruction of the aircraft, investigators were unable to determine the cause of the accident, but noted that weather “was undoubtedly a strong causal factor”.  

     All aboard the aircraft were killed instantly.  They were identified as:

     (Pilot) 1st Lt. Clarence A. Wright.  He’s buried in Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery in San Antonio, Texas.  (See www.findagrave.com, Memorial #3059564)

     (Flight Engineer) S/Sgt. Frederick J. Taylor.  (10th Ferrying Command.)  He’s buried in  Chester Rural Cemetery, Chester, Penn. (See www.findagrave.com, Memorial #88208245)

     Lt. Col. Louis H. Gimbel.  He’s buried in Arlington National Cemetery.  (See www.findagrave.com, Memorial #22787359)

     Capt. John D. Franciscus.  He’s buried in Calvary Cemetery and Mausoleum in St. Louis, Mo.  (See www.findagrave.com, Memorial #49551001) 

     Capt. Gilbert M. Herbach.  He was from New York.  Place of burial unknown.  (See www.findagrave.com, Memorial #88680256)

     2nd Lt. Earl R. Wilkenson.  He’s buried in St. Joseph Cemetery, Batavia, New York.  (See www.findagrave.com, Memorial #75139854)


     U. S. Army Air Corps Technical Report Of Aircraft Accident #42-5-24-13


     Evening Star, (Wash. D.C.), “Arlington Pilot, Five Others Die In Army Plane Crash In Maine”, May 25, 1942, page A-2


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