Windsor Locks, Connecticut – June 15, 1947
On June 15, 1947, Captain William H. Greenleaf, piloting a P-47N, (#44-89106) took off from Bradley Field in Windsor Locks with seven other P-47 aircraft for a simulated combat training mission. After the aircraft formed up over Bradley Field at 5,000 feet they split into two flights of four aircraft each, and each flight took turns making simulated attacks against the other.
When it was their turn, the group in which Captain Greenleaf was part of, climbed to 7,500 feet and made three successive mock attacks against the other group which was circling below at 5,000 feet. After making two mock runs without incident, they climbed again for a third. It was during this third mock attack that Captain Greenleaf’s aircraft never came out of the dive, and crashed at a step angle in a wooded area where it exploded and burned about 1/4 mile south of Bradley Field.
Capt. Greenleaf was killed instantly.
Investigators were unable to determine the cause of the accident.
Captain Greenleaf was assigned to the 118th Fighter Squadron, 103rd Fighter Group, of the Connecticut Air National Guard.
Source: Army Air Force Crash Investigation Report, # 47-6-15-1