Manchester, N. H. – June 7, 1949

Manchester, New Hampshire – June 7, 1949

 

P-51 Mustang
U.S. Air Force Photo

      On June 7, 1949, 1st Lieutenant William Arthur Primm, (26), of Farmingdale, New York, was killed when the F-51 Mustang he was piloting crashed shortly after take off from Grenier Field in Manchester.  (The serial number of his airplane was  44-74791A.) 

     The cause of the accident wasn’t stated. 

     Lt. Primm entered the service in 1942 and served with the Army Air Corps.  At the time of his death he was the communications officer of the 97th Fighter Squadron at Grenier Field.  He’s buried at Long Island National Cemetery in East Farmingdale, N.Y.

     The F-51 Mustang was formerly known as the P-51.  The designation was changed in 1947. 

     Source:

     Nashua Telegraph, “Pilot Killed In Grenier Crash NY State Man”, June 8, 1949 

     www.findagrave.com

Atlantic Ocean – March 5, 1942

Atlantic Ocean – March 5, 1942

(Grenier Field)

 

Douglas A-20 Havoc
U.S. Air Force Photo

     On March 5, 1942, a U. S. Army Douglas DB-7B, (Ser. No. AL-301), (better known as the Douglas A-20 Havoc), took off from Grenier Field in Manchester, New Hampshire, bound for Langley Field in Hampton, Virginia.   The plane carried a crew of three. 

     There was the pilot, 2nd Lt. David Soutbard, (23), of Orlando, Florida; the bombardier, Private 1st Class Jack C. Maxey, Jr., (21), of Ada, Oklahoma; and Private George T. Oswerk, (21), of Walsenburg, Colorado.   

     The aircraft arrived safely and Langley and later took off for a trip back to Manchester.  While in route the aircraft crashed into the ocean off Barnegat Light, New Jersey.  (The reason for the accident was not stated in the press.)

     The pilot and bombardier were killed in the crash, but Private Oswerk was thrown clear and survived.  He was rescued by a passing ship, but unfortunately passed away of his injuries on March 7th. 

     The Nashua Telegraph newspaper reported that this was the “first fatal accident to (a) Grenier Field plane.         

     Lieutenant Southbard’s body was reportedly not recovered. 

     Pvt. 1c Maxey is buried in Rosedale Cemetery in Ada, Oklahoma. 

     Pvt. Oswerk is buried in St. Mary’s North Cemetery in Walsenburg, Colorado. 

     The men were assigned to the 79th Bombardment Squadron at Grenier Field. 

     Sources:

     The Nashua Telegraph, “Grenier Field Plane Crashes Off NJ Shore – Two Members of 3-Man Crew Are Killed”, March 6, 1942, page 1. 

     www.findagrave.com

Londonderry, N. H. – August 25, 1945

Londonderry, New Hampshire – August 25, 1945

Updated January 11, 2021

    

B-17G "Flying Fortress" U.S. Air Force Photo

B-17G “Flying Fortress”
U.S. Air Force Photo

     On the night of August 25, 1945, a U. S. Army B-17G “Flying Fortress” (Ser. No. 44-83577) crashed on approach to Grenier Army Air Field in Manchester, New Hampshire.  The plane impacted a wooded area about three miles short of the runway. 

       Prior to the crash the aircraft had been circling the area unable to land due to very low cloud cover.  As the pilot attempted to make an instrument approach the aircraft clipped some trees in an area known as Crowell’s Corner.  It then plowed onto wooded area west of Mammoth Road where it broke apart as it cleared a swath for nearly a quarter of a mile.    

     Three men aboard were killed, and two others were seriously injured. 

     The Nashua Telegraph identified one of the dead as Sergeant Earl K. Allen.  Sgt. Allen is buried in Blossom Hill Cemetery in Concord, New Hampshire.  

      

     Sources:

     New York Times, “New Hampshire Air Crash Kills 3”, August 27, 1945

     The Nashua Telegraph, “Three Die In Londonderry Crash”, August 27, 1945

     Larry Webster, Aviation Historian and Archeologist

     www.findagrave.com

 

Epsom, NH – April 24, 1944

Epsom, New Hampshire – April 24, 1944

    

B-24 Liberator  U.S. Air Force Photo

B-24 Liberator
U.S. Air Force Photo

     On the morning of April 24, 1944, a B-24 Liberator bomber, (42-5111), with ten crewmen aboard, left Grenier Air Field in Manchester, New Hampshire, bound for overseas duty in Europe.  The weather that day was poor, with only a 1,300 foot cloud ceiling.  Less than ten minutes after take off, the aircraft crashed into the top of  1,400 ft. mountain in the town of Epsom, New Hampshire.  All aboard were killed.    

     The Portsmouth Herald news articles of the crash published in 1944 identified the crash site as being on Washtub Mountain.  The Nashua Telegraph newspaper identified the crash site a Delight Mountain.  And one modern source  identifies the mountain as Nats Mountain. 

     One witness to the accident was identified in the Portsmouth Herald as 25-year-old Joseph Bozek of Mountain Road, who ran out of his house after hearing the bomber pass very low overhead. He later told a reporter, “I thought the plane was going to crash into the barn, and then it when it cleared the roof I though the pilot intended to make an emergency landing in the field.  When I saw the plane rise I thought to myself that the crew would have to gain much more elevation than they had in order to clear the mountain.  A few seconds later I heard a terrible explosion”

     Bozek ran up the mountain to see if he could help, but when he reached the crash site he saw there was nothing he could do.       

      The dead were identified as:

     (Pilot) 2nd Lt. Marvin M. Rupp, 26, of Winfield, Kansas.  He’s buried in Highland Cemetery in Winfield.  (For a photo of his grave go to www.findagrave.com Memorial #58978546.)  He was survived by his wife Maxine.

     (Co-pilot) 2nd Lt. James H. Jones, 21, of Alumbank, Pennsylvania.  He’s buried in Ligonier Valley Cemetery.  (For a photo of his grave go to www.findagrave.com Memorial #24357871) He was survived by his wife Virginia A.

     (Navigator) 2nd Lt. Ardeth K. Gannon, 26, of Rockwell City, Iowa.

     (Bombardier) 2nd Lt. William G. Hunold, 22, of 404 Sterling Place, Brooklyn, New York.

     (Radio Operator) Staff Sgt. Anthony L. Ferrone, 27, of New York, N.Y.

     (Flight Engineer) Staff Sgt. Marion L. Wolfgang, 23.  He’s buried in Seaman Cemetery in Casnovia, Michigan.  (For a photo of his grave go to www.findagrave.com  Memorial #45592673) 

     (Gunner) Sgt. John L. Eddins, 26, of Kingsville, Texas.  He’s buried in Chamberlain Cemetery in Kingsville.  (For a photo of his grave go to www.findagrave.com  Memorial #62693878) 

     (Radio Operator) Sgt. Joseph H. Negele, 23, of Newark, Ohio.  He’s buried in Cedar Hill Cemetery in Newark.  (For a photo of his grave go to www.findagrave.com  Memorial #61446219) 

     (Gunner) Sgt. Lloyd E. Utley, 25, of Mt. Vernon, Indiana.  

     (Flight Engineer) Sgt. Francis M. Weaver, 36, of Bryan, Texas.  He died just four days after his 36th birthday. He’s buried in Bryan City Cemetery, in Bryan, TX.  (For a photo of his grave go to www.findagrave.com  Memorial #90458409)  He was survived by his wife Hattie N. Weaver.    

     Sources:

     Larry Webster, Aviation Historian and Archeologist 

     Portsmouth Herald, “Nine Bodies Found After Army plane Falls On Mountain”, April 25, 1944, pg. 1

     Portsmouth Herald, “Mass Funeral In Manchester For 10 Fliers”, April 26, 1944, Pg. 1

     Fatal Army Air Forces Aviation Accidents In The United States 1941-1945, By Anthony J. Mireles, McFarland & Co. Publishers, 2006 

     Manchester New Hampshire Airport (Grenier Army Air Field) In WWII, by Tom Hildreth

     Concord Monitor, “Ray Duckler: Looking For A Piece Of History”, May 12, 2014

     Town of Epsom, New Hampshire, death records.

     The Nashua Telegraph, “Report 9 to 12 Killed In Plane Crash At Epsom”, April 24, 1944. 

     Associated Press, (Unknown Paper) “Nine Bodies Are Found In Wrecked Army Plane”, date unknown.  Specifically mentions the pilot (Lt. Rupp) as being one of the nine.  No other names mentioned.  Posted on Findagrave.com, Memorial #58978546.

     www.findagrave.com

Grenier Field, NH – March 24, 1943

Grenier Field, New Hampshire – March 24, 1943

    

B-25C Twin-Engine Bomber - U.S. Air Force Photo

B-25C Twin-Engine Bomber – U.S. Air Force Photo

     On March 24, 1943, First Lieutenant Alan J. Bamberger of the Quartermasters Corp was killed when he accidentally walked into a spinning propeller of a B-25C (42-32340) that he was scheduled to fly on as a passenger. 

     The aircraft was assigned to the 13th Anti Submarine Squadron then assigned to Grenier Field in Manchester, New Hampshire.

     Sources:

     Larry Webster, Aviation Archeologist & Historian, Charlestown, R.I.

     Fatal Army Air Forces Aviation Accidents In The United States 1941-1945, by Anthony J. Mireles, McFarland & Co. 2006. 

   

Grenier Field, NH – May 19, 1943

Grenier Field, New Hampshire – May 19, 1943

    

P-47D Thunderbolt - U.S. Air Force Photo

P-47D Thunderbolt – U.S. Air Force Photo

     On May 19, 1943, two U.S. Army P-47D airplanes attempted to land at the same time at Grenier Field in Manchester, New Hampshire, and collided near the intersection of Runways 35 and 24.  Both planes became locked together and caught fire.  

     One of the pilots, Lieutenant Gilbert L. Jamison, was able to climb free of the wreck, but the other pilot, Lieutenant Russell C. Wilson was trapped inside his aircraft and burned to death before he could be rescued.

     The serial numbers of the aircraft involved were; Jamison (42-22344) and Wilson (42-8024)

     Lieutenant Jamison later became an ace with seven aerial victories.

     Lieutenant Wilson is buried in Grandview Cemetery, Bonners Ferry, Idaho.  For a photo of his grave go to Findagrave.com Memorial # 16415555.   

     Sources:

     Larry Webster, Aviation Archeologist & Historian, Charlestown, R.I.

     The Outer Circle – 359th Fighter group Association, WWII, January, 2005, Vol. 16, No. 1, Pg. 5.  

     Fatal Army Air Forces Aviation Accidents In The United States by Anthony J. Mireles, McFarland & Co., 2006    

     Findagrave.com

     WWII Victories of the Army Air Force, by Arthur Wyllie, Lulu.com, 2005

Londonderry, N.H. – September 30, 1943

Londonderry, New Hampshire – September 30, 1943 

 

Beech At-10 U.S. Air Force Photo

Beech At-10
U.S. Air Force Photo

     On September 30, 1943, a Beech AT-10, (#42-43597) with two officers aboard crashed in a heavily wooded area of Londonderry near Scobie Pond.  The plane did not burn, but both were killed. It was discovered the following day.

     The dead were identified as 1st Lt. William C. Curtis, and 2nd Lt. Charles Wilson Jr.

     Source: Nashua Telegraph, “Grenier Field Airmen Dead In Plane Crash”, October 2, 1943.    

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