W45AUTH\BF28B-CW.DOC

Chester Wells Flight Crew #21

Loc

Duty

Rank

08-45

Rank 02-45

Name

ASN

MOS

Home address as of 1992

S1

AC

Capt

Capt

Wells, Chester M Jr

0-424316

1093

deceased

S2

P

1st Lt

2nd Lt

Tuech, Thomas E.

0-827085

1091

1411 W. Marvin St,Longwood FL, 32750

S6

N

1st Lt

1st Lt

Ray, Harry

0-635726

1034

10240 Chicago Circle, Bloomington MN, 55420

S3

B

1st Lt

1st Lt

Bigelow, Fred H.

0-725047

1035

745 Los Topacious, Green Valley, AZ, 86614

S5

RO

2nd Lt

2nd Lt

Butler, Paul F.

0-2062639

0038

11 Crosby St, S. Yarmouth, MA, 02664

S4

FE

1st Lt

2nd Lt

Mascaro, William A.

0-868653

1028

29141 US 19 North #46, Clearwater, FL, 34621

K4

R

S/Sgt

Cpl

Casper, Edward

32710895

2756

deceased

K2

CFC

S/Sgt

Pfc

Diamond, Leland A.

18195352

580

RT 2 Box 335, Watonga, OK, 73772

K5

RG

S/Sgt

Cpl

Blouin, Norman J.

31310423

611

unkown

K1

LG

Sgt

Cpl

Bikofsky, Edwin M.

31429826

611

unknown

K3

TG

S/Sgt

Cpl

Bracey, H. B.

34928962

611

unknown

Chester Wells had already completed a tour in Europe before his second tour in B-29's.

This crews story is told by Fred Bigelow. Fred kept mission notes which he used for the following commentaries. Fred completed 27 missions with Wells before becoming 28th Sqd Bombardier, plus 1 mission with Hammond for a total of 28.

The total number of missions flow by Wells crew is unknown.

Those with 1992 addresses are members of the 19th Bomb Group Association.

 

Headings for the following commentaries come from the Resume of 20th AF Missions which are mission summary sheets prepared in 1945 by 20th AF Hdq. The M# are the 20th AF mission numbers. This data does not go below the wing level. 28th Squadron Headings come from 19th BG 16mm file or from crew records.

 

M#039; 03-04-45; Wings 73-313-314; Night; General Purpose bombs; 25-28,000 ft altitude; Tokyo; Nakajima Aircraft Factory at Musashino "Enkindle #5"

20th AF Airborne=192; Abort=14; Loss=1(unk cause); Bomb load=5646 lb; Fuel Reserve=947 gal.;

EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=0

28th Airborne=(?): VChandler#1, CWells#1, JSimmons#1, FMaupin#0, ESeitz#1,

CWells#1 [M-4] [FBigelow] "(8) 500 lb 3883. This mission was designed to be primarily for scope photo and hit the engine plant, missed the plant, hit the dock area."

 

M#040; 03-09-45; Wings 73-313-314; Night; Incendiary bombs; 5-9,000 ft altitude; Tokyo Urban area "Meetinghouse #2"

20th AF Airborne=325; Abort=12; Lost=14(1 to AA; 5 ditched; 7 unk; 1 to survey); Bomb load=9673 lb.; Fuel Reserve=1044 gal.; EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=40

28th Airborne=(7): VChandler#2, ESeitz#2, CWells#2, JHancock#2, JSimmons#2, RAuer#2, ?__

RAuer#2 Lt Robert Auer lost at target, the first 28th Sqd loss in 42-63569]

CWells#2 [M-4] [FBigelow] "(24)E46 Incendiarys. This mission started off the great fire raids on the Jap homeland. It was flown at 5000 ft and was the first we had seen enemy defenses -- many Search Lights and lots of flak. We dropped in the Tokaido Rail Yards. Lost Auer and crew on this raid. 17 Sqmi burned."

 

M#041; 03-11-45; Wings 73-313-314; Night; Incendiary bombs; 5-8,000 ft altitude; Nagoya Urban area "Microscope #2"

20th AF Airborne=310; Abort=18; Lost=1(ditched after takeoff); Bomb load=9827 lb.; Fuel Reserve=920 gal.;

EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=47

28th Airborne=(6): JO'Neil#_,VChandlerd#3, ESeitz#3, CWells#3, JSimmons#3, VParker#1,

CWells#3 [M-4 Pathfinder] [FBigelow] (24) E46 Incendiary bombs. Flown at 6000 ft as pathfinders for the group. Again lots of flak and S/L. Since we were first, didn't see too much fire.

 

M#042; 03-13-45; Wings 73-313-314; Night; Incediary bombs; 5-9,000 ft altitude; Osaka Urban area "Peachblow #1"

20th AF Airborne=298; Abort=17; Lost=2(1 unk; 1 to survey); Bomb load=13739 lb.; Fuel Reserve=1049 gal.;

EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=40

28th Airborne=(9): JO'Neill#_,VChandler#4,FMaupin#1,CWells#4,VParker#2, HGammel#_, JSimmons#4, EHammond#_, JCarroll#_,

CWells#4 [M-4] [FBigelow] (24) E46 Incendiary bombs. Low altitude strick at 7000 ft. We came in the middle of this raid. There were clouds obstructing our view couldn't evaluate the results."

 

M#043; 03-16-45; Wings 73-313-314; Night; Incendiary bombs; 4-9,000 ft altitude; Kobe Urban area "Middleman #2"

20th AF Airborne=330; Abort=16; Lost=3 (3 to unk); Bomb load=14931 lb.; Fuel Reserve=889 gal.;

EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=96

28th Airborne=(8): VChandler#5, ESeitz#4, CWells#5, JHancock#3, JSimmons#5, VParker#3, ?__,?__

CWells#5 [M-4 Lead crew] [FBigelow] (24) E46 Incendiarys. This time we led the entire command into target and had a milk run as far as enemy defenses were concerned. We hit the Tokaido Main Line in the area of th Kawasaki hvy Industry. We flew at 5000 ft and were successful."

 

M#045; 03-24-45; Wings 73-313-314; Night; Incendiary bombs; 6-10,000 ft altitude; Nagoya; Mitsubishi Aircraft Factory "Eradicate #5"

20th AF Airborne=248; Abort=17; Lost=5(1 ditched enroute; 1 to AA; 3 unk); Bomb load=13690 lb.; Fuel Reserve=1021 gal.; EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=0

28th Airborne=(7) JO'Neill#_, CWells#6, JHancock#4, JSimmons#6, ___, ___, ___

CWells#6 [M-4] [FBigelow] (12) __ This trip we had to light up the target for the rest of the crews, we came in a 9000 ft and dropped three flares on each of four passes over the target. Due to clouds, they missed the factory."

 

M#046; 03-27-45; Wings 73-314; Day; General Purpose bombs; 14-18,000 ft altitude; Kyushu; Tachiari & Oita AF and Omura Aircraft Factory "Fearless #1"

20th AF Airborne=161; Abort=6; Lost=0; Bomb load=6907; RF=788; Damaged=?

EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=18

28th Airborne=(7) 1CWells#7, VChandler#6, 3ESeitz#6, CWells#7, JSimmons#7, FMaupin#3, VParker#5, __

CWells#7 [M-4] [by FBigelow] "started out to be a raid on Kanoya AF but turned out to be a visual drop on Omura Aircraft... they were no longer the pricipal airplane producer on Kyushu.

CWells#7 [M-4] [TTuech] "Omura, Day, 15,000 ft altitude, (10) General Purpose bombs. Moderate, accurate flack, (4) fighters engaged formation, secondary target, good results.

 

M#048; 03-30-45; Wing 314; Night; General Purpose bombs; 7-8,000 ft altitude; Nagoya; Mitusubushi Engine Plant "Eradicate #6"

20th AF Airborne=14; Abort=2; Lost=0; Bomb load=8683 lb.; Fuel Reserve=852 gal.;

EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=0

28th Airborne=(4) ESeitz#7, CWells#8, JHancock#5, ___

CWells#8 [M-4] [FBigelow] (20) GP 500lb for 21300 lb load. We tried the flares again but it didn't work. So we made a radar run after three times around the Target. Couldn't see the ground, so can't evaluate the mission.

 

M#059; 04-07-45; Wings 313-314; Day; General Purpose bombs; 16-25,000 ft altitude; Nagoya; Mitsubishi Engine Plant "Eradicate #7"

20th AF Airborne=194; Abort=10; Lost=2(1 to AA; 1 to EA) Bomb load=8993 lb.; Fuel Reserve=754 gal.;

EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=233 (dest=21, prob=11, dam=22)

28th Airborne=(10) VChandler#8, ESeitz#9, CWells#9, JHancock#6, FMaupin#5, VParker#7, ___, ___, ___, ___

CWells#9 [M-4] [FBigelow] (10) GP 500lb TNT. We try again to get a good look at the plant and lo and behold! It went sky high, it is no more..95% destroyed. We caught a lot of flak and had to land at Iwo. We don't want to do that again!

 

M#065; 04-12-45; Wing 314; Day; General Purpose; 7-9,000 ft altitude; Koriyama; Koriyama Chemical Plant "Lunchroom #1"

20th AF Airborne=85; Abort=7; Lost=2(1 ditched on return; 1 crashed at Agana, Guam); Bomb load=5342 lb; Fuel Reserve=927 gal.; EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=2 (dest=0, prob=0; dam=0)

28th Airborne=(11) 1JSimmons#9, 2VChandler#9, ESeitz#10, JHancock#6, HGammel#__, RSpencer#_, JCarroll#__, FMaupin#7, BKordus#__, TReadheimer#_, GO'Leary#__

CWells#10 [M-4 Pathfinder] [FBigelow] (122) M47 incendiary + 500 lb fragmentation bombs. This was a fire raid on the Tokyo arsenal area. We are Pathfinders and the Japs were ready and waiting for us. We went in at 9500 ft and caught a lot of hell this time. Our left wing was peppered, our right wing was shattered, and we darn near spun in, but Tuesch and his muscle saved the day. It was a worrisome flight home. We tossed out all moveable stuff, flak curtains, anything that was loose went out. The plane began to hold alt. at 1500 ft and we landed at Guam in a sweat.

 

M#068; 04-15-45; Wings 313-314; Night; Incendiary bombs; 6-10,000 ft altitude; Kawasaki Urban area "Brisket #1"

20th AF Airborne=219; Abort=8; Lost=12 (4 probably to EA or AA; 8 unk cause); Bomb load=9659 lb.; Fuel reserve=1060 gal.; EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=53 (dest=?, prob=?, dam=?)

28th Airborne=(13) JO'Neill#__, VChandler#10, ESeitz#12, CWells#11, TReadheimer#_, JSimmons#10,

EHammond#__, JCarroll#__, FMaupin#8, VParker#9, GO'Leary#__, JRobinson#_, MFloyd#__

CWells#11 [M-4] [FBigelow] (122) M47 incendiary bombs. It was a 7500 ft ride over suburban Tokyo. What a spot! Much smoke, many fighters. Chandlers ship really took a beating....Hermes was wounded.

 

M#081; 04-18-45; Wing 314; __; General Purpose bombs; 18,000 ft altitude; Nittagahara AF "Bushing #2"

20th AF Airborne=11; Abort=0; Lost=0; Bomb load=5950 lb.; Fuel Reserve=1047 gal.;

EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=0

28th Airborne=(?) JO'Neill#__, CWells#12, EHammond#__, JCarroll#__, VParker#10

CWells#12 [M-4] [FBigelow] (12) 500lb +frags. This was flown in support of the Navy at Okinowa. We were flying #2 on the wing of a nameless leader. He made 4 passes over the target and we still missed from 18000 ft.

 

M#096; 04-24-45; Wings 73-313-314; Day; General Purpose bombs; 10-14,000 ft altitude; Tachikawa; Hitachi Aircraft Plant "Catcall #1"

20th AF Airborne=131; Abort=0; Lost=5( 2 to AA; 1 to EA; 1 to accident; 1 unk); Bomb load=10063 lb.; Fuel Reserve=1070 gal.; EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=249 (dest=17, prob=23, dam=25)

28th Airborne=(11) CWells#13, TReadheimer#_, RSpencer#, GO'Leary#_, JHancock#9, HGammel#_, EHammond#_, JCarroll#_, FMaupin#10, VParker#10, BKordus(alt),JRobinson#_, MFloyd#_,

MFloyd#__ Lt Marian Floyd lost in M15 over target

CWells#13 [M-4 Group Leader] [FBigelow] (20) M43 500 lb. This was the finest day I had as a Bombardier! We were group leaders and followed three other groups into the target. They had hit a fuel depot south of the target and the smoke completely obscured the factory. I lined up one crosshair on a road leading to the plant and the other on a runway leading to the center of the building. As we flew over the fuel fire we watched our bombs fo directly into the center of the building. We were the only group that hit the factory that day and we received a DFC (Distinguished Flying Cross) for the effort."

 

M#124; 04-29-45; Wing 314; Day; General Purpose bombs; 17-18,000 ft altitude; Kanoya AF "Checkbook #9"

20th AF Airborne=20; Abort=2; Lost=0; Bomb load=10700 lb.; Fuel Reserve=700 gal.; Iwo landings=0;

EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=15 (dest=0,prob=0, dam=0)

28th Airborne=(4) CWells#14, ____________________

CWells#14 [FBigelow] (20) M64 500 lb TNT. A mission to support the Navy at Okinawa. We had a good day and left the airbase in an unuseable condition."

 

M#148; 05-05-45; Wing 314; Day; General Purpose; 17,000 ft altitude; Chiran AF "Treadle#1"

20th AF Airborne=11; Abort=2; Lost=0; Bomb load=8000 lb.; Fuel Reserve=743 gal.; Iwo landings=0;

EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=0;

28th Airborne=(11) CWells#15, FMaupin#13, VParker#14, _____________________________

CWells#15 [FBigelow] (10) GP 500 lb. Dropped on this spot after a hectic time at the IP. Ourt leaders were confused! We missed from 18000 ft. Due to Typhoon at Guam, we landed at Saipan and waited out the storm."

 

M#172; 05-11-45; Wings 58-73-314; Day; General Purpose; 16-20,000 ft altitude; Kobe; Kawasaki Aircraft Plant "Leafstalk #1"

20th AF Airborne=102; Abort=8; Lost=1 (1 crashed on takeoff); (3 dam); Bomb load=11313 lb.; Fuel Reserve=752 gal.; Iwo landings=14; EA Sighted=41; EA Attacks=261 (dest=9, prob=22, dam=15)

The first data on EA Sighted

28th Airborne=(4) CWells#16, JHancock#12, ___, ___

CWells#16 [FBigelow] (20) GP. This was a radar run on the target. Due to an undercast, we couldn't see the target. We had much flak and many fighters. From 18000 ft I don't know what if anything we hit."

 

M#176; 05-16-45; Wings 58-73-313-314; Night; Incendiary bombs; 7-18,000 ft altitude; South Nagoya Urban area Microscope #5"

20th AF Airborne=516; Abort=45; Lost=3(3 unk); (14 dam by AA); Bomb load=14966 lb.; Fuel Reserve=802 gal.; Iwo landings=16, EA Sighted=28; EA Attacks=11 (dest=0, prob=0, dam=0)

first time more EA sighted than attack

28th Airborne=(12) VChandler#16, FMaupin#16, CWells#17, _________________

19th BG aircraft painted Black on bottoms

CWells#17 [FBigelow] (24) E46 Incendiarys. Our first attempt to burn ot a place from high altitude (18000 ft). I screwed up by the numbers -- missed the whole damn town!

 

M#183; 05-25-45; Wings 58-73-313-314; Night; Incendiray bombs; 8-22,000 ft altitude; Tokyo Urban area (Kawasaki)

20th AF Airborne=498; Abort=2; Lost=26(3 to AA; 1 to EA; 2 abandon on return near Iwo; 20 unk); Bomb load=13517 lb.; Fuel Reserve=794 gal.; Iwo landings =0; Damaged(89 by AA, 10 by EA)

First data on Damaged to B-29's and the cause

EA Sighted=?; EA Attacks=99 (dest=19, prob=0, dam=4)

28th Airborne=(14) VChandler#17, FMaupin#17, CWells#18, VParker#12, (JAmbrose#1)

CWells#18 [FBigelow] (184) M47 Incendiary. We led the 314th wing on this mission. Beautiful weather and we did some really good bombing. Excellent results from 8500ft.

 

M#186; 05-29-45; Wings 58-73-313-314; Day; Incendiary bombs; 17-21,000 ft altitude; Yokohama area

20th AF Airborne=510; Abort=26; Lost=7(3 to AA; 1 rammed; 2 ditched; 1 unk); Bomb load=12040 lb.; Fuel Reserve=811 gal.; Iwo landings=39; Damaged=?; EA Sighted=55; EA Attacks=110 (dest=6, prob=5, dam=10)

(101) P51 escort, 2 P51s lost over target. First data on P51 escort

28th Airborne=(13) CWells#19, FMaupin#18, JStevens#2, VParker#13, GO'Leary#_, (JAmbrose#_?), __,___,____,____,____,___

GO'Leary#?? Capt Gerald O'Leary lost in M16 hit by AA over target

CWells#19 [FBigelow] (1126) M76. We flew rt wing to Parker and hit the center of the area from 18000 ft. This was the worst flak I'd ever seen -- you could have landed on the stuff it was so heavy and plentiful."

 

M#188; 06-05-45; Wings 58-73-313-314; Day; Incendiary bombs; 14-19,000 ft altitude; Kobe Urban area

20th AF Airborne=530; Abort=38; Lost=11 (3 to AA; 3 to EA; 3 to AA-EA; 1 crashed at Iwo; 1 unk); Bomb load=13178 lb; Fuel Reserve=677 gal; Iwo landings=43; Damaged=139 (by AA)

EA Sighted=125; EA Attacks=672 (dest=86, prob=31, dam=76)

28th Airborne=(13) VParker#19, CWells#20, FMaupin#20, JStevens#_, JAmbrose#_, JDillard#_, WRowe#_, PCrow, JCarroll#_, HGammel#_, BKordus#_, JRobinson, WRiggs

CWells#20 [FBigelow] (30) E46 fire clusters. We were flying rt wing when on the approach to the target, we took the lead, burned down 5 sq mi of west Kobe.

 

M#189; 06-07-45; Wings 58-73-313-314; Day; Incendiary bombs; 18-23,000 ft altitude; Osaka Urban

20th AF Airborne=449; Abort=29; Lost=2 (2 to mech failure); Bomb load=13182 lb.; Fuel Reserve=544 gal.; Iwo landings=59; Damaged=7 by AA; EA Sighted=10; EA Attacks=30 (dest=0, prob=0, dam=3)

(144) P51 escort; 1 caught fire near Iwo

28th Airborne=(9) TReadheimer#_, CWells#21, VChandler#19, HGammel#_, EHammond#_, JCarroll#_, FMaupin#21, PCrow#_, WRigg#_

CWells#21 [FBigelow] (184) M47 Incendiarys. A typical milk run....10/10 undercast no flak, no fighters."

 

M#216; 06-22-45; Wing 314; Day; General Purpose bombs; 15-18,000 ft altitude; Tamashima; Mitsubishi AC Plant

20th AF Airborne=123; Abort=3; Lost=2 (1 to EA; 1 unk); Bomb load=12192 lb.; Fuel Reserve=778 gal.; Iwo landings=3; Damaged=?; EA Sighted=49; EA Attacks=41 (dest=1, prob=0, dam=0)

28th Airborne=(11) VChandler#21, CWells#22, FMaupin#26, RLong, HGammel, PCrow,JRobinson, WRowe, JStevens#9, ___, ___

CWells#22 [FBigelow] (22)GP for 12500 lb load. Chandler malfunctioned and we took over the lead. We went in at 15500 ft to demolish the place. 94% went up in smoke. It was the best bombing I ever hope to do.

 

M#237; 06-28-45; Wing 314; Night; Incendiary bombs; 7-12,000 ft altitude; Nobeoka Urban area

20th AF Airborne=122; Abort=5; Lost=0; Bomb load=14984 lb.; Fuel Reserve=787 gal.; Iwo landings=6;

Damaged=? ;EA Sighted=6; EA Attacks=1; (0-0-0)

28th Airborne=(11) VChandler#22, CWells#22, FMaupin#28, TReadhimer, JStevens#11, PCrow, RLong, HGammel, JRobinson, EHammond#_, __

CWells#23 [FBigelow] (40) E46. A low alt strike to one of the lesser cities of Japan. We came in over clouds and dropped by radar from 9800 ft. no excitement.

 

M#250; 07-04-45; Wing 314; Night; Incendiary bombs; 10-17,000 ft altitude; Tokushima Urban area

20th AF Airborne=137; Abort=6; Lost=0; Bomb load=15675 lb.; Fuel Reserve=762 gal.; Iwo landing=3;

Damaged=? ;EA Sighted=10;EA Attacks=0

28th Airborne=(11) VChandler#24, CWells#24, FMaupin#30, TReadhimer, JStevens#13, JAmbrose, HGammel, VParker#24, JRobinson#_, EHammond, ___

CWells#24 [FBigelow] (40) MIT incendiarys. This was another night bombing run on a smaller city of Japan. We were amoung the last to get to the target. The place was burning really well, we could see the refugees on the roads out of town. We ran into a thermal that took us up."

CWells#24 [M-__] [by TTuech] "We flew into a thermal while bombs were dropping and rose from 12,000 to 18,000 and back to 13,000 ft like an elevator. Bomb bay doors would not close (had been hit by the bombs) so they had to be manually hooked and closed manualy. Bigelow's job with help. Plane completely stressed and taken out of combat." [note from Tuech, "Fred was too modest"]

 

M#260; 07-10-45; Wing 314; Night; Incendiary bombs; 15-18,000 ft altitude; Gifu Urban

20th AF Airborne=135; Abort=4; Lost=1 (1 caught fire & exploded leaving target); Bomb load=14676 lb.; Fuel Reserve=685 gal.; Iwo landings=3; EA sighted=10; EA attacks=3

28th Airborne=(11) CWells#25, FMaupin#32, JStevens#15, VParker#_, ________________

CWells#25 [FBigelow] (40) E46. A real milk run..fire bombing from 11000 ft and no opposition. just two fighters seen.

 

M#289; 07-24-45; Wing 314; Day; General Purpose bombs; 12-18,000 ft altitude; Nagoya; Mitsubishi Aircraft Factory, Fuji Textile, Toyowa Hvy Industry or Tsu

20th AF Airborne=81; Abort=6; Lost=0; Bomb load=9032 lb.; Fuel Reserve=676 gal.; Iwo landings=45;

Damaged=?; EA Sighted=4; EA Attacks=0

28th Airborne=(13) JStevens#18, VParker#27, CWells#26, ____________

CWells#26 [FBigelow] (2) M56. A real weather Snafu, we went from Nagoya, to Toyahashi naval arsenal to the city of Tsu where we dropped thru the 10/10 undercast from 20000 ft.

 

M#302; 07-29-45; Wing 314; Night; Incendiary bombs; 10-11,000 ft altitude; Uwajima Urban area

20th AF Airborne=32; Abort=3; Lost=0; Bomb load=14960 lb.; Fuel Reserve=725 gal.; Iwo landings=2;

Damaged=?; EA Sighted=0; EA Attacks=0

28th Airborne=(11) JStevens#20, CWells#27, ______________________

CWells#27 [FBigelow] (20) E46, (1) photo (92) M47. This was the last mission I was to fly with Wells. The city was a snap, no flak, no fighters. A good Swan Song."

 

M#309; 08-01-45; Wing 314; Night; Incendiary bombs; 12-15,000 ft altitude; Mito Urban area

20th AF Airborne=167; Abort=6; Lost=0; Bomb load=15071 lb.; Fuel Reserve=724 gal.; Iwo landings=6;

Damaged=?; EA Sighted=22; EA Attacks=1 (0-0-0)

28th Airborne=(15) VChandler#27, CWells#28, TReadhimer, JDillard, JAmbrose#_, PCrow, RLong, HGammel, McCul, JRobinson, JRandolph, VParker, JStevens#21, ___, ___,__

CWells#28 [M-__] [by TTuech] "Mito, night, 13,000 ft altitude, (20) E46 and (92) E47 bombs. Good results."

EHammond#__ [FBigelow] (40) E46. My first as Squadron Bomb Aimer, I rode with Hammond, my first flight with him since bailing out [in Gulf of Mexico during training]. We had a good time, it was a fitting way to close out my career. A really quiet time, no flak, no fighters and excellent results on the ground.

 

M#314; 08-06-45; Wings 73 & 314; Night, _____ bombs; 12-15,000 ft altitude; Nishinomiya urban area

20th AF Airborne=261, Aborts=7, Lost=1, bomb load=16565 lb; Fuel Reserve=555 gal; Iwo=24

B-29's damaged=2 by flak; EAS=27; EAA=8

28th Airborne=(?) CWells#29, _________

CWells#29 [M-__] [by TTuech] "08-06-45 Kobe, night, 13,000 ft altitude. (39)E46, (1) Photo, (1) Frag. Moderate flack, lots of searchlights, no fighters. Good results.

 

M#323; 08-10-45; Wing 314; Day; General Purpose; 22-26,000 ft altitude; Okiguku, Najajima Aircraft Factory

20th AF Airborne=78; Abort=5; Lost=0; Bomb load=9646 lb.; Fuel Reserve=845 gal; Iwo=8;

B-29's Damaged=29 by AA; EA Sighted=9; EA Attacks=0

(50) P47 & P51 escort from landfall to lands end.

28th Airborne=(14) VParker#31, CWells#30; TReadhimer, Verp, MacElroy, Barta, PCrow, Detwiler, HGammel#_, McCull, JAmbrose#_, Randolph, Dillard, __

CWells#30 [M-__] [by TTuech] "08-10-45 Tokyo Arsenal, 21,000 ft altitude. (8) General Purpose bombs. Formation day lead plane. Secondary target due to clouds. Good results.

 

M#330; 08-15-45; Wing 73-314; Night; Incendiary bombs; 15-18,000 ft altitude; Isesaki Urban area

20th AF Airborne=93; Abort=7; Lost=0; Bomb load=14924 lb.; Fuel Reserve=648 gal.; Iwo=6;

Damaged=?; EA Sighted=4; EA Attacks=0

28th Airborne=(15) VChandler#28, CWells#31, ___________

CWells#31 [M-__] [by TTuech] "08-15-45 Isesaki, night, 15,000 ft altitude. (20) E46 and (92) M47 bombs. Lead Pathfinder. Results good. Feathered #2 due to oil loss and then blew a cylinder on #1. Due to bad weather and low power had a hectic flight back to Iwo.

When we landed learned the WAR WAS OVER. THANKS BE TO GOD"

"31 missions completed with 0 aborts."

 

Epilogue

BIGELOW RESEARCH COMPANY

TO: PAUL BUTLER; HARRY RAY;THOMAS E. TUECH; DARRELL LANDAU

FROM: FRED BIGELOW

SUBJECT: CHESTER M WELLS JR.

DATE: JANUARY 9,1997

I talked with Chester's step son in Starkville MS and he tells me the following.

         Chester went back to school and obtained his advanced degrees in agriculture, culminating in a doctorate from southern Illinois.

         He was a professor at Mississippi state teaching agricultural subjects and did consulting work for the us govt.

         Chet quit smoking back in the early fifties and was getting along great until he returned from a government sponsored trip to Africa. Upon return in the 1986, he contracted lung cancer and passed on in two months time.

         He had retired from the military with a rank of L/Col., and was enjoying life until he became ill.

         His wife is still living and was not available to talk on the phone but her son tells me she visits a sister in Tucson regularlly and there is a good chance we will meet her in the springtime.

That is all that I have been able to unravel at the moment. We will keep you advised as to progress.