Raymond J. Farquhar Jr.
J. Farquhar Jr., 1st Lt. (Feb 25, 1921 - Oct 16, 1944)
Navigator, B24 Liberator (B24J - serial # 42-51389)
776th Squadron, 464th Bombardment Group
Stationed: Pantanella Airfield, Italy (and other places)
Plane lost over Austria, October 16, 1944 (see MACR 9132 pdf)
Ray was responsible for saving the life of one crewman (married with a
child) on the B24 by giving up his place in the bail-out order and helping him
out. Only two of the crew of 9 escaped. The plane
was in a spin after having lost a large part of its left wing due to anti-aircraft
fire (flak). This was Ray's 45th mission.
He was due to be rotated stateside after the 50th. Ray was awarded the Distinguished
Flying Cross and the Air Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters.
Raymond enlisted in the Army Air Force on June 12, 1942 after graduating college. He started out as a pilot. During training, he flew under a bridge on the Mississippi river. For this, he was kicked out of pilot training and demoted. Ray was soon back as lieutenant again and in Navigator school.
A poem written by Ray while stationed at Pantanella Airfield. Flight was published
in the Fitchburg Sentinel.
Plane lost, St Valentin, Austria, mission description.
Description from Michael Hill and Betty Karle's book on the 464th.
Photos of some of the Crew
Role of a Navigator
Chaplain Eastwood Letters
The 464th taking off
I was flying as Navigator on Ship #417 in Baker Box 23 position.
The first time I noticed anything wrong with Lt. Roode's ship was when
he retracted the Sperry
Ball. I expected some sort of trouble from him so I kept my eyes on
him. At about 1310, approximately an hour and a half from the target I
noticed his crew throwing out from both waist windows, flak suits, ammunition
and bits of other removable equipment. About the same time he started
to fall back out of group formation. We started to slow down also in order
to keep him in our sight as long as possible but after a few moments we
realized he would not be able to regain his position in the formation
so we pulled away from him and went back into his position in the formation.
All during my observation of his ship I could plainly see that all his
engines were turning, none being feathered. We were not with Lt. Roode's
ship while over the target so I could not determine just what had caused
Lt. Roode's ship to drop behine the formation. At 1322, an hour and 55
minutes from the target, Lt. Roode's ship passed underneath the clouds
and out of my line of vision. I ascertain his altitude at that time to
be about 13,000 feet.
Some Links on the B24 and the 464th Bombardment Group:
Planes Missing MACRs
mike at mlwsw dot com <== pronunciation only, please use normal email syntax--done this way to avoid spam
(Ray is my uncle)