39th Bomb Group (VH)



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F/O Birdell J. Brellenthin
Radar Observer

L to R: Earl Diven and Burly Brellenthin - working on the Officer's Club Early August 1945

Birdell "Burly' Brellenthin flew one mission, 17 hours over Japan on a P.O.W. Supply drop on 30 August 1945. Crews started breaking up shortly after 2nd Sept as long time people were sent home. Groups were closed out.

He transferred from the 39th to the 29th to the 19th BG. Final transfer was to the 501st BG. 315th BW on Northwest Field. I flew various missions for over a year ie training, rescue, airlift and one Sunset flight to Hawaii.

Brellenthin stayed in the Reserves. He was recalled as 1st Lieutenant in June of 1952 and served 18 months. He was assigned after refresher training to a combat crew slated for Korea, however, he was removed as sole male survivor in family and finished as a Radar Instructor for the 44th Bomb Wing, St. Charles, LA.

He retired from my auto dealership "Chevy Olds" after 40 years. I now do volunteer works on museum projects, spring and fall field works for a farmer friend of mine and travel in my motorhome.

Burly and his wife Donna have been married for 58 years in June, they had 2 children, a son, Jack who is married with 3 children and lives in Chattanooga, TN. Jack works for TVA (Tennessee Valley Authority) and a daughter Wendy who is married with 2 sons, She is registured nurse, living in Eau Claire WI.

He is President of Lake Geneva Untility Commission.

He is rated World Class as a iceboat racer, currently the oldest active racer -

His daughter, Wendy shares .. "For being almost 80 - next July - Dad is incredibly active, healthy and in good shape. He and my uncle (a youngster at 76!) canoe in the Boundary Waters of Minnesota every fall, portaging, carrying canoes, supplies etc. Dad's biggest loves would be his farming activities and ice boating!"

Romspert Crew Main Page
61st Squadron Crew Index
Source: Burly Brellenthin, Radar Observer; Wendy Erickson