39th Bomb Group (VH)

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1st Lt Thomas H. Brennan, Jr.

Thomas Brennan, Jr.
Courtesy of Charles Smith
Tom was born August 20, 1917 in Attleboro, MA. He graduated from high school there and attended college for one and one-half years before entering the military service. He had six years of piano studies and played professionally prior to 1941.

Brennen was inducted into the U.S. Army on March 1, 1941. Following basic training, he was assigned to the infantry as Rifleman.

Tom was transferred to the Army Air Corps in June 1942, and sent to navigational school at Selma Field, Monroe, LA. He received his commission upon graduation in May 1943.

On May 8, of that year, Tom and Catherine T. Doran of North Attleboro, MA exchanged marriage vows.

Brennen was then assigned to the 2nd Air Force (B-24's) at Tuscan, AZ. Following a flight accident, he was grounded, and underwent a seven-month period of recovery. Subsequently, he was made a ground flight instructor. In November 1944, Tom was transferred to the 39th Bomb Group. It was there at Salina, Kansas, that he became Crew 44's navigator.

Inasmuch, as Radar Observer Charles Smith was also a qualified navigator, the two performed well as a navigational team. Tom also relied on Volmar, who had training in the Loran set.

Brennen was discharge from the Air Corps with the rank of Captain, December 1945. Among his decorations he received were the DFC and three Air Medals.

He and his wife, Kate, along with their daughter, made their home in North Attleboro, MA. Tom was employed L.G. Balfour Company as a hand engraver and designer for 41 years.

The Brennens have four children and eleven grandchildren: Maurren (Mullowney), a Registered Nurse, with 2 children; Shiela (Fischer), high school science teacher - 5 children; Thomas III, data processing manager - 2 children and Theresa (Petrucelli), a teacher with 2 children. The grandchildren range from a Junior at college all the way down to a nine month infant.

This means that Tom and Kate are frequently busy attending sports events, graduations, recitals, etc. Tom says, "This keeps us young"

Thomas H. Brennan, Jr. took his Final Flight on 21 January 2007 at the age of 89 yrs. Mass was held at St Mark's Church in Attleboro Falls. Burial is in St. Mary's Cemetery, Attleboro Falls.

Crew 44 Main Page
62nd Squadron Crew Index
Source: Source:Tom Brennan, Jr, for the book "History of the 39th Bomb Group"; Photo: Charles A. Smith