39th Bomb Group (VH)


Unit Citation
and Awards

arpuc.jpg [The Presidental Unit Citation]

Oak Leaf Cluster

Service Awards

apcm.jpg [The Asiatic-Pacfic Campaign Medal]


star1.gif [Bronze Star]

wwiivic.gif [The Victory Medal, World War II]

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Pfc Robert S. Murphy
Electrical Mechanic

I went in the service Mar. 43 - Ft. Haynes Columbus OH

Basic Training was in St. Pete, FL (26 days I think)
AM school was Amarilo, TX
Electrical Specialist in Chanute Field, IL
B-29 School Boeing Seattle, WA

Went to Lowery Field in Denver, CO. They had Flight Engineer School there, (I think) Anyway, I couldn't pass the physical to fly, don't remember I took the physical (Seattle or Denver) so I ended up on KP with a bunch of guys who just got back from over in the Pacific (hell of a way to treat them, I thought but they were glad to back).

Every school I went to seemed go in a different direction on graduating I was in the top 10% of my classes, I was told was the reason. I had a class A pass (reward for high grades) most of the time. At Boeing we had a civilian cooks (women), boy what meals we had. Had different ranks in class, had a "bird" Colonel in one class (He was a pilot returned from Europe) about 3 or 4 weeks later I went to Salina, Kansas - 878th Squadron 499th BG, 73rd BW. I was in the extra group in case some couldn't go. They left for Saipan shortly after that.

Then I went to Dalhart, TX where we formed a cadre for the 39th then back to Salina, Kansas to the 61st worked AM, McKenzie was Crew Chief, can't remember the others. Then I was transfered to Electrical. That is when I got on Crumm's list. I asked to transfer to another sqd, he told me no way He would see I never got promoted (he was right).

If I remember right, we had 3 electricians assigned to 6 planes, I'm not sure of the numbers of the planes I worked on, (I think the low 30's), I remember troubleshooting one up the line. I think it was "36", not sure. They were blowing fuses when landing, it was in the warning system and I found that the cannon in the tail had to be positioned do I got with Armament found bare wire that shorting out. Capt Vaccaro was Engineering Officer (a good Joe) He was more interested in the upkeep of the planes than whether your shoes were shined oir your hat was on right. Sgt Bracke was on our crew, not sure of the other guy. Anderson was lead electrician, Ivy was Flight Chief.

In a way I enjoyed working on the planes, we would get new engines ub from one supplier that were out of time (they were pulling the prop shaft the wrong way to set the rotor 10 degrees before top dead center), We sent UR's in but still they came wrong, so we set the timing before installing on the plane (it was just one supplier the others were ok). Too bad the engines didn't hold up better.

The Air Crews had enough to worry about without over heated engines and feathered props. But what would we have done without the B-29

Robert S. Murphy took his Final Flight 24 July 2009 at the age of 86 yrs.

Ground Echelon
61st Squadron Ground Roster
Source: Robert S. Murphy, Aug. 20, 2002