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First Name: Donald

Last Name: Garrard

Birthplace: USA

Gender: Male



Branch: U.S. Army Air Forces (1941 - 1947)



Home of Record: CA
Middle Name: A.



Date of Birth:

Date of Death: 03 April 1945 (Official)

MIA Date: 02 April 1944

Rank: Captain

Years Served:
Donald A. Garrard

   
Engagements:
•  World War II (1941 - 1945)

Biography:

Donald A. Garrard
Captain, U.S. Army Air Forces

In April 1944, Captain Donald A. Garrard was serving as a pilot with the 759th Bomb Squadron, 459th Bombardment Group (Heavy), 304th Bombardment Wing, 15th Air Force, based at Giulia Airfield, Italy. The 459th Bombardment Group flew B-24 Liberator bombers on missions in Italy, France, the Balkans, Austria and Germany.

On 2 April 1944, CPT Garrard was the pilot of the B-24H Liberator bomber Serial Number 41-28716 named 'Swiss Itch' on a bombing mission over Steyr, Austria. The aircraft had a crew of 11. As the aircraft completed its bomb run and turned toward the rally point, two German ME-109 fighters attacked the B-24 passing from the front of the aircraft to the rear. Witnesses stated that they observed the aircraft's #2 and #4 engines begin to smoke as CPT Garrard's aircraft pulled up higher and dropped out of formation to the right. TSGT Kenneth H. Foley, on another aircraft, stated that the #4 engine was smoking and the # 2 engine was feathered. In an effort to keep up with the formation, CPT Garrard un-feathered #2 engine and started to catch up with the formation. This did not help for long and he was forced to feather the engine again and fell out of the formation for the last time. The last reported sighting of the B-24 was made at 1350 hours by USAAF P-38 fighter pilots who reported observing a B-24 with one engine out and another smoking, attempting to make a forced landing in the Adriatic Sea. No trace of the crew or aircraft was ever found despite multiple rescue missions being flown over the reported crash sight.

All 11 crew members were listed as Killed in Action on MACR 3884. Their official date of death is 3 April 1945.

Medals, Awards and Badges

Purple Heart
Air Medal with Award Numeral 3
American Campaign Medal
European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal
World War II Victory Medal
Army Air Forces Pilot Badge

B-24H Liberator Bomber Serial Number 41-28716 'Swiss Itch' had the following crew on 2 April 1944.

● Pilot: CPT Donald A. Garrard [Honoree Record ID 202402]
● Co-Pilot: 2LT Dwyer C. Brownfield [Honoree Record ID 73653]
● Navigator: 2LT Harold E. Yoakam [Honoree Record ID 209416]
● Bombardier: 2LT Gordon H. Dennison [Honoree Record ID 201362]
● Navigator: 1LT Joe Sewnig, Jr. [Honoree Record ID 207598]
● Engineer/Gunner: TSGT Armand F. Sposito [Honoree Record ID 208002]
● Radio Operator: PVT Richard S. Bruno [Honoree Record ID 73662]
● Waist Gunner: SSGT Milton F. Juech [Honoree Record ID 203915]
● Waist Gunner: SSGT Careme J. Jabaly [Honoree Record ID 203650]
● Ball Turret Gunner: SSGT Paul J. Wardlow [Honoree Record ID 208913]
● Tail Turret Gunner: SGT Gordon A. Tasney [Honoree Record ID 78066]

Memorialization

Captain Donald A. Garrard is memorialized on the Tablets of the Missing at the Sicily-Rome American Cemetery and Memorial in Nettuno, Provincia di Roma, Lazio, Italy.

[The information in this biography was derived primarily from various sections of the 459th Bombardment Group website at http://www.459bg.org/ and permission was granted for its use.]



Honoree ID: 202402   Created by: MHOH

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