James Oliver Nichols

Sgt    37239419    614th
1918 - 1944

Right Waist Gunner onboard 42-31036 (Nobody's Baby)

Longwood Cemetery, Missouri, USA.

     James was born May 4, 1918, Longwood, Pettis, Missouri.
     He was an honor graduate of the Longwood High School.

     In Nov 11, 1942 he enlisted to the aircorps.
     He recieved his training at St. petersburg, Fla. and his mechanical training in Santa Monica, Calif.

     On Aug 17, 1943, while in training in the US, his plane collided with another plane, and started,
     downward gliding like an autumn leaf in a breeze.
     He struggled to free himself and was less than one thousand feet from the ground before he
     succeeded in bailing out.
     He landed, recieving numerous bruises and injuries from which he recovered.

     In Nov 1943 he arrived in England to join the 401st BG
     His last mission, Feb 4, 1944, Target: Frankfurt, after dropping bombs the plane was hit by flak.
     They believed to have crashed in the North Sea as no evidence of their crash or bodies were ever found.

     He was awarded with an Air Medal and a Purple Heart Medal

     In 1944, when James died on the age of 25 he left behind his family :

         His father, Robert W Nichols, age 54
         His mother, Pearl Nichols, age 51
         His brother, Robert Nichols, age 30
         His brother, Roy W Nichols, age 28
         His brother, John D Nichols, age 23
         His sister, Mildred P Nichols, age 18
         His brother, Kenneth Nichols, age 14

Mission to Frankfurt, germany, At 12:25 the ship was seen to lose altitude and gradually fell back from the formation.
No one knows what happened but the ship did not return to base.

     Mr. and Mrs. Robert W. Nichols of Longwood were notified by telegram that their son James, is missing
     in action over Germany since Feb. 4.

     Dear Mr. and Mrs. Michols : Since your son, Sgt James O. Nichols, was reported missing in
     action 4 Feb 1944, the war department has entertained the hope that he survived and that information
     would be revealed dispelling the uncertainty surrounding his absence.

     However, as in many cases, the conditions of warfare deny us such information.
     Your son's case was reviewed and he was continued in the status of missing in action as of Feb 5, 1945.

     All available records and reports concerning the absence of your son have been carefully investigated
     and are deemed to warrant a subsequent review of his case.

     Since no information has been received which would support a presumption of his continued
     survival the war department must now terminate yor son's absence by a presumptive finding of
     The date has been set at Sept 18, 1945.

     I regret the necessity for this message but trust that the ending of a long period of uncertainty
     may give at least some small measure of consolation.

     Sincerely yours, Edward F. Witsell, Major Gerneral.

Margraten cemetery, Netherlands.
Wall of Missing

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