John Edwin "Jumbo" O'Neal Jr.

1st Lt    0-671169    614th
1922 - 1944

Navigator aboard 42-97464 (What Next ?)


Margraten cemetery, Netherlands
Plot : M , Row : 12 , Grave : 4.

     John was born 1922, Savannah City, Chatham, Georgia.

     In Apr 2, 1942 he enlisted to the air corps.

     In 1943 he arrived in England to join the 401st BG
     His last mission, Apr 13, 1944, Target: Schweinfurt, Germany, About 10 minutes past the target the ship
     was attacked by 14 FW 190 and 109's..
     A/C turned back and seemed under control for about 40 seconds , the went into steep dive and blew up
     at 16000 Feet.

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

     In 1944, when John died on the age of 21 he left behind his family :

         His father, John Edwin O'Neal, age 51
         His mother, Enna O'Neal, age 48
         His brother, Charles E O'Neal, age 19
         His brother, William E O'Neal, age 17
         His brother, Richard N O'Neal, age 12

Front row, : Jack L. Pfaffman - 1st Lt Stimson - John O'Neal - Robert H. Timberlake
Back row, : Alfred Lesage - Andrew L. Allen - Paul J. Amos - Karl E. Kukurin - Paul S. Melia - Carmon L. Mancuso.

Mission to Schweinfurt, Germany, After fighter had attacked aircraft and right wing tip burning.
Crashed near Weibersbrunn, Germany

         Apr 13, 1944, mission no 50, Target: Ball bearing plant in Schweinfurt, Germany.

         Fighters were agressive and persistent, with as many as 150/200 encountered during the mission,
         and some coming as close as 75 yards.
         Flak was heavy as hell.

         Clouds over the target made observations of strike results impossible.
         The plane was attacked by German fighters after dropping bombs and was out of control.

         The crew was ready to bail out, John was not injured before bailing out.
         When he bailed out he hit his head on bombay doors.
         John was probably unconscious and uncapable of opening chute.

         According to 2 members his chute was open, at least partially.
         John could also have been killed because his chute failed to open.

         2 members found his body just after they were captured.
         They indentified John by his dog tag.

         John was buried on Apr 16, 1944 at Weibersbrunn, Germany and later transferred to margraten,

         John flew about 22 missions.

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