Gerald J. Murphy Killed in B29 crash, Walker Field 17Sept1944
Gerald J. Murphy, Tail Gunner, aircraft #42-6379, 17 Sept 1944.
One of the truly ironic mysteries in doing our research on our Uncle Bob, has been meeting and bonding with those who are doing parallel research on their relatives that connects with our own.
A few weeks ago we came into contact with Jerry Murphy. Jerry's cousin, Gerald J. Murphy, was the tail gunner on aircraft #42-6379. He was killed along with his entire crew when their plane crashed on a training flight on 17Sept1944. They were flying out of Walker Field in Victoria, Kansas.
Our Uncle Bob was also in training at Walker Field at the time of this crash, and on 23Sept1944 wrote this to his mother: "One of the fellows I have been with for a long time was killed here in a plane crash last Sunday. The whole crew got killed. Daisy has a picture of him that I took at Boca Raton."
Sadly, we do not have that photo Uncle Bob took at Boca Raton. Almost all of his WWII records and memorabilia were lost in a flood in the 1950s, so we have no idea what crew member he knew from the above crash. My suspicion is that it would have been the radar operator.
The common bond we have with Jerry and his cousin is how we continue to find each other to exchange information. Some of it very sad in nature. But even those who never served in combat, but died while in training, deserve our utmost respect for having served our great country.
We must remember.