Summary

Ernest J. Sheen a young man from Provo Utah served in WWII and went missing in action during the Pacific campaign. If you have pictures or additional information please contact the author.

Birth:
17 Jun 1922 1
Mapleton, UT 1
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Pictures & Records (10)

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Personal Details

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Birth:
17 Jun 1922 1
Mapleton, UT 1
Male 1
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Birth:
Mother: Sophia Louise Law 1
Father: Ernest Sheen 1

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Sources

  1. Contributed by burnsfamily
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Stories

Missing Aircrew Report

Truk Islands

Page 16
2 images

Based on an eye witness report, the following is the official statement regarding the missing crew and aircraft:

 "On 30 March 1944, F/O David and crew took off in airplane #42-48752 with formation from Torokina at 0840L for scheduled bombing mission on Truk Islands. Over target formation was intercepted by thirty (30) or forty (40) enemy fighters, which gave a running fight for one hour and fifteen (15) minutes. Other gunners saw tracers going through this airplane. Plane was last seen entering cloud cover at end of fight with interceptors. One message was received from F/O David giving an ETA of 1820L at Green and that his IFF and command were out. On return from target many severe frontal areas were penetrated by formation. F/O David never landed at destination. Area was thoroughly searched, but neither traces of the plane nor crew were sighted."

The missing crew...

07° 10’ N 152° 00’ E

Page 3

Ernest J. Sheen is reported as a gunner on aircraft #42-48752.  The crew are as follows:

Pilot: LeVerne W. David
Co-pilot: Jospeh L. Thomas
Navigator: George F. Maier
Bombadier: William J. Rodgers
Engineer: Oscar R. Tiffin
Ass't Engineer: Charles Sweet
Radio Operator: Thomas F. Lane
Ass't Radio Operator: Kenneth C. Gove
Gunner: Ernest J. Sheen
Gunner: Joshua B. Walton


On 30 March 1944 the plane and crew went missing after encountering enemy fire during a bombing strike. The last know location was 07° 10’ N 152° 00’ E.

Torokina Airfield - Start of the mission...

Torokina

Torokina, Papua New Guinea

As far as I can tell the Torkina airfield had only been in allied hands for a few months. The following source gives some information and photos of the airfield.

http://www.pacificwrecks.com/airfields/png/torokina/index.html

 

The following links give an idea of where this small airfield was located.

 

http://www.fallingrain.com/world/PP/7/Torokina.html

http://www.maplandia.com/papua-new-guinea/northern-solomons/torokina/

The target...

Truk Islands

The target on this fateful day was Japanese locations in the Truk Islands. I found one web site that provides information about the operations in this area around this time. It would seem that by 30 March 1944 that US forces had been battling for some time. This report indicates that February 16-17 1944 was a day similar to Pearl Harbor, only in reverse (US forces blasted the Japanese forces in the Truk Islands). Click the following link to read the report.

http://www.cv6.org/1944/truk/default.htm

According to information on Wikipedia, Operation Hailstone was a massive naval, air, and ground attack which launch on Feb 17, 1944. Click on the link below to read details about this operation. The bombing run of 30 March was probably one of several follow-up attacks to eliminate Japanese pockets of resistance.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Hailstone

Headstone Memorial

Provo, UT

ErnestJSheen.jpg
2 images
There is a memorial head stone in the Provo, Utah cemetery that honors Ernie.  It sits next to his parents' marker.

Birth and Early Life

Mapleton, UT, USA

Ernest Jay Sheen was born to Ernest Sheen and Sophia Louise Law on 17 June 1922. His pedigree record and IGI data can be viewed by clicking on the following links.

Pedigree Record

IGI Record

As I receive more information and pictures of Ernie I will add them here.

My uncle was Kenneth C Gove, who was on the B-24 Fuzzy Wuzzy, along with Ernest Sheen. I have a crew photo of all ten men in front of another B-24 called Vibratin Virgin.

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