Flight Officer Leland H. Pennington was deployed to Ramitelli Air Base in Italy with the 301st Fighter Squadron of the 332nd Fighter Group. During a bomber escort mission on April 21, 1945, in which he was flying a North American P-51B Mustang he named "Lucy Gal" (for his wife), he broke formation and radioed that he was "sack timing solo," or returning to base and did not need an escort.
In his after action report, 1st Lt. Jimmy Lanham wrote, "I saw him turn back and assumed he would land at Zara," a friendly field in Yugoslavia. "I did not contact him or sight him after this."
According to 332nd Fighter Group Aircraft Losses, Pennington went missing about 15 miles west of Zara, Yugoslavia, was never recovered and was officially declared dead on April 22, 1946. His name was memorialized on the Tablets of the Missing at the Sicily-Rome American Cemetery and Memorial.