1943-44 — Italy
Lt John C Colleton was a commissioned Bombardier with the 310th Bomb Group, and Flew Combat Missions in both the 381st Bomb Squad and the 428th Bomb Squad. Combat Bombardier with the 381st BS and 428th Bomb Squad.
His 1st combat mission in the 381st was on 12 Jun 43:
A/C No. 42-32333 “Lorelei” (K) P Wightman, Henry B. “Hank”, 1Lt CP Sampson, George D, 2Lt N None B Colleton, John C., 2Lt E None R Porter, Lloyd G., Jr., T/Sgt G Fox, Francis J., S/Sgt F None
As many bombardiers, he flew on several ships and crews, however most often flew with Capt Phillips in Jun and Jul 43
A/C No. 41-13074 “Balls of Fire” / “Royal Flush” (A) P Phillips, Carl A., Capt CP Durgin, James L., 2Lt N Opeka, John (NMI), Jr., 2Lt B Colleton, John C., 2Lt E None R Nickelson, Royal C., T/Sgt G Bozovich, Matthew L., S/Sgt
Then at the end of July, became a regular with Lt Denton on 445:
A/C No. 42-53445 “Lottie’s Goose” (K) P Denton, Richard D., 2Lt CP Boston, Joseph W., Jr., 2Lt N Opeka, John (NMI), Jr., 2Lt B Colleton, John C., 2Lt E None R Potolsky, George (NMI), T/Sgt G Miller, Foster Eugene, S/Sgt F None
Some of the ships he flew on were:
41-13074“Balls of Fire” / “Royal Flush”
I can account for 15 missions in Jun (5) and Jul 43 (10). I did a cursory search of mission reports from Aug thru Nov 43 – Lt Colleton flew 6 in Aug; 9 in Sep, and 0 in Oct and Nov – for a total of 30 with the 381st BS.
According to the 27 Nov 43 entry in the 381st BS war diary, Lt Colleton was transferred to the 428thBS, 310th BG:
This was his ship (serial # 42-42492) and crew for the first few missions.
Hogan, Jack F., F/O, pilot
Edelman, Forrest J., F/O, pilot
Colleton, John C., 2Lt, bombardier
Kelly, Phillip J., S/Sgt, radio-gunner
Porch, Dean O., S/Sgt, engineer-gunner
Risteau, John E., S/Sgt, bombardier-gunner, radio-gunner
I can account for 12 combat missions with 428th BS: 4 in Jan 44, 4 in Feb, 4 in Mar - Looks like his last mission with the 428th was on 14 Mar 44.
According to this 12 May 44 entry in the 428th war diary, Lt Colleton went home.
Pictures and stories from his proud daughter Suzanne and her husband Peter Quinlan.
10 June, 2012 to John T Fitzgerald, 321stBG History Team with Patti Johnson and Barbi Ennis Connolly.
Dear Sir, My name is Peter Quinlan my wife Susanne is the 3rd daughter of John C Colleton (see articles below) he retired as a Lt Col in 1969 from the reserves and this is the only information we have. While google'n his name this week, his name came up under your 57th bomb wing war stories. After looking through what I could pull up, which everything said cached, I could not find his name, but alot of the places mentioned I recall him talking about, Corsica, Tunisia etc.I think he was on a B 24, again this is all I know, if there is anyway you can help us put together anymore info or direct us in the right direction we would appreciate it, Thank You
Peter Quinlan, Loganville Georgia
Researched by the 321st Bomb Group History Team, John (Butch) Fitzgerald, Patti Johnson and Historian Barbi Ennis Connolly. Additions/corrections? PRINCESSBARBI_B25@msn.com