Date: 1944 Oct 24/24 A/C Type: P-47D Thunderbolt SN: 42-26646 Code: HV-U A/C Nickname: Pookey Doo
 File: 627 Airforce:  USAAF Sqn/Unit: 56 FG - 61 FS Mission/Raid: Rodeo mission (offensive sweep, ground attacks)
1 Pilot 2Lt. William J. Osborne        MIA 9 RWG  
2 Co-pilot   10 TG  
3 Nav.   11    
4 B   12    
5 E   13    
6 RO   14    
7 BTG   15    
8 LWG   16                    

Came in a flight of P-47D low over Lake IJsselmeer from the East. Light Flak. Dove in the water north of Marken Island, seen by his colleages. The photo right shows the type of aircraft. It is not Lt. Osborne's plane.  

Statement Capt. Eugene E. Barnum Jr.: "We were coming from an offensive sweep over Central Germany (in fact the Nienburg area) but due to almost complete overcast at about 3000 ft, we were able of doing very little and turned to come home. Just east of the Zuider Zee our group let down below the overcast course 270°, took us 1 mile north of Marken. Guns from the Isle opened fire. Aim accurate. Red 3 was hit (Osborne), gas tank afire. Plane burning badly. He winged over and dove into the water and struck on its back. Burning and appeared to explode as it hit the water. Do not believe pilot could have lived through the crash".

Comment ZZairwar: the above statement is very clear on Marken Island. However, on the map in the MACR (see below) Capt. Barnum marked the crash position ('X') 20 miles higher than Marken Island, a position at Medemblik. Both positions are plausible because of route followed and on both locations at least five aircraft wrecks were recovered post war. Lt. William J. Osborne was not found and remained MIA.

We are quite certain that on 24 October 1944 no light Flak was stationed on Marken Island. Most likely the Flak came from German patrol boats with 20mm guns.
Wreckage with the remains of 2Lt. William J. Osborne will be found someday.


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© ZZairwar (Zuyder Zee Air War)