Cessna Crane, FJ283

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georgetanksherman
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Cessna Crane, FJ283

Post by georgetanksherman » Sun Sep 27, 2020 11:13 pm

Would any one have info on one of these airmen, looking for the hometown on P/O W.K. Wells

Cessna Crane, FJ283, September 21, 1942

Aircraft crashed during instrument flying training, fabric had come off aircraft during flight which was the cause of the aircraft crash near RCAF Vulcan, Alberta, Canada. One crew member was able to bail out, the other two were not able to abandon the aircraft and was killed in the crash.

Crew:
P/O J.R. Lippi, J/12498, RCAF, Oakland, California, U.S.A.- K.I.F.A.
F/O A.M. Vandre, C/3883, RCAF, Lake Mills, Wisconsin, U.S.A. - K.I.F.A.
P/O W.K. Wells, J/12573, RCAF, Unknown, U.S.A. – Bailed out, survived

Note: On April 27, 1944, while with No. 1666 Heavy Conversion Unit, P/O Willard K. Wells was involved in a ground accident while pilot of Handley Page Halifax JB859, while waiting to take off, the aircraft moved hitting Halifax JD106 which was parked ahead of JB859 awaiting take off. The pilot of this aircraft had not noticed the aircraft had moved forward and his crew were all at their take off positions from which they could not see the aircraft was moving forward. The rear gunner of JD106 was sadly killed as a result of the collision. The pilot of this aircraft was later court martialed on a count of negligence but was found not guilty though he would appear to have not resumed pilot duties.

Appreciate any help with this

Cheers
George

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Temujin
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Re: Cessna Crane, FJ283

Post by Temujin » Mon Sep 28, 2020 1:16 am

georgetanksherman wrote:
Sun Sep 27, 2020 11:13 pm
Would any one have info on one of these airmen, looking for the hometown on P/O W.K. Wells

Cessna Crane, FJ283, September 21, 1942

Aircraft crashed during instrument flying training, fabric had come off aircraft during flight which was the cause of the aircraft crash near RCAF Vulcan, Alberta, Canada. One crew member was able to bail out, the other two were not able to abandon the aircraft and was killed in the crash.

Crew:
P/O J.R. Lippi, J/12498, RCAF, Oakland, California, U.S.A.- K.I.F.A.
F/O A.M. Vandre, C/3883, RCAF, Lake Mills, Wisconsin, U.S.A. - K.I.F.A.
P/O W.K. Wells, J/12573, RCAF, Unknown, U.S.A. – Bailed out, survived

Note: On April 27, 1944, while with No. 1666 Heavy Conversion Unit, P/O Willard K. Wells was involved in a ground accident while pilot of Handley Page Halifax JB859, while waiting to take off, the aircraft moved hitting Halifax JD106 which was parked ahead of JB859 awaiting take off. The pilot of this aircraft had not noticed the aircraft had moved forward and his crew were all at their take off positions from which they could not see the aircraft was moving forward. The rear gunner of JD106 was sadly killed as a result of the collision. The pilot of this aircraft was later court martialed on a count of negligence but was found not guilty though he would appear to have not resumed pilot duties.

Appreciate any help with this

Cheers
George
Looking for you George.

In the mean time, some additional information on the crash. The aircraft and crew were from #2 Flying Instructor School, Pearce, Alberta, Canada. Cessna Crane was in a shallow dive and had the fabric stripped from the port wing. The aircraft spiraled to the ground and crashed 15 miles north-east of aerodrome at Vulcan, Alberta.

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Re: Cessna Crane, FJ283

Post by Temujin » Mon Sep 28, 2020 1:38 am

I “think” this may be him George, trying to double check now

Willard K. Wells
1914–2010
BIRTH 24 SEPT 1914 • Syracuse, Onondaga, New York, USA
DEATH 12 OCT 2010 • Levittown, Bucks, Pennsylvania, USA
0D507141-7740-449F-B46D-15A988925471.jpeg
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Re: Cessna Crane, FJ283

Post by Temujin » Mon Sep 28, 2020 1:48 am

Yes, I’m 99% sure that this is him.

More info, it looks like that later he may have transferred back to US Forces.
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364th Fighter Group, 384th Fighter Squadron


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Willard and James Wells, visit their parents -1942
15 Oct 1942
Batavia, Genesse, New York, USA
The Times, Batavia, NY - 15 Oct 1942, page 4

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Re: Cessna Crane, FJ283

Post by Temujin » Mon Sep 28, 2020 2:02 am

Found a newspaper article.......it’s about his brother who was in the US forces......but the article mentions William K Wells, and he WAS in the RCAF but then was flying for Ferry Command AND the “last” Wells at the bottom of the page (Just after the info on William), was another brother who was KIA with American Forces
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AND found this article confirming all of the above and his transferred to American Forces
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Re: Cessna Crane, FJ283

Post by Temujin » Mon Sep 28, 2020 2:10 am

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Re: Cessna Crane, FJ283

Post by Temujin » Mon Sep 28, 2020 2:07 pm

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Just a note.....correction to some of my information before which showed 2 FIS stations at Pearce, Alberta......this unit MOVED to Pearce, but at the time of the crash it was still located at Vulcan, Alberta

Side Note: A lot of my family lived in or near Vulcan at that time, including my Grandmother.
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Re: Cessna Crane, FJ283

Post by Temujin » Mon Sep 28, 2020 2:36 pm

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Re: Cessna Crane, FJ283

Post by georgetanksherman » Mon Sep 28, 2020 5:08 pm

Thank you for the info on Willard Wells, sounds like the "Bad Luck" bug followed him where ever he went ? Between the Anson Accident, the Train thing and then the Halifax. I wonder if switching over to the USAAF was a "Volunteer" thing, or that the RCAF Clipped his wings, so he went over to the USAAF so he could fly some more !

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Re: Cessna Crane, FJ283

Post by Temujin » Mon Sep 28, 2020 5:57 pm

georgetanksherman wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 5:08 pm
Thank you for the info on Willard Wells, sounds like the "Bad Luck" bug followed him where ever he went ? Between the Anson Accident, the Train thing and then the Halifax. I wonder if switching over to the USAAF was a "Volunteer" thing, or that the RCAF Clipped his wings, so he went over to the USAAF so he could fly some more !
That’s what I thought to, so the only way to find out is get his RCAF records, they “may” tell the story

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