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Murray Crew 709
 Murray Crew 709
Back row, left to right...
Kenneth A Schwartz, navigator
Glen R Rosenberry, bombardier
Front row, left to right...
Richard E Statham, gunner
Waukeen C Gatlin, gunner
Elias M Hernandez, gunner
Lowell S Stillflew, engineer
Murray Crew 709 Summary
The Murray Crew was one of the original crews for the 492nd BG that trained in Alamogordo, New Mexico. They transferred in as crew 102 from the 331st CCTS (Combat Crew Training School) in Casper, Wyoming. They were assigned to the 857th BS, designated as Crew 709.
2nd Lt Alvin Murray signed out for a B-24J, 42-110151. Their ship was nicknamed, ALVIN. In April 1944, they flew their assigned aircraft to North Pickenham, England, via the southern route. Their Ground Crew Chief, M/Sgt Hruscik flew with them, thus bumping Sgt Statham onto the Queen Elizabeth.
By our count, Lt Murray flew as the aircraft commander for Crew 709 for a total of 3 missions. We can't be positive if there were any personnel changes on some of their missions.
They were severely shot up by the Luftwaffe on 19 May 44 during a bombing attack on Brunswick. Immediately one crewmen, Hernandez, was killed in the battle while another, Statham, was wounded. Murray dropped out of formation and gave the order to abandon ship. Three of the crewmen helped their wounded comrade bail out before jumping. Then the ship exploded into a fireball. 6 KIA, 4 POW, MACR 5241.
Statham, the wounded survivor, had to have his leg removed in a German Hospital. The other three were put into POW camps.
The plane crashed in a field just outside of Vardeilsen, Germany. Hernandez's body was found just 500 meters from the wreck. However, the bodies of the other five killed were discovered 33 kilometers north of Gottingen. All of the bodies were buried at the Vardeilsen Cemetery. After the war, Hernandez was reburied in the Netherlands American Cemetery. The other five were brought back to the US and given a group burial at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.
The Murray Crew 709 was replaced by the Rasmussen Crew R-02.
More Info
3 pictures
Murray CCT 102
Links to missions
flown by the
Murray Crew 709
are below in their
Mission Record
Original Roster for
Murray Crew 709
Position / MOS Name Rank Serial # Notes
MOS 1024
Murray, Alvin M 2nd Lt O-809026 KIA, 19 May 44, MACR 5241
Buried at Arlington National Cemetery
MOS 1022
Anderson, Kermit W 2nd Lt O-692846 KIA, 19 May 44, MACR 5241
Buried at Arlington National Cemetery
MOS 1034
Schwartz, Kenneth A 2nd Lt O-691815 POW, 19 May 44, MACR 5241, Stalag Luft III
MOS 1035
Rosenberry, Glen R 2nd Lt O-753033 POW, 19 May 44, MACR 5241
Not in NARA AAD POW file
MOS 748
Stillflew, Lowell S S/Sgt 16076369 KIA, 19 May 44, MACR 5241
Buried at Arlington National Cemetery
MOS 757
McMullen, Wesley F S/Sgt 31196750 KIA, 19 May 44, MACR 5241
Buried at Arlington National Cemetery
MOS 612
Gatlin, Waukeen C S/Sgt 18129740 POW, 19 May 44, MACR 5241, Stalag Luft IV
MOS 611
Breckenridge, Clyde H Sgt 32488159 KIA, 19 May 44, MACR 5241
Buried at Arlington National Cemetery
We've seen his name misspelled as Glyde
MOS 748
Hernandez, Elias M S/Sgt 34428503 KIA, 19 May 44, MACR 5241
Buried at Netherlands American Cemetery, T-12-13
MOS 612
Statham, Richard E Sgt 14056752 Arrived to the UK via the Queen Elizabeth
POW, 19 May 44, MACR 5241
WIA, lost wounded leg
  Others Who Flew with Murray Crew 709
MOS 750
Hruscik, Anthony G M/Sgt 06907651 Flew to England with the crew
Murray Crew 709
492nd BG Mission Record
857th Bomb Squadron
Primary Target Mission Notes
 Link to Mission 02 page 02
12 May 44 42-110151 Zeitz, Germany Target: Oil refinery
 Link to Mission 03 page 03
13 May 44   Tutow, Germany Target: Airfield
 Link to Mission 05 page 05
19 May 44 42-110151 Brunswick, Germany Target: Marshalling yard
Lost 6 KIA, 4 POW, MACR 5241
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Page last modified Thursday, April 10, 2014.