Coats' Crew

LT Coats' crew
(submitted by J.C. Coats via Larry Krikorian)

Standing (L to R): Bailey Williams (B), J.C. Coats (P), Kenneth D. McCool (TG), Darius Christie (G), Krikor Krikorian (FE/Top). Front row (L to R): John Scruggs (NG), Earle (BG), Francis McCarthy (CP), Junior King (RO).

June 14, 1944.

SUBJECT:   Air Abortion.

TO:               Commanding Officer, 832nd Bomb Sq (H) AAF Station 174.


               1.   No. 4 engine quit while crossing the French Coast. The only indication was manifold pressure dropping to zero. The oil pressure dropping to 50# per sq. inch at which time the engine was feathered. Approximately 10 minutes later No. 2 oil pressure dropped to zero and the engine could not be feathered. The second engine was lost 21,500 feet.


               2.   Made a short attempted bomb run without a sight, the Bombardier attempted to hit a highway intersection approximately 5 dues easts of Ostend. The bombs (44-100 lb GFs) fell about 500 ft north of highway intersection in patch of woods. The intervolmeter setting was 50 ft. They were dropped from 18,000 ft. Eight bombs in right rear bombay released but hung up in the bombay.


               3.   Crossed enemy coast at Nieuport on heading of 283 degrees and at 17,500 ft. At which time Bombardier attempted to chop the bombs out of Bombay. About 2 minutes off the French Coast the complete electrical system went out, all instruments and radios were out. The Bombardier was unable to get bombs out and 5,000 ft. Pilot ordered bomb pins put back in. All this while No. 1 engine would come down to 15-20# per Sq. inch, then up to 55-60# per Sq. inch.


               4.   Came over English Coast at 2000 ft. for a straight in approach for landing at Manston, made fairly rough landing at which time the remaining 8 bombs fell through bomb doors on runway. Two bombs exploded underneath and slightly behind the tail. No-one was hurt but several holes were put in fuselage, wing and vertical stabilizer. The rest of the mission was uneventful.


J. C. Coats,
2d LT., Air Corps,


Visiting Manston at the time of the above incident was Mr. Malone who interviewed a few members of the crew. Mr. Malone was a nationally recognized human interest reporter with scheduled newscast from the war zone. Following the interviews, Mr. Malone sent telegrams to the wives back home informing them of the times of the scheduled broadcast. Several newspaper articles also appeared chronicling this episode.

LT Coats completed 35 combat missions. His crew completed 33. On July 19, 44 LT Coats flew with another crew on a mission to Saarbröcken. His first flight was a check out flight as copilot on a veteran crew.


Name Rank Position First Mission Last Mission Status
J C Coats 2nd LT Pilot 05/07/44 09/27/44 Completed tour.
Francis McCarthy   Copilot 05/07/44 09/27/44 Completed tour.
James S. Wrenn   Navigator 05/07/44 09/27/44 Completed tour.
Bailey E. Williams   Bombardier 05/07/44 09/27/44 Completed tour.
Krikor G. Krikorian SGT Flight Engineer/Top 05/07/44 09/27/44 Completed tour.
Junior D. King   Radio Operator 05/07/44 09/27/44 Completed tour.
Darius H. Christie   Gunner 05/07/44 09/27/44 Completed tour.
Kenneth D. McCool   Tail 05/07/44 09/27/44 Completed tour.
John R. Scruggs   Nose 05/07/44 09/27/44 Completed tour.
Michael N. Earle   Ball //44 //44 Transferred
Roy Jorgensen   Ball     WIA, Aug 14, 44
George W. Ard   Crew Chief 05/07/44   Completed tour.
Arr. Sudbury 03/02/44 Black Fury TJ 4x-xx644 B24H
001 05/07/44 Black Fury TJ 4x-xx644 B24H
003 05/09/44 Black Fury TJ 4x-xx644 B24H
005 05/20/44 Black Fury TJ 4x-xx644 B24H
007 05/24/44 Black Fury TJ 4x-xx644 B24H
008 05/25/44 Black Fury TJ 4x-xx644 B24H
010 (abort) 05/28/44 Black Fury TJ 4x-xx644 B24H
011 05/29/44 Black Fury TJ 4x-xx644 B24H
013 05/31/44 Black Fury TJ 4x-xx644 B24H
015 06/06/44 Pandora's Box TN 4x-xx714 B24H
021 06/12/44 Lady Lightnin' TO 42-52760 B24H
022 06/14/44 Black Fury TJ 4x-xx644 B24H
024 06/16/44   ND 4x-xx505 B24H
026 06/20/44 Black Fury TJ 4x-xx644 B24H
027 06/20/44   TH 4x-xx682 B24H
028 06/22/44   T- 4x-xx291 B24H
032 (abort) 06/27/44 Pandora's Box TN 4x-xx714 B24H
033 (abandoned) 06/28/44   T- 4x-xx601 B24H
039 07/05/44   TH 4x-xx682 B24H
043 (recall) 07/12/44 Black Fury TJ 4x-xx644 B24H
046 07/18/44 Pandora's Box TN 4x-xx714 B24H
047 (abort) 07/19/44   T- 4x-xx523 B24H
050 08/01/44   T- 4x-xx877 B17G
054 08/05/44 Easy Movement NL 43-38041 B17G
056 08/07/44   PS 4x-xx292 B17G
057 08/08/44   TC 4x-xx910 B17G
059 08/11/44     4x-xx985 B17G
061 08/14/44   TL 4x-xx040 B17G
063 08/16/44   NE 43-38137 B17G
065 08/24/44   TN 43-38194 B17G
066 08/25/44   TN 43-38194 B17G
068 08/27/44   TT 43-37820 B17G
070 09/01/44   TN 43-38194 B17G
073 09/09/44   TN 43-38194 B17G
074 09/10/44   TN 43-38194 B17G
077 09/13/44   TN 43-38194 B17G
078 09/17/44   TC 4x-xx910 B17G
079 09/19/44   TN 43-38194 B17G
081 09/25/44   TN 43-38194 B17G
083 09/27/44     4x-xx008 B17G

Completed 35 missions

Created 09/10/99 Modified 12/23/16

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