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 • Florence American Cemetery and Memorial
 • Florence
 • Provincia di Firenze
 • Toscana
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Sgt Arthur B. Van Kleeck
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Birth: unknown
Death: Aug. 1, 1943

Tail Gunner Sgt Arthur Van Kleek DFC MIA/KIA
Squadron: 344th Bomber Squadron 98th BG
Service # 12037352
Awards Distinguished Flying Cross with Oak Leaf Cluster, Air Medal with 3 Oak Leaf Clusters, Purple Heart.
Pilot Captain Wallace C. Taylor POW

Target: White IV- Ploesti
Mission: 1-Aug-43
Serial Number: 41-24198
Aircraft Model B-24D-
Aircraft Letter: C
Aircraft Name:THE VULGAR VIRGIN
Location: Lost near the target, Ploesti.
Cause: AA Crew 10 9 KIA 1 POW

Flown by Capt Wallace C.Taylor , F/O Packer and crew Briefed to fly the lead position of the 5th wave attacking White IV at Ploesti, Rumania on Aug 1, 1943. Took a direct flack hit in the nose while approaching target and set on fire. Pilot gave bail out signal and climbed the aircraft, leveled out. P,CPL,E, WG believed to have bailed out though only the pilot survived with serious burns. The aircraft is believed to have crashed at Tatarani South of Ploesti.

Sgt. Van Kleek was a gunner in the 98th Bomb Group when he was killed. His name appears Tablets of the Missing at Florence American Cemetery Florence, Italy, his body was never recovered.

Sgt. Van Kleek lost his life in the Ploesti raid "Operation Tidal Wave" one of the most daring raids of WW2. Coming in at tree top level the 98th destroys the Romanian oil refinery. Sgt. Van Kleek was one of the Pyramiders most decorated enlisted men, he was awarded his 2nd Distinguished flying cross for his valor on this mission.

Crew of THE VULGAR VIRGIN
1Lt. Jack K. Wood Navigator
1/Lt. Robert B. Austin Bombardier
Fl. Of. Paul W. Packer Co Pilot
Fl. Of. Paul W. Packer Co Pilot
T/Sgt. Gerald E. Rabb . Engineer
T/Sgt. Alfred F. Turgeon Radio Op.
S/Sgt. Donald R. Duchene Tail Gunner
S/Sgt. Louis Kaiser Waist Gunner
S/Sgt. Ralph M. Robins Gunner
Sgt. Arthur B. Van Kleeck Tail Gunner


 
 
Family links: 
 Parents:
  Arthur B Van Kleeck (____ - 1941)
 
Note: Entered the service from New York.
 
Burial:
Florence American Cemetery and Memorial
Florence
Provincia di Firenze
Toscana, Italy
Plot: Tablets of the Missing
 
Maintained by: John Dowdy
Originally Created by: CWGC/ABMC
Record added: Aug 07, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 56367146
Sgt Arthur B. Van Kleeck
Added by: Harvey Wolchan
 
Sgt Arthur B. Van Kleeck
Added by: Harvey Wolchan
 
Sgt Arthur B. Van Kleeck
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Harvey Wolchan
 
 
Photos may be scaled.
Click on image for full size.


- Dympna Beckett Joyce
 Added: Jan. 14, 2010
 
 
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