Oct. 12, 1942 Bridgeport Fairfield County Connecticut, USA
VETERAN OF WORLD WAR II 2nd LIEUTENANT ARMY AIR CORPS GOLD STAR LIST
Richard Marvin Craghill, 22, son of Postmaster Ernest J. and Celina May (Cochrane) Craghill of Corcoran, was killed in an airplane crash in October, 1942, at Bridgeport, Conn. He was a second lieutenant attached to a fighter squadron of the Air Corps. Craghill went into the service in June, 1941. He graduated from advanced flying school at Foster Field, Texas, and was commissioned in the army air corps. He specialized in flying single engine fighter planes.
Following his graduation from flight school, he returned to Corcoran and married Miss Helen Gardner, a daughter of Joe Shelby and Emma L. Gardner. Mrs. Craghill accompanied her husband to Bridgeport, where she was residing at the time of his death.
Craghill's army plane plunged into the side of a spacious estate home and started a fire which quickly consumed both the plane and the house.
John Stanton, 9 year old school boy who saw the crash from less than 200 feet distance, said the pilot of the plane made three vain attempts to pull his plane out of a spin.
The owner of the home, her maid and three workmen were in a room near that into which the plane crashed but escaped amidst a shower of plaster. The plane immediately burst into flames.
The estate was in the exclusive Silver Mine section, where many notables maintain residences.
Before entering the service, Richard was graduated from Corcoran High School and attended the Visalia Junior College and San Jose State College.
In addition to his widow and his parents, Richard was survived by a brother, Thomas Craghill, who was a student in the army glider school at Albuquerque, N.M., and two sisters, Mrs. Phyllys Lane of Corcoran, whose husband was in the army ferry command, and Shirley Craghill of Bakersfield.