|Birth: ||Aug. 15, 1920|
|Death: ||Jun. 9, 1944, Turks And Caicos Islands|
To visit Sgt Cook's cenotaph in his family's plot in Kansas, USA, click on the link below.
SGT. JAMES E. COOK
THE IOLA REGISTER, IOLA, KANSAS, FRIDAY EVENING, JUNE 23, 1944, FRONT PAGE
SGT. "JIMMIE" COOK MISSING IN ACTION
Mr. and Mrs. Gene Cook were notified yesterday afternoon that their son, Jimmie, (Sgt. James E. Cook) has been reported missing in action following a bombing raid over Truk.
The telegram from the adjutant general read as follows: "The Secretary of War desires me to express his deep regret that your son has been reported missing in action over Truk Island, June 9, 1944. If further details or information are received you will be promptly notified."
Sgt. Cook enlisted in the Air Corps in May, 1942, while he was a pre-medic student at Kansas University and was called to active duty in November. Following his basic training he was assigned to the intelligence department of the Army Air Corps.
He was sent overseas last October and for a number of months has been acting as an aerial photographer on a B-24 bomber. It is the duty of the photographer, who is stationed in the tail of the bomber, to take pictures of the targets being bombed.
These films show the damage done to the targets, the topographic features of the surrounding territory, location of buildings, etc. They have proved to be of great value in planning raids.
Jimmie Cook has a wide circle of friends in Iola, having attended both grade and high school here. He was in his fourth year of college when he enlisted. His father is owner of Cook's Drug store.
Jimmie is a member of the 5th Heavy Bomber Group, 13th Air Task Force, stationed on the Admiralty Islands.
THE IOLA REGISTER, IOLA, KANSAS, SATURDAY EVENING, MARCH 10, 1945, FRONT PAGE
SGT. JAMES E. COOK GIVEN SECOND AIR MEDAL
An Oak Leaf cluster, symbolic of a second award of the Air Medal, has been awarded to Sgt. James E. Cook, who was reported missing in action over Truk last June 9. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Gene Cook.
The citation accompanying the award reads as follows: "For meritorious achievement while participating in sustained operational missions in the Southwest Pacific area from May 24, 1944, to June 3, 1944, during which hostile contact was probable and expected. These operations consisted of bombing missions against enemy airdromes and installations and attacks on enemy naval vessels and shipping. The courage and devotion to duty displayed during these flights are worthy of commendation."
Sgt. Cook won the Air Medal for similar combat missions during the period from May 13 to May 19. His flight log, now in the possession of his parents, reveals that he engaged in 125 hours of combat flying during the period from May 13 to June 9 when he took part in the raid upon Truk from which he has not returned.
THE IOLA REGISTER, IOLA, KANSAS, FRIDAY EVENING, JUNE 15, 1945, FRONT PAGE
STILL A CHANCE SGT. JIM COOK MAY BE FOUND
Gene Cook received notice from the war department today that his son, Sgt. James E. Cook, who was reported missing in action in the vicinity of Truk island in the Pacific on June 9, 1944, is continuing to be carried on the war department records as missing in action.
This determination was made by the war department in compliance with the law which provides that a "review and determination of status" be made in the case of each person who has been missing in action for 12 months.
A letter received by Mr. Cook from Representative E.P. Scrivner explains:
"This means that the department's information is inconclusive and that it is still considered possible for him (Sgt. Cook) to have been rescued and captured without having been reported a prisoner, or to have found refuge on some remote island...Some day it will be possible to check those islands. It may then develop what has happened."
THE IOLA REGISTER, IOLA, KANSAS, MONDAY EVENING, FEBRUARY 18, 1946, FRONT PAGE
ABANDON HOPE FOR JIM COOK
Mr. and Mrs. E.B. Cook have received word from the adjutant general that their son, Sgt. James Cook, missing in action since June 9, 1944, must now be presumed dead.
Sgt. Cook, a crew member of a B-24 bomber, was participating in an attack on one of the islands in the Truk group when his formation ran into heavy anti-aircraft fire. As the planes were dropping their bombs, Sgt. Cook's plane was seen to fall behind, and all the planes in the formation were attacked by enemy fighters. All efforts to contact his plane failed, and no trace of Sgt. Cook has been found since that time.
Jimmy Cook, a popular Iola youth, enlisted in the US Army Air Corps in May, 1942, while a pre-medic student at K.U. he was assigned to the intelligence branch of the air corps, and was serving as a photographer in a squadron based on the Admiralty islands when he was lost. Previous to his final mission, he had won the Air Medal, with one oak leaf cluster.
Maj. Gen. Edward F. Witsell, adjutant general to the army, in the letter to Mr. and Mrs. Cook, wrote:
"I regret the necessity for this message but trust that the ending of a long period of uncertainty may give at least some small measure of consolation. An appraisal of the sacrifice made by your son in the service of his country compels in us feelings of humility and respect. May Providence grant a measure of relief from the anguish and anxiety you have experienced during these many months."
All of the above newspaper notices were contributed by F.A.G. member Eric Ackerman firstname.lastname@example.org on Dec. 13, 2013. Mr. Ackerman is researching KU Faculty, Students and Staff who died during World War II. James' name is on the KU Memorial Campanile and Carillon.
Note: Entered the service from Kansas.
Manila American Cemetery and Memorial
National Capital Region, Philippines
Maintained by: TiogaRose
Originally Created by: CWGC/ABMC
Record added: Aug 08, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 56759607
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