Philip served as a Second Lieutenant and Instructor, 331st Base Unit, Barksdale Army Air Force Base, Louisiana during World War II.
He resided in South Portland, Cumberland County, Maine prior to the war.
He enlisted in the Army Air Corps on January 26, 1942 in Portland, Maine. He was noted, at the time of his enlistment, as being employed as a structural and ornamental metal worker and also as Single, without dependents.
Philip died in the "Line Of Duty" in South Portland, Maine during the war.
While on an training flight in a A-26 Invader Lt. Russell had flown to his home state hoping to land at the Portland Air Field. Due to foggy weather conditions he ended up crashing into the Westbrook Trailer Camp, which was used for war workers, killing himself, S/Sgt Wallace Mifflin, and 17 others in the Trailer Camp.
This crash has been noted as Maine's worst air disaster.
Service # O-683590
Son of Ralph Russell.
Husband of Alma Sears Russell.
Father of Patricia Ann Russell.
( Bio by: Russ Pickett )
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S/Sgt Wallace Mifflin was also killed on this flight with Lt. Russell.
Others who perished include:
Brown, Shirley M., Died August 6th of burns
The Gerrish Family:
Gerrish, Edward A., Father & Husband
Gerrish, Virginia M., Mother & Wife
Gerrish, Roberta A., Daughter
Gerrish, Rose M., Daughter
The Gorham Family:
Gorham, Florence M., Wife
Gorham, Gordon T., Husband
The Hume Family
Hume, Clarence S., Jr., Husband & Father
Hume, Edna M., Wife & Mother
Hume, John, Son
The Little Family
Little, Hazel V., Mother
Little, Jimmy, 4 years old, Brother
Little, Nancy, 2 years old, Sister
The Robertson Family:
Robertson, George J., Jr., Son of Rita
Robertson, Rita M., Mother of George
( Listing by: Russ Pickett )
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~∼Portland high school star athlete who in World War II served as a pilot instructor at Barksdale Field, La. He flew an A-26 Invader to his home state and city on an authorized training mission in 1944, but crashed into a housing project for war workers after getting caught in fog after an initial approach to the Portland Airport. The crash killed 19 people, including Russell and his flight engineer, in Maine's worst airplane disaster. Have not been able to find burial information on him or 17 other victims.
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