TSGT Alvin Relvue Hart

TSGT Alvin Relvue Hart

Birth
Tahoka, Lynn County, Texas, USA
Death
15 Aug 1945 (aged 28)
Osaka, Osaka-shi, Osaka, Japan
Burial
North Hollywood, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Plot
Section: Memorial Park, Lot 5081, Space 2
Memorial ID
208073173 View Source

Alvin Relvue Hart was born April 17, 1917 to Ethel Lavenia (nee Swink) and Edward Washington Hart in the west central Texas city of Tahoka. He was the youngest of Seven siblings; George, William, Burrell, Chester, Vera, and Irene. His family lived in Texas for most of Alvin's young life, and then during the mid-1930s moved to Glendale California where Alvin was a graduate of Glendale High School Class of 1937.

Alvin then attended classes at the University of Idaho, located in Moscow, Idaho and was a member of the Kappa Sigma fraternity. Here he met his future wife Margaret Carol Hart who went by Carol. They were married February 15, 1941 in Moscow, Idaho. but their marriage was kept secret with only close friends and immediate relatives of the couple knowing of the wedding for nearly a year, which coincidentally did not change the bride's last name.

During mid-1941 Alvin was accepted as an Aviation Cadet at the Hancock College of Aeronautics, Santa Maria, California where he was enlisted into the Army Air Corps, Army Serial Number 20947973. Alvin was unsuccessful in his bid to become a pilot and was subsequently discharged from the military. On December 2, 1942 after three months of being discharged Alvin was called back to active duty with his original serial number into the Army Air Forces, successor to the Army Air Corps.

The exact path of training for Alvin has not been discovered. The following is known from the few available records. August 1943 Pvt Hart Santa Ana, Army Air Base, California; December 1943 Pfc Hart, 33rd T.S.S., Lowry Army Air Field, Denver, Colorado. (This was an 8 week armament technical school with instruction on the repair and maintenance of the B-29, Central Fire Control (CFC) System; 25 March 1944, Cpl Hart, 869 Maint. Sq., Pratt Army Air Field, Kansas (Combat crew assignment and training); 22 April 1944, Sgt Hart, 869th Bomb Squadron, Pratt Army Air Field, Kansas (Continued combat crew training, assigned as CFC Gunner to the 1st Lt John D Bartlett crew; 9 September 1944, Sgt Hart, 869th Bomb Squadron, 497th Bomb Group, Herington Army Air Field, Kansas. Final outfitting and preparation for overseas deployment. In late September 1944 Alvin and the Bartlett, crew with the 497th Bomb Group (BG) Very Heavy (VH) deployed and were assigned to the 73rd Bomb Wing, 21st Bomber Command, 20th Air Force, operating from Isely Field, Saipan, Mariana Islands.

On 1 June 1945 the 497th Bomb Group target for the day was Osaka Japan. By this point Alvin had been promoted to Technical Sergeant and 1st Lt Franklin W Crowe had moved from Pilot to Airplane Commander of this crew. This was their 24th mission and this day they were operating the unnamed B-29, Serial Number 42-65348 call sign [A-Square-16]. In formation over the target; their plane was hit by anti-aircraft artillery flak, setting the number 1 engine on fire. The plane crashed about 38 miles Southeast of Osaka on Mount Ōmine [also known as Mount Sanjō] (approximate coordinates 34.252417, 135.935083 where one of the aircrafts engines was recovered in 2007). Seven crewmembers were either KIA in the air or when the plane crashed. The recoverable remains of these airmen were buried by the Japanese near the crash site in a common grave with a 6 foot tall marker dated 3 June 1945.

T/Sgt Hart, 1st Lt Wittee, Sgt Beecroft, and S/Sgt Strong were able to parachute from the stricken plane and were rapidly captured by the Villagers of Kawakami, Nara Prefecture (co-ordinates 34.338322, 135.954322) They were held as a Prisoners of War by the Osaka Kenpei Tai (Military Police Corps) at their headquarters, located in the Osaka Castle compound.

According to their Individual Deceased Personnel Files (IDPFs) (remains recovery and identification)and War Crime Trial, Case History No. 328 records. 1st Lt Wittee and Sgt Beecroft were executed by gunshot to the head on or about 20 July 1945 at the Shinodayama Maneuver Area, Co-ordinates 34.490406 N 135.457799 E.

S/Sgt Russell W Strong was executed about 31 July 1945 by poisoning per testimony of defendants in the Yokohama War Crimes Trial Case No. 328, i.e. "United States vs Hiroshi Anjo, et al", p.62. His remains were recovered from the Sanadayama Military Cemetery and identified during April 1946. However, the U.S. Army Adjutant General Department made an administrative decision relative to his date of death due to exact date uncertainty establishing his date of death as 15 August 1945, and this is why this date is found on his grave maker.

Yokohama War Crimes Trial Case No. 328, i.e. "United States vs Hiroshi Anjo, see source:
[Note: 199 MB]
https://www.online.uni-marburg.de/icwc/yokohama/Yokohama%20No.%20T328.pdf

According to his IDPF the remains of T/Sgt Alvin Relvue Hart were recovered and identified in May 1946 from an isolated grave in the Sanadayama Military Cemetery south of the Osaka Castle, (approximate co-ordinates 34.687333, 135.525956). A cause of death could not be determined at the time of remains inspection, however his skull was intact with no evidence of a gunshot wound. It is possible he died due to mistreatment, starvation, or succumbed to his wounds, as his face was badly burned prior to bailing out of the plane. As with S/Sgt Strong an exact date of death could not be determined resulting in the Adjutant General selecting 15 August 1945 as the last possible date that T/Sgt Hart could have been alive. The remains of T/Sgt Hart were later repatriated to the United States in April 1949 for interment in the Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery. The date of death on his headstone is 1 June 1945 which is incorrect as this was the date that his plane was shot down and crashed.

The members of this crew are listed below in the order as they appear on Missing Air Crew Report No. 14593

1st Lt Franklin W Crowe (AC) KIA
1st Lt Millard H Young (P) KIA
1st Lt John V Manning (N) KIA
1st Lt Harrison K Wittee (B) POW/Executed/KIA
1st Lt Oswald J Jorstad (FE) KIA
T/Sgt Alvin H Hart (CFC) POW/Died in captivity cause undetermined/KIA
S/Sgt Robert B Angell (Radio) KIA
Sgt George A Beck (LG) KIA
Cpl William H Isley (RG) KIA
Sgt Lawrence W Beecroft (TG) POW/Executed/KIA
S/Sgt Russell W Strong POW/Executed/KIA

Brief bio courtesy Scott Muselin - Vindicator I

Alvin Relvue Hart was born April 17, 1917 to Ethel Lavenia (nee Swink) and Edward Washington Hart in the west central Texas city of Tahoka. He was the youngest of Seven siblings; George, William, Burrell, Chester, Vera, and Irene. His family lived in Texas for most of Alvin's young life, and then during the mid-1930s moved to Glendale California where Alvin was a graduate of Glendale High School Class of 1937.

Alvin then attended classes at the University of Idaho, located in Moscow, Idaho and was a member of the Kappa Sigma fraternity. Here he met his future wife Margaret Carol Hart who went by Carol. They were married February 15, 1941 in Moscow, Idaho. but their marriage was kept secret with only close friends and immediate relatives of the couple knowing of the wedding for nearly a year, which coincidentally did not change the bride's last name.

During mid-1941 Alvin was accepted as an Aviation Cadet at the Hancock College of Aeronautics, Santa Maria, California where he was enlisted into the Army Air Corps, Army Serial Number 20947973. Alvin was unsuccessful in his bid to become a pilot and was subsequently discharged from the military. On December 2, 1942 after three months of being discharged Alvin was called back to active duty with his original serial number into the Army Air Forces, successor to the Army Air Corps.

The exact path of training for Alvin has not been discovered. The following is known from the few available records. August 1943 Pvt Hart Santa Ana, Army Air Base, California; December 1943 Pfc Hart, 33rd T.S.S., Lowry Army Air Field, Denver, Colorado. (This was an 8 week armament technical school with instruction on the repair and maintenance of the B-29, Central Fire Control (CFC) System; 25 March 1944, Cpl Hart, 869 Maint. Sq., Pratt Army Air Field, Kansas (Combat crew assignment and training); 22 April 1944, Sgt Hart, 869th Bomb Squadron, Pratt Army Air Field, Kansas (Continued combat crew training, assigned as CFC Gunner to the 1st Lt John D Bartlett crew; 9 September 1944, Sgt Hart, 869th Bomb Squadron, 497th Bomb Group, Herington Army Air Field, Kansas. Final outfitting and preparation for overseas deployment. In late September 1944 Alvin and the Bartlett, crew with the 497th Bomb Group (BG) Very Heavy (VH) deployed and were assigned to the 73rd Bomb Wing, 21st Bomber Command, 20th Air Force, operating from Isely Field, Saipan, Mariana Islands.

On 1 June 1945 the 497th Bomb Group target for the day was Osaka Japan. By this point Alvin had been promoted to Technical Sergeant and 1st Lt Franklin W Crowe had moved from Pilot to Airplane Commander of this crew. This was their 24th mission and this day they were operating the unnamed B-29, Serial Number 42-65348 call sign [A-Square-16]. In formation over the target; their plane was hit by anti-aircraft artillery flak, setting the number 1 engine on fire. The plane crashed about 38 miles Southeast of Osaka on Mount Ōmine [also known as Mount Sanjō] (approximate coordinates 34.252417, 135.935083 where one of the aircrafts engines was recovered in 2007). Seven crewmembers were either KIA in the air or when the plane crashed. The recoverable remains of these airmen were buried by the Japanese near the crash site in a common grave with a 6 foot tall marker dated 3 June 1945.

T/Sgt Hart, 1st Lt Wittee, Sgt Beecroft, and S/Sgt Strong were able to parachute from the stricken plane and were rapidly captured by the Villagers of Kawakami, Nara Prefecture (co-ordinates 34.338322, 135.954322) They were held as a Prisoners of War by the Osaka Kenpei Tai (Military Police Corps) at their headquarters, located in the Osaka Castle compound.

According to their Individual Deceased Personnel Files (IDPFs) (remains recovery and identification)and War Crime Trial, Case History No. 328 records. 1st Lt Wittee and Sgt Beecroft were executed by gunshot to the head on or about 20 July 1945 at the Shinodayama Maneuver Area, Co-ordinates 34.490406 N 135.457799 E.

S/Sgt Russell W Strong was executed about 31 July 1945 by poisoning per testimony of defendants in the Yokohama War Crimes Trial Case No. 328, i.e. "United States vs Hiroshi Anjo, et al", p.62. His remains were recovered from the Sanadayama Military Cemetery and identified during April 1946. However, the U.S. Army Adjutant General Department made an administrative decision relative to his date of death due to exact date uncertainty establishing his date of death as 15 August 1945, and this is why this date is found on his grave maker.

Yokohama War Crimes Trial Case No. 328, i.e. "United States vs Hiroshi Anjo, see source:
[Note: 199 MB]
https://www.online.uni-marburg.de/icwc/yokohama/Yokohama%20No.%20T328.pdf

According to his IDPF the remains of T/Sgt Alvin Relvue Hart were recovered and identified in May 1946 from an isolated grave in the Sanadayama Military Cemetery south of the Osaka Castle, (approximate co-ordinates 34.687333, 135.525956). A cause of death could not be determined at the time of remains inspection, however his skull was intact with no evidence of a gunshot wound. It is possible he died due to mistreatment, starvation, or succumbed to his wounds, as his face was badly burned prior to bailing out of the plane. As with S/Sgt Strong an exact date of death could not be determined resulting in the Adjutant General selecting 15 August 1945 as the last possible date that T/Sgt Hart could have been alive. The remains of T/Sgt Hart were later repatriated to the United States in April 1949 for interment in the Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery. The date of death on his headstone is 1 June 1945 which is incorrect as this was the date that his plane was shot down and crashed.

The members of this crew are listed below in the order as they appear on Missing Air Crew Report No. 14593

1st Lt Franklin W Crowe (AC) KIA
1st Lt Millard H Young (P) KIA
1st Lt John V Manning (N) KIA
1st Lt Harrison K Wittee (B) POW/Executed/KIA
1st Lt Oswald J Jorstad (FE) KIA
T/Sgt Alvin H Hart (CFC) POW/Died in captivity cause undetermined/KIA
S/Sgt Robert B Angell (Radio) KIA
Sgt George A Beck (LG) KIA
Cpl William H Isley (RG) KIA
Sgt Lawrence W Beecroft (TG) POW/Executed/KIA
S/Sgt Russell W Strong POW/Executed/KIA

Brief bio courtesy Scott Muselin - Vindicator I


Family Members

Spouse
Siblings