SSGT Thomas Albert “Tom” Hoff

SSGT Thomas Albert “Tom” Hoff

Birth
Milwaukee County, Wisconsin, USA
Death 11 Aug 2011 (aged 88)
Oconomowoc, Waukesha County, Wisconsin, USA
Burial Summit Corners, Waukesha County, Wisconsin, USA
Memorial ID 25201353 View Source
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Son of Albert Hoff and Onalee Ranguette.

Hoff served in the U.S. Army Air Force in WWII with the 389th Bomb Group. He was shot down during the famous and most decorated bombing raid known as Operation Tidal Wave over the Ploesti, Romanian oil fields. He survived the plane crash only to become a prisoner of war for for 13 months. For his heroism, he received the Purple Heart, the Air Medal with an Oak Leaf Cluster, a Squadron Citation and the second highest military award, the Distinguished Service Cross.

Survivors include his wife, one daughter, six sons, one brother, plus grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
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DSC Citation
The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 9, 1918, takes pleasure in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross to Staff Sergeant Thomas A. Hoff, United States Army Air Forces, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy while serving as Tail Gunner on a B-24 Heavy Bomber in the 564th Bombardment Squadron, 389th Bombardment Group (H), NINTH Air Force (Attached), while participating in a bombing mission on 1 August 1943, against the Ploesti Oil Refineries in Rumania. During a long and hazardous attack against a vital enemy oil installation made at low-altitude by a formation of B-24 type aircraft, Staff Sergeant Hoff acquitted himself with great skill as his aircraft flew through one of the most heavily defended areas of Europe. When the plane on which he served was severely damaged, and, despite the fact that gasoline was streaming from one of its damaged fuel tanks, continued on, in the face of almost insurmountable odds. Over the blazing target, Staff Sergeant Hoff, with heroic calm and unflinching loyalty, remained steadfast by his guns. Staff Sergeant Hoff's unquestionable valor in aerial combat is in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflects great credit upon himself, the 9th Air Force, and the United States Army Air Forces. The personal courage and zealous devotion to duty displayed by Staff Sergeant Hoff on this occasion, even when confronted with practically certain destruction, exemplified the highest traditions of the military service and reflects great credit upon himself, the 9th Air Force, and the United States Army Air Forces.
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Army Air Forces
Air Craft Number: 42-40753
Letter: J
Nickname: Ole Kickapoo
Target: Red
Bomber Group: 389th
Squadron: 564
Tail Gunner
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Visit the virtual cemetery of the "Ole Kickapoo" Crew.


Inscription

THOMAS A HOFF
S SGT USAAF WW II
MAY 13 1923 † AUG 11 2011
DSC PH POWM
PLOESTI OIL
REFINERIES MISSION
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PATRICIA M. HOFF
AUG. 2, 1932
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THOMAS A. HOFF
MAY 13, 1923
AUG. 11, 2011