SGT Harry Morris Hinkson, Jr

SGT Harry Morris Hinkson, Jr

Wilmington, New Castle County, Delaware, USA
Death 5 Aug 1944 (aged 21)
Lostau, Landkreis Jerichower Land, Sachsen-Anhalt, Germany
Burial Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA
Plot Sec: 34, Site: 1908
Memorial ID 49204646 · View Source
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Son of Harry Morris Hinkson, Sr. and Mary Ingram Hinkson. Harry, who resided at 1022 Monroe Street, Wilmington, Delaware, served as a a Sergeant, gunner and radio operator, on a B-17 with the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II. He was "Killed In Action" during a mission over Magdeburg, Germany. He had served in the Air Corps for one year and five months at the time of his death and was decorated the Air Medal, a Citation of Honor, and the Purple Heart.
Sergeant Harry Morris Hinkson Jr, Army serial number 32752255, was born at Wilmington, New Castle County, Delaware on July 29, 1923. He was the youngest of three children of Harry Morris Hinkson (3 Oct 1884 – 7 Jan 1973), who was born at Elam, Concord Township, Delaware County, Pennsylvania; and Mary (Ingram) Hinkson (24 Oct 1886 – 10 Nov 1986), who was born in Pennsylvania. His parents married about 1907 and lived at Wilmington, Delaware, where his father was a milk dealer at Hinkson Dairy, the family business. The family home and dairy were located at 1022 North Monroe Street in Wilmington. His father sold the family business to Hy-Point Dairy by 1942, and then worked for Hy-Point Dairy on Naaman Road in Wilmington.

He had two sisters, both born at Wilmington: Marguerite (Hinkson) Beach (2 Jan 1909 – 8 Jul 1995) and Ruth I. (Hinkson) Hammond (27 Nov 1912 – 23 Jan 2011). A niece (daughter of his sister Ruth) said, "The family called him Junior. We were only 12 years apart. He was my 'big brother' and took me everywhere. Music was his life. He was a talented trumpet player and was courted by the Marine Band, but he wanted to join the Air Corps. He was engaged to a woman named Ann Clayton when he went overseas."

He completed Army Air Forces aerial gunnery training and was assigned to the heavy bomber crew of Second Lieutenant Charlton A. Deuschle. The crew completed B-17 operational training in the States (possibly at Sioux City, Iowa) and deployed to England. They were assigned to the 838th Bomb Squadron of the 487th Bomb Group. This unit was based at Army Air Forces Station 137 near Lavenham, Suffolk, England, and was part of the 8th U.S. Army Air Force in Europe. The Deuschle crew was a replacement crew and arrived in England by July 1944. On August 5, 1944, Lt Deuschle and crew flew their fifth combat mission. Here is the crew roster on that day:

B-17G 43-38007 – 838th Bomb Squadron
• Deuschle, Charlton A – 2/Lt – Pilot – POW
• Steffens, Eugene F – 2/Lt – Copilot – KIA
• Underwood, Allan B – 2/Lt – Navigator – KIA
• Gregory, Jesse E – 2/Lt – Bombardier – KIA
• Late, Carl L – T/Sgt – Engineer – KIA
• Cochran, William J – S/Sgt – Radio Operator – KIA
• Hinkson Jr, Harry M – Sgt – Waist Gunner – KIA
• Deelaney, Grady E – Sgt – Ball Turret Gunner – KIA
• Haglund, John L – Sgt – Tail Gunner – KIA
• Crooker, Robert J – Sgt – Waist Gunner – POW

Note: The crew roster in Missing Air Crew Report 7893 lists Sgt Hinkson as the tail gunner and Sgt Haglund as a waist gunner; but the casualty questionnaires completed by Lt Deuschle and Sgt Crooker state that on this mission Sgt Hinkson was the left waist gunner and Sgt Haglund was the tail gunner.

Sgt Hinkson and seven of his crewmates were killed in action on August 5, 1944 when their aircraft, B-17G 43-38007, was shot down by flak on a mission to bomb an aircraft engine factory at Magdeburg, Germany. The aircraft received direct hits just before bombs away, and exploded within seconds. The fuselage broke apart aft of the ball turret, and part of the right wing came off. Most of the men were either killed instantly, or were ejected from the aircraft without their chutes. The aircraft crashed near Lostau, Germany, about 13 kilometers southwest of Burg, near Magdeburg. Pilot 2/Lt Deuschle and gunner Sgt Robert J. Crooker survived and became prisoners of war. The dead were buried initially at the village cemetery in Lostau (possibly in Alter Friedhof Lostau, the Old Lostau Cemetery).

After the war his remains were returned to the United States and reinterred at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia. He is buried in Secton 34, Site 1908.

1. 487th Bomb Group Association

2. 1920 US Census; Delaware; New Castle County; Wilmington. Hinkson, Harry M. 2 Jan 1920 (his father)

3. 1930 US Census; Delaware; New Castle County; Wilmington. Hinkson, Harvey M [sic]. 12 Apr 1930 (Harry Morris Hinkson, his father)

4. 1940 US Census; Delaware; New Castle County; Wilmington. Hinkson, Morris. 9 Apr 1940 (Harry Morris Hinkson, his father)

5. de Jong, Ivo. 'The History of the 487th Bomb Group (H)'. Paducah KY: Turner Publishing, Oct 2004

6. Delaware State Birth Records, 1861–1922: Harry Morris Hinkson was born at The Delaware Hospital, 14th and Washington, Wilmington, New Castle County, Delaware on July 29, 1923.

7. Delaware Vital Records, 1650–1974. Marguerite Hinkson was born at Wilmington, Delaware on 2 Jan 1909; Ruth Hinkson was born at Wilmington, Delaware on 27 Nov 1912. (his sisters)

8. (The) News Journal, Wilmington, Delaware. Obituary of Ruth (Hinkson) Hammond. 26–27 Jan 2011 (his sister)

9. Pierce, Mary Jane. Personal Conversation. 30 Jul 2019 (his niece)

10. Social Security Death Index

11. U.S. Army Air Forces Missing Air Crew Report 7893

12. U.S. Army. Arlington National Cemetery

13. U.S. Department of the Army, Adjutant General Office, Technical Records Section. 'Individual Deceased Personnel File of William J. Cochran, 12131579' (his crewmate)

14. U.S. War Department. 'World War II Honor List of Dead and Missing Army and Army Air Forces Personnel'. Washington, D.C., June 1946

15. World War I Draft Registration of Harry Morris Hinkson. 12 Sep 1918 (his father)

16. World War II Draft Registration of Harry Morris Hinkson. 27 Apr 1942 (his father)

Research by:
Paul Webber
Secretary, 487th Bomb Group Association
Find A Grave member ID 47577572

Family Members



JULY 29 1923
AUGUST 5 1944

Gravesite Details SGT AAF 8TH AF 838 BOMB SQ 487 BOMB GP USA

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  • Created by: John C. Anderson
  • Added: 5 Mar 2010
  • Find a Grave Memorial 49204646
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for SGT Harry Morris Hinkson, Jr (29 Jul 1923–5 Aug 1944), Find a Grave Memorial no. 49204646, citing Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA ; Maintained by John C. Anderson (contributor 47208015) .