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LTC Russell Reed Brunner

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LTC Russell Reed Brunner

Birth
Duluth, St. Louis County, Minnesota, USA
Death
3 Feb 1943 (aged 32)
At Sea
Memorial Site*
Manhattan, New York County (Manhattan), New York, USA

* A structure erected in honor of someone whose remains lie elsewhere.

Plot
Tablets of the missing
Memorial ID
56118210 View Source

Russell served as a Lieutenant Colonel, Headquarters Army Air Forces, U.S. Army Air Force during World War II.

He resided in Maryland prior to the war.

He was declared "Missing In Action" as a passenger of transport flight C-87 (#41-1708) which crashed into the Atlantic Ocean during the war.

The flight was from Accra, Gold Coast (Ghana) to Natal, Brazil. 26 Men lost their lives on this flight.

Service # O-902521

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

(The source of the below information from: Report dated 14 Feb 1943, Determination of Status of crew and passengers of missing airplane C-87 No. 411708)

On Jan 17 Flight C-87 No. 411708 departed from Accra, Africa 2338 GCT en route to Natal, Brazil. Accra reported the plane missing Jan 20, 1943 (other docs show the afternoon of 18th Jan when reported missing). A wide search for the plane was conducted and was abandoned Jan 29.

The flight had an Army Air Crop. Crew of six men, seven Army Personnel and 13 members of the RAF.

On Feb. 4 1943 a life raft was found at sea by the U.S. Destroyer Kearney about 60 miles due East of Recife, Brazil. The raft contained an unidentified man, who was later identified via finger prints as LT. Col. Brunner. He was buried at sea from the destroyer.

An inventory of the articles found on the life raft included five life jackets, indicating that at least four other men were on the life raft. Other articles found indicate the presence of British and Canadian members of the RAF. No other American articles where found other than LTC. Brunner's.

On Feb. 5 1943 another life raft was found on the beach of Ponte Negra, Brazil. It contained the remains of Major Arthur Mills. Articles found on the raft:

Col. Douglas C. MacKeachie's
$20.00 American Express Company Travel Cheque, bearing his signature.

1st Lt. John A. Byler
One Chronometer, one pipe, one pocket address book containing log, one wallet containing: W.E.A.G.O. ID card, one envelope of collector's stamps, $34.00 (U.S.) and 100 Francs (Algerian) and other smaller foreign banknotes, personal papers, and cards.

Cpl. Joseph P. Braniff
Social Security Tag…., Wallet containing: $1.00 (U.S.) and 5L sterling, personal papers, and cards.

Six life jackets were found in the raft indicating that there were originally six men in the raft. The insignia of the Rank of Colonel USA was found (made into the shape of a crude fish hook), and other articles which serve to identify two Royal Air Force Officers as occupants of the raft.

Assumptions made about the crash are:
The plane was forced down but did not explode or crash violently.
There was little time for the passengers and crew to escape to the rafts, as the only articles saved were those normally carried in the pockets of clothing.

No other life rafts or bodies were recovered and is assumed that the remaining 15 men stayed with the downed Aircraft until it sunk.

Flight crew included:

Capt. Orval Eknes, Scanlon Minn. pilot of the transport.
Capt. Felton B. Lancaster, Mexia, Tex. co-pilot.
Second Lt. Joseph F. Peoples, Jersey City, N.J. navigator.
Master Sgt. Alvin A. Young, Bossier City, La. radio operator.
Sgt. James N. Clauss, Washington, Ind. crew member.
Master Sgt. Charles W. McKain, Franklin, Pa. crew chief.

Flight Passengers:

ATC PERSONNEL:

First Lt. John A Byler
First Lt. Hugh P. Minor
Major Arthur Mills
(These men were returning from having delivered a B-17 to Africa from Miami. Major Mills was the pilot, 1st Lt. Minor was the co-pilot, 1st Lt. Byler was the navigator.)
Corporal Joseph P. Braniff
Corporal Grover K. Trees

(Board at St. Erval, United Kingdom)

Lt. Col. Russell Reed Brunner
Col. Douglas C. MacKeachie

RAF FERRY CREW:

Fl. H.J. Martin
RO Sergeant H.V. Lamb (ferry command for 8 months)
Navigator H. Warman
Captain Paul Bleecker Makepeace
RO C. Derry
Navigator P.C. Zoephel
Captain G.A. Clegg
RO N. Durry
Navigator Pilot-Officer W.T.B. Smithson

Russell served as a Lieutenant Colonel, Headquarters Army Air Forces, U.S. Army Air Force during World War II.

He resided in Maryland prior to the war.

He was declared "Missing In Action" as a passenger of transport flight C-87 (#41-1708) which crashed into the Atlantic Ocean during the war.

The flight was from Accra, Gold Coast (Ghana) to Natal, Brazil. 26 Men lost their lives on this flight.

Service # O-902521

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

(The source of the below information from: Report dated 14 Feb 1943, Determination of Status of crew and passengers of missing airplane C-87 No. 411708)

On Jan 17 Flight C-87 No. 411708 departed from Accra, Africa 2338 GCT en route to Natal, Brazil. Accra reported the plane missing Jan 20, 1943 (other docs show the afternoon of 18th Jan when reported missing). A wide search for the plane was conducted and was abandoned Jan 29.

The flight had an Army Air Crop. Crew of six men, seven Army Personnel and 13 members of the RAF.

On Feb. 4 1943 a life raft was found at sea by the U.S. Destroyer Kearney about 60 miles due East of Recife, Brazil. The raft contained an unidentified man, who was later identified via finger prints as LT. Col. Brunner. He was buried at sea from the destroyer.

An inventory of the articles found on the life raft included five life jackets, indicating that at least four other men were on the life raft. Other articles found indicate the presence of British and Canadian members of the RAF. No other American articles where found other than LTC. Brunner's.

On Feb. 5 1943 another life raft was found on the beach of Ponte Negra, Brazil. It contained the remains of Major Arthur Mills. Articles found on the raft:

Col. Douglas C. MacKeachie's
$20.00 American Express Company Travel Cheque, bearing his signature.

1st Lt. John A. Byler
One Chronometer, one pipe, one pocket address book containing log, one wallet containing: W.E.A.G.O. ID card, one envelope of collector's stamps, $34.00 (U.S.) and 100 Francs (Algerian) and other smaller foreign banknotes, personal papers, and cards.

Cpl. Joseph P. Braniff
Social Security Tag…., Wallet containing: $1.00 (U.S.) and 5L sterling, personal papers, and cards.

Six life jackets were found in the raft indicating that there were originally six men in the raft. The insignia of the Rank of Colonel USA was found (made into the shape of a crude fish hook), and other articles which serve to identify two Royal Air Force Officers as occupants of the raft.

Assumptions made about the crash are:
The plane was forced down but did not explode or crash violently.
There was little time for the passengers and crew to escape to the rafts, as the only articles saved were those normally carried in the pockets of clothing.

No other life rafts or bodies were recovered and is assumed that the remaining 15 men stayed with the downed Aircraft until it sunk.

Flight crew included:

Capt. Orval Eknes, Scanlon Minn. pilot of the transport.
Capt. Felton B. Lancaster, Mexia, Tex. co-pilot.
Second Lt. Joseph F. Peoples, Jersey City, N.J. navigator.
Master Sgt. Alvin A. Young, Bossier City, La. radio operator.
Sgt. James N. Clauss, Washington, Ind. crew member.
Master Sgt. Charles W. McKain, Franklin, Pa. crew chief.

Flight Passengers:

ATC PERSONNEL:

First Lt. John A Byler
First Lt. Hugh P. Minor
Major Arthur Mills
(These men were returning from having delivered a B-17 to Africa from Miami. Major Mills was the pilot, 1st Lt. Minor was the co-pilot, 1st Lt. Byler was the navigator.)
Corporal Joseph P. Braniff
Corporal Grover K. Trees

(Board at St. Erval, United Kingdom)

Lt. Col. Russell Reed Brunner
Col. Douglas C. MacKeachie

RAF FERRY CREW:

Fl. H.J. Martin
RO Sergeant H.V. Lamb (ferry command for 8 months)
Navigator H. Warman
Captain Paul Bleecker Makepeace
RO C. Derry
Navigator P.C. Zoephel
Captain G.A. Clegg
RO N. Durry
Navigator Pilot-Officer W.T.B. Smithson

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