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Julius Heitler

Military

It was known in the family that Julius enlisted when he was 17, needing his parents' permission to do so. Three months before his death, he wrote to his sister Sylvia: "I’ve started flying but as yet I haven’t told Mom & Pop. Please don’t tell them until I want them to know, and that will be when I stop flying. Don’t let Mom wrangle it out of you and don’t let it slip out accidently, since I don’t want Mom & Pop to worry unnecessarily, and it is unnecessary." A military buddy of Julius, hearing of his death, wrote Sylvia: "Julie wasn’t famous or important in the eyes of other people, but to you he will be an idol who was willing to give his life so that there will be no race prejudice, class distinction, or be denied the right of free worship for the pursuit of one’s happiness —."
Assigned to 566BS, 389BG, 8AF USAAF. Fatal mid-air collision with B-24 44-10513 during formation assembly near Carleton Rode, 21-Nov-44. Killed in Action (KIA)

Awards: AM (OLC), PH.

Service

People

  • Donald Bremer

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 389th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 566BS, 389BG, 8AF USAAF. Fatal mid-air collision with B-24 44-10513 during formation assembly near Carleton Rode, 21-Nov-44. Killed in Action (KIA) Awards: PH.

  • Walter Brewer

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Gunner | 389th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 566BS, 389BG, 8AF USAAF. Fatal mid-air collision with B-24 44-10513 during formation assembly near Carleton Rode, 21-Nov-44. Killed in Action (KIA) Awards: AM (OLC), PH.

  • Alfred Brooks

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 389th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 566BS, 389BG, 8AF USAAF. Survived mid-air collision with B-24 44-10513 during formation assembly near Carleton Rode, 21-Nov-44. Sole survivor from A/C. RTD Awards: WWII Victory, EAME.

  • William Bucher

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 389th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 566BS, 389BG, 8AF USAAF. Fatal mid-air collision with B-24 44-10513 during formation assembly near Carleton Rode, 21-Nov-44. Killed in Action (KIA) Awards: AM (OLC), PH.

  • Carl Hughes

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Gunner | 389th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 566BS, 389BG, 8AF USAAF. Fatal mid-air collision with B-24 44-10513 during formation assembly near Carleton Rode, 21-Nov-44. Killed in Action (KIA) Awards: AM (OLC), PH.

  • William Sawyer

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Gunner | 389th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 566BS, 389BG, 8AF USAAF. Fatal mid-air collision with B-24 44-10513 during formation assembly near Carleton Rode, 21-Nov-44. Killed in Action (KIA) Awards: AM, PH.

  • Stanley Smith

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Engineer | 389th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 566BS, 389BG, 8AF USAAF. Fatal mid-air collision with B-24 44-10513 during formation assembly near Carleton Rode, 21-Nov-44. Killed in Action (KIA) Awards: AM (OLC), PH.

  • Niel Snodgrass

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 389th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 566BS, 389BG, 8AF USAAF. Fatal mid-air collision with B-24 44-10513 during formation assembly near Carleton Rode, 21-Nov-44. Killed in Action (KIA) Awards: AM(OLC), PH.

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Units served with

  • 8th Air Force

    8th Air Force


    Eighth Air Force Bomber Command became the Eighth Air Force on February 1944, it oversaw bombardment of strategic targets in Europe until 1945. ...

  • 389th Bomb Group

    389th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 389th Bomb Group, known in more familiar terms as "the Sky Scorpions", flew strategic bombing missions in B-24 Liberators from Hethel, England. They also sent detachments to join bases in North Africa at Benghazi No. 10, Libya, between 3 July 1943...

  • 566th Bomb Squadron

    566th Bomb Squadron

    Squadron
    Constituted 566th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy) on 19 Dec. 1942. Activated on 24 Dec. 1942. Inactivated on 13 Sept. 1945. Campaigns: Air Offensive, Europe; Sicily; Naples-Foggia; Normandy; Northern France; Rhineland; Ardennes-Alsace; Central Europe; Air...

Aircraft

  • 44-10513 'Old Glory'

    B-24 Liberator
    Involved in a mid-air collision with another 389th BG aircraft 42-50452 during formation assembly near Carleton Rode, on 21 November 1944.

  • 42-50452 'Earthquake McGoon'

    B-24 Liberator
    Involved in a mid-air collision with another 389th BG aircraft 44-10513 during formation assembly near Carleton Rode, on 21 November 1944. The pilot of EARTHQUAKE MCGOON on this day was Lt. Alfred Brooks. Brooks was the only survivor from his aircraft....

Missions

  • 720

    21 November 1944

Associated Place

  • Hethel

    Military site : airfield
    Construction of Hethel airfield began in 1941, and was finished in late 1942. The number of hardstandings was increased from the planned 36 to 50 in 1942, in order to accommodate a full heavy bomb group. The 320th Bomb Group occupied the base for ten...

Events

Event Location Date
Born Brooklyn, NY 1925

Son of Paul and Esther Heitler.

Enlisted New York City, NY March 1943

Someone wrote enlisted date as Sept 21, 1943, but he wrote home several times from military training in March and April 1943.

Based Hethel July 1944 – 21 November 1944

Assigned to 566BS, 389BG, 8AF USAAF. His letter of Aug. 8, 1944, says he had gotten his permanent assignment (with the 389BS, 566BS) by this time.

Died Carleton Rode, Norfolk 21 November 1944

Fatal mid-air collision with B-24 44-10513 during formation assembly near Carleton Rode, 21-Nov-44. Killed in Action (KIA)

Buried 22 November 1944

Cambridge American Cemetery and Memorial
Plot: Plot E Row 5 Grave 95

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
04 August 2019 03:34:40 Julie W. Changes to nickname
Sources

The name the family used in letters to him that I have in my possession.

Date Contributor Update
04 August 2019 02:03:35 Julie W. Changes to events and person associations
Sources

Found a trove a his letters, from which I'm updating the information that was on the site placed by someone else.

Date Contributor Update
04 August 2019 01:42:35 Julie W. Changes to media associations
Sources

Family picture of Julius and burial marker in military cemetery in Cambridge.

Date Contributor Update
04 August 2019 01:19:02 Julie W. Changes to biography, person associations and aircraft associations
Sources

Letters returned to the family after Julius's death in active service.

Date Contributor Update
07 February 2019 20:13:15 Al_Skiff Changes to role, biography, events, unit associations, place associations and mission associations
Sources

https://www.fold3.com/record/91364461-julius-heitler
https://www.fold3.com/record/529897050-julius-heitler
https://www.fold3.com/image/310770541?rec=299519408
https://www.fold3.com/image/100663378?rec=100663438
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/56290597/julius-heitler

Date Contributor Update
13 May 2015 09:40:05 usxpat Changes to events, unit associations, aircraft associations and media associations
Sources

American Battle Monuments Commission
www.usaafdata.com

Date Contributor Update
17 March 2015 16:50:39 usxpat Changes to service number, awards, events, unit associations, place associations, aircraft associations and media associations
Sources

Find A Grave Memorial# 56290597

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:17:39 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Combat Supplement, 389th website / Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia

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