B-24F Liberator ,306K
Plane # 42-50306K
446th Bomb Group
Flixton Air Field
Account of crash on Thursday, 27 April 1944 at 3:55 p.m.
The B-24F, numbered above, was named
There were at least four B-24's so named during WWII.
Emmett Bagwell, T/SGT, Flight Engineer and Top Turret
of the above B-24F Bomber was a personal friend.
He was the best basket ball player in our Walnut
Consolidated High School, Vance, MS. His sister,
Francis, was a classmate of mine.
Below are the names of the crew, all of whom were
killed in the crash on 27 April, 1944 upon
take off from Flixton Field:
Pilot - Case, Wayne, 1st. LT - 0684274
C0-Pilot - Mayer, Roswell C. FO-T121325
Navigator - Boulas, Joseph B. 1st. LT - 0728164
Bombardier - Conant, Samuel B. 1st LT - 074757
Engineer & TT Gunner - Bagwell, Emmett D. T/Sgt 34476923
Radio Operator - Plallego, Lewis H. S/Sgt - 33234767
Gunner - Kendall, August R. S/Sgt - 39118289
Gunner - Rachal, James L. S/Sgt - 38385559 ( Last name may be Fathal)
Gunner - Whitton, Morgan H. S/Sgt - 11035600
Gunner - Douglass , Charles N. S/Sgt - 18052441
This B-24F crew had bombed a site in France in the morning
and returned to the field (# 125) for a second mission
to France in the afternoon.. They were loaded
with twelve (12) 500 lb. bombs.
Strong winds were blowing at Take Off when the wind
direction changed by 90 degrees, causing the B-24F to crash
at the end of the runway, demolishing a Radar shack and killing
two RAF Britts, whereupon the plane caught fire and six bombs
exploded. I have photos of the wreckage which totally
demolished the plane. What is left of the plane
doesn't even resemble a plane. Bodies of the ten crew
members were strewn over the entire crash area,
with not enough left to send home.
I have a Restricted Copy of the US Army Air Corps
report of the crash (#128).
It is dated 27 April, 1944, AAF station 125,
B-24J (not F), 8th AF. Cause of the crash is given as
strong winds on Take Off.
It is interesting that another B-24 crashed on the same date
and that my friend, Emmett Bagwell, was killed on each
plane?? The second plane was # 42-7610.
Emmett's plane was bound for Blainville, France.
Further data on the crash is given below:
446th Bombardment Group
20th Combat Wing
2nd Air Division
Station 125, Flixton, England
The 446th was known as "The Bungay Buckaroos"
Their Motto: Voler Venger Vaencre,
which means: Fly, Avenge, Vanquish.
456 crew members were killed, 1943 - 1946.
The 446th BG (Heavy) was activated 1 April, 1943
from Davis Monthan Field, Tucson, AZ.
They trained at Lowry Field, Denver for over seas
duty and departed 18 Oct. 1943 for Europe.
They set up a permanent field at station
125, Flixton, UK in Nov. 1943
They began operations on 16 Dec. 1943
with a raid against Bremen, Germany,
and flew the last against Salzburg
on 26 April 1945.
They flew 273 missions between those dates
losing 58 aircraft in battle, and 28 others
from non-battles with 447 men killed in action.
They dropped 16,818.95 TONS
Over 6,000 airmen served at Flixton AAB
The 446th BG won the following Campaign ribbons:
European-African - Middle Eastern Theatre
Bronze Star ETO ribbon
Northern France Campaign
Ardennes - Alsace
Submitted by: FINAL NOTE:
I am C. Douglas Caffey, disabled veteran of WWII
having served in the 509th BG, 58th Wing
in the Pacific with B-29's.
I searched for how Emmett Bagwell died
for over sixty years to no avail until the year
2003 when I began an extended search
via the NET, and little by little, I finally
learned how my friend Emmett Bagwell died.
He was my first friend to die in WWII.
I have never forgotten Emmett, the Star basket ball player,
nor Emmett, the B-24 Flight Engineer and
Top Turret Gunner who gave his life for the cause