New England Air Museum
Howard S. Heydon

 

heydon1
Howard Heydon - WWII

 

Recent Address:

1601 Bridge Street, Englewood, FL 34223

Email:

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Family Information:

Parents: Albert and Jean; Wife: Doris; Children: Howard, Jr., Sharon, Donna, Laurie, Peter

Hometown:

East Williston, Long Island, NY

Date Entered Service:

February 9, 1943

Service Number:

32798298

Bomb Group:

444th

Squadron:

678th

Location of Unit:

Dudhkundi, India - 11/15/44

Missions Flown:

26

Hump Missions Flown:

2

Targets:

Rangoon, Bangkok, Saigon, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Osaka photo), Kawanishi, Osaka (2), Omuta, Tokohashi, Kagamigahara, Okayama, Kure, Takamatsu, Chiba, Sendai, Utsonomiya, Fukui, Tsu, Hachiogi, Imabari

Awards/Decorations:

Asiatic-Pacific Theater Ribbon with 3 Bronze Stars, Good Conduct Medal, Air Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters, Distinguished Flying Cross

Service Schools Attended:

Aircraft Electrician Nov 1943-Mar 1944; Aircraft Armorer Mar-May 1944; Aircraft Radar Observer Jul 1944

Military Specialty(ies):

MOS 1685-B-29 Left Gunner, MOS 2867-Radar Observer Mechanic

Rank Upon Discharge:

Staff Sergeant

Crew Type:

Flight crew

Airplane Serial No.& Name:

 

Were you a POW?

No

If so, where?

 

Were you interned?

No

If so, where?

 

Date Transferred from the 58th:

September 30, 1945

Date Discharged from the 58th:

Octboer 15, 1945

Post-WWII Military Service:

 

Post-WWII Civilian Occupation(s):

Civil Engineer for Port of New York Authority; Guided Missile Test Engineer for Grumman Aircraft; Specifications Engineer & Director of Maintenance & Chief Engineer for New Jersey Turnpike Authority; Project Manager for Technical Assistance to the Indonesian Toll Road; Team Leader, Technical Advisor to the Lending Banks for the English Channel Tunnel

Thoughts on the 58th Bomb Wing:

It was an experience of a lifetime! Although I was often so scared that I went to sleep. I am forever thankful that I flew around the world and participated in the battles against Japan. Seeing South America, Africa, Arabia, India, China, Burma, Australia and Tinian gave me a prospective I would never have had otherwise. Battle testing a new airplane had its problems but the B-29 proved itself worthy of the name "Superfortress." Compared to any ground troops or any other air crews we had it good. We could fly in our shirt sleeves, without oxygen, and come home to comfortable quarters. The missions were dangerous, long and often frequent but we were comfortable.

Comments:

Training, living and flying with others as a member of an air crew is a unique experience. Although I have lost touch with my fellow crew members, I treasure the memories of our intertwined lives under trying circumstances for 18 months. There is a lot to learn in becoming a crew member.

I am proud to have served in the 58th Wing of the Army Air Corps.

 

heydon2
Howard Heydon - 2002

 


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