New England Air Museum
Ivan Leroy Bodie

S/Sgt. Ivan Bodie, WWII

Recent Address:

403 Fifth St., S.W., State Center, IA 50247-2021



Family Information:

Parents: William and Nellie; Wife: Barbara; Children: Steven, Bruce.


Los Angeles, CA

Date Entered Service:

August 27, 1942

Service Number:


Bomb Group:




Location of Unit:

Great Bend, KS (1943)

Missions Flown:


Hump Missions Flown:



Yawata, Bangkok


Air Medal with 6 Oak Leaf Clusters, 4 Bronze Battle Stars, China Campaign Medal, Air Offensive Japan Campaign Medal, India-Burma Air Combat Campaign Medal, Distinguished Flying Cross, Good Conduct Medal, WWII Victory Medal awarded Nov. 18, 1947 at State Center, IA

Service Schools Attended:

Airplane Mechanic Feb 1943; Electrical Apr 1943; B-29 Armor Jul 1943

Military Specialty(ies):

MOS 685-Airplane Electrical Mechanic, Specialist, Left Gunner, B-29 Aircraft

Rank Upon Discharge:


Crew Type:

Flight crew

Airplane Serial No.& Name:

#391 "The Uninvited" - (crashed 6/5/44), 42-24507 Bachelor Quarters

Were you a POW?


Were you interned?


Date Transferred from the 58th:


Date Discharged from the 58th:

June 26, 1945

Post-WWII Military Service:


Post-WWII Civilian Occupation(s):

Mechanic at Miller Chevrolet Dealership, State Center, IA; moved to Los Angeles, CA, and was employed at Lockheed Aircraft at Burbank, CA. This location was where I was inducted, even though my hometown was State Center, IA.

Thoughts on the 58th Bomb Wing:

I wanted to serve my country in whatever capacity I could. Every young person should serve at least two years. It teaches discipline, character and makes one a better person.

Our crew of eleven men were a very close knit group. As many as seven crew members have remained special friends and have renewed memories at the 58th Bomb Wing reunions.


On June 5th, 1944 we were on a mission when B-29 aircraft was running low on fuel. Pilot, Major Booth G. Malone, made a decision to exit aircraft. Every crew member jumped except one -- he went down with the aircraft and it burned in Chinese graveyard. All other crew members were strung out. I landed in a rice paddy after having much trouble opening my chute. One crew member landed in a tree. All of us walked a long time before arriving at headquarters, and then were interrogated at length. I credit our Pilot Major Booth Malone with keeping a cool head and saving our lives.


Ivan Bodie, 2003


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