Tribute to My Grandfather - Frederic N. Hernandez







10th Air Force / 7th Bombardment Group / 492nd Bombardment Squadron

SSgt. William W. Kalamajka, 33298600, Aerial Gunner - Northrup Crew    Enlisted: 29 Oct 42


Sgt. John F. Kamens, 16106888, Aerial Gunner    Enlisted: 24 Apr 43


Sgt. Barkley R. Kane, 39722677, Armorer Gunner    Entered Service: 4 Jan 44


Pvt. Roger P. Karin, 12025050    Enlisted: 18 Jun 41   Separated: 10 Aug 45


SSgt. John L. Katsikas, 36747902, Radio Operator - Prodoehl Crew

Entered Service: 6 May 43   Joined 492nd: December 1944   Separated: 17 Nov 45

Air Medal w/Oak Leaf Cluster


Sgt. Charles A. Kaufman, 35707381, Armorer Gunner - Fritsche Crew

Enlisted 7 Aug 43    Joined 492nd: 15 Aug 44

Distinguished Flying Cross    Air Medal w/Oak Leaf Cluster


1Lt. Robert L. Kavanagh, O-435791, B-24 Pilot

Enlisted: 11 Jul 41    Prisoner Of War: 1 May 43

  On May 1, 1943 Kavanagh was pilot of B-24D #41-42513 serving with the 10th Air Force, 7th Bombardment Group, 492nd Bombardment Squadron. They were part of an eight plane mission to bomb Japanese cargo ships in the harbor at Rangoon, Burma. Immediately after dropping their bombs they were attacked by enemy fighter planes, knocking out two engines and wounding four of the crew. Their plane fell out of formation and the fighters continued their attacks until Kavanagh was able to lose them in cloud cover.
   Approximately an hour later they were finally unable to keep the plane in the air and crash landed in a rice paddy northwest of Bassein, Burma. By this point three of the crew had died of their wounds. The remaining crew set out on foot through the jungle in hopes of reaching India. They were attacked by Japanese patrols three time over the following week (one crewman was killed and Kavanagh was wounded) before finally being captured and taken to Rangoon Central Jail.   Kavanagh died as a prisoner of war. He was from Swift County, MN, and received the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal and the Purple Heart.



SSgt. Robert L. Keene, 17136501, Armorer Gunner - McKee Crew

Enlisted: 3 Feb 44   Distinguished Flying Cross   Air Medal w/Oak Leaf Cluster


Cpl. Arnold Keim, 13003274, Engineering & Maintenance   Enlisted: 12 Sep 40


MSgt. Donald S. Kelley, 0-6579800, Engineering & Maintenance

Enlisted: 6 Jan 40    Separated: 16 Sep 45


TSgt.Joseph C. Kellner, Jr., 12060872, Aerial Gunner - Kavanagh Crew

Enlisted: 18 Mar 42    Prisoner of War: 1 May 43, Died from wounds

Distinguished Flying Cross   Air Medal   Purple Heart

On May 1, 1943 Kellner was a waist gunner on B-24D #41-42513 - named "7-11" - serving with the 10th Air Force, 7th Bombardment Group, 492nd Bombardment Squadron. They were part of an eight plane mission to bomb Japanese cargo ships in the harbor at Rangoon, Burma. Immediately after dropping their bombs they were attacked by enemy fighter planes, knocking out two engines and wounding four of the crew, including Kellner. Their plane fell out of formation and the fighters continued their attacks until the bomber was able to lose them in cloud cover.   Approximately an hour later they were finally unable to keep the plane in the air and crash landed in a rice paddy northwest of Bassein, Burma. Kellner was taken prisoner by the Japanese and some time later died of his wounds. He was from Queens County, NY and received the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal and the Purple Heart.   Because his body was not recovered, he is memorialized on the Tablets of the Missing.

Pvt. Halim J. Kelly, 35608670, Aircraft Mechanic

Enlisted: 30 Mar 43   Joined 492nd: December 1944


2Lt. Patrick J. Kelly, O-679075, Assistant Group Operations Officer

Enlisted: 22 Apr 43   Joined 492nd: July 1944   Honorable Discharge: 1 Aug 45

Distinguished Flying Cross    Air Medal


Pvt. Thomas R. Kelly, 32693943, Armorer - Hall & Spurrell Crews

Joined 492nd: December 1944


2Lt. William E. Kelly, O-723980, Bombardier - Bruno Waara Crew

Assigned to 492nd: 7 Feb 45    Air Medal


2Lt. Herschel C. Kemper, O-696782, B-24 Pilot

Enlisted: 27 Jul 42  2nbsp; Killed In Action: 13 Aug 44

Air Medal    Purple Heart

Kemper was the pilot on B-24J #42-72841 assigned to the 10th Air Force, 7th Bombardment Group, 492nd Bombardment Squadron. On August 13, 1944 they departed their base in Kurmitola India to fly fuel and supplies over the Himalayas to United States Army Air Forces based in Liuchow China. The plane was over Assam approaching the Burmese border and still gaining altitude for the flight over the Hump. At around 5000 to 6000 feet there was an explosion which tore away a section of the right wing and started a widespread fire. The plane started dropping rapidly and Kemper gave the bail-out order. He was able to hold it steady while the others escaped, but the plane crashed before Kemper got out.

TSgt. Gordon B. Kennedy, 34356771, Flight Engineer - Bashor & Chapyak Crews

Air Medal    Good Conduct Medal


SSgt. Terrence G. Kerr, 36078719, Personnel NCO    Joined 492nd: December 1944


Sgt. Boleslaus F. Kicinski, 42094117, Flight Engineer - E. Williams Crew

Air Medal    Purple Heart

Enlisted: 29 Jan 44    Killed In Action: 8 May 45

Boleslaus served as a Sergeant and Flight Engineer on B-24J #42-73246, nicknamed 'Snafu', 492nd Bomber Squadron, 7th Bomber Group, 10th Air Force, U.S. Army Air Force during World War II.   He resided in Erie County, New York prior to the war. He attended Burgard Vocational High School in Buffalo.   Boleslaus was Killed In Action during the war when his plane crashed on takeoff from Madhaiganj air base in India. All aboard were killed. He was awarded a Purple Heart.

TSgt. John A. Kilpatrick, 31151120, Radio Operator - Boesker Crew

Enlisted: 13 Aug 42    Killed In Action: 27 Jun 44

Distinguished Flying Cross    Air Medal

T/Sgt Kilpatrick was the radio operator on B-24J #42-73189, assigned to the 10th Air Force, 7th Bombardment Group, 492nd Bombardment Squadron.   They were flying a cargo of gasoline from Kurmitola India to Kunming China when they had an engine failure and fuel leaking inside the airplane. so the pilot ordered the crew to bail out. Three men made it to the ground safely, Kilpatrick and two others were killed.

Pvt. Raymond H. Kinder, 35552204, Aircraft Mechanic - Gunner

Enlisted: 31 Mar 43   Joined Squadron: December 1944   Separated: 14 Nov 45


Sgt. Harry B. Kinkel, 32913113 , Armorer Gunner

Enlisted: 9 Apr 43   Joined 492nd: December 1944   Air Medal w/Oak Leaf Cluster


Sgt. Herbert W. Kinsey, 14189219, Aerial Gunner    Enlisted: 14 Jun 44


Pvt. Attila H. Kiss, 0-66028776, Enlisted: 9 Aug 40   Good Conduct Medal


Capt. Herman G. Klamka, 0-1821468, Killed, Non-Battle: 25 May 44

Aboard aircraft C-47A, #42-100614 which crashed en route from
Calcutta, India on a Meat Shuttle mission to Dinjan, Assam, India.


2Lt, Charles G. Kleffen, O-713301, Co Pilot - Stulz Crew

Enlisted: 19 Jun 42    Killed In Action: 19 Aug 45

Kleffen was the co-pilot of B-24J #42-78685, assigned to the 10th Air Force, 7th Bombardment Group, 492nd Bombardment Squadron. They were flying a cargo of fuel from Tezpur India over the Himalayas to Kunming China when they disappeared. Because his body was not recovered, he is memorialized on the Tablets of the Missing in the Manila American Cemetery in the Philippines.

PFC Roger A. Klein, 32859257, Aircraft Mechanic

Enlisted: 22 May 43    Added to 492nd: December 1944


Sgt. Walter J. Kobierski, 36650571, Nose Gunner - Robison Crew

Enlisted: 20 Mar 43   Separated: 4 Dec 45   Air Medal w/Oak Leaf Cluster


Pvt. Bernard M. Kolander, 39021699, Engineering & Maintenance

Enlisted: 2 Mar 42    Separated:4 Oct 45


Sgt. Harry Konopka, 36131599, Tail Gunner - Robison Crew

Enlisted: 27 Oct 41   Air Medal w/Oak Leaf Cluster


TSgt. Robert E. Kooi, 36458906, Flight Engineer - Mead Crew

Enlisted: 29 Mar 43    Killed In Action: 21 Nov 44

35 Combat Missions    Air Medal

TSgt. Kooi was the flight engineer on B-24J #44-40811, assigned to the 10th Air Force, 7th Bombardment Group, 492rd Bombardment Squadron. They were part of a twelve plane formation that departed Madhaiganj, India to knock out the Geang Luang bridge in Burma. Right after bombing the target from about 300 feet the plane was hit by anti-aircraft fire on the left wing, which caught fire. The plane drifted to the left, lost altitude and crashed 25 miles southwest of Bhre, Thailand, All aboard were killed.

SSgt. Thomas "Merch" Kooris, 31240799, Aerial Gunner - McKee Crew

Enlisted: 22 Dec 42    Air Medal


MSgt. Ignatius G. "Ike" Kopacz, 13008400, Engineering & Maintenance

Enlisted: 15 Nov 40    Separated: 14 Sep 45


2Lt. Joseph M. Kortman, 19047674, Navigator - Henning Crew

Enlisted 27 Feb 42    Air Medal


Sgt. Michael C. Kozak, Jr., 31039519, Armorer-Gunner

Enlisted: 14 Jan 43    Air Medal


Pvt. Thaddeus S. Kozikowski, 32487532, Cook

Enlisted: 14 Jan 43     Added to 492nd: December 1944


TSgt. Harold R. Kratzer, 36458819, Flight Engineer - Davis Crew

Enlisted: 27 Mar 43    Separated: 19 Sep 45

Distinguished Flying Cross    Air Medal w/2 Oak Leaf Clusters


TSgt. Leo W. Kritsick, 32026542, Radio Operator - Brenner & Spurrell Crews

Enlisted: 4 Feb 41    Separated: 24 May 45


SSgt. Harrison H. Krickbaum, 17055430, Enlisted: 2 Oct 42   Joined 492nd: 14 Sep 44


1Lt. Kenneth K. Krogh, O-713595, B-24 Pilot

Enlisted: 2 Feb 43    Separated: 14 Nov 45

Distinguished Flying Cross w/Oak Leaf Cluster    Air Medal


Capt. Carl F. Krohn, O-726260, B-24 Pilot

Enlisted: 13 Dec 41   1st Mission w/492nd: 12 Feb 43   Separated: 2 Oct 45

Distinguished Flying Cross    Air Medal


Sgt. Walter (NMI) Kulow, 35926436, Armorer Gunner - Murrell Crew

Enlisted: 22 Nov 43    Separated: 23 Nov 45

Distinguished Flying Cross    Air Medal w/Oak Leaf Cluster


7th BG Personnel

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