I have been contacted by a reader looking for information about an airman who served with the 352nd FG. If anyone has any information about his service post war, could they please contact my self or Jean-Pierre through the post.
Joel W. McPherson, born on March 12th, 1918 in Vance (Alabama), and was the son of Lewis Neal McPherson (1886-1965) and Kate Maye White (1892-1974). After leaving High School, he was employed as an electrician, and lived in Lakewood, county of Cuyahoga, Ohio.
He was 21 years old when the Second World War began and on January 27th, 1942, he joined the USAAF in Fort Hayes, Columbus, Ohio (number 15074789) for what would be the duration of the war; leaving some 6 months after the cessation of conflict.
He was posted to RAF Bodney (Station 141) and the 352nd FG HQ. As a 1st Lt. (s/n 0-732302) he flew a P-47D-11-RE ‘Thunderbolt’ ’42-75532′, (HO-?).
On January 29th 1944, McPherson took part in a mission to Frankfurt, a number of kills were recorded here but following the battle McPherson ran out of fuel over France; he parachuted to safety near Rouillac Charente*. He continued to fight alongside the French Maquis, eventually being captured by the Germans. He was able to escape making his way back to England.
McPherson was decorated with the Air medal, for “Meritorious achievement while participating in aerial flight”, he left the service 6 months after the end of the war.
Joel McPherson eventually died on October 14th 1981, in Winter Haven, Florida at the age of 63.
Does anybody know what happened to him between 1944 and 1981? Can you help?
*Missing Air Crew Report 2124 : “Missing in return vicinity Hodi, Belgium” Report by Capt. Preddy & 1st Lt McMahon
My thanks to Dr. Jean-Pierre Duhard for all the above information.
Note : Dr Duhard has since made contact with Mr McPherson’s son. My gratitude to those of you who passed information on, it was very much appreciated. Andy.