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T/Sgt John N. Danhof
I began my mechanic training at Chanute Field, Rantoui, IL.
After leaving there I attended Boeing B-17 School at Seattle.
Upon graduation, I was then sent to Walla, WA, where I worked
as a mechanic on the B-17s for four-engine pilot flight training.
After a couple of years it was back to Seattle for B-29 School
then assignment to SHAAF (Smoky Hill Army Air Field), Salina,
KS. On Guam, our ground crew consisted of: Edward Kosmowski,
Assistant Crew Chief; Donald Davie, David Gotieb, and another
who's name I can't remember - aircraft mechanics.
one of Crew 8's missions, in which, it had sustained severe
damage, the ground crew was sent to Iwo Jima to make repairs.
It was badly shot up but somehow our aircrew had been able to
reach Iwo. We patched numerous holes in the skin, replaced the
entire outboard wing section and the inboard fuel cell that
was nearly burned through. Also # 4 supercharger was damaged.
on Iwo, we witnessed spectaculars such as we would never see
again. Following a maximum effort mission severely shot up B-29s
many with one or two engines out would come limping in.
soon as a damaged plane was parked we would immediately pull
the sump plug to determine if a replacement engine was needed.
our stay at Iwo, we were hit by a typhoon. I sat at P-8 and
kept the brakes on during the worst of the storm. When I returned
to our tent, the main ridgepole had snapped in two, allowing
water to flood the entire interior.
of the still hot lava beneath Iwo, we had plenty of hot salt
water for showers.
the Japanese surrendered, Crew 8 was in Hawaii on R and R leave.
They had managed to survive 30 combat missions. Since we expected
them to return to Guam, we didn't exchange home addresses. Consequenty,
we had been unable to keep in touch over the years.
Danhof died 11 July 2003 in an auto accident
Squadron Crew Index