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Remembering World War II
Glenn Cecil Truesdell
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Name: Glenn Cecil Truesdell Rank: First Lieutenant Service Number: O-859714 Service: 882nd Bomb Squadron, 500th Bomb Group, United States Army Air Force Awards: Air Medal, Purple Heart Date of Birth: May 19, 1915 Place of Birth: Ackley, Franklin County, Iowa Date of Enlistment: November 1942 Place of Enlistment: Unknown Age at Enlistment: 27 Address at Enlistment: Arlington, Kentucky Marital Status: Single (at enlistment) Next of Kin: Jean Elsie Truesdell (Wife) Height: 5 feet, 7 inches Complexion: Ruddy Hair Color: Brown Eye Color: Blue Date of Death: January 3, 1945 Age: 29 Cemetery: Zachary Taylor National Cemetery, Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky Grave: Section E Site 114 Glenn Cecil Truesdell was the son of Stephen Frank Truesdell (1880-1951) and Hattie Agnes (Speed) Truesdell (1887-1972), and the husband of Jean Elsie (Hartling) Truesdell (1918-2001) of Amherst, Cumberland County, Nova Scotia. Jean served as a Second Lieutenant in the Army Nurse Corps during WWII. Both of Glenn’s parents were born in Iowa. His father was born in Putnam Township, Fayette Co. and his mother was born in Elkport, Clayton Co. His siblings were Wayne Palmer Truesdell (1908–1988), Viola A Truesdell Burchett (1910–1995), Frank Speed Truesdell (1912–2002), and Evelyn Hannah (Truesdell) Warren (1917–1987). Glenn’s brother Wayne, a Lieutenant, served as a US Navy Navigator. Glenn resided in Tuscaloosa, Alabama prior to the war, and was employed with the United States Bureau of Mines. He registered for the US Draft on October 16, 1940 in Tuscaloosa. He married Jean Elsie Hartling on November 4, 1943, in Walterboro, Colleton Co., South Carolina. They had one son together, Glenn C Truesdell Jr. Glenn served as the Flight Engineer on B-29 "The Leading Lady" Serial No. 42-24766, 882nd Bomb Squadron, 500th Bomb Group U.S. Army Air Force during World War II. Mission 17: On January 3, 1945, B-29 No. 42-24766, Tail Code Z Square 22 was one of ninety-seven B-29s that took off from Isley Field, Saipan, Mariana Islands on a bombing mission against Nagoya urban areas and docks. Each B-29 was armed with fourteen M-69 incendiary cluster bombs. Nineteen aircraft aborted before reaching the target and 57 hit the primary target and 21 others bomb alternates and targets of opportunity; Japanese fighters made 300+ attacks against the formation. Five B-29s were lost including this the mission. First Lieutenant Glenn Cecil Truesdell was killed in action when his B-29, minutes after bomb release over the target of Nagoya, Japan, was rammed by an enemy Ki-61 Hien (a "Tony") fighter of the 55th Sentai (flying regiment) piloted by 1st Lt. Minoru Shirota and crashed about 30 kilometers southeast of Nagoya, in Sodame forest near the village of Matsudairacho, Toyota, Aichi, Japan. There were 5 B-29's lost on this mission. First Lieutenant Glenn Cecil Truesdell was originally interred in Yokohama, Japan and was later repatriated to the United States on August 13, 1949. The reason he is named on a group headstone is because when soldiers, sailors or airman were killed near each other, and they were unable to identify them separately at the time, their remains were interred together in one grave. Airmen who perished on B-29 (#42-24766): Major Wilbur E Hurlbutt, Commander, NY 2nd Lt. Felix P Omilian, Pilot, NY 1st Lt. Glendon M Aitken, Bombardier, PA 1st Lt. Edward H Stoehr, Navigator, IL 1st Lt. Glenn C Truesdell, Flight Engineer, AL Sergeant Joseph P Nighan, Radio Operator, PA Sergeant Frank J Yanik, CFC Gunner, PA Staff Sergeant Karl Hunt, Left Gunner, ME Corporal Richard P Steinberg, Right Gunner, NJ Staff Sergeant Paul E Dreyer, Radar Operator, MD Lt Col Marcus A Mullen, Observer - formerly 500th Bomb Group Ops. Officer, but was Deputy Group Commander, NY One crewman, Sergeant Harold Thomas Hedges (1923-1979), the Tail Gunner, survived the crash. He was taken prisoner by the Japanese and confined in the Japanese Omori Headquarters, Camp Ofuna, Tokyo 35- 139. He survived the war. Glenn Cecil Truesdell Sr. was interred at the Zachary Taylor National Cemetery in Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky.
Air Medal Awarded Posthumously to Arlington Man Published in 'Oelwein Daily Register' Oelwein, Iowa Friday April 12, 1946 Mrs. Jean E. Truesdell, Arlington, has received the air medal which has been posthumously awarded to her husband First Lieutenant Glenn C. Truesdell, Air Corps. The medal was awarded by direction of the president. Lieutenant Truesdell received the Purple Heart posthumously March 9. Lieutenant Truesdell, 29, served in the Air Corps for two years as a flight engineer on a B-29. The citation read: "For meritorious achievement while participating in aerial flights as combat crew member in successful combat missions against the Japanese Empire from December 3 to 28, 1944. All missions were flown under rapidly changing and oftentimes adverse weather conditions. The flights were subject to enemy anti-air-craft fire and fighter opposition. There were constantly present difficult navigational problems, danger of engine failure and consequent ditching many miles at sea. Under prolonged periods of physical and mental strain, and undaunted by the many hazards faced regularly and continuously, each crew member displayed such courage and skill in the performance of his duty as to reflect great credit on himself and the Army Air Forces." Lieutenant Wayne Truesdell, a brother of Lieutenant Glenn Truesdell, is still serving as a navy navigator. Lieutenant Truesdell's wife and his son, Glenn, reside in Arlington.