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Thread: Capt Keiser's co-pilot wounded Java 20 February 1942

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    Default Capt Keiser's co-pilot wounded Java 20 February 1942

    Hi guys

    Another Java query - any help appreciated.

    On 20 February, the co-pilot of Capt Keiser's B-17 was wounded on the ground during a strafing attack by A6Ms on Malang airfiled, Java.

    He suffered a serious leg wound and was transferred to hospital. His name is unknown to me but possibly 2/Lt Ferrey? Can anyone confirm, please? And what was his fate? PoW or was he evacuated to Australia?

    Cheers
    Brian

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    Hi Brian

    O-022816 Capt Donald M Keiser died in North Africa on 10/12 1942, caused by a brain tumor (North Africa American Cemetery Carthage, Tunisia).

    He had two co-pilots with B-17D, #40-3066, namely Elliott Vandevanter Jr, who soon after the withdrawal from Malang (Singosari), was sent to Europe in Command of the 385th BG.

    Then we have his other co-pilot, 1st Lt O-352477 James Paisley Ferrey, who I have found as PoW. Source: WO 361 - Casualities and Missing Personnel 1939-1945, Prisoners of War, Far East (Fold 3).

    Here is a quote of a story told by the pilot Ed Teats in 1942:

    "The crews of the four Fortresses were sitting under their wings of their planes killing time. There was always a lot of noise about the field, with the Dutch planes taking off and engines being run up by mechanics therefore as the siren hadn’t sounded they knew nothing of the attack until the strafing started. Three or four of the fellows were seriously wounded although none of them died.

    One of them -- Keisers co-pilot -- caught an explosive bullet on the shin. Keiser and several others were in a split trench at the corner of the hangar, saw him fall and heedless of the certainty that the strafers would circle for a second run, dashed across the field, picked him up and carried him to a fox-hole.

    He was hospitalized at Malang. When we flew our the personnel other than that absolutely necessary for combat operations, he was set to go out to Australia on a sling stretcher which had been rigged up in one of the bomb bays. His leg wasn’t getting along too well. It had been pretty badly torn up, was draining profusely, and at the stage where the dressing had to be changed every hour.

    He was told that if he made the trip he probably wouldn’t be able to receive medical attention for at least 18 hours and that in that time infection might set in which would compel amputation. If he remained in Malang, the leg probably could be saved.

    Left the decision whether to go our and risk losing his leg, or stay in Java and save it. He elected to stay."

    http://www.lanbob.com/lanbob/FP-19BG...2-01JA-Jan.htm

    http://www.roll-of-honour.org.uk/Spe...ar_maru_16.htm,


    I am convinced your man is 1st Lt James Paisley Ferrey, he was left. As far as I can see, he survived the war. According a note in a PoW Database, he was a Canadian Citizen, enlisted via Port Nelson Ontario, Canada, correct?

    I have found a Canadian James Paisley Ferrey in the Year Book 1937 by Virginia Military Institute.

    Regards

    Finn Buch
    Last edited by Argus; 27th November 2019 at 09:11. Reason: Update

  3. The Following User Says Thank You to Argus For This Useful Post:

    Jagan (27th November 2019)

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    Hi Finn

    Many thanks for the confirmation and additional information. Excellent.

    I had previously seen Ed Teats' account, but thanks all the same.

    Cheers
    Brian

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    Brian,

    The Windsor Star of 15 July 1942 has a story on Ferrey.

    Ontario Flier is Decorated

    United States Headquarters, Australia
    Lt James P. Ferrey, United States Army Air Corps, whose address was listed as Port Nelson, Ont, yesterday was awarded the Order of the Purple Heart.

    With eight others, Lt Ferrey was cited for acts performed February 20 at Malang, Java. After returning from a mission, while standing an alert, they were wounded, one of them fatally, by Japanese airplanes which strafed their airport with machine gun and cannon fire
    Smaller article under states he is the son of Mr and Mrs HJ Ferrey of Port Nelson. Also states he was awarded the DFC in January 1942 for "his part in the trans-Pacific flight of Flying Fortresses the previous September"

    An article in the Staunton (Virginia) News Leader from 25 February 1942 adds that Ferrey, VMI Class of 1937, was "recently awarded the DFC for piloting a bomber over an uncharted route from Hawaii to the Philippines".

    By 1955, Ferrey is a full Colonel, Air Force plant representative at the Boeing Airplane company in Wichita, Kansas.

    Regards,

    Dave

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    Hi Brian

    Date of Birth: 4/8 1915

    Pay Date: 1/6 1937

    Source: Air Force Register (Washington)

    Regards,

    Finn

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    Default James Ferrey

    Hi Dave

    Well, that's the icing on the cake! No doubt that we have 'our man'

    Thanks to you and Finn for solving this little mystery for me. Information now included in the draft of my latest book project.

    Many thanks again.

    PS: I'm still hopeful of acquiring a copy of an article that appeared in a copy of TIME magazine (circa September 1942) regarding M/Sgt Louis T. Silva DSC. He was a Java veteran (killed in Australia). Perhaps you may be able to locate a copy (scan?) for me, or at least point me in the right direction.

    Cheers
    Brian

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    Hi Brian, just a note if you have seen this already:

    https://books.google.cz/books?id=-5o...D.S.C.&f=false

    Pavel
    Czechoslovak Airmen in the RAF 1940-1945
    http://cz-raf.webnode.cz

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    Brian,

    Various US newspapers confirm Pavel's information.

    Louis Silva was an interesting fellow. From the 8 May 1942 Hanford (California) Morning Journal:

    He's Tops, New Yankee Hero Falsified Age; Army Still Glad

    Washington, May 7 (UP) Master Sgt Louis Silva of Rio Vista, Calif. falsified his age by more than 10 years when he joined the army, but Undersecretary of War Robert P. Patterson today assured Silva he was only interested in what he had been "putting over" on the Japanese.

    Silva has been awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for shooting down at least three Japanese fighters while serving as a volunteer gunner on a Flying Fortress in the Dutch East Indies.

    Army records show Silva to be 47, but Patterson said he understood that he was actually nearer 60.

    "It appears that when Sgt Silva enlisted in 1922 he was putting something over on the War Department", Patterson commented, adding that he hoped the Silva case "won't give wrong ideas to the grandfathers of America"
    Regards,

    Dave

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    Default

    Hi guys

    Belated thanks for the latest re Louis Silva, much appreciated.

    Cheers
    Brian

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