Topics - B29 Superfortress Crash
Tripoli, Lybia
February 2, 1953

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A B-29 Superfortress bomber with the 301st Bomber Squadron, 352nd Bomber Wing based in Upper Hayford Air Base, England, crashed after taking off from Wheelus Field, Tripoli, Lybia on February 2, 1953.  The plane was taking off on a training mission.  Cause of the crash was not immediately determined.  Fifteen crew members were killed.  Fourteen of them were from the 301st Bomber Wing, formerly stationed at Barksdale AFB and temporarily assigned to duty in England.  The list of crash fatalities was sent to the KWE by Art Lajeunesse of New York.


  • Capt. Charles Wayne Eley, Commander of the Aircraft.  He was born in Bossier Parish, Louisiana on November 18, 1918.  Service Number AO760606.  His wife was Rose Marie Eley (1920-2016).  The couple is buried in DeAnn Cemetery, Prescott, Arizona.
  • 1LT Lonzo Preston Armstrong, Pilot - Bossier City, Louisiana.  Born April 21, 1926, he was a son of John S. Armstrong (1899-1990) and Hazel E. Dunham Armstrong (1898-1985).  His sibling was Milton L. Armstrong (1932-2017).  Service Number 21552A.  Lonzo is buried in Highland Cemetery, Okemah, Oklahoma.
  • 1LT Daniel D. Corvelli, Navigator - Bossier City, LA.  His wife was Betty Gene Corvelli.
  • 1LT John T. Hackbarth, Bombardier - Bossier City, LA
  • M/SGT William H. Grant, Medical/specialist - Bossier City, LA
  • A1C James A. Yuvan, Gunner - Hutchinson, PA.  James was born August 27, 1932, son of Frank Yuvan (1915-1974) and Dorothy Jane Roebuck Yuvan (1915-2009). James is buried in West Newton Cemetery, West Newton, Pennsylvania.
  • 2LT Frederick Young, Radio observer [KWE research: He is buried in Gate of Heaven Cemetery, East Hanover, New Jersey]  He was the son of William Frank Young, New Jersey.
  • T/SGT David W. Bolstad, Aero/Medical Specialist [KWE research: Born October 30, 1930, he is buried in Willamette National Cemetery, Portland, Oregon.] [Findagrave: He was a son of Otto D. Bolstad (1901-1989) and stepson of Helen Agnes Moser Falkenberg Bolstad (1906-1992).  His siblings included Dan Bolstad, Helen Bolstad Campbell, Jean Bolstad Cassins, Ralph Bolstad, Lois Bolstad Olson, Joan Bolstad Ward, and one more sister (deceased).]
  • Airman Frank James Lovvorn, Radio operator [KWE research: Airman Lovvorn was born April 05, 1930 and is buried in Gethsemane Cemetery and Crematory, Detroit, Michigan]
  • A/1C Donald V. Wilson, Gunner [Findagrave: Born in 1929 in Fulton, Missouri, he was a son of Allie B. Wilson (1896-1972) and Anna Gertrude Simms Wilson (1896-1971).  His siblings were Arthur James Wilson (1921-1968), Helen Wilson Tyree, Faye Wilson Bell, and Norman Wilson.  Donald is buried in Callaway Memorial Gardens and Mausoleum, Fulton, Missouri.]
  • A/1C Talmadge L. Kloster, Gunner [KWE research: Airman Kloster was born May 02, 1929 in Clearwater County, Minnesota, a son of Jacob N. Kloster (1894-1989) and Gertrude Kloster (1901-1997).  His siblings were Orvis Neil (1924-2004), Morris O. (1926-1991) and Donald Larry (1944-2012).  Talmadge is buried in Bethlehem Lutheran Cemetery, Fosston, Minnesota.]
  • A/1C James Clark McDowell, Passenger [KWE research: James was born January 26, 1933 and is buried in Park Cemetery, Bridgeport, Connecticut.]  He was the son of Willard A. McDowell (1904-1971) and Lillian A. McDowell (1912-2006).
  • S/SGT Frederick Joe Jones, Passenger [KWE research: Frederick was born April 10, 1925 and is buried in Oakland Cemetery Poteau, Oklahoma.]  His wife was Hazel Jones.
  • Airman Harold D. Bellotte, Passenger [KWE research provided by Shannon M. Sakshaug via Findagrave: Harold David Bellotte was born on April 25, 1932, son of William David Bellotte (1889-1935) and Eula Lee Colson Bellotte (1893-1935).  His sibling was Euna Kathalene Bellotte (1924-1931).  Harold is buried in Orange Hill Cemetery, Williston, Florida.
  • Airman Ray Oden Willis, Passenger [KWE research: Ray was born September 2, 1931, son of Dexter Oden Willis (1891-1973) and Marie Munch Willis (1899-1951).  A 1950 graduate of Norview High School in Norfolk, Ray is buried in Riverside Memorial lPark, Norfolk, Virginia.]

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