Our Northwest

Pendleton pilot laid to rest after 69 years

Friday, April 12, 2013by  Jon Osterberg

The four-prop bomber rumbled over the rugged mountain tops in Papua New Guinea, then plunged to the ground, killing all 10 crewmembers.
   It was May 7, 1944, and the B-24 Liberator crash site wasn’t found until 1973. The rugged terrain then swallowed the wreckage until 2002, when Australians rediscovered it and retrieved human remains. Thanks to DNA sampling, investigators have identified one of the victims as Army Staff Sgt. Ray Thompson, an Oregon resident who was 25 at the time of the crash. Now Thompson’s family has closure following his April 10 burial in a Pendleton cemetery. Read The Oregonian article.

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