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Raymond D. Fuller
Bomb Group: 22nd Bomb Group
Bomb Squadron: 19th Bomb Squadron

 


SURPUSS-1


Raymond D. Fuller on right


First plane across from States


The Hardway

1st Air Base Sqdn Langley
1st Air Base Sqdn Langley


Air Corps, Technical School, Chanute Field, Kansas, Airplane Mechanics Class Number 2 May 22, 1931

                                                                               8th Ind.                                                                   WHG/rhs

19TH BOMBARDMENT SQUADRON, 22ND BOMBARDMENT GROUP (M), APO 503, 17 October 1943.

To: Headquarters, 22nd Bombardment Group (M), APO 503 .

1. In compliance with the 5th Ind. the following information is submitted:

2. The commendable service of M/Sgt Raymond D. Fuller starts on December 7, 1941. At that time, he was Squadron Inspector of this organization. This organization was ordered to make a permanent change of station from Langley Field, Virginia to Muroc, California. Information for the change of station came about 7:00 P.M. on the 7th of December, 1941. Through the efforts of the Line Chief, Sgt. Fuller and the ground personnel, twelve (12) out of thirteen (13) assigned airplanes were in commission for take-off at 7:30 A.M on December 8, 1941. All airplanes reached their destination with only insignificant malfunctions.

3. Through the foresight of the Squadron Commander, Sgt. Fuller, along with a Crew Chief and armament man for each airplane were sent along with the air echelon to start immediate operations since the ground echelon and equipment were to arrive later. Other Squadrons from this Group had not dispatched ground personnel with their airplanes and it was necessary for Sgt. Fuller and ground personnel to assist with maintenance, supply and loading of bombs for all airplanes of the group. Through untiring efforts of Sgt. Fuller, and his leadership of -the limited amount of personnel, operations were carried on until the arrival of the ground personnel.

4. After the arrival of the ground personnel, Sgt Fuller was made line Chief, of this organization, which he has served to date. During operations at Muroc, California, the Squadron was flying patrol missions from northern California along the coast line to south of the Mexican Border. These missions required frequent use of airplanes on prolonged flight. Despite adverse weather and maintenance conditions of frost, freezing rain, snow and dust storms, and limited source of supplies for B-26 type airplanes, Sgt. Fullerís leadership and maintenance kept the require number of airplanes in commission for these operations.

5. The organization as ordered to make another change of station to foreign service. The airplanes were ferried to Sacramento Air Depot, to be disassembled for shipment. Sgt Fuller accompanied the planes to the depot where he supervised the disassembling of the planes. This was necessary due to the fact that the depot had little experience with this type of aircraft.

6. Sgt. Fuller again was sent with the airplanes to Hickham Field, Hawaii, where the planes were assembled for flight to Australia. Sgt Fuller, Crew Chiefs and combat crews made the acceptance check, which included ground tests and flight test. In order to get the planes in commission for the, flight, it required working fourteen to eighteen hours a day for three weeks. Sgt. Fuller was assigned to lead ship of the first flight. The trip to Australia was made in several series with no loss of personnel and equipment. The airplanes operated with only normal operational malfunctions.

7. Since the bases that the planes landed at were under construction, there were no supplies except gasoline and food available. In some cases where supplies were needed, substitutes were made. Parts for a stem of an inner tube were made from a valve and stem of an automobile inner tube. Other cases of necessary parts being made from Prince Albert tobacco cans. These methods made it possible for the planes to reach their destination as quickly as possible. Since their need of immediate use in combat was very urgent.

8. Upon arrival in Australia, the air echelon joined the ground echelon and made a permanent change of station to Garbutt Field, Townsville for combat service. At this time there ware no supplies or Service Squadrons at Townsville. This required the Engineering section to do 3rd and 4th echelon work. All accessories were overhauled by makeshift equipment. This was carried on over a period of a month before adequate facilities were available. It was through experience, ingenious methods, untiring efforts and leadership on the part of Sgt. Fuller that this system made possible the operation of the number of -planes necessary for combat.

9. There was another case of an engineering feat which proved to be very valuable. The organization was stationed at Iron Range, APO A72 705. The tail section of an airplane was damaged to the extent that it had to be removed. The Service Squadron was contacted to repair the ship. They stated that it would take them two weeks to finish it, due to the fact that they had other work to be completed before they could start on the airplane. This airplane was urgently needed for combat. The Squadron engineering Section decided to make the repair. It was necessary to remove the entire tail section from the rear bomb bay of the damaged airplane and the same process from another airplane which was condemned for flying. The entire procedure was completed, airplane tested and ready for combat duty in seventy-two hours, which was a record job for this squadron. The equipment ordinarily necessary for this job was not available, the use of scrap lumber and a trailer of a crash unit was used for support while the tail section was being installed.

10. The proceeding paragraphs have been written in detail, in an effort to show the initiative and leadership of this non-commissioned officer. His accomplishments have been due to force, physical endurance, and his ability to lean men. It is felt Sgt. Fuller has demonstrated outstanding qualities for appointment as a commissioned officer.

11. It is requested that every possible consideration be given Sgt Fullersís application.

8 Incls:                                                                                                                                Walter H. Greer,
                                                                                                                                           Major, Air Corps,
n/c                                                                                                                                       Commanding.

 

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