|Lt. Hubert Chamness piloted the B-24 Flak Happy based in Italy.|
Hubert Ray Chamness never had a chance to reach 100 years old on New Year's Day. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.
He was born on January 1, 1918 in California. His father John was also born in California and his mother May was born in Kansas. His father worked as a dairy assistant manager and later as creamery manager. Hubert had two older sisters and one older brother. By 1940 Hubert had completed four years of high school and he was working as a milk salesman while living with his sister and her husband.
I don't know when Hubert enlisted but he volunteered for the Army Air Forces and became a pilot and second lieutenant in the 739th Bombardment Squadron, 454th Bombardment Group, 15th Air Force which was equipped with B-24 Liberators. The 454 BG was activated in June 1943 and arrived in Italy in January 1944.
On November 11, 1944 Lt. Chamness was piloting the B-24 Flak Happy on a mission to Linz, Austria. It did not make it back to base and was reported missing. Later it was determined that Lt. Chamness was killed, but all of the rest of the crew survived.
Updated 1/2/2018: Thanks to Joe Irvine who provided me with this photo of Lt. Chamness and the crew of Flak Happy.
His grave is at Long Beach Municipal Cemetery in California.
Stanly Berdinsky, 103rd Infantry Division, was the first of the fallen that I profiled one year ago on New Year's Day. You can read his story here.
On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!
I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100