What Radio Station Is Michigan State Football On Today Survival Over The "HUMP" Part One

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Survival Over The "HUMP" Part One

First Lieutenant Art Tuttle yelled into the phone. “Doctor, our number 4 engine is showing a drop in oil pressure and an increase in cylinder head temperature. “Take a look at it and let me know if your numbers continue to go south,” said our pilot, Captain Doc Waller.

As a flight co-pilot, I knew that the B-29’s engines and other malfunctions were causing problems for many other aircrews stationed at Piardoba, India. We often loaded 140,000 pounds to 160,000 pounds of excess weight, which caused the engines to overheat.

Lovers, Losses, and Pin Ups

The rapidly building cumulus clouds below caught my attention. However, I realized that eighteen hours of B-29 flying on one mission in the China Burma Theater gave us all plenty of time to think about it; wives and girlfriends flying the B-17 Love Boat over Walker Field, my wife, Betty Ann, flying the Big Bomber through the skies over the Michigan/Ohio State football game, my time in the cavalry and a new assignment as General Smith’s aide. loss of Lt. Edward Pierce, football star from Flint Northern and 3-year letterwinner from Michigan State, on a mountainside in Morocco in France… then Lt. Charles Hill (MSU quarterback), failed to pilot a Liberator over Germany after a When I returned, it stuck to me like a knife.

Pierce, Hill and I all moved through 14 transfers to camps and bases, from the Cavalry to the Army and then to the Air Force. We all lost our wings in one way or another and I mourned for them and their crews. Heartbroken, their infant widows carried on… and believed that their loved ones would return.

The choice of nose art was important to unite the crew…the spirit and pride of each crew. In this battle, the more personal, intimate and irreverent, the better for 19-24 year olds. Maybe a pinup next to the plane will induce the enemy (with laughter or desire) in an attempt to crash our plane allowing our gunners to nail him first. Pinup or worse was a thrill for most and a relief for some. Themes range from cute or sexy to cartoons/caricatures, people, logos/names and name only themes. What the hell the more garish the better. If only it would ease the tension a little and we’d let it. It was great fun and suddenly every man in every aircrew was an artist to get a representative coat of arms.

Duster star fight

SSgt James Lynch, our right gunner suddenly yelled into the phone; – Doctor, our number 4 smokes. Here we go again, I thought, as Captain Doc Waller, our pilot, told Jimmy to get out of the fire and to 1st Lt. Art Tuttle, the flight engineer, to check the gauges, temperatures and pressures, and his emergency checklist. to do .

Time number 4 could be worse. We were 34,000 feet above the Himalayas. This is not a bombing mission, but a cargo flight. We carry eight 2,900-gallon rubber fuel tanks mounted on bomb racks after a 13-hour flight directly to our forward base in the Cheng Tu Valley… in preparation for a bombing raid on the Japanese homeland.

They carried so much fuel on board a long way from home. The potential engine fire was now even more terrifying with heavy and accurate anti-aircraft fire over Kyushu and Yokohama.

I looked at Doc, calmly focusing on his next task. He was going through emergency procedures and his options for landing and re-routing – in case the worst should happen. He knew that twelve people were counting on his life or death decisions. Doc told me to take the yoke and I took off in my new title “STARDUSTER”. While checking Art Tuttle for engine performance numbers I kept an eye on the 4 and asked for regular updates from our engine eyes in the back.

From the darkness of the early morning we pressed on. None of us expected that our missions would come off without casualties, or that our own aircraft would have a better chance of emerging unscathed than others. The question we’ve all been wondering… What? And it seemed like an answer that, if it became a reality… soon.

The engine number 4 was slowly losing its power, and now the smell of gas could be heard in the nose of the plane. With a sudden dramatic swing to the right, TSgt Alden Huisjen, our senior gunner, yelled, “We’re getting thick black smoke coming out of No. 4 now.” I quickly turned to confirm our problem child on the wing. Doc gave me that look and I nodded my head in confirmation of the reality of our problem. Our converted B-29 tanker was now in real condition.

Doc immediately reduced power when he heard smoke coming from the engine, even as Art reported that all engine instruments were showing normal readings. A power cut reduced the amount of smoke, but within 10 minutes a large plume of oil and smoke suddenly erupted from the top box. SSgt Don Carter, our radio operator, went to the side of the bomb to check for gas fumes. Doc was worried that the fumes would saturate the plane and could harm the entire crew.

“Fire, fire coming out of number 4 now,” Alden said, “Fire growing.”

Suddenly there was a second jolt and Art looked at the tachometer and informed the pilots that the MAPs/RPMs were dropping rapidly in the 4’s. Then the engine jerked violently and it stopped all together…

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