Howell Collier Osborne Jr.

Second Lieutenant Howell Collier Osborne Jr., U.S.A.A.F. died on 10th April 1944 when Marauder "Winnie Dee" crashed in low cloud over Chimney Rock Mountain.

Second Lieutenant

Howell Collier Osborne Jr.


Second Lieutenant Howell Collier Osborne Jr. (O-685276) served in 3rd Combat Crew Replacement Center, 8th United States Army Air Force during the Second World War. Born on 20th August 1922, he was the son of Howell Collier Osborne Sr. and Nell Osborne of Fort Smith, Sebastian County, Arkansas, U.S.A.

Howell grew up with brothers William Osborne and Thomas Osborne, and sister Martha Osborne. He married Frances W. Stewart of Van Buren, Arkansas, U.S.A., and the couple had a daughter named Ann Osborne.

Howell trained as an Aviation Cadet at Coffeyville Army Airfield, Kansas, U.S.A. There, he flew Vultee BT-13 Valiant planes, achieving pilot rating on 26th June 1943, and instrument rating on 19th October 1943 as a member of Class 43-F. After initial training, he joined 335th Bombardment Group at Barksdale, Louisiana, U.S.A. It was there he first flew a B-26 Marauder. By the time of his final flight in Northern Ireland, Osborne had completed 230 hours and 40 minutes of flying on the B-26.

Second Lieutenant Osborne died on 10th April 1944 while serving as a pilot on B-26B #41-18150 “Winnie Dee”. The plane crashed on Chimney Rock Mountain in The Mourne Mountains near Newcastle, Co. Down. The crew was on a gunnery training flight from Toome Airfield, Co. Antrim, and flying at a low level in cloud when the incident took place. All 5 crew members died as a result. Two other Marauder aircraft on the same non-operational flight returned safely.

Burial first took place at Plot B, Row 2, Grave 4 of Lisnabreeny American Military Cemetery, Belfast on 20th April 1944. Exhumation from Lisnabreeny took place on 11th November 1947. In 1948, Osborne was repatriated to Forest Park Cemetery, Fort Smith, Sebastian County, Arkansas, U.S.A.

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