Database Search

You are in the database section of the website.

Select a record category from RECORDS above. When you have selected a category, you will see search options for that category above the record list. 

Most fields require at least three characters. When you submit your query, the search engine will return all records that contain your search term.

Note that when searching for an aircraft serial number, you must enter the full serial number without the leading "4" and without a dash in the Aircraft SN search field. For example, you would enter 42-37772 as 237772.

The Personnel name field searches both last and first names, so if you enter the search term, "Russ", the search engine will return both Russell Abel and James Russell.

You narrow the search by entering more characters into the search field. For example, "Russ" returns many hits. "Russell" returns fewer hits. The same principle applies to all queries.

The POW and KIA categories are list only and are not searchable.

S/SGT  Matthew C. AVEN

UNIT: 418th BOMB Sqdn POSITION: WG

Sgt Matthew C. Aven, KIA on March 6, 1944 mission to Berlin with Lt Zeb Kendall Crew

Matthew C. Aven, KIA with Lt Zeb Kendal Crew on March 6, 1944.  Photo courtesy of Daughter Sharon Aven Moncrief 

SERIAL #: 38473776 STATUS: KIA
MACR: 03016 CR: 03016

Comments1: 6 MAR 44 BERLIN

COMMENTS & NOTES

MEMO 1:

CREW

2ND LT ZEB KENDALL JR.                  P KIA 06 MAR 44 BERLIN
2ND LT EDWIN J. LOUGHRAN          CP KIA 06 MAR 44 BERLIN
2ND LT WILLIAM R. THORPE JR.    NAV KIA 06 MAR 44 BERLIN
2ND LT CLIFFORD L. GOWEN       BOM KIA 06 MAR 44 BERLIN
S/SGT LEMAN E. TUTOR             ROG KIA 06 MAR 44 BERLIN
S/SGT MELVIN A. HICKMAN         TTE KIA 06 MAR 44 BERLIN
SGT REGINALDO AGUILA            BTG KIA 06 MAR 44 BERLIN
SGT MATTHEW G. AVEN JR.      RWG KIA 06 MAR 44 BERLIN
SGT RAYMOND L. BRIDGES           WG KIA 06 MAR 44 BERLIN
SGT VICTOR STOFFREGEN          TG KIA 06 MAR 44 BERLIN

418TH SQDN.. CREW, AS ABAOVE, JOINED THE 100TH ON 22 FEB 44 AND MUST HAVE BEEN LOST ON EITHER THEIR FIRST OF SECOND MISSION.

AIRCRAFT 42-30278, UNNANMED WAS SHOT DOWN DURING FIGHTER ATTACK NEAR HASELUENNE AT APPROX 1200 HOURS.  THERE WERE NO SURVIVORS.

 MACR #3016, Microfiche #1020

 Exact cause and location of the loss of this  aircraft is unknown..

Date Crew Nbr Mission Nbr Last Name Initial Rank Position Aircraft Nbr Target
3/3/1944 34 122 STOFFREGEN V. SGT TG 91 BERLIN
3/3/1944 34 122 KENDALL Z. LT P 91 BERLIN
3/3/1944 34 122 LOUGHRAN E.J. LT CP 91 BERLIN
3/3/1944 34 122 THORPE W.H. LT NAV 91 BERLIN
3/3/1944 34 122 GOWEN C.L. LT BOM 91 BERLIN
3/3/1944 34 122 TUTOR L.E. T/SGT ROG 91 BERLIN
3/3/1944 34 122 HICKMAN W.A. S/SGT TTE 91 BERLIN
3/3/1944 34 122 AGUILA R. SGT BTG 91 BERLIN
3/3/1944 34 122 AVEN M.C. S/SGT RWG 91 BERLIN
3/3/1944 34 122 PRIDGES R.L. SGT LWG 91 BERLIN

3/4/1944 34 123 PRIDGES R.L. SGT LWG 278 BERLIN
3/4/1944 34 123 AVEN M.C. S/SGT RWG 278 BERLIN
3/4/1944 34 123 AGUILA R. SGT BTG 278 BERLIN
3/4/1944 34 123 HICKMAN W.A. S/SGT TTE 278 BERLIN
3/4/1944 34 123 TUTOR L.E. T/SGT ROG 278 BERLIN
3/4/1944 34 123 GOWEN C.L. LT BOM 278 BERLIN
3/4/1944 34 123 THORPE W.H. LT NAV 278 BERLIN
3/4/1944 34 123 LOUGHRAN E.J. LT CP 278 BERLIN
3/4/1944 34 123 KENDALL Z. LT P 278 BERLIN
3/4/1944 34 123 STOFFREGEN V. SGT TG 278 BERLIN

3/6/1944 34 124 GOWEN C.L. LT BOM 278 BERLIN
3/6/1944 34 124 STOFFREGEN V. SGT TG 278 BERLIN
3/6/1944 34 124 PRIDGES R.L. SGT LWG 278 BERLIN
3/6/1944 34 124 AVEN M.C. S/SGT RWG 278 BERLIN
3/6/1944 34 124 AGUILA R. SGT BTG 278 BERLIN
3/6/1944 34 124 TUTOR L.E. T/SGT ROG 278 BERLIN
3/6/1944 34 124 THORPE W.H. LT NAV 278 BERLIN
3/6/1944 34 124 LOUGHRAN E.J. LT CP 278 BERLIN
3/6/1944 34 124 KENDALL Z. LT P 278 BERLIN
3/6/1944 34 124 HICKMAN W.A. S/SGT TTE 278 BERLIN

MEMO 2:

Matthew G. Aven, Jr. was born in Wichita Falls, Texas on January 8, 1924 to Matthew G. Sr., and Minnie Mildred Johnson Aven. The US Census 1930 lists the family in Wichita Falls, but the US Census 1940 shows then as residents of Tyler, Texas. Aven was drafted, and inducted into military service in 1942. He was assigned to the Army Air Forces, and trained as an aerial gunner. Upon completing this course, he was promoted to Sergeant, and assigned to an operational unit for crew training. The crew deployed to England in 1944, and flew either 1 or 2 missions. (Records not clear.)

On march 6, 1944, this crew was selected as part of a bombing raid on the industrial complex outside Berlin, Germany. The formation was attacked by numerous German fighters. The inexperienced gunners were overwhelmed by the skilled Luftwaffe pilots, resulting , according to records, in 23 of 38 B-17s being shot down. Aven's aircraft was raked by heavy machine gun and cannon fire. The bomb load exploded, killing all the crew at their stations. The wreckage fell near Haseluene, Germany, just outside the target area. The dead were evidently recovered and buried locally, because after the war ended, they were retrieved by Allied forces and moved to other cemeteries. SSgt Aven presently lies in the Rose Hill Cemetery in Tyler, Texas in Section A.

SSgt Matthew G. Aven, Jr. was acting as a waist gunner on B-17G # 42-30278, named "Sly Fox," assigned to the 418th Bomb Squadron.

Missing Air Crew Report 3016 was issued, and applies to this loss. Crew listings state the crew consisted of:

2 Lt Zeb Kendall, Jr.  p
2 Lt Edwin J. Loughran  c-p
2 Lt William R. Thorpe,Jr.  nav
2 Lt Clifford L. Gowen  bomb
SSgt Melvin A. Hickman  eng/tt gun
SSgt Leman E. Tutor  r/o
Sgt  Reginaldo Aguila  btg
Sgt  Matthew G. Aven, Jr.  wg
Sgt  Raymond L. Bridges  wg
Sgt  Victor Stoffregen  tail gun




There were no survivors.

KIA / MIA / EVA / INT INFORMATION:

TARGET: Berlin DATE: 1944-03-06  
AIRCRAFT: "Sly Fox" (42-30278) CAUSE: EAC & Explosion  

BURIAL INFORMATION

PLOT: ROW:  
GRAVE: CEMETERY:  

PHOTOS:

Purple Heart Certificate for Matthew Aven.   Photo courtesy of Daughter Sharon Moncrief

Purple Heart of S/Sgt Matthew Aven. KIA on March 6, 1944 mission to Berlin with Zeb Kendall Crew. Photo courtesy of Daughter Sharon Moncrief

Gunners School Yearbook for Matthew Aven.  Photo courtesy of Daughter Sharon Moncrief

Life Magazine Photo of the Crews that flew the March 4, 1944 Mission to Berlin. Photo courtesy of Daughter Sharon Moncrief

 

SERVED IN:

Crew 1

ID: 155