Elwood R. Bailey

ACCOUNTED FOR

NAME
Elwood Ray Bailey
NICKNAME
MCSN
O-10347
HOME OF RECORD
Route 1, Parma, MI
NEXT OF KIN
Wife, Mrs. Elwood Bailey
DATE OF BIRTH
1921
DATE OF ENLISTMENT
June 26, 1941
DATE OF LOSS
August 24, 1942
REGION
Solomons
CAMPAIGN / AREA
Guadalcanal
CASUALTY TYPE
MIA (Declared Dead)
25 August 1943
UNIT
VMF-233
DUTY
Pilot
F4F-4 #02095
CIRCUMSTANCES OF LOSS
Second Lieutenant Bailey, a Cactus Air Force pilot, flew an F4F-4 Wildcat (BuNo #02095) to intercept a Japanese air raid on Henderson Field, Guadalcanal, on 24 August 1942. Five Americans engaged six Japanese fighters over Malaita Island; one of the Zeros went down in flames, but Lieutenant Bailey’s aircraft was badly hit. He was last seen breaking away from the formation and heading back towards Guadalcanal, but never returned to the airfield. Bailey was declared dead on 25 August 1943.

For many years, it was assumed that Bailey had bailed out over the water, or had gone down into the sea in his aircraft. However, the wreck of his plane was found in the remote foothills of Mount Austen, Guadalcanal, in 2012. Human remains found at the site were determined to be those of Lieutenant Bailey in September 2017.

INDIVIDUAL DECORATIONS
Purple Heart
LAST KNOWN RANK
Second Lieutenant
STATUS OF REMAINS
Accounted For 28 September 2017
DPAA Announcement
MEMORIALS
Manila American Cemetery

Biography:
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3 thoughts on “Elwood R. Bailey

  1. I’m 2nd Lt. Bailey’s great-nephew and, as it happens, a Naval aviator myself. I’ve just learned more about Elwood in 2 minutes on this page than in 200 pages of reading his military record and correspondence to his parents and next of kin over 20 years following the war. Thank you for this site and for distilling research on these Marines from hundreds of books and magazines that I would not have time to read myself. This is an incredible service to the families. Take care and God bless.

    Sincerely,
    Scott Tompkins
    LCDR, USN

    1. Bailey and Pond and Bill Maher were like brothers….Pond got it shortly thereafter…..
      There was a low cloud deck that day and the fight went low
      Bailey learned cat n mouse in a plane the three owned….a piper cub before the war.
      Quarter rolls and vertical reverses in a cub…you bet
      Fading
      It was the only way to nurse a cripple home solo and dodge the lil bastards….
      Floating in and out of the cloud bases violated contact 2/3 rule but beats eating 20 mm shells
      Float out get a bearing…disappear
      The ridges there come straight out of the sea in the haze…it’s all the same color
      He was a great guy, Peggy’s Dad Bill was sore about pond and Bailey for 70 years
      They were tight
      Always a laugh
      I wish Bill could have learned Bailey didn’t splash
      Bailey had to bring back the F4 as it was a desperate fight and even a wreck could be resurrected by the ground crews if it could make Henderson or the jungle nearby
      Besides they were marines and not going to loose…they were crazy

  2. Please contact us we have information and making a film Jackson College Heritage Center. Think you would will be very interested.

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