Last Known Activity
Maurice Robert Herrick was born on April 5, 1922, in Grandville, Michigan. His parents were Wilmot G. and Hattie B. Sturtevant Herrick. He graduated from Grandville High School, and was employed for a time by the Winters and Crompton Corporation. The US Census 1930 shows the family residing in Wyoming, Michigan.
He enlisted on November 17, 1943 in Chicago, Illinois. His enlistment record states he joined as a private from the Reserves. He had completed 4 years of high school, and his occupation as given was machnist.
He was trained as a navigator, then awarded wings and a commission. He also married Marian Dykema in Grand Rapids, Michigan on April 13, 1944. Evidently, they eventually had a daughter, but she died soon after birth.
When deployed to England, Herrick was assigned to the combat crew of Lt MCCullough. He only flew two missions, one with McCullough on January 10, 1945, and the last with Lt Eisenhart on January 13, 1945.
The target for that mission was the railroad bridge located at Mannheim, Germany. During the bomb run, the aircraft was struck by flak in the tail assembly, blowing the horizontal stabilizer off and shredding the tail assembly. The aircraft went into a steep dive, and then broke up in mid-air. No parachutes were seen.
German records state 7 bodies were recovered near the crash site, although the listing contains one who was not a member of this crew. A later statement has the three additional crew members penciled in.
The bodies were buried by the Germans, and recovered by the Allies after the war. Herrick was moved to the American (Lorraine) Cemetery in France, where he lies in Plot D, Row 32, Grave 37.
US Census 1930
Headstone Inscription and Interment Record card
Michigan Marriage Records, 1867-1952
Lt Maurice Herrick was the assigned navigator on B-17G # 43-38689, unnamed, assigned to the 427th Bomb Squadron.
Missing Air Crew Report 11574 was issued to cover this incident. Mission loading lists state the crew was composed of:
2 Lt Oliver T. Eisenhart p
2 Lt Henry W. McCullough c-p
2 Lt Maurice R. Herrick nav
F/O Herring Joyce, Jr. bomb
Sgt Samuel Hindman eng/tt gun
SSgt Bernard S. Kaufman r/o
Sgt William V. Kimber btg
Sgt Jack Thompson, Jr. wg
Sgt Therman F. Conaway tail gun
Ranks and grades as of mission date.
The narrative of the mission addresses Joyce as "Lt." All other sources state "F/O."
Appended photo is of Herrick and his wife.
Service photo source: