Goen, Robert W., Jr., Capt

 Service Photo   Service Details
View Time Line
Last Rank
Last Primary AFSC/MOS
AAF MOS 1091-Pilot, B-17
Last AFSC Group
Pilot (Officer)
Primary Unit
1943-1944, AAF MOS 1091, 353rd Bombardment Squadron, Heavy
Service Years
1942 - 1944
USAAFOfficer Collar Insignia

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by CMSgt Don Skinner-Deceased to remember Goen, Robert W., Jr., Capt.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Last Address
353rd Bomb Squadron
Ceignola, Italy

Casualty Date
Jan 11, 1944
Hostile, Died while Missing
Air Loss, Crash - Land
World War II
Location of Interment
Goen Cemetery - Palo Pinto County, Texas
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Military Associations and Other Affiliations
World War II Fallen
  1944, World War II Fallen

 Ribbon Bar

Pilot Badge

 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
Aviation Cadet Flight School301st Bombardment Group, Heavy  353rd Bombardment Squadron, Heavy
  1942-1943, Aviation Cadet Flight School
  1943-1943, AAF MOS 1091, 301st Bombardment Group, Heavy
  1943-1943, AAF MOS 1091, 301st Bombardment Group, Heavy
  1943-1943, AAF MOS 1091, 301st Bombardment Group, Heavy
  1943-1944, AAF MOS 1091, 353rd Bombardment Squadron, Heavy
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1942-1945 World War II/European-African-Middle Eastern Theater
  1943-1943 World War II/European-African-Middle Eastern Theater/Tunisia Campaign (1942-43)
  1943-1943 Air Offensive, Europe Campaign (1942-44)/Operation Strangle
  1944-1944 World War II/European-African-Middle Eastern Theater/Anzio Campaign (1944)
 Colleges Attended 
University of Texas at Arlington
  1939-1940, University of Texas at Arlington
 My Aircraft/Missiles
B-17 Flying Fortress  
  1943-1944, B-17 Flying Fortress
 Additional Information

Last Known Activity
Robert W. Goen, Jr. was born in Millsap, Texas on September 5, 1921 to Robert, Sr., and Bertha Goen.

Goen enlisted in Houston, Texas on January 20, 1942 as an aviation cadet. According to his enlistment forms, he had completed 1 year of college, unnamed in the documents, and was working as an unskilled mechanic or repairman. Another source gives his college as the University of Texas - Arlington, Class of 1940.

Goen was trained as a pilot, commissioned, awarded wings, and sent to transitional training on B-17 aircraft. Then, he was assigned to North Africa, where, according to reports, he flew 50 missions.

On January 11, 1944, he was part of a bombing raid on Piraeus Harbor, Greece. As the formation neared the target area, it encountered large cloud banks. Entering the clouds, it found excessive winds and icing conditions. Two of the leading element aircraft decided to abort.

As the turned, they flew directly into the second element emerging from the clouds. Goen's aircraft struck another, shearing the tail assembly from the aircraft. The aircraft became uncontrollable and crashed near the target.

But one of the miracles of war happened. The tail section, with the tail gunner trapped inside, "fluttered" to the ground some 19,000 feet below, and landed in a grove of small trees, allowing the tail gunner to emerge unscathed. He was immediately captured, and was a POW for the remainder of the war.

Evidently, the dead were recovered and buried locally, for in 1948, Captain Goen was returned to his family for burial. He now lies in the Goen Cemetery in Millsap, Texas.

NARA Enlistment Records
Application for Headstone or Marker Records Card (1948)


Captain Robert W. Goen, Jr, was the assigned pilot on B-17F #42-3098, named "Skippy," assigned to the 353d Bomb Squadron.

Missing Air Crew Report 1832 was issued for this report, but is reproduced as dark and unintelligible for the most part. However, the crew roster can be read, and the crew aboard was:

Cpt Robert W, Goen, Jr  p
1 Lt Henry J. Sudol  c-p
1 Bruce E. Hicks  nav
1 Robert B. Fassett bomb
SSgt John A. Kemmler  eng/tt gun
TSgt Lucio A. Pittoni  r/o
SSgt Leonard E. Matkey  btg
SSgt Eldon C. Steerman  wg
SSgt James A. Raley  tail gunner

Ranks and grades as of mission date.

SSgt Raley was the only survivor.

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