Last Known Activity
Lloyd B. Arnett was born in Montgomery, Ohio on March 28, 1920 to Walter B. and Harriett Bowman Arnett. The US Census 1930 lists the family in Brookville, Ohio, while the US Census 1940 has them living in Pittsburg.
Arnett was drafted, and inducted into military service on September 21, 1942 at Cincinnati, Ohio. His records state he had completed 4 years of high school, and was, at the time, working as a semi-skilled worker in a machine shop.
He was assigned to the Army Air Forces, and trained as a flight engineer, as well as an aerial gunner. Upon completing the courses, he was promoted to Sergeant, and assigned to crew training. This training took him through various bases including Colorado, Utah, Texas, and Tennessee. The crew deployed to England, ferrying a new B-17 by way of Scotland. They arrived in England on October 10, 1943. (One source states October 28, 1943.)
They flew their first combat mission on November 3, 1943 - a strike against facilities at Wilhelmshaven, Germany. On November 5, 1943, they were slated to participate in a bombing raid on the synthetic oil plant located at Gelsenkirchen, Germany.
As they near the target area, the aircraft was hit with flak, destroying one engine, the compass, and the electrical system. The bombardier salvoed the bomb load as the pilot turned to a reverse course to England. The pilot, fearing a break-up, ordered bail out, but only two crewmen could do so. They reached the ground safely, and with the help of French patriots, evaded until August, 1944 when they were returned to England. The rest of the crew was in the aircraft when it vanished - presumably crashing into the English Channel.
No remains nor wreckage was ever recovered, so the dead members of the crew are remembered on the Walls of the Missing in the Cambridge American Cemetery in Cambridge, England. There is also a memory stone for TSgt Arnett in the Riverside Cemetery in West Milton, Ohio.
NARA Enlistment Records
US Census 1930
US Census 1940
Ohio Birth Index, 1908-1964
Sgt Lloyd B. Arnett was acting as flight engineer and top turret gunner on B-17G # 42-37748, unnamed, assigned to the 418th Bomb Squadron.
Missing Air Crew Report 1156 applies to this loss. Crew rosters and personnel files show the crew as:
2 Lt Thomas R. Martin p
2 Lt James A. Kennemer c-p
2 Lt James W. McCorley nav
2 Lt Joseph P. Murphy bomb
Sgt Lloyd B. Arnett eng/tt gun
SSgt Donald H. Allwine r/o
Sgt Cosmos J. Braun, Jr. btg
Sgt David M. Davis wg
Sgt Merritt K. Gillespie wg
Sgt Laverne E. Clarke tail gun
Ranks and grades as of mission date.
Lts McCorley and Murphpy survived.
In the crew photo, Arnett is in the back row, 2nd from left.
Although Sgt Braun, Jr is listed on the crew roster as "Cosmos," his real first name was "Cosmas."
Service photo source: