2Lt. Thomas W. Mox, Jr.
Depew, NY

B-24 Liberator

744th Bombardment Squadron(H)
456th Bombardment Group(H)
Fifteenth Air Force
Mediterranean Theater of Operations

Thomas Mox, Jr. was drafted on November 18th, 1942 and accepted into the
USAAF. He trained as a navigator at Hondo Army Air Field in Texas, winning
his navigator's wings in August of 1943. He was assigned to the 744th Bombardment
Squadron, 456th Bombardment Group which moved overseas to Italy starting in mid
December of 1943. By early February of 1944 the group had settled in at Stornara
Airfield, flying its first combat mission on February 10th. I have yet to find any
definite information as to how many missions Thomas flew, but he was awarded
five Air Medals, indicating that he may have flown as many as 25 missions.

On May 23rd, 1944 the 456th was despatched to hit railroad marshalling yards in the
vicinity of Frascati, Italy but was unable to bomb due to bad weather. Upon the group's
return to Stornara, two B-24s of the 744th Bombardment Squadron collided in the air
directly over the airfield. All but one of the twenty crewmen aboard the pair of
bombers were killed, including Second Lieutenant Thomas Mox, Jr.

Thomas Mox, after earning his Navigator's wings.

Buffalo Courier Express September 1st, 1943
(Original Image: Fulton History)

A Beech AT-7 Navigator. This is the type of aircraft that Thomas Mox would have
trained on during his time at Hondo AAF, TX. Matter of fact, this ship was from Hondo,
and the photo was taken in 1943, so it's possible that he trained in this very plane.

Project 914 Archives (S.Donacik collection)

A newspaper clipping from the Courier Express announcing
Thomas' completion of navigator training at Hondo AAF, TX.

Buffalo Courier Express September 1st, 1943
(Original Image: Fulton History)

B-24s of the 456th Bombardment Group on a mission over Italy in 1944.
The ship in the foreground is from the 744th Bombardment Squadron, Thomas' outfit.

National Archives and Records Administration via Fold3

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