BAD 2 Warton, England, was established under the 8th Air Force Service Command, September 5, 1942. Its mission: the modification and repair of military aircraft. War planes coming from the United States would be adapted to meet special requirements of the European Theater of Operations. Battle damaged aircraft would have to be repaired, perhaps whole sections rebuilt. A ferrying squadron was needed to get planes to Warton (from fields where they originally landed) and later delivered to combat units. By summer, 1944, there were 10,000 Americans at Warton, working around the clock.
Twenty nine " Wartoneers " gave their lives for their country.
On August 23, 1944, two recently repaired B-24 (Liberator) bombers were on test flights. Word came from Brig. Gen. Isaac Ott's headquarters of an impending storm. All planes were ordered to land immediately. The pilots attempted to, but the storm was of such intensity, it was impossible. Witnesses saw the plane piloted by Lt. John Bloemendal struck by lightning. It crashed into a school in the Village of Freckleton. Sixty one persons died, including 38 five-year-old children, trapped in the nursery classroom. The second plane was driven almost to the ground and flew ten miles at tree top level before getting out of the storm. Five children were pulled out of the burning classroom. Two died in the Base Hospital.
At that time, this was the second worstcrash in aviation history.
Second marker:Base Air Depot No. 2 Station 582 USAAF
To the memory of the following who died whenan American B-24 Bomber crashed. DestroyingFreckleton Church of England School on the23rd August 1944
Sgt. Douglas Baston · Sgt. W.W. Cannell · Sgt R. J. Bell · Sgt. C.W. Newton
1st Lt. John Bloemendal · Pvt. Samuel A. Mezzacappa · Pvt. George C. Brown · Sgt. Theodore Edwin Nelson · Cpl. Herbert George Cross · T/Sgt. James Manuel Parr · Pvt. Minas Philip Glitsis · Cpl. Arthur James Rogney · Sgt. Gordon Wilber Kinney · Sgt. Frank L. Zugel
Howard Allanson · John Hardman · Alice M. Rayton · Martin Alston? · Annie L. Herrington · Malcom Scott · Edna R. Askew · Beryl Hogarth · June Stewartson · Sylvania Bickerstaffe · William H. Iddon · Dorothy Sudell · Kenneth G. Boocock · Kathleen Isles · John Sudell · Jean Butcher · Vera Jones · Joseph Threlfall · David Carr · Georgina Lonsdale · John Townsend · Maureen D. Clarke · Thomas F. Mullen · Barrie B. Truscot · John Cox · Gillian Parkinson · Lilian M. Waite · Sonia M. Dagger · June Parkinson · Sylvia A. Whybrow · Peter Danson · George Preston · Alan Wilson · John H. Foster · Michael Probert · William R. Wright · Judith M.J. Garner · Thomas Rawcliffe
Jenny Hall · Louisa Hulme
Kathleen Forshaw · Alan Whittle · Gwendoline Franken · Pearl Whittle · Evelyn Rhodes · Rachel Whittle · James V. Silcock
The following is a list of Americans killedat Warton, in addition to those who died inthe B-24 crash:
Lloyd Bingham · Max Reinhardt · Pliney R. Blodgett · Jay Sampson · William C. Clearwater · Nelson Scarborough · "Tex" Freeman · John Schneider · George R. King · Redene W. Simonson · Leonard D. Johnson, Jr. · H.W. Vallee · Charles J. Moeller · Kenneth Hubbard (409 BG) · Robert I. Nickerson · Norman E. Zuber (409 BG) · Burtie Orth