|Born||29 Aug 1920|
|Died||27 Jul 2006|
Contributor: C. Peter Chen
ww2dbaseOwen John Baggett was born in Graham, Texas, United States in 1920. In 1941, he graduated from Hardinâ€“Simmons University in Abilene, Texas. After a brief time working in New York, New York, United States, he enlisted in the US Army Air Corps. In mid-1942, he graduated from the pilot training program at New Columbus Army Flying School. In Dec 1942, at the rank of second lieutenant, he was assigned to the 9th Bomb Squadron of the United States Army Air Forces 7th Bomb Group stationed at Pandaveswar Airfield in eastern British India, serving aboard B-24 Liberator bombers. On 31 Mar 1943, he participated on a mission to destroy a bridge at Pyinmana, Burma. En route, his bomber was fatally damaged by Japanese fighters, and the entire crew bailed out in their parachutes. The Japanese fighters circled back to fire on the descending survivors, killing two. When one of the Japanese fighters approached, Baggett fired at the cockpit with his .45 caliber M1911 pistol, claiming to have killed the pilot and to have destroyed the pilot's A6M Zero fighter. He reached ground safely, but was imprisoned by the Japanese. He was liberated in Singapore at the end of WW2. Post war studies of Japanese records revealed that he had misidentified the aircraft; the fighters that had attacked on that day were Ki-43 fighters of Japanese Army Air Force 64th Sentai. Furthermore, 64th Sentai's records showed that no pilots were lost on 31 Mar 1943. He remained in military service and retired at the rank of colonel. He passed away in 2006.
Last Major Revision: Jun 2017
Owen Baggett Timeline
|29 Aug 1920Â||Owen Baggett was born in Graham, Texas, United States.|
|26 Jul 1942Â||Owen Baggett completed the pilot training course at New Columbus Army Flying School.|
|31 Mar 1943Â||Owen Baggett, while descending in a parachute over Burma after his B-24 bomber was fatally damaged, claimed to have used a M1911 handgun to kill the pilot of a Japanese A6M Zero fighter. Post war study of Japanese records would show that there were no A6M Zero fighters in the vicinity on that date, and the Japanese squadron present during the engagement suffered no pilot losses.|
|27 Jul 2006Â||Owen Baggett passed away.|
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