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BURNETT, Lt. Robert L. (1923-1945)


Posted By: Alan Nicholson - volunteer
Date: 6/6/2014 at 20:08:04

O'Brien County Bell
16 May 1945
Page 4

Lt. Robert BURNETT Killed In Pacific Zone

Primghar people were shocked to hear that Lt. Robert BURNETT of Fairfield, Iowa, fiancÚ of Irvene FARNSWORTH, was killed in action in the Pacific zone. Word was received at the I. L. FARNSWORTH home last Tuesday that his death had occurred about May 5. The young man had friends in Primghar, as he had visited here on several occasions, at the FARNSWORTH home. He was a navigator on a B-25 in the army air corps. Mr. FARNSWORTH drove to Rock Rapids Wednesday and brought Irvene home, as her school work was practically completed.


"The Fairfield Daily Ledger"
Wednesday, May 16, 1945
Page not noted

Lt. BURNETT Dies Pacific

2nd Lieut. Robert L. BURNETT, 21, navigator aboard a Mitchell B-25, was killed in action in the West Pacific, April 28, according to a telegram received yesterday by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Roy BURNETT of one mile north of Libertyville. Lt. BURNETT's last letter dated the day prior to his death stated he was unable to mention the nature of his work but he was continuing the missions which had been started as soon as he had arrived somewhere in the Philippines from the States, two months ago.

His last leave home was in September of last year when he came for a brief time after landing at a Des Moines airport with an AT-7 advanced trainer crew and a cross country flight which had extended over Virginia, Louisiana and Indiana. Accompanying him on the visit home was his fiance, Miss Ervene (sic - Irvene) FARNSWORTH of Primghar, Ia, who taught the past year at Rock Rapids, Iowa, following her graduation from Iowa State Teachers college, Cedar Falls. The crew brought the plane to Ottumwa for the take off and BURNETT's parents were permitted on the field to see him off. The return to his New Mexico base was made via Denver.

Lt. BURNETT, a graduate from the Fairfield high school with the class of 1940, was a junior student at Iowa State college, Ames, when called into service February, 1943. He attended CTD at Iowa state Teachers college, Cedar Falls, before going to California for his earlier training. He received his wings and the commission as navigator, 2nd Lieutenant, Hondo Field, Texas, about the middle of March 1944. He was later sent to the army air base at Greenville, S. C. for advance training. It was thought he would be shipped out a number of times during the year that followed, but final orders did not come until two months ago.

Besides his parents, he is survived by one sister, Margery, a member of this year's Fairfield high school graduating class; and one brother, Herbert, in the 8th grade at Libertyville school.


Admin. note: Second Lt. Robert L. BURNETT, U.S. Army Air Forces, 501st Bomber Squadron, 345th Bomber Group, Medium, is memorialized on the Tablets of the Missing in the Manila American Cemetery, in Manila, Philippines. He was awarded an Air Medal and a Purple Heart, according to the American Battle Monuments Commission website. This website also lists a date of death for him of October 28, 1945, however it is likely a date when he was declared dead by the military since the above obituary mentions a date of "about May 5". He was the son of Roy C. and Mary E. McCORMICK BURNETT, and is noted on their gravestone in Bethesda Cemetery, born 8 Sep 1923 and died 28 Apr 1945, "lost over Saigon, Indo China" (now Vietnam).

Robert BURNETT - 1940 yearbook photo

Jefferson Obituaries maintained by Joey Stark.
WebBBS 4.33 Genealogy Modification Package by WebJourneymen

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