Apr 242016
 

Uncle Sam

Robert Stokley Close (1920) was born in Wanamassa, New Jersey, the son of Egbert W Close (1891) and Ruth Ester Bunnell.

He was inducted into the US Air Cadets in 1943 at Asbury Park, New Jersey and was posted overseas in 1944 as a B-17 pilot in Europe. He was shot down on 24 May 1944 while flying B-17F, 42-30169, with the 341st Bomb Squadron of the 97th Bomb Group. He was the last to bail out of the A/C and was with two of his crew in Stalag Luft 4 and then moved with them to Stalag Luft 1. The camp was liberated 1 May 1945 and Lt. Close left with a group of POW’s, aginst orders, to find there own way home. He was never heard from again and his body was never recovered.

He was awarded the Purple Heart Medal, Air Medal and Additional Army Awards.


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