Date of Birth: June 23, 1918
Place of Birth: Weskan, Wallace Co., Kansas
Father and Mother’s Names: Thomas and Bertha (Cox) Corporon
Date Entered Service: December 12, 1941 at March Field, Riverside, California.
Service Branch: Army Air Corps
Service ID: 19039469
Division/Company/Unit info: 345th Bomber Squadron, 97th Bomber Group (Heavy).
Riley Connection: Emerson was enumerated in 1940 residing in Manhattan while he was living at 427 Pierre as a lodger with the Seavall family. Working at R&H Bakery as a baker while going to K-State. He was again Enumerated in 1941 in Ogden where he was living with his parents.
Date of Death (and Age): July 15, 1943 (age 25), Listed as DNB (Deceased Non-Battle).
Place of Death: Location is still TBD.
Grave Location: Rose Hills Memorial Park, Whittier, Los Angeles Co., California.
History of 97th Bomber Group: Constituted as 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on 28 Jan 1942. Activated on 3 Feb 1942. Trained with B-17's; also flew some antisubmarine patrols. Moved to England, May-Jul 1942, for duty with Eighth AF. Entered combat on 17 Aug 1942 by bombing a marshalling yard at Rouen, the first mission flown by AAF's heavy bombers based in England. After that, attacked airfields, marshalling yards, industries, naval installations, and other targets in France and the Low Countries. Moved to the Mediterranean theater in Nov 1942, being assigned first to Twelfth and later (Nov 1943) to Fifteenth AF. Struck shipping in the Mediterranean and airfields, docks, harbors, and marshalling yards in North Africa, southern France, Sardinia, Sicily, and southern Italy, Nov 1942-May 1943, in the campaign to cut supply lines to German forces in North Africa. Helped to force the capitulation of Pantelleria in Jun 1943. Bombed in preparation for and in support of the invasions of Sicily and southern Italy in the summer and fall of 1943. From Nov 1943 to Apr 1945, engaged chiefly in long-range missions to targets in Italy, France, Germany, Czechoslovakia, Austria, Hungary, Rumania, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, and Greece, attacking oil refineries, aircraft factories, marshalling yards, and other strategic objectives. Received a DUC for leading a strike against an aircraft factory at Steyr on 24 Feb 1944 during Big Week, the intensive air campaign against the German aircraft industry. 2nd Lt David R Kingsley, bombardier, was awarded the Medal of Honor for saving the life of a wounded gunner on 23 Jun 1944: during a mission to Ploesti, Kingsley's B-17 was seriously crippled and the tail gunner was injured; when the crew was ordered to bail out, Kingsley gave his parachute to the gunner, whose own had been damaged, and assisted him in bailing out; Kingsley died a few moments later when his bomber crashed and burned. The group received its second DUC for a devastating raid against one of the Ploesti refineries on 18 Aug 1944. Other operations of the 97th included pounding enemy communications, transportation, and airfields in support of Allied forces at Anzio and Cassino; bombing coastal defenses in preparation for the invasion of Southern France; and assisting US Fifth and British Eighth Army in their advance through the Po Valley. Inactivated in Italy on 29 Oct 1945.
MacDill Field, Florida, 3 Feb 1942
Sarasota, Florida, 29 Mar-c. 16 May 1942
Polebrook, England, c. 13 June-9 Nov 1942
Maison Blanche, Algeria, c. 13 Nov 1942
Tafaraoui, Algeria, c. 22 Nov 1942
Biskra, Algeria, c. 25 Dec 1942
Chateaudun-du-Rhumel, Algeria, c. 8 Feb 1943
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