Bisterfeldt, 2nd Lt. Rudolph H.

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Bisterfeldt

2nd Lt. Rudolph Henry Bisterfeldt 
Born: 24 November 1919 – Bellwood, Illinois 
Parents: Johan Conrad Biesterfeldt & Dorothea “Dorothy” Lenk-Bisterfeldt 
– mother remarried
Siblings: 4 sisters, 2 brothers
Hometown:
– 111 South Harlem Avenue – Forest Park, Illinois
Education:
– St. John Lutheran School, Forest Park
– Proviso Township High School
– Class of 1938
Occupation:
 – Jefferson Electric Company – paper cutter
Residence: 300 Marengo Avenue, Forest Park, Illinois
Selective Service Registration: 1 July 1941
– Contact Person: Mrs. Edmund Galloway
Inducted:
– U. S. Army Air Corps
– 18 October 1941 – Chicago, Illinois
– Serial Number: 36302852
Training:
– Orange County Army Airfield, Santa Ana, California
– Santa Maria Army Airfield, California
– Lemoore Naval Air Station, California
– awarded wings
– Luke Army Airfield, Arizona
– Tonopah Army Airfield, Nevada
Unit:
– 362nd Fighter Squadron, 357 Fighter Group
Plane: P39-D
Died:
– 6 April 1943 – plane crash – Tonopah, Nevada
– On the day of the crash, Bisterfeldt’s formation had been up to 18,000 feet and were letting down in trail formation. At approximately 15,000 feet, the formation had to fly around a small cumulus cloud which was about 300 yards in width. This cloud was described as being similar to a fair-weather cumulus cloud. The last time Bisterfeldt was seen was when he flew into this cloud which the rest of the formation had gone around. What happened in the cloud is not known, but the force of the plane hitting the ground shook houses in a mining camp about a mile from the scene of the accident. The four-wing guns were imbedded in the ground where the plane hit at about a 70-degree angle. The plane and engine were completely disintegrated. The pilot’s safety belt latch was found locked. The crash took place at the Tonopah Bombing and Gunnery Range. A cause for the crash was never determined.
Buried:  – Concordia Cemetery – Forest Park, Illinois

 

 

Bisterfeldt Grave

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