Hughes, Lloyd Herbert, Jr. "Pete"

    Date of birth:
    June 12th, 1921 (Alexandria/Louisiana, United States)
    Date of death:
    August 1st, 1943 (Prahova River/Campina, Romania)
    Buried on:
    American War Graves Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery
    Row: U. Grave: 53.
    Service number:
    O 666 292
    Nationality:
    American (1776 - present, Republic)

    Biography

    Lloyd Herbert Hughes Jr. was born on June 12th, 1921 as the son to Lloyd Herbert Hughes, Sr. and Mildred Mae Rainey Hughes. Although born in Alexandria, Louisiana, he was raised in Texas, the homestate of his mother.

    He left school in 1941, just prior to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, without finishing his education in Petroleum Engineering and enlisted the Military Service voluntarily on January 28th, 1942 vrijwillig at San Antonio. Her he was appointed Aviation Cadet. He married Hazel Dean Ewing on November 8th, 1942 and received his Pilot Wings on November 10th, 1942. Pete Hughes was assigned to 564th Bomber Squadron, 389th Bombardment Group and left for North Arfica in June 1943. During Operation Tidal Wave, on August 1st, 1943 his plane, Consolidated B-24 D Liberator, #42-40753 J, "Ole Kickapoo", was shot in fire at low altitude during the attack. After succesfully dropping his bombload, the plane crashed. Of the ten crew member, six men, among which was Hughes, did not survive the crash. Two others later died of their wounds. Only two men survived, being taken POW.

    Hughes remains were reinterred at Fort Sam Houston, San Antonio on April 12th, 1950.
    Besides his personal decorations he was also entitled to the Distinguished Unit Citation and the Meritorious Unit Commendation.

    Promotions:
    January 28th, 1942: Private;
    January 28th, 1942: Aviation Cadet;
    November 10th, 1942: Second Lieutenant;

    Career:
    ? - 1939: Refugio High School, Refugion, Texas;
    ?: Corpus Christi Junior College, Corpus Christi;
    September 20th, 1939 - December 3rd, 1941: Texas A&M University, College Station;
    Janbuary 28th, 1942: Private, San Antonio, Texas;
    January 28th, 1942: Aviation Cadet, Air Corps Replacement Training Center, Kelly Field, San Antonio;
    March 1942: AAF Primary PIlot Training School Tulsa, Oklahoma;
    April 1942: AAF Basic Pilot Training School Enid, Oklahoma;
    July 1942: AAF Advanced PIlot Training Lubbock, Texas;
    September 1942: Four Engine Transition School and Combat Crew School Tarrant Air Base, Fort Worth, Texas;
    November 10th, 1942: Pilot Lubbock Flying Field, Lubbock, Texas;
    November 13th, 1942 - January 1943: 564th Bomber Squadron, 389th Bombardment Group, Tarrant Field, Fort Worth, Texas;
    January 1943 - February 1943: 564th Bomber Squadron, 389th Bombardment Group, Davis-Monthan Field, Tuscon, Arizona;
    February 1943 - March 1943: 564th Bomber Squadron, 389th Bombardment Group, Biggs Field, El Paso, Texas;
    April 1943 - May 1943: 564th Bomber Squadron, 389th Bombardment Group, Lowry Army Air Force Base, Denver, Colorado;
    June 1943: 564th Bomber Squadron, 389th Bombardment Group, Hethel Royal Air Force Base, England;
    July 1943: 564th Bomber Squadron, 389th Bombardment Group, Benghazi, Libia.

    Missions Consolidated B-24 D Liberator, #42-40753 J, "Ole Kickapoo":
    July 9th, 1943: Maleme, Crete;
    July 11th, 1943: Reggio, CalabriŽ, Italy;
    July 16th, 1943: Bari, Apulia, Italy;
    July 19th, 1943: Rome-Littorio, Italy;
    August 1st, 1943: Steaua Romana, Ploesti, Romania.

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    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Awarded on:
    November 10th, 1942
    Pilot Wing
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Rank:
    2nd Lieutenant
    Unit:
    564th Bomber Squadron, 389th Bombardment Group, U.S. Army Air Forces
    Awarded on:
    February 26th, 1944
    Awarded for:
    Operation Tidal Wave
    Action:
    Citation:
    "For conspicuous gallantry in action and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. On August 1943, 2d Lt. Hughes served in the capacity of pilot of a heavy bombardment aircraft participating in a long and hazardous minimum-altitude attack against the Axis oil refineries of Ploesti, Rumania, launched from the northern shores of Africa. Flying in the last formation to attack the target, he arrived in the target area after previous flights had thoroughly alerted the enemy defenses. Approaching the target through intense and accurate antiaircraft fire and dense balloon barrages at dangerously low altitude, his plane received several direct hits from both large and small caliber antiaircraft guns which seriously damaged his aircraft, causing sheets of escaping gasoline to stream from the bomb bay and from the left wing. This damage was inflicted at a time prior to reaching the target when 2d Lt. Hughes could have made a forced landing in any of the grain fields readily available at that time. The target area was blazing with burning oil tanks and damaged refinery installations from which flames leaped high above the bombing level of the formation. With full knowledge of the consequences of entering this blazing inferno when his airplane was profusely leaking gasoline in two separate locations, 2d Lt. Hughes, motivated only by his high conception of duty which called for the destruction of his assigned target at any cost, did not elect to make a forced landing or turn back from the attack. Instead, rather than jeopardize the formation and the success of the attack, he unhesitatingly entered the blazing area and dropped his bomb load with great precision. After successfully bombing the objective, his aircraft emerged from the conflagration with the left wing aflame. Only then did he attempt a forced landing, but because of the advanced stage of the fire enveloping his aircraft the plane crashed and was consumed. By 2d Lt. Hughes' heroic decision to complete his mission regardless of the consequences in utter disregard of his own life, and by his gallant and valorous execution of this decision, he has rendered a service to our country in the defeat of our enemies which will everlastingly be outstanding in the annals of our Nation's history."
    Details:
    Awarded posthumously.
    General Orders No. 17, 26 February 1944.
    Place and date action: Ploesti Raid, Rumania, 1 August 1943.
    The Medal was presented to his wife Hazel on April 18th, 1944.
    Medal of Honor - Army (MoH)
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Details:
    Awarded posthumously.
    Purple Heart
    Period:
    Second World War (1939-1945)
    Action:
    Awarded with three bronze campaign stars for "AIR OFFENSIVE EUROPE", "SICILY" and "AIR COMBAT OPERATIONS".
    European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal

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