The B-24 crewmen who flew over the Haruna carried the experience with them for the rest of their lives.  At least two are alive today, 72 years after the mission. Pilots Emil Turek and Tom Cartwright, spoke and wrote of the mission until their deaths. Navigator Rolf Slen and Al Emery are with us, still.

Cartwright's memoir, A Date with the Lonesome Lady, is by far the most complete first-hand account of the mission and fate of the Hiroshima POWs until he was separated from them. His Squadron Leader, Turek, was among the last to see Cartwright's Lonesome Lady and Dubinsky's Taloa on their final descents. Cartwright had only one of his surviving crewmen to write to, so he contacted the missing men's family members, and sent letters to the US government offering what he knew and seeking information about his men. 


Much of Turek's post-wartime correspondence referred to this mission, as he sought information from others to help him to come to terms with the questionable mission assignment and to learn what happened after the Lonesome Lady disappeared with men on board through the clouds beneath him.     

Excerpt from a letter written by Emil Turek in 1988 to his crewmen and others after he attended a 494th BG(H) reunion. Courtesy of Barbara English.