First Officer William B. Simpson Repatriated Feature Image

F/O William B. Simpson Repatriated


February 12, 2009


F/O William B. Simpson, 22, was accounted for by the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency. Project Recover located his downed B-24 in January 2004 and is honored to play a vital role in his repatriation. 

Project Recover humbly acknowledges F/O Simpson’s service and sacrifice, as well as the enduring loss to his family. We are grateful and honored to play a vital role in bringing him home. The repatriation of F/O Simpson helps resolve generational grief and awaken us to gratitude, hope, love, and unity. This is the legacy of our MIAs and their final mission.

Keeping America’s Promise to bring our MIAs home is a mission for every American.

F/O William B. Simpson

F/O William B. Simpson, 22, was the co-pilot on the B-24 piloted by 2nd Lt. Jack S. M. Arnett. On September 1, 1944, he took the place of the regular co-pilot on a B-24 with the tail number ending in ‘453.

The B-24 was shot down on September 1, 1944, on a bombing mission over Palau. F/O Simpson was declared MIA. 

Project Recover located the aircraft on January 26, 2004, after a 10-year search. The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) repatriated eight MIAs. F/O Simpson was among them. The eight repatriated MIAs were buried together at Arlington National Cemetery. First Officer Simpson was from Winston-Salem, NC.

Three crew members were not recovered from the B-24. They parachuted from the aircraft, were then captured, and executed by enemy forces. They remain MIA
The plane is featured in a painting by Mark Pestana, entitled Mission: Palau. The story of the search and recovery was featured in the book, Vanished: The Sixty Year Search for the Missing Men of World War II by Wil S. Hylton.

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