Army Technical Sergeant
John Robert Conde
Bridgewater, South Dakota
October 19, 1920 – June 8, 1944
Killed in Action in England
John Robert Conde was born October 19, 1920,
in Monle, Iowa. John was the son of Archibald and Ruth Conde. He had three
other siblings, Harold, Betty, and Grace. John graduated from high school in
1938 at Earlham, Iowa, and then the Conde family moved to Bridgewater, South
Dakota, where John’s father became the pastor of First Presbyterian Church.
Then a few years later the family moved to Pierpont, South Dakota, to pastor
John visited Des Moines, Iowa, when he was 20
and entered the service while he was there. He then went to CCC camp in Rapid
City for training. He earned the rank of Technical Sergeant in the Air Force.
He was stationed in the Aleutians. During this time he was decorated twice, the
first time he was given an air medal with two oak leaf clusters and the second
adornment was given for bravery under fire. He was later stationed in England.
On June 8, 1944, Technical Sergeant John R.
Conde was serving as the radio operator on the airship “Double Trouble” for a
bombing mission. He had been on 21 previous missions over Europe. The mission
was cancelled after his ship was already airborne, but his pilot asked to be
allowed to stay in the air to give his navigator some practice. During the
flight, the aircraft hit the ground, became airborne again and then crashed
about a mile away. Twelve 500-pound bombs detonated on impact killing all
Sgt. Conde’s mother received this message from
the Major General J. A. Ulio on June 23, 1944:
I know the sorrow this
message has brought you and it is my hope that in
time the knowledge of his heroic service to his country, even unto death,
may comfort you.
John was posthumously awarded the Purple
Heart. His father died several days later, on July 12, 1944. I will remember the
service and the sacrifice of Technical Sgt. John R. Conde.
entry was respectfully submitted by Amanda J. Muir, 10th Grade Honors
English, West Central High School, Hartford, South Dakota, February 22, 2002.
Information for this entry was provided by Mike Stowe, Accident Reports, 1322
Main Street, Millville, NJ 08332, the SD bonus record application, and by