San Diego, CA Fighter Plane Crashes Into Home, Aug 1943


San Diego, Cal., Aug 19 -- Three children and a pursuit pilot were killed when the airman's blazing P-38 fighter plane crashed into a house in San Diego's Linda Vista war housing project late Wednesday after a mid-air collision with another plane.
The children who were playing in the yard of the home as the fighter plane crashed into it and exploded were:
NICHOLAS SHOEMAKER, 5, and MARGARET SHOEMAKER, 3, children of Dr. and Mrs. W. A. Shoemaker, of Hettinger, N. D.; and KATHERINE LONG, 5, daughter of Clifford Long, a Consolidated aircraft employe.
Military authorities did not immediately release the name of the dead pilot, who reportedly fell from his plummeting craft at an altitude of 200 yards, crashing through the roof of the house and into the living room.
Mrs. Shoemaker, who, with her family, had been visiting Mr. and Mrs. Fred Curtis Green while seeking a house of their own, was with her year-old third child and Mrs. Green in the living room of the Green home when they heard the rising roar of the plane's motors.
They rushed to the door just as the plane crashed into the nearby house and were knocked down by the blast and flying debris.
Mrs. Shoemaker and her surviving child were unhurt but Mrs. Green, an expectant mother, suffered severe shock.
L. C. Gillette, an eye-witness, said he heard "a clicking noise" as the planes came together an estimated 1,000 feet above the project after which "a puff of smoke" came from the plane.
The pilot of the other plane involved in the collision, also a P-38, was reported to have parachuted to safety before his plane crashed into a canyon.

Las Cruces Sun-News New Mexico 1943-08-19

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