TSgt Leo George Copulos
8 June 2020
499th Bomb Group (VH), 877th Bomb Squadron
AIRCRAFT SERIAL NUMBER
27 June 1940 - 15 August 1945
source : John Lehnen
There are details in the
Newell Crew and Case History 328
pages that are not presented here. Additional information can be found
within the Osaka
Castle Virtual Cemetery created by Scott Muselin.
Leo George Copulos was born June 27, 1920 and grew up in the Detroit
area. His father died in either 1934 or 1935 and by 1940 his mom had
married James Condilis.
He enlisted on 10 October 1942 and from February through September 1943
had some interesting assignments. The first document below this introduction
has a list of his stations and some of them in early 1943 are a puzzle
to me. His enlistment record follows the list of stations.
He arrived at Smoky Hills AAF ( SHAAF ) in Salina Kansas in June 1944
and became a part of the Newell crew as a CFC gunner. His station list
clarifies dates concerning movement from SHAAF to Hamilton Field. A
few documents at the Newell
Crew page provide minimal details of this transfer. The crew arrived
on Saipan 19 December 1944.
The B-29 that he was on crashed close to Osaka, most likely from anti-aircraft
fire, 26 june 1945. TSgt Copulos was one of 9 survivors and ended up
at the prison at Osaka Castle.
All were executed at various times during August 1945 with the last
taking place 15 August 1945.
There is overlap between the Recovery
sections but between the two you will notice that there was a considerable
amount of time between his initial recovery at Osaka and his identification
Within Senator Ferguson's section
are letters about Mrs Lucille Condilis, none actually to or from her.
This changes with four letters in the
Coming Home section that are addressed to Mrs. Condilis. These provide
her with information that had eluded her since the first notification
of her son being missing in action in July 1945.
A letter from Major General Edward Witsell to Senator
Ferguson, dated 24 August 1948, states that the date and specific
cause of TSgt Leo G Copulos' death cannot be determined. This is followed
by a reference to Public Law 490 and the reasoning behind this decision.
There are four documents in the Official
Documents section. Two are Battle Casualty Reports, with the first
one indicating Missing in Action and the second updated to Killed In
Action while a POW of the Japanese Government. The Reports of Death
include the original followed by a Corrected Report indicating date
of death as 15 August 1945.
My thanks to the following for providing
material for this page:
Most of the documents in these pages are from
Roy Wall ( IDPF from St Louis National Archives )
ASSIGNMENTS IN THE UNITED STATES
FEBRUARY 1943 THROUGH DECEMBER 1944
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source: National Archives
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