On July 16, 1945, at 8:45 p.m., I received a telegram that my husband, Staff Sgt. Harry R. Hill, a radio operator on a B-29, had been missing in action following an air raid over Shikoku, Japan, on July 3, 1945.
I was employed as the chief clerk at one of the Selective Service Boards in Peoria, Illinois. My husband's mother and our 6-year-old son resided with me. Peoria erupted in celebration at the news the war was over, but my cousin, whose husband was stationed in Europe, her 2-year-old son, my husband's mother, my son and I attended services at the Episcopal Church across the street from the federal building where the Selective Service offices were located.
Our prayers for my husband's safe return were not realized. His body and those of the members of his crew were found in December 1945.
Mary E. Hill Duncan
Albuquerque, New Mexico