Hollis Alfred Foster Memories
SSgt Hollis A. Foster, 416th Gunner
Hollis A. Foster, born Dec. 19, 1918 in Marshall County, South Dakota, was the oldest child of Alonzo Marion Foster and Wanda Myrtle Hartshorn Foster.
Foster transferred into the 416th BG in August of 1943 as a gunner after finishing a tour in the Southwest Pacific theater.
November, 1943, the 416th had established a Base at Pollock, Louisiana and was assigned the task of giving support to the blue army in the Louisiana maneuvers. Combat crews were assigned. Captain Randall, 671st Bombardment Squadron Executive Officer, acted as Base Executive Officer.
From November 6 to 22 a formation of planes under the command of Captain Robert G. Oestreicher took part on a nation wide demonstration tour. SSgt Hollis was among the gunners who took part. Lt Jedinak was the only navigator to make the trip.
The crew of Stockwell, Jedinak, Foster and Rust first teamed up on May 1st, 1944. Rust and Foster were a winning team. Foster was more experienced and often gave good advice to Rust and other gunners who asked.
May 12, 1944, number 35 was the late mission of the day. Lt. Robert E . Stockwell was flying deputy lead in an A-20, serial number 43-10129 with crew B/N Lt. Albert Jedinak, and Gunners SSgt. Hollis A. Foster and SSgt. Egon W. Rust. While over the Amiens area, the ship received a direct hit through the open bomb bay doors and another burst in the tail section, causing the ship to crash over the No-Ball target. All crew were listed as MIA. "Two parachutes were seen to have opened, so it is believed that two of the crew are still alive," according to the 671st history.
Lt. Stockwell and SSgt Hollis A. Foster were KIA. Lt. Albert Jedinak and SSgt Egon W. Rust were taken POW.
SSgt Foster was awarded the air metal with four oak leaf cluster and Purple Heart posthumously.
SSgt Foster is laid to rest at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery in St Louis, Missouri