Twin brothers Edward R. Norton and James A. Norton Jr. were obsessed with flying. After two years of study they signed up as volunteers in the US Air Force. They were trained as bomber pilots.
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In December 1942 and after their Flight Training Edward and James were sent to England and assigned to the 452nd Bombardment Squadron. At full strength their B-26 Bomb Squadron consisted of 16 aircraft and 377 men.
See Edward & James' Combat route Map 1>
On May 17, 1943 the Norton brothers flew their first mission in a convoy of 11 Martin
B-26 Marauder bombers. Targets: the power stations of Velsen and Haarlem. The mission ended in tragedy. All the bombers were shot down.
See Edward & James' Combat Route Map 2>
In September 1945 - more than two years after the disaster - Mr. Norton heard from the Mayor of Haarlem that James' body had been washed up on the beach on 26 July. Edward's body was never recovered.
See Edward & James' Combat route Map 3>
After the war, the Norton family decided that Edward & James should find their final resting place in Margraten. Of the crew members killed on 17 May 1943, twelve are buried in Margraten, including James (P-16-5). Edward's name can be seen on the Walls of the Missing along with the names of seven other crew members.
See Edward & James' Combat route map 4>
to the UK
Landing on Utah Beach
Died on pleasure flight
Buried in Margraten, Block RR, Row 12 Grave 290
Air Evac. Nurse diploma
Body washed up
Departure for Europa
Arriving in England
Landing Omaha Beach
Germany invades Poland, Britain
and France declare war on Germany
Nazi Germany declares war on the US
Battle of Stalingrad: Red Army defeats Germans
Edward “Hoggy” Robertson
Norton & James “Wack” Arthur Norton Jr.
|Born:||August 18, 1920|
|Deceased:||May 17, 1943, 22 years|
|Rank & Army
|2e Lieutenant, 452 Bombardment Squadron,
322 Bombardment Group
|Cemetery:||Edward: Walls of the Missing
James: Block P, Row 16, Grave 4
Twins Edward R. Norton and James A. Norton Jr. were obsessed with flying. They applied as volunteers to the US Air Force and became bomber pilots.
On May 17, 1943 they flew their first mission in a convoy of 11 Martin B-26 Marauder bombers. It would also be their last ... their plane was shot down by German flak.
Both brothers - 22 years old - were killed in the chilly waters of the North Sea. They died as they had lived: inseparable.
De Martin B-26 Marauder was one of the bombers used in WWII by the US Air Force. A B-26 had a seven-man crew and could carry 2,600 kg of bombs.
Edward Norton was 1st pilot and his co-pilot was James Norton. The brothers flew their mission on May 17, 1943 zero altitude - just above the ground - in order to drop their bombs on targets as accurately as possible. This meant that the risk of civilian casualties was also quite small, but the chance of being hit by a German FLAK high and happened with 9 out of 11 aircraft, including those of the Norton brothers. They were hit above IJmuiden and crashed into the North Sea.