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The Second World War on the The Wartime Memories Project Website


FO. Sylvan Ryan Lucier

US Army Air Force 45th TC Sqd. 316 TC Group

(d.13th Oct 1944)

As an American born nine months after Pearl Harbor I am now reflecting on how huge the war was in my developing years. I recently started a memorial blog for my uncle FO Sylvan Ralph Lucier who lived on your soil from about January 1944 until his death in a double tow glider accident October 13, 1944. He flew a British Horsa on D-Day in Normandy, and a Waco in the Liberation of Holland. He was in the 316 TC Group, assigned to the 438th (88th SQ) for Normandy. His glider crashed, killing all three aboard near the town of Tiffield, Northamptonshire. He was buried for a time at Cambridge.

I have mostly his aviation training and social history posted on my uncle's site ( and am gathering and slowly publishing what I find about his missions in Africa, Sicily, France & Holland. I am trying to construct in my mind how he lived on the English bases. He was a very quiet person and a devout Catholic and the many cards in my grandmother's scrapbook were for masses for his parents. He was convinced he would not survive the war but he survived many missions and then died transporting cargo from one base to another!

I have greatly enjoyed reading, "Friendly Invasion, Memories of Operation Bolero," (The American Occupation of Britain 1942-1945) by Henry Buckton, and published by Phillimore & Co. Ltd.2006. There was great secrecy with aviation accidents in war time but I would like to find someone in England who remembers the tradegy or a later report written about Sylvan's accident near Tiffield, England. I was fortunate to have obtained the official accident report. I would appreciate any ideas about finding any eyewitnesses to the crash site or its exact location. Such horrible events must have brought the war much too close to civilians in the countryside! I'm planning a trip to Europe in the near future and hope to include places he lived in England, and memorial sites.

Visit Ann's site for further information

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