On the occasion of its Bicentennial, Morgan County placed this marker here to commemorate the
WW II B-25C Airplane CrashIn the early afternoon of January 10, 1945, residents of the south-western portion of Morgan County were witnesses to the crash of a B-25C airplane in a field near the intersection of present- day Godfrey Road and Walton's Mill Road. The plane had taken off from Greenville Army Air Base in Greenville, South Carolina, and it was on a low altitude rendezvous mission at 500 feet.
Witnesses to the accident reported seeing the airplane flying below altitude and very close to the trees. According to published reports from Army Air Forces, after striking a tree the plane crashed to the ground and burst into flames. Witnesses reported seeing smoke coming from the plane before it crashed, suggesting mechanical failure. The official report filed with the AAF Office of Flying Safety identifies a possible loss of power on right engine as a contributing factor to the crash, but the underlying cause is listed as "unknown."
Casualties were: Lt. Calvin Elden Stocking, 21, pilot, Greenville, SC; Lt. Samuel James Strong, 21, co-pilot, Bakersfield, CA; Lt. Frank H. Bartels, 25, bombardier-navigator, Ronceverte, WV; Cpl. William E. Thrash, 20, engineer gunner, Murphreesboro, AK, and Cpl. Robert Deana Rogers, 19, radio-gunner, Maplewood, NJ. The local newspaper Madisonian noted on January 19, 1945, "the sympathy of the people of Morgan County goes out unstintingly to those whose homes are bereaved by this unfortunate accident."
Because of the Sacrifice these men, we commeemorate our WW II Veterans