Name: Telio A Puccio
First Name(s): Telio A
Last Name: Puccio
Place of birth: Texas, Harris Cnty, Houston
Rank: S/Sgt Crew Chief
Company: 95th Sqdrn
Unit: 440th Troop Carrier Grp 9th USAAF
Reported as: DOW
Date of incident: 27-12-1944
Place of incident: Sibret
His story: On December 27, 1944 eight gliders of the 95th squadron and five planes and five gliders of the 96th squadron took off from the airstrip at Châteaudun, France. The gliders were loaded to capacity with high explosives and were on a mission to drop supplies and ammunitions to the men of the 101st Airborne Division, surrounded in Bastogne, Belgium.
Just before going into the Landing Zone at Bastogne, aircraft C-17A, 43-15658, was hit by enemy anti-aircraft fire but continued on. The plane was seriously damaged and burning and it is believed that Co-pilot 2 Lt Seymour R Belinky had been killed by the initial strike and that 1 Lt Stanley J Zdun was probably seriously wounded. Two parachutes were seen to come from the aircraft, one of which belonged to Radio Operator, Sgt. William F. Spearing, who was taken prisoner. The other was Crew Chief, S/Sgt Puccio, who was badly burned about the hands and face and is believed to have died in Germany whilst in captivity.
The aircraft crashed in flames near Sibret, South-West of Bastogne.
Type: C-47A-90-DL Skytrain “Fern II” #43-15658
Destination: Bastogne, Belgium
Mission: Glider Tow