Arthur Wayne Rowe was born on June 12, 1921, in Jasonville, Indiana, the son of Lester and Myrtle Warren Rowe. His father was a truck driver in the construction field in 1930.1 Lester died on April 13, 1987, and Myrtle on April 3, 1973.2 Arthur completed four years of high school at Bloomington High School, where he participated in MYC, varsity band, PEP Band, Hi-Y, and International Relations Club.3
Rowe married Jane “Janell” Kemp on January 11, 1944, in Las Vegas, Nevada, at the Nellis Air Force Base. He was an aviation cadet at the time.4 Arthur and Janell had five children, Arthur W., Jr., Stephen, Margaret, Sandra, and Rodney.5
Rowe enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps on August 28, 1940, at Chanute Field in Rantoul, Illinois.6 He was employed as a gas attendant at the time.7 In April 1942, Rowe was admitted to a hospital at Daniel Field, Georgia, but was released back to duty.8 Daniel Field was originally built as a civilian airport but was utilized by the Army Air Corp during WWII.9
Chief Warrant Officer Rowe was on a B-17 bomber during his service in the Army Air Corps and was awarded the Airman’s Medal with four oak leaf clusters and the Distinguished Flying Cross.10 He was stationed in Japan, England, Germany and Italy and lived with his wife in nine states during his military service. Rowe was honorably discharged on July 14, 1945. He registered for the draft 10 days after being discharged.11 In 1950, he was stationed at Robins Air Force Base in Houston County, Georgia.12 He also served during the Korean War.13 On July 24, 1954, Arthur, Jane, and the three older children left Rhein Main AB, Germany on a Trans Ocean Air Lines aircraft bound for New York.
A Chief Warrant Officer 3 provides the technical assistance to guide and supervise their subordinates. The CWO3 usually supports operations from team to brigade levels.14
The B-17, also called the Flying Fortress, was a U.S. heavy bomber used during the second world war. It was operated by a crew of ten, which included the pilot, copilot, navigator-radioman, bombardier, and gunners. The bomber was used to attack strategic targets by precision daylight bombing. The B-17 was the mainstay of the strategic bombing campaign because of superior high-altitude performance and greater resistance to battle damage.15
On Arthur’s headstone, the words Nine-O-Nine appear at the bottom. The Nine-O-Nine was a B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bomber of the 323rd Bomb Squadron, 91st Bomb Group, that completed 140 combat missions during World War II, believed to be the Eighth Air Force record for most missions, never losing a crewman as a casualty. To learn more about the Nine-O-Nine, visit Nine-O-Nine | Military Wiki | Fandom.
Arthur Wayne Rowe died on May 15, 2015, in Salem, Illinois. Janell died in St. Louis on February 1, 2003.16