1st Lt Andrew D. Marshall
1924 – December 30, 1945
Graduation Date: March 12, 1944
Graduation Rank: Lt
Unit: 332nd Fighter Group, 301st Fighter Squadron
Service # O-824835
Andrew Daniel Marshall was born in West Virginia in 1924, his parents – the Rev. Levander David Marshall and Bessie Tillman – moved to West Virginia in the 1920s but moved back to Anson County by the time of the 1940 census.
Marshall from flight training on March 12, 1944, at Tuskegee Army Air Field in Alabama. He soon deployed to Italy with the 301st Fighter Squadron, part of the 332nd Fighter Group.
On Oct. 6, the 332nd Fighter Group was sent on a strafing mission to three Greek airfields. The 301st Fighter Squadron was sent to Eleusis, but found the base mostly abandoned. As the squadron fired on the base, setting a fuel dump on fire, Marshall’s P-51 Mustang was hit by anti-aircraft fire and the second lieutenant was forced to parachute from the plane.
Luck seemed to be with him: Marshall landed among Greeks who hid him from Germans soldiers. A week later, British forces moved into the area. Injured, Marshall was able to get a ride back to Ramitelli Air Field in Italy, returning to the base on Oct. 18.
Marshall’s luck ran out two months later. While escorting bombers to Landshut and Mahldorf, Germany, Marshall’s plane was again hit by anti-aircraft fire. “About five minutes from the target bubbles, blue flight was caught in the middle of a concentration of flak,” 1st Lt. Stanley L. Harris wrote in a military report. “In the following evasive action, I became separated from 1st Lt. Frederick D. Funderburg, Jr. and 2nd Lt. Andrew D. Marshall, who were the other two men in the flight with me. I joined up with the nearest group of planes and I did not see them again. I heard radio transmission from both of them later, however, and they were trying to join up with another squadron. They were not heard or seen after this.”
After bailing from his plane, Lt. Andrew D. Marshall was missing for nearly two weeks before returning to his base in Italy.
The Messenger-Intelligencer (Wadesboro) issue of Thursday, Oct. 19, 1944, page 8, reads:
“In Megara, Greece, on October 14, 1944, the only American able to beat the Nazi’s was First Lieutenant Andrew D. Marshall, African American pilot from Wadesboro NC who had to ‘crash land’ his P-51 plane seven days ago while on a ‘Strafing Mission.’ (Strafing is the military practice of attacking ground targets from low-flying aircraft using aircraft-mounted automatic weapons.)
“The natives of Megara, Greece, hid First Lieutenant Marshall in the hills and several days ago he was rescued by several hundred inhabitants of the village. Lieutenant Marshall is a son of the Reverend L. D. Marshall who is Pastor of Harris Chapel AME Zion Church in Morven NC. After finishing high school, Marshall entered the Army-Air Force School at Tuskegee, Alabama, where he received his wings and his commission as Lieutenant and was sent to Italy early this year. While living in Wadesboro First Lieutenant Marshall was employed by the A&P Store on South Greene Street.”
Marshal was declared dead on Dec. 30, 1945, in Bavaria, Germany, and was buried at the Sicily-Rome American Cemetery & Memorial Cemetery in Lazio, Italy.
Marshall’s and Funderburg’s names are included on the Tablets of the Missing at the Sicily-Rome American Cemetery in Italy. Marshall was promoted to first lieutenant, and, according to a government database, was awarded an Air Medal with an oak leaf cluster and a Purple Heart with an oak leaf cluster for his military service.
Lt. Andrew D. Marshall, left, tells a pilot from the 51st Troop Carrier Wing about his experience hiding from Nazis in October 1944 after parachuting from his plane in Greece. Marshall was forced to bail after his plane was hit by flak on Oct. 6. Marshall suffered cuts and bruises; Greeks hid him from German soldiers and British paratroopers helped Marshall get back to Ramitelli Air Field in Italy a few weeks later. (Library of Congress)