World War II Honor Roll

Oscar C. Kline

Flight Officer, U.S. Army Air Force



Entered the Service from: New Jersey
Died: March 24, 1943
Buried at: New Saint Mary's Cemetery
                  West Browning Road
                  Bellmawr NJ

FLIGHT OFFICER OSCAR CLYDE KLINE JR. was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on March 29, 1920 to Oscar & Loretta Kline. The family lived at 1013 Marlboro Terrace in Philadelphia in 1920. His father was a veteran of World War I, and listed his occupation as "ordnance" at the Philadelphia Navy Yard  in the 1920 census. In 1930 his occupation read "gunnery sergeant" in the "Quartermaster department", which would indicate a military career, possibly in the Marine Corps. In any event, it is fairly certain that he still worked at the Philadelphia Navy yard. In 1930 the Kline family owned a home at 337 Haines Avenue in Barrington NJ. The family later moved to 525 Clements Bridge Road in Barrington. Besides Oscar Jr., the family included an older sister, Mary M., and a younger brother, William F. Kline.

Oscar Kline enlisted in the Army in 1939. He had qualified for flight duty, and had been commissioned as a Flight Officer. Oscar Kline was training to as a P-47 fighter pilot when he was killed while attempting an emergency landing on a highway near Hope Valley RI, not far from Newport RI on March 23, 1943.   

3-24-43H. Hope Valley, Rhode Island. At 1900, a Republic RP-47B crashed at Hope Valley, Rhode Island, killing pilot F/O Oscar C Kline. The airplane had taken off with another P-47 from Westover Field, Chicopee, Massachusetts, at 1715 on a routine formation training flight.  The flight ws led by 1Lt. Richard A. Cline. Darkness arrived and the two airplanes became lost and low on fuel.  Lt. Cline elected to attempt a landing on a highway near Hope Valley.  He made seven approaches before he was able to put the airplane down on the highway.  He struck a post with the port wing, causing only minor damage to the wing and the port landing gear.  He taxied to a clear area and parked. After observing Lt. Cline's successful landing, F/O Kline attempted a similar highway landing about two miles away.  Just as the airplane touched down and began rolling down the highway F/O Kline spotted an automobile coming toward the airplane.  He gave the airplane throttle for take-off and pulled the airplane into the air.  He successfully avoided the automobile but lost flying speed and fell off in a stall back down to the highway.  The port wing struck a telephone pole, causing the airplane to veer to the left and cartwheel into the ground.  The airplane smashed into an area of heavy timber about 75 feet from the edge of the highway.

Oscar Kline Jr. was survived by his parents and sister Mary, who were living in Barrington at the time, and his brother William, who was serving in the Merchant Marine. Flight Officer Oscar Kline rests at New Saint Mary's Cemetery in Bellmawr, NJ. 

Oscar Kline was one of six members of Haddon Heights High School's class of 1937 to lose their lives while serving in the United States armed forces during World War II, the others being William C. Tait, Edgar S. Crouthamel, William Raws, Warren Stafford Jr., and Oliver F. Starr Jr.. Another member of the Class of 1939, Carlton R. Rouh, was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.

Memorial Day - May 31, 1948

World War II
War Memorial
was dedicated
Memorial Day
May 31, 1948 

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