Sidney C. Ormsbee (1943/08/16)
Sid's name remains imprinted today in a stained glass panel in St. Johns Episcopal Church in Aptos, California.
Sidney Chase Ormsbee was born in Oakland, California, on April 16, 1916, to Mr. and Mrs. H. N. Ormsbee. He moved to Santa Cruz County as an infant and grew up in Capitola. Sidney attended grammar school in nearby Soquel and in 1932, entered Santa Cruz High School. In high school he took a general varied course, joined the Science Club and played on the basketball and football teams.
Upon graduation in 1936, Ormsbee enrolled in San Jose State College and for the next three years majored in forestry engineering. After leaving school, he worked as a forest ranger at Felton until the war began.
On December 20, 1941, Sidney Ormsbee entered the Army Air Corps as an aviation cadet. He was sent to Kelly Field, Texas, for his initial training followed by schools in Oklahoma City, Houston, and Midland, Texas. On September 3, 1942, he became Second Lieutenant Ormsbee.
While Sidney was undergoing combat training at Columbia, South Carolina, a U-boat menace along the US East Coast diverted him to submarine patrol duty until February 1943.
Upon receiving orders to North Africa, Lt. Ormsbee was assigned to the 487th AAF Squadron and navigated his B-17 Flying Fortress across the Atlantic, by way of Brazil, to Tunis, where he landed February 14. While serving in North Africa, he participated in the Tunisian campaign.
During the invasion of Italy, Ormsbee flew missions over Solerno and Palermo in Sicily, and was cited for bravery on a flight over Naples. After completing a bombing mission on August 16, 1943, Lieutenant Ormsbee's plane was shot down by anti-aircraft fire off Cape Faro. He bailed out of the aircraft, but was killed during his descent or upon landing.
The remains of Sidney Ormsbee were later recovered and returned to California, where they were interred in Oakwood Memorial Park in Santa Cruz.
(NARA2; SCR June 3, 1943 1, SCHSC Pg. 15, SCSn August 25, 1943 1:5}