Jeppson, Morris Richard, 2LT

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Last Rank
Second Lieutenant
Last Primary MOS
AAF MOS 1036-Bombardier
Last MOS Group
Aviation (Enlisted)
Primary Unit
1945-1945, AAF MOS 1036, 509th Composite Group
Second Lieutenant

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Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by SFC Ken Logue-Deceased to remember Jeppson, Morris Richard, 2LT.

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Contact Info
Home Town
Las Vegas, NV
Last Address
Not Specified

Date of Passing
Mar 30, 2010
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

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 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
Second Lieutenant Jeppson, along with then Captain William "Deak" Parsons of the U.S. Navy were responsible for arming the atomic bomb "Little Boy" on the Boeing B-29 Superfortress bomber during the flight from Tinian to Japan. The bomb was protected from premature in-flight detonation by inserting three safety plugs into the electrical connection from its internal battery to the firing mechanism. This was designed to prevent a firing voltage from reaching the mechanism. Each plug was about the size and shape of a car cigarette lighter (approximately three inches in length), with a green cap for the safety plug and a red cap for the arming plug. Jeppson's role was to climb into the bomb bay and remove the three green safety plugs from the bomb and to replace them with the three red plugs just before the aircraft climbed to high altitude close the target area, a job that later caused controversy.
Other Comments:
Silver Star

Awarded for actions during the World War II

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress July 9, 1918, takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Second Lieutenant (Air Corps) Marris R. Jeppson, United States Army Air Forces, for gallantry in action while engaged in aerial flight against the Japanese Empire on 6 August 1945. Second Lieutenant Jeppson was the Electronics Officer for a combat crew of the B-29 aircraft of the 393d Bombardment Squadron, 509th Composite Group, TWENTIETH Air Force, which flew from a base in the Marianas Islands to drop on the city of Hiroshima, Japan, the first atomic bomb to be used in warfare. Flying 1500 miles over open water to the coast of Japan, they manned their assigned positions and crossed the island of Shikoku and the Inland Sea. They constantly faced the danger of being hit by anti-aircraft fire, enemy fighters, or suffering mechanical or other failures which would intensify the risks of carrying this powerful missile. Throughout the mission the element of hazard from the unknown prevailed, for this was the first time that this bomb, much more destructive than any other in existence, had been dropped from an airplane. The effect it would have on the airplane and these crew members was only to be estimated. Shortly after 0900 they brought the plane in over the city, and at 0915 the bomb release was pressed. The bomb cleared, and fell toward the planned objective. They then headed from the area and, despite a minor effect from the detonation, returned safely to their home base. By their courage and skillful performance of duty achieved in outstanding fashion despite the dangers involved in accomplishment of this historic mission, these individuals distinguished themselves by extraordinary achievement and reflect great credit on themselves and the Army Air Forces.

General Orders: Headquarters, 20th Air Force, General Orders No. 69 (September 22, 1945)

Action Date: August 6, 1945

Service: Army Air Forces

Rank: Second Lieutenant

Company: 393d Bombardment Squadron

Regiment: 509th Composite Group

Division: 20th Air Force

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 Unit Assignments
509th Composite Group
  1945-1945, AAF MOS 1036, 509th Composite Group
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1945-1945 Air Offensive Campaign Japan (1942-45)/Atomic Bombing of Hiroshima Japan
 Colleges Attended 
University of Nevada, RenoYale UniversityHarvard UniversityMassachusetts Institute of Technology
  1941-1942, University of Nevada, Reno
  1942-1943, Yale University
  1943-1943, Harvard University
  1944-1944, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
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