335th Fighter Squadron, 4th Fighter Group
Plot B, Row 3, Grave 41
Capt. Bernard L. “Big Mac” McGrattan, a fighter pilot in the 4thFighter Group during World War II, was born in New York in 1920. In 1941, while the United States was still neutral, he volunteered for the Royal Canadian Air Force, and served in England with the British Royal Air Force as an operational pilot before receiving a commission as a Flight Officer in the U.S. Army Air Forces on May 26, 1943. He joined the 335thFighter Squadron of the elite 4thFighter Group. After deployment to Europe, the 4thFighter Group, nicknamed the “Debden Eagles,” was re-equipped with Mustang P-51s in January 1944. McGrattan excelled and became an ace by scoring eight-and-a-half kills in the spring of 1944, greatly contributing to the excellent record of the unit. It destroyed more enemy aircrafts in the air and on the ground than any other fighter group of the Eighth Air Force.
On June 6, 1944, McGrattan, now promoted to section leader, was chosen for bomber escort. He was shot down and killed over the town of Rouen, France on D-Day. He was 24 years old.
Awards: Distinguished Flying Cross with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters
Bernard L. McGrattan is buried in Normandy American Cemetery Plot B, Row 3, Grave 41.