Historical Militaria & Autographs
(1923-2019) 2nd Lieutenant in the 393rd Bombardment Squadron and in the 509th Composite Group. He flew in the Necessary Evil during the August 1945 Hiroshima bombing mission and in the Enola Gay during the Nagasaki bombing mission. On August 6, 1945 Gackenbach was a navigator aboard Necessary Evil, one of two B-29’s that accompanied the Enola Gay. The mission of Gackenbach’s aircraft was strike observation and photography. In the aftermath of the detonation of the Little Boy bomb, Gackenbach took a photo from 31,000 feet and sixteen miles from Hiroshima. The crew of Necessary Evil did not know at the time that they had dropped the first atomic bomb. Signed b/w photo, 8 x 10 in., of the mushroom cloud over Hiroshima, he writes ‘Photo taken by Russell E. Gackenbach Navigator Necessary Evil Photo Plane Hiroshima 6 August 1945.’ With a press photo of Hiroshima during a memorial ceremony August 6 1965.