Whether the association of the TXNG group with the AAF on Java was intended or simply fortuitous is as yet unclear (to me anyway). Never the less, they began assisting the B-17 (and other types?) crews that had evacuated from the PI by re-fueling and loading bombs. These few planes from the 19th Bomber Group were flying almost daily recon and bombing missions – perhaps even back to the PI.
The first two deaths of the TXNG came as a result of this association. According to one survivor account, they had gone up with the crew of a B-17 on a test flight after repairs had been made to that plane. It was the afternoon of Feb 3 1943 that just so happened to be the time of the initial air raid on the airfield at Singosuri. His account states that not only were all of the planes on the ground destroyed in that attack, but the plane being tested was also shot down thus killing the two Texans. Luckily, most of the planes were away on routine flights at the time of the attack. The remains of the TXNG were never recovered.
Others of the TXNG did fly as gunners on these planes which were flying attack and recon missions on Japanese positions as far away as the PI.