I was researching a B-29 crash that my grandfather was in during the Korean War, and he was listed as the IVO on the flight. I couldn't find what that abbreviation meant, nor could I find some of the others for crewmen on the flight: CFC and VC. There was an IP on the flight, which is an Instructor Pilot, so I was wondering if my grandfather was an Instructor V-something Officer. Also the crash happened at night, if that's relevant.

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    CFC Gunner appears to be central fire control gunner IVO is mentioned in this source, without an explanation. IVO is not one of the crew roles listed, but the admins of that site may be able to explain.
    – MCW
    Dec 9, 2019 at 21:27
  • @MarkC.Wallace the link you listed re: IVO is actually the same plane :)
    – arcain
    Dec 9, 2019 at 21:55
  • Not sure if this helps but from the USN Glossary (i was unable to locate a US Air Force one) VC = Composite Aircraft Squadron , VO = Observation Plane , CFC = Chief Fire Control.
    – ed.hank
    Dec 9, 2019 at 22:01
  • @ed.hank I think VC and IVO are different in this context. My grandfather was a navigator in WWII and fairly distinguished in that field, so I'm thinking IVO would be related to navigation. Also, from that article, he's listed as having flown six combat and two training missions before the crash, so I'm thinking that flight was his third training mission (as an instructor).
    – arcain
    Dec 9, 2019 at 22:28
  • One definition of IVO I've found that might make sense is "Installation Voting Officer". No clue what such a person would do/
    – jwenting
    Dec 10, 2019 at 6:08

1 Answer 1


I reached out to the Korean War Education Site, who were quite courteous and responsive. I will quote their answer below (I have removed personal information since they didn't grant permission to use names).

Can’t verify but seem to recall that the VO was the radar operator. RO would have been the Radio Operator, thus the V. The “I” would indicate Instructor, so IVO would be the instructor radar operator. Don’t recall ever using the VC designation. It could be a either a command or crew chief position. Rank would help narrow it. I also believe I remember that the crash occurred at night, followed by an explosion the shook our hut. When we saw the flames, everyone who witnessed it agreed that there could be no survivors. We were happily astonished when we learned there were no fatalities. Apparently one of the crew died later.The Korean War Educator

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