Bill Farrow was born on September 24, 1918, in Darlington, South Carolina. After attending the University of South Carolina, he enlisted in the Aviation Cadet Program of the U.S. Army Air Corps on November 23, 1940, and was commissioned a 2d Lt and awarded his pilot wings at Kelly Field, Texas, in July 1941. After completing B-25 Mitchell training, Lt Farrow was assigned as a B-25 pilot with the 34th Bomb Squadron of the 17th Bomb Group at Pendleton Field, Oregon, and was accepted for the Doolittle Mission in February 1942. Lt Farrow was the pilot on the 16th B-25 to take off from the aircraft carrier USS Hornet (CV-8) on April 18, 1942, and after bombing its assigned targets in Japan, the crew bailed out over China when their aircraft ran low on fuel. He and the other members of the crew were all captured by the Japanese in Occupied China the same day they bailed out, and he was held as a Prisoner of War in China until being executed by the Japanese on October 15, 1942. After the war his remains were recovered and buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
His Distinguished Flying Cross Citation reads:
For extraordinary achievement while participating in a highly destructive raid on the Japanese mainland on April 18, 1942. 1st Lieutenant Farrow volunteered for this mission knowing full well that the chances of survival were extremely remote, and executed his part in it with great skill and daring. This achievement reflects high credit on Lieutenant Farrow and the military service.