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Date:
12/29/2005
Time:
4:04 PM
 
Rochester Area Soldier Killed In Afghanistan
Posted by: Maria Sisti, Assignment Editor
Created: 12/29/2005 12:48:15 PM
Updated: 12/29/2005 1:37:10 PM
 
HILTON, N.Y. (AP) -- A soldier from western New York has died in Afghanistan.
 
The father of Private First-Class Jason Hasenauer says his son was killed Tuesday when his Humvee rolled over after being hit by a roadside bomb.
 
The 21-year-old member of the Army's 82nd Airborne Division was from Hilton, in Monroe County about ten miles northwest of Rochester. He was assigned to the 82nd Airborne's base at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
 
His father, Dan Hasenauer, tells W-H-A-M Radio in Rochester that his son joined the Army right after graduating from Hilton High School in 2003. The younger Hasenauer was a member of the local fire department and working for J-C Penney when he decided to join the Army because, he father says, he thought it was the right thing to do.
 
Jason Hasenauer's fiancé gave birth to their daughter on December 2, 2005. His father says his son had only seen the baby on videos from home.
 
Funeral arrangements are pending.

Date:
12/27/2005
Time:
6:20 PM
 
My father, Ed Dunn, passed on Christmas Day. I noticed your web site and thought you might enjoy this story:
 
http://www.mnlegion.org/paper/html/dunn.html
 
I know other Marauder Men will enjoy it.
 
Thank you,
Tim Dunn Eagan, Minnesota

Date:
12/27/2005
Time:
4:33 PM
 
Marauderman's Name:1st Lt. Ray Hasey
Bomb Group: 386th bomb group
Years in service: 2.5
Graduation Class: ?
Class Location: ?
Comments: Posted for my dad: Bombardier / Radar 55 missions in the B-26 & taught British Pathfinders Radar. -Ray Hasey, Jr.

Date:
12/27/2005
Time:
7:55 AM
 
I liked your site and will send you some of my accounts in North Africa soon. I was there in 1943 as a 26 copilot in 320th group of 442 sq. Thanks Carl Bougher

Date:
12/26/2005
Time:
9:23 AM
 
Wiley E Burris died 4 years ago; my mother is still alive and would be interested in any information regarding him. I acquired an accident report dated 7 April 1944 at Decimannu where Captain Edson Pyle (see below) was Asst Ops Officer who investigated the crash. Jack Larkin 2nd was pilot; Wiley E Burris, 2nd lt was co-pilot.
 
If Ms Bonner--or any others--have information it would be greatly appreciated. The family's understanding is that he flew the Southern Route, entering combat in North Africa with the 319th, flying some 65 missions, but did not deploy to the South Pacific.
 
While his name is not among those on the Web site as having retired from the USAF (http://www.319thbombgroup.com/) in fact, he did. Wiley left the service and became a police officer in Blackwell, Oklahoma, then a State Trooper until Korea. He re-entered the service, training pilots stateside, and continued until retiring as a Major in 1968/69 after 20. Stations included MacDill, McConnell, Morocco and Spain with SAC/Reflex, then Barksdale from where he retired.

Date:
12/25/2005
Time:
3:46 PM
 
Good afternoon - My father, Jack Eskenazi, flew with the 553rd. He was shot down in a raid on St. Wendel, Germany on 11/18/44. All of the crew got out and were taken POW. I am seeking information, specifically photos, of the plane that he was in at that time. It was "Dinah Mite (sp?)" - #131576. If any of you have a photo, would you please get ahold of me. I would appreciate it. Take care. -Marc Eskenazi

Date:
12/22/2005
Time:
10:28 PM
 
I am trying to find out the names or nose art, if any, of any of the following B-26 planes of the 394th Bomb Group 585th Squadron. These planes were, at one time, piloted by 1st Lt. Francis M. Kirby out of Base No. 161 in Boreham, England between March, 1944 and June, 1944:
 
42-96030 4T-B
42-96054 4T-P
42-96117 4T-A1
 
Any assistance you could provide would be greatly appreciated by the Kirby family.
 
Thank you kindly for your assistance.
Mollie Garcia

Date:
12/20/2005
Time:
7:56 PM
 
My name is Jeb Collier, and my father, Calvin Collier, was a B26 pilot in the 322 BG during WWII. He flew 36 missions between August 1944 and May 1945. I know he would love to be included on your website.

Date:
12/15/2005
Time:
9:34 PM
 
What a wonder is the internet. I found this picture of my mother's cousin Whitey: http://www.b26.com/marauderman/myron_sterngold.htm
 
He was instrumental in encouraging me to learn to fly, which I've been doing for over 40 years (non military). Whitey passed away about ten years ago of kidney problems. His daughter (Susie) and sister (Selma) are still with us.
 
Thank you for putting up this site.
 
Jeff Moskin

Date:
12/13/2005
Time:
6:39 PM
 
Marauder Man: Frank Rice
24th Sqd S.A.A.F.
Ser. 42/44
Courses. 64 Air School S.A.A.F.
43 Air School S.A.
72 O.T.U. R.A.F.
 
Crew:
Deryk Brooksbank / pilot
John K H Guest / co pilot
Harry F Wells / obs
Max Friedland / ?
James V Hamilton /?
 
A/C Honkytonk B26 FB508 ?
 
My uncle and namesake (Frank Rice) served with 24 sqd S.A.A.F. first on Bostons as WO/AG WT/AG completing 30 missions mostly with LT Goldblum and then onto Marauders as tail gunner with LT Brooksbank sadly all the crew lost their lives on a night bombing raid on Maleme aerodrome CRETE ON 7/5/44 (PER NOCTEM PER DIEM story of 24th sqd S.A.A.F; page 130). I would like to hear from anyone who has any memories or information about the crew or a/c, thank you in anticipation and for a great site.

Date:
12/11/2005
Time:
6:10 PM
 
It is with deep sorrow and sadness that we inform you of the passing of one of our outstanding members who was our Vice President. Walter Clyde Harkins has made his last flight. He passed away on November 28, 2005 at his home. His service was officiated by Bishop Kurt Marler, a friend of the family. Clyde's four children each participated in the service. Sons Clyde, Robert, Richard and daughter Chalone. Walter Clyde Harkins is survived by his wife of 60 years, Amy. There are nine grandchildren. The military service with full military honors was conducted at Riverside National Cemetery.
President Earl J. Seagars, 558th Bomb Squadron
 
I lost a friend. - MS

Date:
12/9/2005
Time:
12:29 PM
 
Gerald Ernst, Captain, 574th Bomb Squad.  I am looking for anyone who may have known my grandfather, or could tell me more about the missions of the 574th. -Thanks, Erika
 
391st Bomb Group
572nd, 573rd, 574th and 575th Bomb Squadrons

Date:
12/8/2005
Time:
7:11 AM
 
My father, Joe Skibinski, was a bombardier/ navigator. He he flew 65 combat missions 3 of which were on d-day. He served with the 452nd bombardment squadron. His plane was called "Peasapis". He passed away on Nov 20, 2005 and we are finding a lot of memorabilia -- including 150 love letters that he sent to my mother. Is there any way to determine if any of his crew members are still alive? In his wallet he had a dollar bill with all of their signatures on it. Any info would be helpful.
 
Joe - your fathers' crew on March 11th 1944 was:
 
F/O R W Spenser pilot
F/O L C Richards copilot
2.Lt J A Skibinski Bomb/Nav
Pvt V W Jones Engineer/gunner
S/Sgt A Paskin Radio/gunner
Sgt H R Watson Armourer/gunner
 
Regards
Trevor Allen historian b26.com
 
Roy Edge

Date:
12/7/2005
Time:
7:21 AM
 
Hi there, I've come across your website more than once and decided to drop you a line. My grandfather, Nelson Gidding, is a Marauder Man. He was a first lieutenant and navigator aboard a B-26 in the 17th Bomb Group, 432nd Bomb Squadron. He was shot down north of Rome on his 39th mission out of Tunisia in 1943, but survived. The pilot of the bird made a belly-landing, and the entire crew managed to escape. They hid in caves for a couples weeks, before being found out by the fascists and taken prisoner. My grandfather was a Jew, so he threw away his dog-tags to avoid being sent to a concentration camp. He ended up spending about eighteen months in a German prison camp, before being liberated by the Soviet advance. He even ended up writing a novel based on his experience, "End over End". I was just wondering if there was any information you could give me to help me narrow down which plane he flew on. It was lost flying out of Tunisia, so I suppose it would've been between late June and November 1943. I would really appreciate it!
 
--Zack Gidding
 
Zack, this is just a hypothesis for your further research, based on details about 432nd BS Marauders during the 17th BG period of operations at Djedeida, Tunisia from June 25th 1943 to December 7th 1943. Further research (the MACR) will eventually confirm the hypothesis.
 
The 432nd BS Marauders that were taken out of service of various reasons during that period was, according to my data:
41-17829 "Arleen" 10.20.1943 - War Weary
41-17900 09.14.1943 - shot up; not repairable
41-17921 09.14.1943 - shot up; not repairable
41-17968 "My Sister Would'nt But I Will - Sis" 10.15 1943 - War Weary
41-18187 B/N 81 "The Wolves" 11.30.1943 - shot down over target. Had 40+ missions.
41-18320 09.24.1943 - shot up; not repairable
 
According to the list above, one can assume that the sought after Marauder might be "The Wolves". Pilot on that mission was a Captain Carver, and there is a MACR #1476. I have on list that '81' went down over Vieano in Italy, but cannot find it on maps etc. 17th BG target for November 30th 1943 was Monte Molino R/R bridge, which is located a distance North of Rome. 34th BS history book says that the CO of 432nd BS, Major Belsma, was shot down by flak on Nov 30th 1943.
 
I have added photos of some of the A/C. There was a second "The Wolves", it was replaced on January 9th 1944 and survived the war (42-95765) B/N 81. I assume that the first "The Wolves" is two first photos in this row....
 
Regards,
Alf Egil Johannessen

View large images...

Date:
12/6/2005
Time:
3:15 PM
 
Mr. Jack Dickert is a Marauder Man. He was the Co-pilot in the 344th Bomb Group, 494th Bomb Squadron, 9th Air Force. He does not have internet but you can contact him through me - I'm sure he would love to talk with you. He will be 83 years old on December 14th. -Diane Howell

Date:
12/4/2005
Time:
8:06 AM
 
Today has been a sad day.
 
In today’s mail was a copy of the November 2005 INVADER, The Newsletter of the 13th Bomb Squadron. In it I learned that Lucien I. “Stag” Thomas, known in the 454th as “Raf,” had died on September 27th. He was buried in Arlington National Cemetery on October 27th.
 
I covered Lucien in Marauder Men (page 217 with footnotes on pages 334 and 337). Lucien and I had been in contact since I first started writing history decades ago. I commented on several of the books he wrote. In that Lucien had served at Kunsan Air Base (but not during my command of the Air Base), we had a second connection. Lucien assisted me in my own writing of Taking Command.
 
I know of no one whose career could match that of Lucien. During his military career, he accumulated nearly 400 combat missions. His military service began with the Black Watch Regiment (Canada). Like many good Americans, he volunteered to fight well before the U.S. was involved in WW II. In the process, he had to swear allegiance to the King – losing his U.S. citizenship in the process. He finally got into the RAF flying as a gunner (night missions) in the Wellington and later the Halifax. With a record of many enemy “kills,’ he was awarded the British Distinguished Flying Medal by the King.
 
With the U.S. in the war, Lucien transferred to the 323rd Bomb Group (454th Squadron) to fly in the B-26 Marauders. This was about the time the 323rd had started flying night missions – five of which I flew three.
 
Later, when Lucien was handling extremely sensitive matters in the USAF, it was discovered that the U.S. had forgotten to reinstate his citizenship. This matter was quickly taken care of ON THE QUIET.
 
Lucien went on to fly in the Korean War and in the Vietnam War.
 
Lucien ended up wearing 75 or 76 medals including items from eight countries.
 
Maj. General John O. Moench, USAF (Ret)

Date:
12/2/2005
Time:
11:38 AM
 
Hello! I served in WWII and spent 9 Months at Hebron, Labrador. About 5 miles north of there was a wreck. which I visited. either a b25 or b26, with the name "Times Awaiting" & a painting of Snuffy Smith with a riffle. I think that it crash Landed there in December of 42/43. I was told that some of the crew took the life raft and left the bay, North of Hebron Bay. to paddle South. The Bays are not frozen in December. They were never found. The remaining crew members stayed with the ship and kept a diary, and finally died in February/? They never knew that they could walk about 5 miles to the Mission and village. Their bodies were recovered along with the two engines shortly there after. What do you know of the "Times Awastin"? I was then Henry Adams/ T/Sgt 8 Comm Sq., USA sn XXXX521 (Regular Army)
 
This must be 41 - 17 862 "Time's Awasting" of 440th BS 319th BG lost on December 10th 1942 in Labrador. Pilot was Grover Hodge, MACR 15726. Three Marauders were lost according to 319th BG history book. The following is excerpts from a cached page at Google. - Alf Egil Johannessen
 
"Aboard the doomed aircraft that December in 1942 were the pilot, 1st Lt. Grover Cleveland Hodge, Jr., co-pilot 2nd Lt. Paul Jansen, navigator/bombardier 2nd Lt. Emmanuel J. Josephson, radio operator, TSgt. Charles F. Nolan and gunners Sgt. Russell (NMI) Reyrauch, Cpl. James J. Mangini and Cpl. Frank J. Golm. Read more here...

Date:
12/1/2005
Time:
9:46 AM
 
Hello - my requests are about my father who served in WWII. I have limited information and he pasted away in 1997. I would be so very grateful if you could tell me more based on the following info:
Name: Ralph E. French AAF
Organization: 2509th AAF Base Unit
Date in: 14 jul 43
Date outside US: 20 jul 44 / Destination EMAE Theater / Arrival 1 aug 44 / depart 20 mar 45
Battles and Campaigns; Northern France Ardennes Rhineland
Military Occupation: Airplane Armorer Gunner 612
Squad: Martins Marauders
Tom C Martin / Pilot
Elmer O Johnson / Co-Pilot
John T Hall / Bombardier
Raymond C. Gohlke / Navigator
James Mc Kinney / Engineer
Harry S Mitchell / Radio Operator
Robert S. Perry / Tail Gunner
John Gill / Waist Gunner
Ralph "Frenchy" E French / Ball Turret Gun
 
I hope you will be able to help me for it seems I can't find the "2509th or the type of plane he was in. The writing on the side of the bomber plane reads "Rapsody in Red" . My only family is my baby sister, mom and dad both gone. I never had any children and my sis has 2 teenage boys who are absolutely intrigued with their grandpa's military past. I hope you can help. Please email me back one way or another would like to here from you. God Bless you sincerely Carol
 
Carol,
You listed a crew of nine men and the description ball turret gunner. Your grandfather either flew in B17 Flying Fortresses or B24 Liberators.
 
Regards
Trevor Allen historian
b26.com
 
Hi Trevor - I was able to see, with the help of an engravers lope, that the small writing on the side of the bomber is as follows:
 
U.S. Army B-17 G-40 VE
Air Force Serial No. 42-97 959
Crew Weight Limit 1200 LBS 97645
 
Maybe that will be of some help. Also could you suggest any other websites I could check-out to find out more on my dad? Greatly appreciated. Thank you very much Carol
 
Carol, 42-97959 coded DF-Y named "Rapsody in Red" belonged to the 324th.Bomb Squadron 91st Bomb Group based at Bassingbourne, England. This B17 flew 90 + combat missions and returned to Bradley Field, USA 5/29/45.It was eventually scrapped at Kingman, Arizona. You will find the 91st Bomb Group web site at 91stbombgroup.com. I trust this information will be of help to you. Regards, Trevor

Date:
11/29/2005
Time:
8:52 PM
 
Hello - I am trying to find any information on 1LT. Harold Wagoner who died December 23rd 1944 flying this mission. I know this was the largest loss of life with the 9th. in one day. History of the American B26 bombers, which crashed at December 23, 1944 near Demerath and Steineberg. Thank you in advance, Tim Glenn
 
Tim,
2.Lt Wagoner flew as a copilot with the 559th Bomb Squadron 387th Bomb Group. December 23rd 1944 the B26 they were flying in was shot up by fighters and exploded in mid air.
 
1.Lt Wayne W Church, killed; 2.Lt Harold D Wagoner, killed; Capt Jeff B Newman, killed; T/Sgt James A Logas, killed; S/Sgt Frank C Porter, killed; S/Sgt Paul D Dunkan, returned; S/Sgt Jimmy G Bort, returned; Cpl Aubrey Waldron, killed.
 
Regards
Trevor Allen historian
b26.com
 
Luxembourg American Cemetery
Name | No. | BS/ BG | Home State | Date of Death | Grave Location | Medals
Newman Jeff D Capt | XXXX303 | 559 Bomb SQ, 387 Bomb GP/M/ | LA | 23 DEC 44 | B-3-51 | DFC/ AM/ 5 OLC/ PH
Porter Frank C S/Sgt | XXXXX019 | 559 Bomb SQ, 387 Bomb GP/M/ | MT | 23 DEC 44 | E-14-30 | AM/ 5 OLC/ PH
Waldron Aubrey E JR CPL | XXXXX581 | 559 Bomb SQ, 387 Bomb GP/M/ | MI | 23 DEC 44 | C-9-5 | PH

Date:
11/25/2005
Time:
3:22 PM
 
Richard E. Robinson 323rd BG 455BS Pilot- B26 Liberty Lady
Final Release, age 81, before his recent death, all six living members of the Liberty Lady were found and made contact with each other. Dishong (tailgunner), Oakley (copilot), Arthur (radioman), Graham (engineer), Kisner (bombardier). Robinson may have been the youngest B-26 pilot in the US Army Aircorp, European Theater in WWII when he received his wings on 14 Jan. 1943. He was 19 yrs., 4 Mo. and 17 days of age at that time. He passed away 30 July 2005. -John Chapman

Date:
11/25/2005
Time:
8:30 AM
 
My dad is 83 years old and served on a B26 as a bombardier in WW II first in Europe and then, after D-Day, in France, Belgium and Germany. His plane was called "The Deuces" and he completed 24 missions. He has been to a reunion but has never been able to meet up with anyone from his squad. Since he was the youngest member, they may all be gone. His name is Harry J. Keane, 596th bomb squadron, 397th bomb group, and you can email him. -Carol Keane

Date:
11/23/2005
Time:
1:09 PM
 
Hi - I am Bill Mulholland the son of Mitchell Mulholland whose drawings are featured in Thrice Caught. Dad was in Barth with the author. The book is absolutely wonderful, I could not be more proud of the WWII generation! Thanks for a wonderful book. Dad flew both the Marauder and the Invader but was shot down in a B-17. -Bill Mulholland

Date:
11/19/2005
Time:
2:35 PM
 
Dear Mr. Peters, my father was a turret gunner/radio operator in the 444th. He flew one mission with your father on Aug 21, 1943 to the Villo Littorio Marshalling yards. Your dad was the copilot, the pilot was CPT Towns. The 320th lost four ships that day and encountered their heaviest fighter opposition of the war (75 enemy fighters). I have a few photos of his regular crew, if you would like I can send them to you. - Dave DeSantis

Date:
11/19/2005
Time:
1:18 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Sgt Clifford Jack Fuller RAAF, XXXX28
Bomb Squadron: 24 Sqn SAAF
Years in service: 1941
Comments: I am seeking information regarding the above airman who was presumed killed over Sidi Barroni 5 August 1941. A newspaper clipping list others killed with Clifford as Lt Clarkson, Sgts Read and Green. Any information regarding this airman would be greatly appreciated. -Trevor Davison

Date:
11/18/2005
Time:
12:26 AM
 
My name is Amie Gleason Cox and I'm looking for Larry Galmish. I have a photo copy of a letter his mom sent to Edward Gleason's parents in April of 1945, not long after the crash that killed his father Elvin and Edward. Perhaps he'd like a copy?

Date:
11/15/2005
Time:
3:04 PM
 
Hello - I am Todd Sandt the second cousin of Chester Mann who was shot down in while on a mission over France in the Son of Satan. He is alive and well. He was the only crewmember to survive the bailout after being hit by flak and was captured. The son of Satan was a popular plane having survived many missions and I am not certain of the events of his bailout and capture has been recorded. Todd Sandt
 
Hello Todd Sandt:
I saw your request for information regarding C.J. Mann. I wrote a story about that shoot down November 18, 1944. It was 386th Group mission number 294. You can read about it on my web listed below. You can see how the formation was made up that day by going to, "formation diagrams", then click on thumb nail diagram number 294 and you will get a full page enlargement of the information.
 
Chester P. Klier--Historian, 386th B.G.
http://www.b26.com/historian/chester_klier.htm

Date:
11/15/2005
Time:
12:10 PM
 
Good morning. My name is Patricia Huff Stromberg. My father (now deceased) was George Reeder Huff. He served as an Armament Officer (Captain) with the 391st and was in the service April 1942 through December 4, 1945. During much of that time he kept a journal, which I am in the process of transcribing. I am also doing general research about the 391st and gathering period information about the community that he came from (Eldred, PA) and the contribution that they made toward the war effort (e.g. two munitions factories in this very small town of fewer than 3,000 people). I have found your website to be an excellent resource and have used it to corroborate information in the journal and that from other sources. Thank you very much.
 
P.S. If you are interesting in receiving a copy of the document when I have concluded my work, I would be pleased to share it.

Date:
11/13/2005
Time:
8:41 PM
 
HUGE thank you for this photo site. My belief is that my father, Augustus Russell Agneta was posted at Rivenhall. He was with the 397th BG. Thank you again. Kathy Langerlan

Date:
11/13/2005
Time:
8:41 PM
 
I am Tim Sweet, son of Redfield Sweet, and I have heard this story from my father many times. Dad is still living and very interested in sharing memories. He can be reached by email.

Date:
11/13/2005
Time:
8:41 PM
 
I'm looking for information for the plane Capes Gremlin Chaser pilot Walt Caples 387 BG 557Bs. Walt died in 6-93 I have been always been interested in his service. We talked a lot about it when we were having a slow day of deer hunting or on one of my many construction projects. I was hoping to find out more about the number of missions he flew and the type. My interest was recently stirred up when I was contacted by this fellow writing a book about the American's that went to Canada and into the RCAF and then back to fly for the US after they got into the war. Unfortunately Walt had already passed on and his wife had just got rid of most of his memorabilia when she moved to a small apartment. The name of the book is Immigrants Of War. -Mitchell

Date:
11/11/2005
Time:
9:24 AM
 
I am located very close to Iron Range Queensland Australia. I am seeking as much information as possible about the 22nd Bomb Group that was stationed at Iron range during WW2.
 
I have just completed a Memorial Wall for all units based at Iron Range during WW2.
 
I am seeking, veterans, photos, information, crash reports or any other available information within the Iron Range area.
 
I hope you may be of some help.
 
Thank you,
Michael Musumeci
 
For a view of the wall and more information: Iron Range World War II Memorial, Australia

Date:
11/10/2005
Time:
7:43 AM
 
We are saddened by the loss of our friend and father David Westheimer. He passed quickly and peacefully surrounded by his family and close friends on November 8th, 2005.
 
Sincerely,
The Westheimer Family
-----------------------------------
Novelist DAVID WESTHEIMER passed away Tuesday, November 8th, 2005 at UCLA Hospital from heart failure. He was 88 years old. Born in Houston, Texas, he received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Rice University in 1937. He began his successful writing career at the Houston Post in 1939 as an assistant editor in the amusement department, then became radio, magazine and television editor before leaving the paper in 1960. He would return to the paper as a columnist in the 1980s.
 
His first novel, SUMMER ON THE WATER, was published by MacMillan in 1948. During the span of his career he wrote many books. He is perhaps most well known for best sellers VON RYAN'S EXPRESS and MY SWEET CHARLIE. MY SWEET CHARLIE became a Broadway play and later, a TV movie that won Patty Duke an Emmy. Twentieth Century Fox made a film on VON RYAN'S EXPRESS, starring Frank Sinatra. David also wrote numerous teleplays and adapted the screenplay DAYS OF WINE AND ROSES into a popular novel.
 
David served as Captain in the Air Force between 1941-45, spending three years as a POW in Italian and German prison camps. He remained in the Air Force Reserve, serving as a Lieutenant Colonel until he retired.
 
He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Dody (also a former Houstonian and graduate of Rice); his two sons, Fred and wife Susan; Eric and wife Karen; five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. No services planned, at his request.

David Westheimer & Marauder Man Odell Myers spent time together.

Date:
11/8/2005
Time:
10:34 AM
 
Hi my name is Michael Saunderson ex Frolich adopted and my name was changed. I have my Uncle George’s log book from Aug 1949 – Feb 1944 when I believe he went missing. He was Capt and maybe Sqd Leader of 24 Sqd at that time. There is a lot of detail of all those he flew with the details of the 70 raids they flew and the planes he piloted including plane references. The last I think was probably Marauder 512. Earlier he spent a lot of time in Bostons. Have you any information on him, his last flight and maybe on his twin brother Air Sgt. F Frolich known as "Kikki", he was in 12 Squadron probably a gunner.
 
Michael,
6th March 1944 was the last mission Capt George Frolich flew. A strike was in progress on shipping in Scala Bay when flying in FB504 he and his crew were attacked by fighters, the B26 pulled up under the formation streaming smoke, the landing gear came down, then lurched into a spin to subsequently crash. Four parachutes were observed, but it was assumed all of the crew died. The crew that day were Capt G Frolich; Lt G M H du Plessis; Lt A M Bain; W.O.I G A Dingle; W.O.I A B Aiken and W.O.I P J Pretorius
 
Regards
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
11/6/2005
Time:
6:23 PM
 
Dear Mr. Allen,
I just found your website and am so very glad that I did. My father, Lt. Col. (Reserves) William C. Budge, was a co-pilot of the "By Golly" (planes one and two) captained by Capt. West. I tried, unsuccessfully, to give the Air Force Museum here in Dayton, Ohio, copies of my father's orders, pilot's log, newspaper articles etc. so that he would be remembered along with all the other brave Airmen of the Army Air Corps.
 
In fact, in the mid 1990's, a French historian, Pierre Babin, interviewed my father as part of his thesis on the B-26 that crashed over his little village. I have VCR tapes of my father answering Pierre's questions as well as one that Pierre sent to me showing (among other things) the field in which my father was captured by the Germans after bailing out of his fatally crippled plane. Eventually, my father was rescued from a German held hospital by the French Underground and returned to the Allies.
 
My father passed away in October 2000 ever humble about his participation in WW II. I would very much like to send you copies of the information I have relating to him, so that he will be memorialized as the hero my family and I have always known him to be.
 
I am NOT very computer savvy, could you please send me information on how I can get this information to you? Thank you very much.
 
Sincerely,
Barbara Budge Hansford
 
This newspaper clipping was found by a relative of a deceased person from Madison, Wisconsin, among some papers, and could be of interest to Barbara Budge. He scanned it and sent it to me when trying to find more info about "By Golly" in 2003.
 
It shows 42-96138 U2-C "By Golly" after it's crash landing on an allied Normandy airstrip July 9th 1944, with one engine disabled and, hydraulic reservoir hit, and severed rudder control. Another photo from this event is found on page 114 in Freeman's book "B-26 Marauder At War". The second plane piloted by Captain John Q. West, Jr.; 43-34126 U2-H, was shot down by fighters over France on August 1st 1944, MACR 9808.
 
click here for large image

Date:
11/6/2005
Time:
10:20 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: Ltc Robert Blickenstaff USAF (Ret)
Bomb Group: 1st Provisional Pathfinders
Bomb Squadron:
Years in service: 1943-1974
Graduation Class: 44C
Class Location: Houston (Ellington)
 
My son and I found this list yesterday, isn't the internet a wonderful thing. I am searching for information on any of my crew members from my Marauder days. I have listed them below.
 
P: McAlpin
CP: Blickenstaff
B-N: Klienert
E: Boden
RO: Arnodo
G: Adkins
 
We were attached to the 322nd, but as many of you know we Pathfinders did not remain with the group we were attached to for all of our missions. I flew 24 missions.
 
We were stationed as follows:
 
Great Saling, UK
Bauvais, France
San Quentin, France
 
My last mission got me grounded. While leading a box of 26's over Germany, we were on the final leg when the group commander (I don't remember his name) called on the radio and indicated we did not have fighter cover and he said "the fighters haven't joined us, what are we going to do?" In my youthful exuberance I said "We're going to drop some bombs Colonel, what are you going to do?" The next day I became the transportation officer.
 
Glad to have found the list, looking forward to hearing from old comrades in arms. I went on to enjoy a military career and retired in April of 74.
 
Bob Blickenstaff

Date:
11/5/2005
Time:
7:18 PM
 
Hello, My dad's name was Maurice "Morrie" Meurer. He was part of the ground crew in the 9th. I have his uniform pin (9) and his little book 'Time over targets' I also have a stack of photos he took. I will always be proud of him and I thank God for letting me be his son. Dennis Meurer.

Date:
11/5/2005
Time:
5:39 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: James E. Stumm
Bomb Group: 387th
Bomb Squadron: 558th
Years in service: 1944 - 1945
Residence: He was born & raised in Wisconsin / then lived and died in Minnesota
 
Several years ago I did some research on my father's service in Europe during WWII. I was fortunate to link up with some wonderful people who provided me some information, however, I am always looking for more! I haven't done any research since that time so have not tried to contact those people again. (My computer crashed and I lost much of the information I had obtained although I do have some of it in hard copy.) My father (James Stumm) died in 1969 at the age of 45. I never heard him speak of the war (although I have to admit that at age 18 I hadn't thought much about it - and now it is too late to ask him).
 
He was with the 387th in Chipping Ongar, Stony Cross, Maupertus, Chateaudun, Clastres, Beek and Rosierer and was awarded medals for his participation in the mission of Dec. 23, 1944. I have a document dated August 06, 1945 with the following information:
 
'D Flight' - #5
Pilot R.W. Moser
Co-Pilot L.F. Hildebrand
Bombardier M.S. Aria
Engineer James Stumm
Radio C. C. Cady
Gunner J. Carnell
 
How do I find out the name of the plane(s) he flew - and the missions? Does anyone recognize his name and have information on him?
 
Finally - my husband (his father was in the infantry and it appears he was in many of the same areas as my father and also fought in the Battle of the Bulge - he also took part in the liberation of Buchenwald) and I plan to travel to Europe next fall to visit some of the areas where our fathers were during the war. We would appreciate advice on the 'must see places' - or any information / advice you can offer. Thank you!
 
Mary (Stumm) Jarussi
 
Visit Netherlands American Cemetery and Normandy American Cemetery

Date:
11/3/2005
Time:
7:46 AM
 
Question: What is the 1st Pathfinder Squadron (Provisional) and when were they used?
 
1. When were Pathfinder planes assigned? Only when the undercast was 10/10 (zero visibility)?
 
2. Was there a Pathfinder in front of both Box 1 and Box 2?
 
3. When a Pathfinder was assigned, would Window ships fly in front of the Pathfinder? Why was window used only together with Pathfinders'? Which crews were assigned to these ships? Were these also from me 1st Pathfinder Squadron?...
 
Answer:
Pathfinder planes were assigned in accordance with the current weather forecasts available. Usually these were in 10/10 cloud expected conditions.
 
If two Pathfinder ships were assigned for a mission then a pathfinder B26 led each box.
 
Window ships were not only used on Pathfinder missions. Their purpose was to blot out radar emissions from anti aircraft guns, so if a target was particularly heavily defended window ships were assigned to the mission. Window ships were flown by crews from the participating group.
 
Read the complete answer here

Date:
11/1/2005
Time:
4:01 PM
 
Name:  Ed Young
BombGp:  Unknown
Squadron:  Unknown
Years:  42 - ?
Class:  Unknown
Location:  Las Vegas, NV
My dad, Ed Young, was a B-26 flight engineer stationed in Las Vegas at what is now Nellis AFB. He passed away in August 2000.
 
I was wondered if anyone here knew him and if so, would you know what his unit's designation was? I know that the B-26s out there were primarily used to tow targets for training B-17 gunners.
 
Thanks for any info.
Barry Young

Date:
11/1/2005
Time:
1:16 PM
 
This is in response to 10/27/2005 Guest Book inquiry from Kim Aarts seeking information on Lt. Edward Wallerstein.
 
Regards, Robert Benner, 450BS/322BG
 
I flew several missions with Lt Edward Wallerstein, (Murphy), in 1944, when he was assigned as Bombardier on my crew where I was co-pilot. I don't remember how long he was with us, or the dates but it was early to mid 1944, prior to D-day. I recall him as being good at his job, and he was well liked by the entire crew. He had a great sense of humor, part of which contributed to his nickname "Murphy".
 
It was reported that on the bomb run his plane took a direct hit in the cockpit and was observed to crash and explode 1 mile east of the target, Zulpich. No chutes were spotted. Crew members with Lt Wallerstein: Lt. Jack W. Cox, Lt Lyle A. Taggert, S/Sgt John R. Mackett, T/Sgt Marion T. Evans, and S/Sgt Joseph M. Mischik.

I do understand why you cannot post email addresses. I think your system works good and the web site is great. You are right about my being in the 322nd and 450th
 
Mr. Taggert (L, 7, 8) and Mr. Mischik (L, 14, 19) are also buried in Netherlands American Cemetery.

Date:
10/31/2005
Time:
8:54 PM
 
My name is Leighton Lee Peters and I am the son of Ralph Lee Peters.
 
My father served in North Africa as a B-26 pilot. He was in the 444th of the 320th BG.
 
To all the men who flew that plane and served our country my hat is off to you. Thank you for your service and dedication. One of the stories that my dad related to me was about the intense amount of AAA that was encountered over Italy and especially Anzio. The widow maker was a difficult craft to fly when it was first produced, but after Glen Martin made the modifications to the stabilizer and lengthened it my dad said it was a great plane to fly.
 
God Bless you all and Thank you,
 
Sincerely,
Leighton Lee Peters

Date:
10/27/2005
Time:
2:27 PM
 
One year ago I adopted the grave of;
 
Second Lieutenant Edward Wallerstein
Air Medal, 8 Oak Leaf Clusters
Grave Location M, 16, 3
Service X-XXX774
450th Bombardment Squadron, 322nd Bombardment Group, (M)
Died: 23 February 1945
 
He is buried at the Netherlands American Cemetery Margraten, The Netherlands. Maybe there are people that have some more information for me about this person. All information is welcome. Thank you in advance.
 
Regards,
Kim Aarts

Date:
10/22/2005
Time:
12:56 PM
 
My wife's grandfather flew B-26's. His name is Raymond Pigman and he flew under the 9 AF, 397th Group, 596th Sq. I don't know very much more than that and are currently looking for history as well. Do you know where I could purchase old memorabilia i.e. sq patches etc. I am currently a B-1 WSO (Weapons System Officer) and fly out of the US. I must say my hats off to you guys for making the world what it is today and am proud to serve under the legacy and history of the Bomber crews before me.
 
WSOs are navigators that are dual rated. We do both offensive and defensive portions of the mission. We are equivalent to a B-52 Navigator and Electronic Warfare Officer all wrapped up in one person, so life can get pretty busy. If there are any Marauder Men in the area, it would be awesome to take them out to the B-1 for a tour. We also have role calls every week where we discuss flying from the week. This takes place at our bar and we really pick on each other for messing things up. We also have the younger guys give a brief history lesson. I am sure our guys would love to hear some stories about how the Marauder Men took care of business.
 
Sincerely,
Captain Michael S.
 
My father, Sterling Hoch, joined the 397th in July, 1943 at MacDill AFB, Tampa, and flew 65 missions over France and Germany, with his last one being on Feb. 10, 1945. I have an extra AAF patch and an extra 9th AF patch that I would gladly let you have. Unfortunately, I only have one 596BS patch. I have attached pictures of each, as well as a picture of my father (standing, left) and his crew. I also have (very hard to read) copies of the squadron history for most of its existence from the official records at Maxwell AFB.
 
D. S. Hoch
 
PS: I guess a ride in your B-1 is out of the question!!!
 

 

596 Bomb Squadron insignia/patch
 


Date:
10/22/2005
Time:
10:28 AM
 
Tuskegee Airmen Suit Up, Head to Iraq
By SAMIRA JAFARI, Associated Press Writer
 
Lt. Col. Herbert Carter is 86 years old and ready for deployment. More than 60 years after his World War II tour with the pioneering black pilots known as the Tuskegee Airmen, Carter's new mission will be shorter, though no less courageous.
 
Carter is one of seven aging Tuskegee Airmen traveling this weekend to Balad, Iraq — a city ravaged by roadside bombs and insurgent activity — to inspire a younger generation of airmen who carry on the traditions of the storied 332nd Fighter Group.
 
"I don't think it hurts to have someone who can empathize with them and offer them encouragement," he said.
 
The three-day visit was put together by officials with the U.S. Central Command Air Forces to link the legacy of the Tuskegee Airmen with a new generation.
 
"This group represents the linkage between the 'greatest generation' of airmen and the 'latest generation' of airmen," said Lt. Gen. Walter Buchanan III, commander of the Air Forces command, in an e-mail to The Associated Press.
 
Read Article

Date:
10/21/2005
Time:
7:14 AM
 
This is in response to Nicole Sproncken's query of October 15, 2005 concerning Lt. Harold E. Harsin. Perhaps the following would be helpful:
 
Lt. Harold E. Harsin was a squadron gunnery officer. He was shot down by flak on February 24, 1945 in B-26 Marauder USAAF # 42-107576 (See Missing Air Crew Report # 12611). There is additional information at the following website: http://www.391stbombgroup.com/575crew.htm - Check under pilot's name Hanish.
 
Good luck and thank you for honoring America's war dead.
 
Ed Garcia

Date:
10/20/2005
Time:
5:21 PM
 
Russell P. Hall, Bomb-Nav, 455th Sdn of the 323rd Group
Flew from England and France. June '44 to April '45
Pilots: Capt. G. P. McGowan and Capt. Michael F. Groom
Copilots: Lt. Max Guthrie, Lt. Byrd Moore, Lt. George Oakes
Flew flight leads with Capt. Groom and Group Leads with Capt. McGowan
Plane: Most missions were in Bat out of Hell, YUG, 643
 
The normal tour was 65 missions. A policy to give extra credit to Lead Crews a one mission credit for each four lead missions resulted in my tour ending with only 58 missions.
 
The 455th Bomb Squadron Association has annual reunions which are great fun, and now we even have a Heritage Flight which keeps the outfit going.
 
I noticed an entry in the Guest Book 2004 a message by Charles Anderson dated 10/01/04 asking for info re his brother's plane "Mission Belle". I suggest that he contact Mignon Mims, the editor and publisher of our Sdn paper " Flight Line". She can publish Charles' request and may get some info.
 
I have a print of a wonderful painting called the "Flight of the Mission Belle". It was commissioned by Paul Mulrenin the co-Pilot on the plane when it had to assume the flight lead when the lead was shot down. Paul Mulrenin was our historian until his death about a year ago.
 
Also, I would very much like to visit with Michael Groom, Jr, the son of Capt. Mike Groom. Mike Groom Jr. left an inquiry a while back in the guest book.
 
Russell P. Hall

We need an updated Mike Groom Jr. email address


Date:
10/19/2005
Time:
6:33 PM
 
Appeal for Information
 
I am one of a group of volunteers transcribing Sussex War Memorials onto the internet. The Crowborough War memorial, East Sussex, has six USAAF personnel listed on it and I assume that their plane must have crashed locally.
 
I think that all of the men were from one crew of a B26 Marauder, from 555 Bomber Squadron, 386th Bomb Group out of Great Dunmow. I think that the aircraft no. was 131623, serial YA-T, 'Hells Bells'. I think that they died in January 1944.
 
The names are:
Homer R. McClure
Charles M Morris
Jeff L Pearson
 
I know that these three men are buried at the American War Cemetery at Madingley, Cambridge.
 
The other three are:
L Carrigan
AG Depew
AV Strauss
 
I don't know anything about them and would like to add a small biography about each individual, as for the rest of the names on the memorial.
 
If you have any information such as Christian name, serial number, rank, age, position (pilot, nav, gunner, etc.), where they were from, decorations etc. I would be very grateful.
 
Thanking you in anticipation of your help
 
Dawn Grigg

Date:
10/15/2005
Time:
6:33 PM
 
My name is Nicole Sproncken. About 11 years ago I adopted a grave of an American soldier at the American Cemetery in Margraten, The Netherlands. This month I've adopted another grave. Just like the first time I'm trying to find as much information as possible. Eventually I hope to find his family, that is if there is any family alive. The name of the soldier is Harold E. Harsin; Awards: Air Medal, 3 Oak Left Clusters & Purple Heart. Grave location N, 14, 7. I don't know much about him, but I'm hoping that someone can help me with my search. This is the information that I have right now.
 
Name: Harsin, Harold E.
Rank: 1 LT
Reg. no: X-XXX860
 
575 Bomb SQ 391 Bomb GP/M/
Died on Feb. 24 1945
State: California
 
I'm looking forward to hear from anyone who can help me with my search.
 
Best wishes,
Nicole Sproncken

Some information about 1st Lt Harsin here:
http://www.391stbombgroup.com/575crew.htm

The Marauder was 42-107576 O8-V, MACR 12611.


Date:
10/14/2005
Time:
8:38 AM
 
Re: Marauderman Worth M. Speed
 
I notice Suzanne Speed Power is looking for people who had contact in WWII with Worth M. Speed of the US 443 Sq. I would very much appreciate if you could help me contact her.
 
My father Thomas Arthur Rowles was liberated by the US Army in April 1945 in southern Germany in the company of a Worth M Speed and another US airman after hiding in a cellar in a small village somewhere near Nuremberg for about 10 days. We are sure the troops who liberated them were from the US 7th Army of General Patch. Dad recalls that the GI that opened the door to the cellar called out “Is anyone there? To which Worth replied ‘Two flyers and a Limie.’ Dad was the Limie.
 
My father had a colourful war. He enlisted in the British Army in the Royal Horse Guards as an 18 year old and on the outbreak of the war in 1939 was shipped to the Middle East where he transferred to 42 Middle East Commando and fought in Greece and Crete, being capture by German Paratroops in Crete. He was taken to Germany and held in Stalag V111B in Eastern Germany, while there he was forced to do forced labour in Auschwitz Concentration Camp as a POW.
 
Towards the end of the war the camp was marched west in front of the Russian Army until they arrived in Nuremberg in 1945.
 
Dad is alive and well at 85 and was delighted to learn that I had found a reference to Worth on the internet. Worth’s mystical name has entered our family folk law, as has the circumstances of their liberation. The family are profoundly grateful for Dad’s liberation by the US Army and the considerate treatment he received after his liberation and safe return to England by the US military.
 
Dad and all of us would like to make contact with the Speed family. I mentioned to Dad tonight that I had found reference to a Worth M Speed on the Web and he was delighted. He sends his greetings to Worth and his family.
 
If Suzanne would like to write to me we can arrange further contact. Dad would very much like to know the name of the other US airman who was liberated with him and Worth.
 
If this is not the Worth who was liberated with Dad, our family sends our greeting to another brave US flyer and his family, but it seems unlikely that the US Army had too many Worth’s.
 
Tom Rowles

Date:
10/6/2005
Time:
5:42 PM
 
Greetings to all you special breed of men: my father, Lieutenant Vincent S. Garrambone, from Yonkers NY, was the flight leader of a B26 on May 17, 1943 bombing of Ijmuiden, Netherlands. He was with the 322 bomber group and was shot down with every other plane on that mission. He spent two years in Stalag Luft 3 and was liberated by General Patton. I'm told that this was the second raid at the same location. The planes were at tree top elevation and the German gunners were waiting for them having picked them up on radar. From the heavy fortifications around this canal entrance from the North Sea, it seems that it would have been a miracle for any allied plane to return from this mission. My dad is gone now. He hardly spoke of this experience. I wish he had been able to but he kept it all inside. I don't know if I would have had the courage to do what he did. God bless all of you men of courage: you men of a special breed.

Date:
10/5/2005
Time:
5:06 PM
 
Marauderman's Name S/Sergeant Henry "Hank" Hoppe
Bomb Group 386th
Bomb Squadron 553rd
Died Monday May 29 1944
 
I am looking for any information regarding S/Sergeant Hoppe. My aunt was engaged to him. All she remembers is that he was shot down in the war. I paid my respects to the newest and most impressive memorial - the WWII Memorial in DC. I learned so much about the war I did not know. I told my aunt about my experience and she remarked that she wishes she knew what happened to Hank. She also remarked that she would like to visit the WWII Memorial. My aunt is 85 and not in the best of health for traveling to Washington. So I will try bring a WWII experience to her. If anyone has any information about Hank I would appreciate it.
 
Thank You,
Patricia (Leskoske) Kelley

Date:
10/1/2005
Time:
5:02 PM
 
Hi. Just to let you know that I recently met the Ex CO of 14 Sqnd. Group Captain Dick Maydwell (The Boffin). Despite his 92 years he is well. He has nothing but praise for the B26. Also many stories about ops in the Med.
Yours John.

Date:
9/30/2005
Time:
5:16 AM
 
Any B26 flyers that were in Italy on Dec. 28 1944 and came to the aid of a straggling B24 when Messerschmitts appeared and then showed them a P47 base near Bologna Italy please contact me. The B26s could have been American flyers, English Air Force, Free French flyers, Australian flyers or South African flyers. The crew of the 449th bomb group 716th squadron, Captain Bob Wilding, who is now deceased, but still about five of the crew would like to hear from you. We just had our 15 reunion (came back yesterday 9/29/05). Two visiting Generals were there and the feat of courage was again related .We would like to hear from any member of the crews of those three Martin B-26 aircraft. If you are one that knew of this and possibly can have any way of putting us in touch with these flyers it will be greatly appreciated. My name is Bud Rosch and we have been trying to find these flyers for a long time. They saved our lives. We had no ammunition to fight even if we wanted to as we threw it out to lighten the plane after a mission to the Brenner Pass where three of our crew jumped out over the target, another crewman killed, and we had only two good engines (one out completely and one half power). If possible please help. Bud Rosch

Date:
9/29/2005
Time:
12:41 PM
 
I am search of information concerning my fathers years with the 451st bomber squadron. He was M/Sgt Ira L. Dudley, Jr. and a bombardier on one the aircraft of the 451st. If there is some way to place his name on the list of crew members of one of these aircraft, I would greatly appreciate any assistance.
 
Marauderman's Name: M/Sgt Ira L. Dudley, Jr.
Bomb Group: 322nd
Bomb Squadron: 451st
Years in service: Oct 41 – Sept 45
Graduation Class: ?
Class Location: ?
Comments: In search of any information concerning the aircraft, its crew and the various campaigns and missions.
 
“Battles and Campaigns” as noted on the discharge papers were:
Air Offensive European GO 33 WD 1945; Normandy Campaign GO 33 WD 1945; Northern France Campaign GO 33 WD 1945; Ardennes Campaign GO 33 WD 1945 and the Rhineland Campaign GO 33 WD 1945

Date:
9/28/2005
Time:
4:25 PM
 
To the student J.M. He should find most of what he wants in the "Pilot's Manual for Martin B-26 Marauder." Reprints are available.
 
Carleton & Lou Rehr
Authors, Marauder: Memoir of a B-26 Pilot in Europe in World War II
ISBN: 0786416645
Format: Hardcover, 230pp
Pub. Date: November 2003
 
To student J.M. E-mail your postal address and I will send you by return airmail: 3 A3: (approx. 15x12 inch) pages, showing plane view, various side elevations, front views etc., including additional details on the B-26 in 1/72 scale.
 
John Maljers
Australia

Date:
9/28/2005
Time:
12:53 PM
 
I am a U.S. Navy veteran from the 1980's. My interest in your page comes through a friend who had a relative who flew as a Gunner in a B26. The interesting thing is that he recorded his experiences in a diary after each flight. His first flight was on June 4, 1944 and continues on for 52 missions.
 
My questions are as follows. He states in his second entry they bombed a "No ball hqs" and goes on to say "flying bomb hqs place where they send the flying bomb over to England". What is NO BALL? was this a euphemism for the flying bomb?
 
Also, he says in a later entry he was number 2 man. What where the numbered positions on the B26?
 
I would like to thank you in advance for any answers, but most of all I appreciate your service and sacrifice for our country.
 
Glenn A. Taylor
 
Glenn,
Noball was the code name for a V-1 flying bomb launch site, not the V-1 weapon itself. There were no numbered positions in a B-26, every crew member was referred to from his assignment. Pilot, Copilot, Bombardier, Navigator, Engineer gunner, Radio gunner and Armourer gunner.
 
You do not say which bomb group or squadron your friend served with, would you kindly email us with his unit identity.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen historian b26.com

Date:
9/27/2005
Time:
5:25 PM
 
The student J.M., (inquiry 9/26/2005), can find helpful info and 3-view drawings of B26 in book "Deadly Duo" by Charles A. Mendenhall. Hope this may be beneficial.  I think your system works good and the web site is great. I was in the 322nd bomb group and 450th bomb squadron.
 
Robert G. Benner

Date:
9/27/2005
Time:
6:52 AM
 
What is the story on this ship's codes. 41-34946
 
1/ Monogram has produced a 1/48th B-26 model with AN-L as the a/c code.
2/ Robert Taylor has painted it with the AN-L code. Did he use the monogram as model?
3/ Roger Freeman' Camouflage and Markings number 14 has as it front cover painting the ship also with: AN-L.
 
Because I have some microfilms on the 386th, Capt. Kerney Sigler of the 555BS wanted to know the exact number of missions he did. He asked me also to do the same for Wentz and Stevensen, they were the semi permanent crew for the Yankee Guerilla. But I did not find an AN-L only YA-L! and 41-34946 always in the 555 BS.
 
Are the above 1-3 incorrect, or am I barking up the wrong tree?
 
Regards to all,
John Maljers a Friend of the Marauders
 
John - 41-34946 was coded YA-L and never carried any other code. Roger Freeman originally made the error in a publication many years ago. Everyone else who has also used the code AN-L has blindly copied the error and done no original research. This only goes to prove that copying published material can lead to all kinds of errors and unfortunately many such errors exist with B26 material now circulating on the web. The motto is, if you cannot prove it yourself, or unless you have access to well researched material, treat any material you see with caution. This is a motto a great many people should learn, but I doubt very much if they will. With all my years of experience I still treat new material with caution until I can verify it from at least two or three different sources.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
9/26/2005
Time:
9:05 AM
 
I am a student at a US Military Academy and an Aerospace Engineering Major. My classmate and I have been assigned to do a final project on the B-26 that is due in early December. I have looked high and low for a 3 view diagram of the Martin B-26 and have come up short handed. Do you know where I can obtain one? I am also looking for the Cl max, stall speed with flaps up and down, max cruise speed, moments of inertia, and the airfoils used on the wings. Basically, I need all the design elements I can find to begin my calculations for my Stability and Control class.
 
Any help you can provide would be greatly appreciated.
 
Very Respectfully,
J. M.

Date:
9/22/2005
Time:
7:30 AM
 
I found undeveloped film from a 559th Marauderman. The two B-26 airplanes featured in the film have names of "Off-Limits" and "Barrel Lass". I found "Barrel Lass" in the 558th Aircraft list but not a crew. I was unable to find "Off-Limits". Any tips? Thanks, Evelyn
 
"Off-Limits" 43-34119 FW-T 387th BG 556th BS. Survived the war. Alf Egil Johannessen

Date:
9/22/2005
Time:
6:52 AM
 
Reading thru this excellent treasure trove of B26 information and memories, want to extend best wishes to all 323rd Medium Bomber Group of the Ninth Air Force members, and never-quit survivors.
 
Particularly, to those who served in the 456th Bomb Squadron in every capacity. Organized in Tampa (One a day in Tampa Bay), I joined the 456th after it moved to Myrtle Beach, S.C.
 
Having just arrived there from Savannah radio school, I was assigned to Luke Hargroves' crew as a---naturally--radio operator-gunner. I had to learn gunnery, like all that shooting stuff, via skeet shooting, then firing the 50 calibers in the waist as we went after isolated ground shooting ranges, far, very far, from other people. Then of course in 1943 via the North Atlantic route with stops at exotic Greenland and Iceland, to our new home base at Earl's Colne.
 
To the keeper of this fine site, the gathering place of B26 folks, our thanks and gratitude for this tremendous job being done. This message is also written to get the last word, since I just celebrated--if that's the word--my 90th two weeks ago. Guess flying aboard those wonderful B26s for a few years, actually gave me a new lease on life, along with needed practice on regular or hi-speed breathing exercises. All the best to all.
 
Phil Scheier
 
Phil, were you with Luke Hargroves on September 21st 1944 when he put "Shirley Bee" into a sand pile at the edge of the runway, salvaging it. Cheers, Trevor Allen historian b26.com
 
HI TREVOR:
The date sounds about rite, and I was with Luke as we landed at this field recently freed from the Nazis. I think this was our first trip to this field, which was either Lessay or Chartres.
 
We came in for our usual landing, curious as hell about our new home. I was seated against a bulkhead in the rear, when suddenly we hit hard, bounced, with the bullet racks above my head breaking loose, whipping in front of my face. There was a lengthy screeching stretch before we slowed down, and finally stopped. My headphone plug had been disconnected, so no chance to hear any messages from Luke. Two of us were in the rear, tail gunner Jimmy Myers and myself. As soon as we stopped bouncing, I knew we had to get out before there mite be a fire. I yanked open the waist window where I swung out the guns on a mission, and we both jumped out. I remember running towards the cockpit to see if Luke and the others were getting out. They certainly were and fast.
 
I was told we were given clearance to land on a runway, where there was still lots of damage from earlier Allied bombing when it was held by the Germans. Either it was a pile of sand which Luke couldn't see until it was too late , or a ditch. John Moench wrote about it in his book.
 
In any case, no injuries despite equipment flailing around the plane's interior, but the plane was wrecked. It was used, as u note, for salvage, and we got ourselves a nice, new shiny plane.
 
What other kind of info do you have regarding the squadron? Always a pleasure to hear from the squadron, and share memories, thanks to Mike's excellent web site. All the best.
 
PHIL SCHEIER
 
Phil, I have been around a long time and studying the combat history of the B26 and the men who took it to war for the past 51 years. Have learned a great deal in that time, but always on the lookout for new stories and material. Your story of the crash at Chartres added meat to the bones, anything else interesting to tell us. See if the attached is of interest. Regards, Trevor
 
"Shirley Bee"
Click here for large image

Date:
9/22/2005
Time:
4:32 AM
 
Hi - I don’t have much information but I do have some genealogy on a Marauder man; 2nd Lt. James C. Ambrose, USAAF. I’m actually trying to find more information on him or even a photo. He served in the 554th Bomber Squadron, 386th Bomber Group and was killed September 16, 1944. He is buried at the Cambridge American Cemetery in England. Would you, or someone at www.b26.com be able to help? Alternatively, would you know what happened on the day he was killed ( I gather that at least another serviceman was killed that day from the same unit )? Any help appreciated.
 
Thanks for your time.
Andrew Wallace
 
Sept. 22, 2005 11:26PM -- Hello Andrew Wallace. I saw your inquiry in guest book this date asking about 2nd Lieutenant James C. Ambrose. He was a bombardier in the 554th Bomb Squadron, 386th Bomb Group. He was killed on September 11, 1944. I was also flying on that mission with Major Bud Lambert. We had just taken off and were in the process of gaining altitude, as we circled the airdrome at Great Dunmow England. Lambert said to me, "Look over there to the left at that black smoke coming up-- somebody must have went in!"
 
The mission was called off just after that crash due to a weather report update. the news was forth coming that the pilot of that plane was Major Turner, a former B-17 pilot, and not all that familiar with a B-26 attempting to land with a full load of bombs. He simply got too slow on short finale and went into the ground upside down!
 
The entire crew were killed. They were: Major E.E. Turner, pilot; Lt. A.R. Woolsey, co-pilot; Lt. J.C. Ambrose, bombardier; S/Sgt. D.L. Schoffstall; Sgt. G. Vogiatzis and Pvt. J.J. Rudy.
 
Another tragic event in our Group on this date: 1st. Lt. S.L. Ruslander, Jr. was struck by a revolving B-26 propeller, and was critically injured. He died of his injuries on September 13, 1944 in Bangor Hospital.
 
Chester P. Klier
Historian, 386th Bomb Group

Date:
9/21/2005
Time:
5:50 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Ben Goldsmith
Bomb Group: 323rd
Bomb Squadron: 455th
Comments: My name is Larry Goldsmith and Ben is my dad. We just returned from the 455th squadron’s 23rd reunion in Reno and I vowed to get more involved in learning about these guys. Even though this was not my first reunion, somehow it struck me more clearly that these men were truly heroes and their legacy must be preserved. I have vowed to get more involved with the children and grandchildren of these brave men to do just that.
 
In addition, it turned out that my wife’s father was in the South African Air Force during the war, stationed in Italy. He was a navigator but it is unclear what plane he flew in. He was apparently not very talkative when it came to that time in his life and now he is gone so I am trying to get any information I can about what he might have gone through. I know the SAAF flew 26’s but I am not sure if he was in one. Anyway, if there are any SAAF veterans out there who by chance are leafing through this web site and you have any information at all about Italy and maybe you flew with a Johan Nel or a Jan Abraham Nel nicknamed Abry (his brother who was also a pilot) please post a reply to this message.
 
Thanks, Larry

Date:
9/16/2005
Time:
10:43 PM
 

Date:
9/8/2005
Time:
10:43 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Sherman Best
Bomb Group: 322nd Bomb Gp
Bomb Squadron: 449th squadron
Years in service: five
Graduation Class: 43J
Class Location: Craig Field, Selma AL
Comments: I was assigned to B26's after finishing single eng school and flew 63 missions with this squadron....14 of them in the famous Flak-Bait tail number 773. After my first disappointment at not being assigned to a P51 squadron, I found that the old Marauder was a very good airplane and brought me home every time while some of my classmates in the Mustang did not.... I remember weekends on London and Paris with Andy Byrd and Hank Bozarth and went back in 2000 to visit all the places and see the changes.

Date:
9/7/2005
Time:
9:51 PM
 
My grandfather was a Marauder Man. Here is a link to info I have managed to put together (NOTE, I have original copies of his flight logs):
 
http://rblackburn.home.mindspring.com/John.Bernhard.html

Date:
9/6/2005
Time:
5:08 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: S/Sgt Edward J Kanthack
Bomber Group: 391st
Bomber Squadron: 574th
Years in Service: '41-'45
Have you ever played the old guessing game "Twenty Questions"? Well, I have exactly 20 questions about things I found, or failed to find, in my dad's war diary. I'm hoping someone out there can answer for me. Dad's words are in italics. My questions are in bold. And things that are the most important to me are in blue. Here goes...

Date:
9/3/2005
Time:
3:55 PM
 
My name is Bud Rosch and I was a radio operator in B24s ( link ). On the 28th of December 1944 we were shot up badly over the Brenner Pass ( link ). Three crew jumped out right over target. The rest tried to get back to our territory. Messerschmitts showed up and 3- B26s saved us - they came in formation with us. I told them we have no navigator both jumped over target and we needed a heading to the nearest base. They said they won't give us a heading - they will take us there. They showed the base to us but everything on our ship was shot out and we could not get wheels down even with manual controls - so we jumped. I was shot in both legs and they found me the third day and took me to the English hospital at that base they showed us. Now here is what this request is all about. We never knew who those Maraudermen were to thank them for saving us. We still would like to locate anyone that was on those three B26s. This happened on the 28th of December 1944 over Italy as we flew out of Grottaglie Italy in the heel of Italy, south of Bari.  Is there anyway you can help us find anyone of these "guys" - this is a wish of ours. Some of us are already gone. We will appreciate any help. Bud Rosch

We have a date and a place, any ideas are welcome. Thank you.


Date:
9/3/2005
Time:
7:29 AM
 
We need material for the new 17th bomb group section of the web site... we're starting with the mission number, target and date and we'd like to build on this information.
 
more info...

Date:
8/27/2005
Time:
4:58 PM
 
This message is for Charlie Anderson that posted a question on 10/1/2004
 
The aircraft "Mission Belle" was shot down Dec. 26, 1944.  The pilot was my Great Uncle 1st LT. John W. Fox. It took a Flak burst between the engine and fuselage killing all on board.
 
Ryan Fox

Date:
8/24/2005
Time:
7:15 PM
 
Calling all `Marauder Men`! Those who have visited this site will recall I wrote an article & pictures entitled "Mountain Marauder" about Marauder Man Mr. Kenneth Carty. This I was able to compile from contact with the pilots brother, as well as archive records. My latest project for a book involves crashes around the Isles and Scottish Hebrides, and one such incident involved a B-26 on a ferry flight to the UK. During a spell of low cloud, and with mechanical & radio trouble, the B-26 made a hasty landing at Stornoway, Isle of Lewis, 24th June 1944. With only 1,500ft of runway she overshot, hit a truck & was written off. The pilot, 2/Lt Ed Smolen, Co-Pilot 2/Lt Ed Smith & Nav 2/Lt John Sisson were killed, and 3 survived:
 
Engineer/Gunner: Sgt Walter C. McFadden, # XXXX0310, Air Corps
Radio/Gunner: S/Sgt Philip W. Jones, # XXXX3731, Air Corps
Gunner Sgt: J.E. Mattison, # XXXX2566, Air Corps
 
I am trying to locate the survivors or anyone who knew them. Any help from the three survivors, or info or pictures of any of the crew would be most welcome.
 
Thanks & Regards. Dave Earl

Date:
8/22/2005
Time:
10:37 PM
 
1st Lt. Roberds, while piloting a B-26 aircraft, crashed in Brazil, while flying the “Southern Route”.
 
Based at Barksdale Army Airfield, Lt. Roberds was a First Pilot of a B-26 crew, which included 2nd Lt. Robert J. McCallum as Co-Pilot. Lt. McCallum’s letter of December 10, 1942 to his parents says everything.
 
“Tonight I learned that I will be transferred tomorrow to the 475th squadron and given a chance to check out as a first pilot..." read more...

Date:
8/22/2005
Time:
10:18 PM
 
Greetings, my name is Donald Kirkland and my father, Sherman L. Kirkland Jr. was a B26 veteran .What little my father talked about his time in the service during WW2 was that he was stationed in Belgium and didn't fly on very many missions. He said most of his time overseas was fighting illness ,several that were probably contracted due to the run down conditions in Europe in the middle of a world war. He was a radio/gunner and I have some old manuals from his time in the service. One that I can remember after combing thru boxes of family artifacts is a training manual for the gun he was assigned to on the plane. If I might ask...what exactly did a radio/gunner do on the B26? I know that the primary mission was to operate the radio, but, where was his gun location? I don't know what unit he was assigned to except that he did train in San Marcos Texas (communication training I think) and Barksdale, in Louisiana. Well, thank you for your time, my father was a good man and I miss him.
 
My thanks to all those who served then and all those who have served since.
Donald Kirkland

Date:
8/22/2005
Time:
10:16 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: PFC Billy Chinn
Bomb Group: 40-1475
Bomb Squadron: 33rd
Years in service: ?
Graduation Class: ?
Class Location: Lowry Field
Comments: I am searching for information about the B-26 that crashed into Keller Peak around Riverside, California on either 12/30 or 12/31 of 1941. I understand that the crew was testing the Norden Bombsight.
Billy is my great uncle and unfortunately I never got to meet him, but I would appreciate any information about him, the crew, and the crash.
 
Thanks to all ,
Randy Woodruff

Date:
8/22/2005
Time:
10:13 PM
 
I am looking for information about Clarence E. Sox, S/Sgt, 37th Bomber Sqdn 17th Bomber group, who was lost on 24 February 1943, per information contained in "missing in action report", the report states he is memorialized: North Africa American Cemetery, Carthage, Tunisia.
 
The Viet Nam Veterans Assoc. group are having a "get together of WWII Veterans of our County (Hyde County, North Carolina) this Saturday, 27 August---Do you by chance have any information at all concerning this man that you could share with me? If so it would be deeply appreciated. The only information I have is he was from Hyde County N.C., yet I can find no data about him in the county, nor family, nor anyone who knew him. Quite a mystery.
 
Thanks for your help,
Roy Clarke

Date:
8/21/2005
Time:
2:03 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: John (Jack) Lane
Bomb Group: 322nd
Bomb Squadron: 449th
Years in service: 42/46
Graduation Class: 42J
Class Location: Columbus, MI
Comments: I was an instructor pilot at Barksdale Field for a year and a half before going over seas and joining the 322nd BG in June of 1944. Eventually we moved to Beauvais France and then on to Le Culot Belgium. I flew 38 missions with the 449th squadron where I was operations officer. After the war I was stationed in Frankfort Germany flying C-47s and moving personnel and freight around Europe. Returned to the States in late 45.The B-26 I flew ( Je Reviens ) ended up under the Eiffel Tower on display with other aircraft that were used in the European Theater. If anyone out there has any information on the following personnel please contact me;  Edward (Ned) Grubb, William (Curly) Mills, Woody Woodward, Harper Allen, John Alderson, Irving Pincus, Thomas Nelson or any other members of the 449th.
 
Jack Lane

Date:
8/21/2005
Time:
8:17 AM
 
From Michele Becchi, WWII historical researcher
Reggio Emilia, North Italy
 
Hello, my name is Michele Becchi, I'm an historical researcher about air war over my town in WWII. On July 7, 1944 a mixed formations of B-25 and B-26 hit the railroad bridge north of my town (Reggio Emilia, North Italy, Po Valley), does anyone know the squadron who hit the bridge? I have checked 319th and 320th group mission lists without results, and I have found nothing about 17th BG.
 
Anyone can help me?
 
Thanks in advance,
Michele
 
Michele - here is what The 17thBG historian says they did on 7-7-44: The 17th flew two missions that day. Aulia Munition factory Italy ( blew it up ). Cellecchio fuel & ammunition dump, Italy ( did not drop bombs.)
 
Hope this helps,
Don Enlow

Date:
8/11/2005
Time:
8:24 PM
 
Name: Mayo James Reece
Group: 130th AAF, BU (CCTS-F)
Squadron: "D"
Years: 43-45
Location: Norfolk, VA
Comments: My father, 1st Lt. Mayo Reece, was a tow target pilot flying out of Norfolk AAF, until May 23, 1945 when his TB-26C, No. 41-35399 crashed. There were 4 crewmen, only one survived. The other men who died were co-pilot 2nd Lt. Guy Abbott and engineer Sgt. Jeffress Craddock. Tow reel operator S/Sgt. Michael Matyola survived. According to the accident report, this crash was observed by Boatswain Mate First Class Frank Elliott and Seaman First Class Hoel Fowler. I would like to hear from anyone with knowledge about these men or about the crash or about the tow target missions themselves. I can't imagine anyone would have pictures of the planes towing targets, but if someone did, I would like to see them, if possible. Jim Upper

Date:
8/10/2005
Time:
8:28 PM
 
323rd BG and 454th BS reunion reminder. Tuesday August 16th is the last day for hotel reservations. Contact Roy Bozych for details and registration information.

Date:
8/10/2005
Time:
6:20 AM
 
Looking for insignia patches for the 387th BG and 557th BG. My Grandfather, Vic Squires, was a member. I believe his cadet class was 43B. Can you help?
 
Thanks,
Gary Witcher Jr.
556 557 558 559

Date:
8/9/2005
Time:
9:38 PM
 
James Porter McCarty "Major Mac"
 
FRANKFORT, KY - James Porter McCarty. Life Celebration services for James Porter McCarty, 83, of Frankfort, KY. Military services will be held Tues., Feb. 22, 2005 at Camp Nelson National Cemetery in Nicholasville. He died Feb. 16, 2005, Lexington, KY. A native of Eminence, KY he was a country boy, proud veteran, loving husband, father and grandfather. He enjoyed a lengthy military career. He retired from the United States Air Force in 1963 with the rank of Major after receiving many distinguished service awards. He was past Commander of the 391st Bomb Group and veteran of WWII and the Korean War. Following his military career he served as principal of the Somerset Vocational School and was instrumental in establishing the first and only Federal Aviation Maintenance School in Kentucky in 1970. He retired from the Dept. of Education in 1986. He was a member of First Presbyterian Church of Somerset, where he served as deacon and elder. He was cofounder of the First Christian Church of Ft. Walton Beach Florida; past member of the Rotary, Kiwanis, Elks, and YMCA. He was the son of the late Stanley and Aleene Constantine McCarty. He was preceded in death by his wife, Wanda Wilson McCarty. Survivors include his son, two daughters, three sisters, three brothers, six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Honorary pallbearers will be his grandchildren.
 
I lost a friend. -MS

Date:
8/7/2005
Time:
7:51 PM
 
T/Sgt Frederick A. Naas, Engineer/Gunner, 596th Bomb Squadron, 397th Bomb Group, passed away in Royal Oak, MI after a long illness on 25 May 2005.
 
Posted by his son, James Frederick Naas

Date:
8/7/2005
Time:
9:23 AM
 
Hello, I am trying to get in touch with Mr. David L B Gearing ((see 2002 post) note: contact email inop). In your post you reference your original crew with P 2nd Lt. James B. MacKamey that was shot down over Utah Beach on D-Day. My uncle, Sgt. Howard L. Finn, was on that plane that was shot down. I was hoping you have further information on my uncle, the plane (The Bad Penny), or any other details you may have. Please contact me if you have any information. Your assistance is appreciated.
 
Chris Gelsomino

Date:
8/6/2005
Time:
7:48 AM
 
I came across your excellent B-26 website on the internet and thought you may be able to help me.
 
I am an aviation artist and am planning a project involving a B-26 from the 387th BG at Ongar, Essex in the Aug/Sep 1943 time-frame.
 
I have never worked on a B-26 painting before as I am normally painting B-17s and B-24s, or other such heavy bombers, however, this is an opportunity for me to get to know an aircraft I have always wanted to work with.
 
I am looking for the nose art, in colour if it exists, of the ship, 'Heavenly Body'. Maybe you can point me in the right direction?
 
Also, can you tell me if the ships at this station were all in olive drab (with grey undersides) at the time period I require? I do believe that B-26Bs were the ship the crews were using at this time. Can you confirm this for me?
 
If you could recommend any books that would help me put together a 387th ship of the 1943 period at Ongar I would be very grateful indeed.
 
Warm Regards,
Alexandre Jay

Date:
8/5/2005
Time:
11:01 PM
 
Greetings - I found your ad after typing in "George F. Doran" (a Sgt. I knew in 50's who was shot down over Italy in WW2) I would like any link to find out where he is now. He was the best Morse code radio op. I ever knew. Any help appreciated. Harold W.

Date:
8/4/2005
Time:
8:53 PM
 
Rubin Kichen - I would like to correct the answer to your request for info on the plane named 4F on 2003. We were in the 386th Bomb Group. 554th Bomb Squadron. I have a picture of Bar Fly back home and when I get home I'll try to find it and send it off. Also a member of crew that got shot down with us was Woody, not Weedy. I wrote a letter to Mrs. Tiller after the war and told her about her son going down with plane. We corresponded for years later. I'm not sure whether I got a picture of 4F. - John Zitnyar Jr.

Date:
8/4/2005
Time:
7:23 PM
 
Hi - responding to a posting from Oct, 2002 from Ron Ellison who is looking for Stan Morgenstern. I am alive and well and would love to answer any questions I can for him. Best if he contacts my son Jim. Thanks, Stan

Date:
8/4/2005
Time:
6:39 PM
 
Saw your website dedicated to the B-26. My father, William Draganchuk (shortened to “Dragan” in 1947), and who is still as of this date alive at 82, was a bombardier-navigator in the 391st BG, 386th BG and the 409th BG. He mainly flew in the B-26’s but also a small number of missions in the A-20 and A-26. He does not recall his squadron number, although from years back I recall it was one of BS’s in the 550’s-I think it was either 554 or 555. After cadet and flight training in TX (Beeville?), he shipped overseas and first arrived in England around the summer of 1944 and when the units left for France in late Sep/early Oct 1944 he went with them. I do not know the number of missions he flew, and he no longer remembers. However, there seemed to be plenty. He recalls supporting Patton’s troops during the breakout at Bastogne and bombing the Remagen bridge (and missing that target---thank God he says b/c it was later needed to cross into Germany). He also has told me often of a mission where his plane was shot up so badly no one knew how they made it back, especially, since the pilot flew it back on one engine (out of two!) since the other was badly damaged due to flak. At the time of his assignment to the 9th AAF, he was a 1st Lt. At the war’s end, he was promoted to Captain and, having been qualified to fly, had on occasion co-piloted a C-47 cargo mission or two.
 
His ribbons/award include the Air Medal, Presidential Unit Citation, Good Conduct Ribbon, World War II Victory Medal, African-European-Middle East Campaign Medal, American Campaign Medal; Occupation Medal. In addition to the standard WWII ribbons and medals, his awards include the Air Medal and a Presidential Unit Citation. I don’t know what kind of records exist anymore. Any further information that you know of would be of great help. He has not kept up with anyone of those days although he does remember that now-deceased actor Robert Preston (at that time a Major) was a member of the staff. I encourage anyone who remembers him to contact me.
 
W. George Dragan
c/o William Dragan

Date:
8/3/2005
Time:
8:58 PM
 
My dad is here by me - John R. Sharpe, he was crew chief with the “Winnie Dee” till before D-Day he remembers Andrew Byrd - if you want more information email me. Dean Sharpe

Date:
8/3/2005
Time:
8:30 PM
 
My father, Joseph Sloane, was a B-26 navigator in the ETO. He flew out of England and was awarded he DFC for actions as a lead navigator on D-day. He was in the 387th Bomb Group, 556th Bomb Squadron. Sincerely, Stan Sloane

Date:
8/3/2005
Time:
7:55 PM
 
The Passing of a Marauder Man
 
During the evening of July 30th, Elliott Swift Moorhead III, my dad, passed away at his home with my mom, his wife of 45 years by his side. I had just visited them the day before and we knew Dad wouldn't be able to hang on much longer.
 
Our family had decided to keep dad at home to his final day. My mom truly has done all that was humanly possible to keep him with us long after the doctors thought she could. It's difficult to express in words the love and devotion they felt for each other. The commitment to family and maintaining the unity of their marriage was second to none.
 
I believe the inner strength and commitment of my parent’s generation is something that this world is losing daily. They are part of The Greatest Generation that will eventually only live on through their descendants.
 
Dad will be cremated this week and funeral services will be held on Saturday the 6th in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He will then be interred at Arlington Nation Cemetery sometime in October. We don't have an exact date yet.
 
Regards,
Roland Moorhead

Date:
7/31/2005
Time:
2:26 PM
 
Monday, November 29, 1943 - 386th Bomb Group Mission number 46:
Target, Airdrome located at Chievries, Belgium.
 
Briefing was underway at 0600 hours: IX Bomber Command Field Order Number 147, and 386th Bomb Group Field Order Number 48, directs the 322nd, and 386th Bomb Groups to attack the airdrome located at Chrievies, Belgium. Target number ZB50. Both Groups will supply thirty-six bombers plus four extras. Each aircraft will carry six 500 pound general purpose demolition bombs - each of which is fused for one-tenth second nose and one-one- hundredth second tail. RAF II Group will furnish Spitfire escort and support for both Bomb Groups. The fighter escort is made up of the following: One squadron of Spits close escort for the 386th. The 322nd and the 386th Groups will share two squadrons of escort cover, three squadrons of high cover, and two squadrons of top cover. read more...
 
Tuesday, February 22, 1944 - 386th Bomb Group Mission Number 110:
 
Captain Lehman was awakened by Major Thornton at 0400 hours, about thirty minutes later they along with all lead and deputy lead officers met in the intelligence room. Walls of the room were covered with charts, many had colored pins stuck into them. The target for today and route was laid out along with red circles indicating known flak batteries. Numbers showed how many enemy aircraft and type that could be expected on this trip.
 
Lead Bombardier Lehman voiced his disapproval to an S-2 Officer about the wisdom of attacking the same target for the third day in a row; the target selection prevailed! After completion of the pre-briefing all joined other early risers in the officers mess for their breakfast, which for the most part consisted of coffee and lots of cigarettes. Within the hour all scheduled flight crews made their way to the briefing room. read more...

Date:
7/30/2005
Time:
11:08 AM
 
Has anybody heard of or have any evidence that the Australians flew Martin B-26s? George Parker, 397th Pilot

Date:
7/29/2005
Time:
10:44 PM
 
I am doing research for a book on the 17 December 1944 mission flown by the 15th AF against the Odertal (Kozle, Poland) Refineries. Several of the B-24 Groups (484th, 485th, 464th) had B-24s that were Ferrets and were ECM/RCM/ELINT capable. These a/c carried an 11th crewman to operate the "special" radios and "green belly" equipment in a special compartment in the aft bomb bay. One 485th B-24M had a canard type antenna under the nose. I noted with great interest Bob Young's 27 December 2002 posting on an a "special" radio operator aboard 320/442 B-26 42-95763 which was downed 29 Jan. 1944 over Ladispoli, Italy. I had no idea the ECM/RCM/ELINT equipment was used in mediums. Anyone have anymore specifics relating to B-26s in this role? John Bybee

Date:
7/29/2005
Time:
10:36 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Ernest Septime PETROWSKY, SR.
Bomb Group: 386th
Bomb Squadron: 552nd
Years in service: 16 Jan 42 - 19 Sept 45
Graduation Class: ?
Class Location: ?
Comments: I have been searching for years for any mention of my grandfather anywhere, hoping to cross paths with anyone who knew him. Of course, as the years pass on, the chances become slimmer, as the great heroes of WWII are passing on with each passing day. But, I won't give up. The information I have comes only from the copies of the 3 military forms I have: Form 100; Certificate of Honorable Discharge; Form 53-55.
 
He was from New Orleans, LA. He also went by Ernie, Trosky or Trotsky (or some variation) and Big Daddy. His place of entry was Camp Shelby, Miss. Prior to active duty, he was a coin and vending machine salesman. On active duty his occupational specialty and # was Communication Chief 542. He was a MSGT at time of separation.
 
Battles/Campaigns: Air Offensive Europe, Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes, Central Europe, WDGO 33 45.
 
Decorations/Citations: Good Conduct Medal AR 600-68; Unit Citation GO 254 Hq 9th AF 44; EAMETO Med
 
He was never wounded (or if he was, noone ever found out.) Service schooling he rec'd: Radio Operator; Radio Maintenance High Frequency.
 
All of his paperwork says he was in the Army, but I thought the transition/separation or whatever it was called between the Army and Army Air Corps and Air Force occurred about this time.
 
While in England, he met and married a girl by the name of Ezora Wilman, but I know nothing else about that marriage as the marriage to my grandmother, Ouida, came later.
 
My grandfather passed away of Alzheimer's 14 October 1983 in Tampa, FL (and is buried there).
 
Any information would be greatly appreciated.
 
And once again, a great big thank you to all of the warriors and heroes in uniform. I cannot think of a greater legacy to pass on to our youth than freedom!!!! God Bless America!!!!!
 
Very Respectfully,
Vanya Malmstead
 
Vanya, he was a Master Sergeant in the 552nd B.S. was in the communications section.
Chester Klier

Date:
7/29/2005
Time:
10:32 PM
 
I read with interest Bob Young's comments (12/27/2002) about a B-26 being shot down in January 1944 with a "special" radio operator aboard. In conducting research on signals intelligence support to combat operations in Europe in WW II, I have gathered details documenting the use of airborne voice intercept operators (German linguists) who flew aboard B-17 and B-24 bombing missions from bases in Italy during 1944 and 1945. Typically, a bomb group installed a special intercept radio receiver in one of its bombers, and the German linguist (special radio operator) would use that radio to monitor voice communications between attacking German fighters and the German fighter control stations. In turn, the airborne voice intercept operator (German linguist) would forward the leader of the flight of bombers of pending attacks and also gather intelligence that could be used to plan targets for future missions. Although I have no confirmation of airborne voice intercept operators (German linguists) flying missions aboard B-26 missions, it is reasonable to assume that the "special" radio operator aboard the mission with S/Sgt Howard W. Young (320 Bomb Group, 442nd BS) in January 1944 was probably one of the German linguists/voice intercept operators.
 
Larry Tart

Date:
7/29/2005
Time:
3:42 PM
 
Hello, I am an academic at Liverpool John Moores University in the UK. I am researching into a raid made against rail marshalling yards at Hasselt, and Coxyde airfield in Belgium, on the 8th. of April 1944. The operation was carried out by 9th USAAF units, 198 B-26s and 32 P-47s took part (including units from the 322nd BG, the only unit I have been so far able to identify) which I understand was the biggest tactical raid of the campaign.
 
I am researching this operation through a growing interest in the stories of the men and women of the USAAF in WW2, but also in the hope of a small positive outcome after all these years. The raid resulted in a crater field, some of which remains and has developed into an important wildlife site of over 117 ponds, which local people are campaigning to preserve. Building up a social history (and perhaps some links between veterans and residents?) may help them preserve this beautiful and valuable site, which seems to me at least a worthwhile memorial, as well as valuable in its own right.
 
Were you involved? Can you help me with information, references, stories?
 
Jim Hollinshead
 
M/Y Hasselt was third mission for 394th BG. Group Leader: Caney. 36 A/C, 57.75 tons dropped, poor results.
Coxyde Airdrome was 11th mission for 344th BG (Belgium coast North of Dunkirk)
M/Y Hasselt was 151st mission of 323rd BG. PM-mission, 39 a/c.
M/Y Hasselt was 142nd mission of 386th BG.

Date:
7/28/2005
Time:
6:39 AM
 
Perhaps someone will be able to help me to find what I am looking for. My name is Frederic Henoff and I am a French amateur historian. I make a research work regarding missions of the 8th and 9th AF during the second world war over the Bourges area, center of France. I will like to know the circumstances of the crash of the B-26 below.
 
- B-26 Marauder "Hoot's Zoot Shooter" serial number 41-31676 coded TQ-G from 387th BG / 559th BS, lost in September or October 1944, 12 miles S. of Bourges, France. According to the sources, shot up by fighters and belly landed.
 
I am surprised by this accident because at that time the battle front was further towards the East, close to the German border and Bourges is in the center of France. Perhaps not a war mission flight but an accident during an airlink flight?
 
I hope to not importune you by this message and I thank you by advance for the assistance which you will be able to bring to me.
 
Best regards,
Frederic Henoff

Date:
7/24/2005
Time:
9:43 AM
 
Can anyone help me with any information on George P. Burnett, 323bg, 453bs, serial #XXXX867? He was shot down Jan.14th,1945 over St. Vith flying in support of Bastogne. He was captured and survived. I was his physician in 1986 and treated him for complications of leg shrapnel wounds. His family knows little of his flying experience, and I am writing an article about his story and medical condition for a medical journal. Thank you, Will Ryan
 
This was the 287th mission for 323rd BG, target Steinbruck Highway Bridge. Group Leaders were Adams and Kohnert. 36 Marauders took of for this PM-mission from Station A-69, Laon-Athies, France, on Sunday 14 Jan 1945. Group Leader Adams' Marauder was 42-107588 VT-R, MACR # 11926.
 
Alf Egil Johannessen

Date:
7/23/2005
Time:
6:07 PM
 
I am a South African who has been living in the States for a number of years. My Uncle (my Mom's brother) is the Dick Townsend referred to in the paragraph below from the South African section of your website.
 
It has been a lifelong dream of his to travel to the Smithsonian to see WW2 aircraft and hopefully a Marauder. Due to nursing his ailing wife, he never left South Africa. She sadly died a few months ago. He is now planning to visit us sometime between mid August and mid September this year and feels as if it is a dream come true (first time to the US and he is in his mid eighties!!) He does not have a definite date as he is waiting for his US visa to arrive and will then make his flight reservation.
 
I just thought I would pass this information on for your interest and also, in case you had any ideas of related items of interest in the DC area - we are definitely taking him to the Dulles Smithsonian.
 
Thank you for your interest.
Regards,
Lyn Hopkins
 
(See paragraph below)
"Disaster struck only three days after commencing operations when the O.C. Lt. Col Robbs and his crew were shot down over Suda Bay, Crete in FB478 "T". A photograph of this Marauder going down was deemed to be a freak photograph since it showed an apparently whole Marauder flying below the formation whereas closer inspection showed that the tail section was upside down and several hundred feet above the aircraft. Jack Robbs and his co-pilot Lt. R.K. "Dick" Townsend were the only two survivors while four other crew went down with the plane."
 
The 387th and 397th Bomb Groups are having a join reunion in DC in September - you're invited!

Date:
7/23/2005
Time:
6:01 PM
 
Name: 1st Lt. Lyle G. Mc Glocklin, Pilot
Bomb Gp: 322nd
Squadron: 450th
Years: 43-44
Graduation Class: ?
Class Location: Idaho?
Comments: Our uncle went missing during a mission on May 9, 1944. We have always presumed he went down with his plane. Authorities declared him officially KIA in May of 1945. None of his crew members were found at the crash site, they must have parachuted from the plane. The only thing that was returned to his mother, our grandmother, Effie Mc Glocklin, was a piece of parachute jump cord with only part of his last name on it and his wings that were partially burned and melted. We believe that he arrived at Station #485, Andrews Field, Essex on June 12, 1943. Prior to this date it has been told to us that he was originally was stationed in North Africa and later was transferred to Essex. Our uncle is buried in Normandy American Cemetery and my brother has even visited his grave site during an extensive trip to Europe. Neither one of us knew him. We only have some pictures and memories as told to us by our mother, his sister and Grandpa. It was never spoken about by our Grandmother, too painful we always presumed.
 
We are now in our late 40's and mid 50's and have so many questions as to what happened during his mission and what the objectives of he and his crew were that day. Is there any way that any and all information that is available possible for you to provide for us? There are only three of us cousins still alive from the Mc Glocklin line. None of us have children. We are it. I guess we just want to know more about his accomplishments during his service for our fine country since we were never able to meet him. Are there any surviving members that may remember him? Contact us by email. Please, any information or contact names would be so very appreciated by all of us.
 
Sincerely,
Toni MacDonald
Ron MacDonald
Kevin Mc Glocklin
 
Pilot 1st Lt Lyle G. McGlocklin:
B-26B-30-MA 41-31954 322nd BG. 05.09.1944 fire in left engine, caught fire, no FLAK or fighters. MACR# 4478
 
Mr. Mc Glocklin is buried in Normandy American Cemetery, Plot C, Row 13, Grave 25. He was awarded the Air Medal and 4 Oak Leaf Clusters.
 

Date:
7/22/2005
Time:
6:50 AM
 
Marauder Man: 1st Lt. Francis M. Kirby
Air Force: 9th
Bomb Group: 394th
Squadron: 585th
 
This is being sent in honor of 1st Lt. Francis M. Kirby and his crew--shot down over Creil, France on June 12, 1944.
 
Narrative Description of the Last Mission of B-26-B-55 Marauder 42-96117 of the Ninth Air Force's 394th Bombardment Group 595th Squadron.
 
Lt. Francis M. Kirby's plane was on a mission with 36 other planes on June 12, 1944. Their target was the Eiffel railroad bridge in Conflans St. Honorine. Lt. Kirby's plane was shot down just before the formation reached the Initial Point ...continue.

Date:
7/22/2005
Time:
6:40 AM
 
I have been doing some research on my Grandfather who was a flight surgeon on a B-26 during the war. His name is Dr. Willett E. Wentzel, and he was part of the 572nd squadron of the 391st group. I'm getting more info from him, like where was he stationed, when did he get to Europe, and what was the name of his plane just to name a few. When I get all this info, I will pass it along to you. I really enjoy the site and will be a very frequent visitor.
 
Sincerely,
Charles Ward

Date:
7/22/2005
Time:
6:25 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: S/Sgt Orand J Hoffman
Bomb Group: 17th
Bomb Squadron: 432nd
Years in service: unk
Graduation Class: unk
Class Location: unk
Comments: This particular person was my Great Uncle...I had not known of him until a few years ago...I was searching for him on Ancestry.com and found out exactly when he died and the monument he was placed on in Italy...then I came to your website and in looking at your guestbook I found what happened to his plane...I was wondering if you had more information on his crew mates...according to my father (his nephew) no one ever talked about what had happened...I would like to know if there are any pictures or stories so that I might get closer to him...My husband is in the Army and we both believe that the heroes of our great military should be celebrated and not forgotten...Thank you so much!!
 
Tammy Larson

Date:
7/20/2005
Time:
6:00 AM
 
My father, George R. Vidusic, served in the 386th in the 552nd bomb group. He was in bomb disposal. Can anyone provide information on any of the people he served with? He told me he and the following men served together:
 
Lester McAlister, Charles Delaney, U.F. Troxclair, G.C. Reynolds, Harold Bellar, Joe Bellucci, Ray Hatcher, Ben Guberman, Ray Holston, Albert Larson, Al Schaf, Robert Ramsey, Leander Adkins, Rene Chauvin, Lionardo Molina, Alphonso Stango, Conway Stone, Clarence Zinn, Wallace Mullins...
 
My dad is alive and well and would like to contact anybody that he served with. He figured at 81, he may be the only one left. Someone out there please prove him wrong!
 
Any replies can be directed to me.
 
Ralph Vidusic

Date:
7/18/2005
Time:
7:21 PM
 
Guy D. Fleetwood, 386 bomb gp, 552 squadron, yrs. 42-45, gunner. I would like to hear from members of the 552 squadron.

Date:
7/17/2005
Time:
4:07 PM
 
Greetings ... I’m trying to helping a friend who is arranging a re-union of a WWII B26 Marauder crew, one member of whom is her uncle. She is in contact with five of the survivors and we’re trying to locate the sixth member - L. Arthur. Here are the details she gave to me:
 
Unit: 455th Bombardment Squadron of the 323rd Bombardment Group
 
Aircraft Ser #: 41-31781
Name: Liberty Lady
Damaged by flak over Holland 13 Dec 1943, abandoned by parachute over England. At least five made it back home and they survive to this day.
 
Crew:
Pilot: Richard E. Robinson
Co-Pilot: Ross L. Oakley
Navigator: Lloyd E. Kisner (uncle of lady doing the re-union; see web site below)
Engineer: H. G. Graham
Tail-gunner: Martin Dishong
Radio Operator: L. Arthur (whereabouts unknown - we’re looking for him and/or his family)
 
You can see a picture of the crew and an article on Kisner at this web site:
http://www.b26.com/marauderman/lloyd_kisner.htm
 
I checked the MACR for 13 Dec 1943 and found only one B26 listed for that day under report number 1497. Although it was assigned to the 455th BS, the serial number is listed as 41-34940, not that of the Liberty Lady.
 
Can you offer any advice as to how we might proceed from here?
 
BTW, I’m a retired Army aviator (Vietnam X2) - reading about the flying adventures of my WWII comrades is always a pleasure.
 
Many thanks, Bob

Date:
7/14/2005
Time:
6:06 AM
 
My dad, Capt. (then 1Lt) Robert S. Heppe, was a bombardier/navigator with the 454 Sqdn, 323 BG.
 
He flew 54 missions including Dieppe, 20 May 44,when he made a crippled landing with COL (then LTC) Marion Morgan at the helm, D-Day at Utah Beach, Battle of the Bulge and on 14 Feb 45 with MG (then 1Lt) John Moench. My son and his grandson, 1Lt Adam D. Heppe, flew 105 combat missions in his Apache A-64 form 1 Mar 04-31 Jan 05 (I was unceremoniously bumped out of flight program in 1969 for being color blind). My father's B-26 years were the best of his life and had a positive effect on his entire life.
 
Bob Heppe, Jr.
COL, JA, USAR

Date:
7/14/2005
Time:
6:06 AM
 
My father S/Sgt Paul Gearhart was in the pacific theater from 1940 to 1944. His discharge papers are incomplete about what units he served in. It does state however that he participated in 300 medium and heavy bombardment sorties for 1100 combat hours. He was in a mental hospital in 1944 at Ft. Logan, Colorado where he was discharged. After contacting the archives in St. Louis, they tell me his records where burned in the 1973 fire. On the the cover sheet of his discharge papers there is a 6/1998 in the upper right hand corner. Some military personnel tell me something is or could be classified about my father. After 13 years I just received his medical documents from the hospital stay in Ft. Logan. In a section of these documents it states he was a waist gunner on a B-26 in 1944. Paul's MOS was a armorer-gunner (612) and he served at Bellows Field on 12/7/41. This website seems to be the best site on B-26 personnel so I'm hoping that somebody may have my father's name on a crew roster. As best as I can tell, Paul joined the Army in 1940 to send home money for his wife since the depression was on. Paul was 26 in 1944 and was probably thought of an "old man" among his fellow crew members. He may have had a nickname "RED" and stood 5' 11" and when he was discharged ,he weighed in at 130lbs. Any help would greatly appreciated. I've been working on this since 1993. Sincerely, Paul Gearhart Jr.
 
Paul, the last operational Marauders in the Pacific were 22nd BG 19th BS, January 1944, the other three squadrons had then re-equipped with the B25 and even later all squadrons re-equipped with the B24. Trevor Allen
 
My name is Mignon Mims of the 455th Bomb Sqaudron, 323rd Bomb Group. I am the Editor/Publisher of The Flightline and daughter of Robert P. Mims, a B-26 Pilot. I read where Paul had checked for his Father's records with the Archives. I recently read where the Veterans Administration discovered some 10 million duplicates of military records thought to have been destroyed in their 1973 fire. Maybe his records are one of them. He can write to: National Personnel Records Center, (Military Personnel Records), 9700 Page Blvd., St. Louis, MO, 63132-5100. Best Regards, Mignon Mims

Date:
7/11/2005
Time:
10:35 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Mason Mandell
Bomb Group: 322nd
Bomb Squadron: 451st
Years in service:
Graduation Class:
Class Location:
Comments: Mason was my mother's first husband. I understand that his plane was called "Audrey" and that he was killed 11/9/44. He was a tail gunner and radio-something. My mother has a lot of information that had been provided indirectly by the soul survivor, Lt. John Corley, who is no longer with us. Any information regarding Sgt. Mandell would be greatly appreciated. Incidentally, I was born 11/9/57, which helped take some pain away for my mother. I found this information in a Yahoo cached website that apparently is no longer on-line: "Aircraft piloted by Lt. John Corley hit by flak and seen to crash. Six chutes seen in air. Corley reported as prisoner, others reported killed. They were Lts. George McLaughlin and Phillip Sachs, Sgts. Chester Green, Douglas Jackson, and Mason Mandell." Robert R.

Date:
7/10/2005
Time:
12:39 PM
 
Help us identify the 344th bomb group pilot below...
 
...large image

Date:
7/7/2005
Time:
9:24 PM
 
I do believe that Elizabeth L. Gardner (WASP) delivered mostly B-26 Marauders for the war effort (and others like her). All thought not a Marauder Man - she was a decanted B-26 pilot during the war in 1943-45 and should get a small foot note on your website.
 
Moreover, a pretty face is hard to ignore :-)
 
Dale M.
 
...large image
 
The plane Ms. Gardner is pictured in above is a AT23A-MA training version of the B26. This bird 42-43441 was used in the Stateside training system spending the majority of its service life at Harlingen.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
7/7/2005
Time:
7:05 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: James Ramsay
Bomb Group:21 squadron SAAF
Bomb Squadron:
Years in service: Sept 1942 in New Zealand basic training
Feb 1943 Dunnville Canada Harvard's etc
Sept 1943 Ternhill England Banff Scotland
July 1944 Egypt and Italy Marauder 111
Comments: My father-in-law sometimes still tells stores of flying opp's over Italy and Yugoslavia. He moved with the squadron up from Pesaro to bases in Italy. He talks a lot about a Majer Meaker had was his first pilot, before getting a crew of his own. He very much would like to here what happened to him, his own crew Lt Taylor Sgt's Holland, Dean, Porter etc or an of the 21. -Kevin & Christine

Date:
7/7/2005
Time:
5:28 AM
 
I am not sure if my father was a Marauder Man or not...he was S Sgt David Lee Meador, Jr., and went down on August 20th, 1944 over the Mediterranean. He was with the 432 Bomb Sq. 17 Bomb Gp/M. His name is on the Wall of Honor in Anzio, Rome. From letters given to me by my mother, I believe he was an aerial photographer, and was in the tail section of the plane when it was shot off. I would love to hear from anyone in this squadron, or anyone who knew of him. I was 2 1/2 yrs. old when he went down, and we had never seen each other. Any information or any leads would be greatly appreciated. -Kris F.
 
Kris,
Your father was indeed a Marauder man serving with the 432nd bomb squadron 17th bomb group. On August 20th his b26 hit by flak in the right engine and ditched at sea NW of Corsica. Four of the crew were rescued by a Catalina flying boat.
 
Those saved were the pilot F/O Beverley D Draughon, F/O Cornell copilot,2.Lt Dobbs bombardier and S/Sgt Clark. Those lost were S/Sgt Orand J Hoffman, S/Sgt David L Meador and S/Sgt Sexton Richard.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
7/6/2005
Time:
9:44 PM
 
Monday, November 29, 1943 - 386th Bomb Group Mission number 46:
Target, Airdrome located at Chievries, Belgium.
 
Briefing was underway at 0600 hours: IX Bomber Command Field Order Number 147, and 386th Bomb Group Field Order Number 48, directs the 322nd, and 386th Bomb Groups to attack the airdrome located at Chièvres, Hainault, Walloon Region, Belgium. Target number ZB50. Both Groups will supply thirty-six bombers plus four extras. Each aircraft will carry six 500 pound general purpose demolition bombs - each of which is fused for one-tenth second nose and one-one- hundredth second tail. RAF II Group will furnish Spitfire escort and support for both Bomb Groups. The fighter escort is made up of the following: One squadron of Spits close escort for the 386th. The 322nd and the 386th Groups will share two squadrons of escort cover, three squadrons of high cover, and two squadrons of top cover.
 
Chester P. Klier
Historian, 386th Bomb Group

Date:
7/5/2005
Time:
10:07 PM
 
Capt. James M. Peters of Wisner Louisiana. Trained in Sikeston, Mo, Enid Ok, Lubbock, TX where he received his commission. Assigned to Barksdale A.F.B. to the B-26. Was assigned to duties in England June 16, 1943. Flew 83 Missions initially in the "Privy Donna", most missions in the "Little Jim" named after his 3 yr. old son.  He held a record at the time for successful missions without any "Turn-Backs".  He returned from Europe in September 1944 and was assigned to Laughlin Field, Del Rio, TX. where he was made Group Commander. He was up for promotion to Major when he was killed on a training flight March 3 rd 1945.  He was giving "one more chance" to an airman who was about to "Wash - out".  Captain James M. Peters, Pilot 386 BG, 554 B Squadron Primary Crew: 1st Lt Robert E. Bray, 1st Lt Ingles M. Thompson, Tech Sgt Clarence P. Bourgeois, Staff Sgt Winfield S. Gardner, Staff. Sgt John W. Looney. Other crew members: Tech Sgt H. P. Moody, Jr., 1st Lt Roger M. Freeman, Pvt. John V. Goshorn. I am his son James M. Peters, Jr. and would love to hear from anyone who knew or served with my dad, especially any crew members listed above or others.

Date:
7/5/2005
Time:
9:57 PM
 
Message posted 7/5/2005 6:45 AM by Bernard Bland Jr. of the 397th BG 597th BS.
 
My brother, Allen Carden was in your BG and BS. He flew missions from Belgium and later from Venlo Holland. Lt Robert Grubb was his pilot. I have attached a picture of Allen by his B-26 in Venlo Holland. Allen is now deceased as of April 2002.
 
I am Leo Carden and was with the 17th BG 37th BS and flew missions from Dijon, France at the same time frame.
 
R. (Bob) Leo Carden
 

Date:
7/5/2005
Time:
7:04 AM
 
Richard E. Robinson (Robby) 323rd, 455th --- B-26 pilot "Liberty Lady"
 
June 28 2005
B-26 Marauder -- Power Dive --“ Popped Wing Rivets” Speed in access of 400mph
 
Well into a training flight near Cypress Gardens Fla., I think we were over Lake Winter Haven, my bombardier/navigator informed me that we had better get on with it and head for the bombing range to drop our practice bombs. Flying at 8000 feet, I told Kisner we would get right down to low level altitude for the bomb run. I rolled the B-26 into a steep bank to the left and soon found myself in a “bad position”. My judgment must have been overcome by youth (19 years *) because I knew my bank was too steep, and yet I continued into my mistake. I couldn’t back out of trouble. My reasoning now was to go into a simulated split- S as in a rollover position, except in a split- S you come out on your back position by retarding your throttles, then your airplane will automatically fall out into a straight down descent but you change directions of 180 degrees from your original heading. Because of not doing the maneuver intentionally I forgot to reduce my power thereby causing us to be in a power dive. I remember the shaking, the vibration, and the wings trying to flap. The B-26’s airspeed was at 420 mph. before I pulled out at 300 feet. My Marauder was red-lined at 335 mph. This “maneuver” pulled the rivets loose on the top of the wings. After landing and plane inspection, Martin people were called in, I related what had happened and they agreed that the speed had to be over 400. That is when the Colonel called me in. He was group commander and told me not to make any more accidental mistakes or he would have my wings. I left his office and told my squadron commander that I was ready to go to combat. Pilot Richard E. Robinson adds; “ I don’t imagine many B-26 crews can talk about doing 420 miles per hour in a B-26, the planes top speed was around 285 --- and no acrobatics were allowed!”
 
I never did ask Robby if they dropped those bombs. At the end of his letter relating this story to me, uncle Robby writes --I’ll knock off for now and finish my pie. I got my crust in the fridge cooling, good-by for now--- Richard E. Robinson.
 
Footnote:
This story; “Did I ever tell you about popping the wing rivets”, took place on 1943 I believe.
 
In a later article concerning the Dec 13, 1943 Schiphol Airdrome mission Uncle Robby was referred to as one “Plucky Pilot”.
 
The crew of the Liberty Lady (323rd Bomb Group, 455th Bomb Squadron)
H. G. Graham
M. P. Dishong
L. Arthur
L. E. Kisner
 
Ryan
R. E. Robinson
 
* Robinson was possibly the youngest A. A. F. Marauder pilot at this time

Date:
7/5/2005
Time:
6:45 AM
 
I am Bernard Bland, Jr. and I flew as a tail gunner on the B-26 Marauder flying out of Station A-72 in Peronne, France. I was assigned to the 597th BS of the 397th BG. By chance is there anyone out there who may have flown with my BS and/or BG?
 
Bernie

Date:
7/5/2005
Time:
6:45 AM
 
I am working on a memorial to the men who graduated from my high school or that lived in my neighborhood in Akron, OH that were killed in the military. I am attempting to find out what happened to each of the 120+ men from WWII, Korea, and Vietnam. The online version of my memorial can be viewed at www.northhillakron.org/military. One of the men, Staff Sergeant Charles Wesig was with the 452nd Bomb Squadron. Available information indicates that he was killed in a Non-battle plane crash on 29 May 1943 somewhere in Europe. I am looking for any additional information regarding this accident. Any help is appreciated.
 
David Schember
Akron, OH
 
David,
May 29th 1943 while on a low level practice flight the b26 clown by 2.Lt Robert F McDonald and crew, exploded and crashed over Rougham Airfield, England.
 
Those killed were:
2.Lt Robert F McDonald
F/O Henry F Bryant
2.Lt Eugene L Curran
S/Sgt Curtis M Muse
S/Sgt Charles Wesig
Sgt Richard R Dietrich
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
6/29/2005
Time:
5:47 AM
 
Excerpt from President Bush's speech: "...In this time of testing, our troops can know: The American people are behind you. Next week, our nation has an opportunity to make sure that support is felt by every soldier, sailor, airman, Coast Guardsman, and Marine at every outpost across the world. This Fourth of July, I ask you to find a way to thank the men and women defending our freedom -- by flying the flag, sending a letter to our troops in the field, or helping the military family down the street. The Department of Defense has set up a website -- http://www.AmericaSupportsYou.mil . You can go there to learn about private efforts in your own community. At this time when we celebrate our freedom, let us stand with the men and women who defend us all..."

Date:
6/28/2005
Time:
10:30 PM
 
Hello I just received the mission list from Mr. Allen. Real nice list. I spoke to my Grandfather a little about it. Fletcher was his Bombardier. He said Fletcher and another crew member returned late from a pass. They had to fly with another crew and were shot down. My Grandfather said they were POWS. Fletcher is the one holding Salvo, the dog that wore a parachute on missions. If you look at the mission list my Grandfather flew with the same guys for months. Kenny (copilot) & Fletcher (bombardier) last time they flew together was 25 February 1944. My Grandfather flies another mission 2 March 1944 with all the same guys except Kenny and Fletcher. A Lt Crosier is Copilot and S/Sgt McKeough is Bombardier for a few missions. Kenny and Fletcher do not fly with him again. I am mailing the mission list to my Grandfather today. Maybe he will think of some stories.
 
Take care,
Al Rein Jr.

Date:
6/28/2005
Time:
9:35 PM
 
My father, Gordon Lionel Dodds turns 80 years old on the 30th of July 2005, in two days time. I have typed his memoirs for him. He describes the best days of his life when he received his wings as an above average pilot in September 1944. An extract from his memoirs:
 
“Arrived at SAAF camp Al Maza and then transferred to RAF air station Shandur on the Suez Canal on the Little Bitter Lake about 10 miles north of the town of Suez. Commenced operational training on B26 Marauder bomber for 6 weeks, then returned to Almaza, Cairo, and went on 3 weeks leave while awaiting posting to Squadron in Italy. … On return from Palestine I was posted to 12 Squadron, JESI Italy in February 1945, via Athens to Bari transit camp by air, then next day on to Jesi by road, about 250 miles north of Bari along the Adriatic Sea coast Road. …. Arrived Jesi in a blinding snowstorm and was very pleased to find shelter after traveling all day in an open 3-ton truck. 12 Squadrons living quarters, all ranks, as well as admin offices were situated in the village of Montsarno, a small hilltop village about 3 miles to the west of Jesi airfield... I was the youngest pilot in the squadron, being then only 19 years and 7 months, or just a “sprog” in air force slang...”
 
My father is, Thank God, healthy of body and mind, in the loving arms of his family, his wife, daughters, and grandchildren.
 
He is an avid second world war vet, although his time in the actual war was short-lived, his passion still fires up his eyes when he relates his fascinating stories to all of us.
 
We enjoyed your photographs and website immensely.
 
Regards,
Colleen Muskat, on behalf of Gordon Dodds

Date:
6/25/2005
Time:
2:30 PM
 
Regarding the B26 Blackjack post - This is the airplane my crew flew overseas from Patterson Field, Ohio to New Caledonia. We left in May 1942, got to Hickam Field, Hawaii during the Battle of Midway and spent about a week with a torpedo strapped to the planes belly while we waited for the Jap Fleet which never showed up, thanks to the Navy and two planes [B-26s] from our sqdn, 69th, and two from the 22nd Boom Gp. Two were shoot down, one from each unit and the other two crash landed back on Midway. The rest of the 69th flew to New Caledonia. At that time the 69th was part of the 38th Bomb Group which was made up of the 69th {New Caledonia, the 70th [Fiji] the 71st & HQ Sqns in New Guinea. I got carried away---any how I don't know the names of the two mechanics standing by Old 81. I got tears in my eyes when I read that the plane I spent many hours in had been destroyed. We got B25s in early 1943 and I had no idea what happened to Old81. Merv Neis

Date:
6/25/2005
Time:
8:34 PM
 
Name: Ted Kramer
Class: 44J
B-26 Transition: Del Rio, TX
Location: Lake Havasu City, AZ
Comments: I was a B-26 Pilot with my training at the end of the war. My primary training was in Vernon, TX, Basic in Enid, OK and advanced in Altus, OK. I have lost all of my class books but would like to hear from any of my classmates.

Date:
6/21/2005
Time:
10:36 PM
 
My father, S/Sgt Clifton Leroy Bailey, was an aircraft instrument mechanic during WWII. He is rather elderly now and unfortunately cannot remember exactly who he served with during the war. I know he landed in Casablanca on Christmas Eve 1942 after shipping over on the Susan B. Anthony. I also know he spent most of his time working with B-26s. He doesn't mention any other aircraft. In addition to working on the instruments he made oxygen for high altitude flying. He spent most of his time in North Africa and Italy and as far as I know was never stationed in France or Germany. He recently told me that he thought he was part of the 10th air force. But that doesn't fit well with what he has told me. I think he must have been part of the 12th air force most likely with the 42nd bomb wing (17th, 319th, 320th Bombardment groups). I think he most likely served with the 319th as he told me he spend 38 months overseas and was getting ready to ship to Japan when the war ended and it appears the 319th was also headed to Japan.
 
I have not been able to find his name associated with any of the above mentioned groups which has led me to question whether the maintenance guys were directly tied to the bombardment groups and squadrons?
 
Sincerely,
Chris Bailey
 
Chris,
Establishing the units of ground crew is very difficult since the historical records rarely mention them. This is totally opposed to aircrew records which are relatively easy to trace.
 
With his arrival in North Africa on Christmas Eve 1942 there is a good possibility that he was with the 319th Bomb Group, but this is only a guess. The 319th never went to France with the other two 42nd Bomb Wing B26 Groups having converted from B26's to B25's in October 1944.
 
They were shipped back to the United States in January 1945 and converted to A-26's. They then shipped out to Okinawa and entered combat against the Japanese.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
6/21/2005
Time:
9:10 PM
 
My Dad, Henry M. Hill, was a B-26 Marauder Man from Memphis TN. He flew over Continental Europe - 72 missions. He was in the 9th Air Force, 387th Bomb Group, 559th Bomb Squadron. He received the Air Medal (four oak leaf clusters) and two Distinguished Flying Crosses. His basic training was in Enid Oklahoma and graduated from the Lubbock Army Flying School, Class 43-A on 1-14-43. Date of separation 6-29-45. He passed away July, 1996. I hope this helps with your research.
 
H. Mark Hill

Date:
6/21/2005
Time:
5:53 PM
 
I am looking for information on my namesake, James Norman Bryan, shot down over France in the “Utah Gamecock.”
 
Jim Bryan
 
Jim,
James N Bryan was assigned to the 323rd.Bomb Group 455th.Bomb Squadron. He was shot down on 5th February 1944 when his B26 took a direct flak hit, one wing was blown off and the plane burst into flames. This B26 was not "Utah Gamecock" which was retired as War Weary.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com
 
Jim, My Father, Robert P. Mims, Jr., Pilot of The Swamp Chicken, was shot down the same day as James Norman Bryan. He, also, was in the 323rd Bomb Group, 455th Bomb Squadron. I about fell out when I read your letter. I am the Editor/Publisher of The Flightline, newsletter for the 455th BS. My Father is still healthy, 84, and remembers everything. I am going to contact him and ask him about him. You are welcome to contact me and I can put you in touch with my Father. James N. Bryan, is listed in our Marauder Squadron Albums as Aircraft Number 41-34721 (YU-F); Aircraft name, Utah Gamecock. His crew consisted of William J. Hook, Salvatore Echo, John A. Holton, William F. McLaren and Silveo J. Tulipane. Good luck. Best Regards, Mignon Mims

Date:
6/20/2005
Time:
10:53 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: John Richard Wikle
Bomb Group: 323
Bomb Squadron: 453
Years in service: 4 or 5
Graduation Class:
Class Location:
Comments: I am looking for any information on my father John Richard (“Dick”) Wikle. He was part of the ground crew on the 323 BG, 453 BS. I would like to know the name of the bomber, and anyone who can remember him.
 
Sandra L Wikle

Date:
6/19/2005
Time:
10:53 PM
 
I'm looking to see if I would be able to find information on Perkatory II, from 386th in WW2. My father-in-law was good friends with a crewman named Frank E. Hamrick, 555th bomb squadron, 386th bomb group. I would appreciate any access to photos of the plane as I've been asked to recreate it in model form for the family as Frank recently passed and my father-in-law wished to present it to his children as another remembrance of their father's sacrifice in WW2. Thank you for any information you may provide to help in my quest, Jim Lorenz
 
  ...large images

Date:
6/19/2005
Time:
10:45 PM
 
Hi, this is a very old article from a military newspaper. It's titled "Rescued After 10 Months In Jungle". A friend wanted me to send it to you in hopes you may be able to forward it to Dale Bordner's family or relatives. Thanks! David
 

Date:
6/19/2005
Time:
10:01 PM
 
Look closely, bottom right - nice!
 
...large picture

Date:
6/19/2005
Time:
9:22 AM
 
My father, 1st Lt. Robert J. McCallum, passed away about two weeks ago. In going thru his old papers for our family history archives, I have ran across several General Orders, (GO 122, 128,149, etc.) which relate primarily to awards for the DFC and Air Medals, Oak Leaf Clusters, plus other items, such as the transfer of crews from the 386th to the 394th BG. I have also found items from the Dodge City Air Base, where he was stationed as a instructor, after his return from the ETO. I would appreciate any advice on how or where to send these items for their preservation, and enjoyment by everyone. Dad served in the 386 BG., 554th BS and in the 394th BG., 585th BS. I found him on missions 92 & 99. Thank you Mr. Klier!!!!
 
I have his crew consisting of:
1st Lt. Robert J. McCallum -P
F/O Thomas Q. Raney -CP
2nd Lt. James L. McClung - B
S/Sgt. Robert W. Hagedorn - RG
S/Sgt. Henry L. Butler - E
S/Sgt John E. Laboranti - G
 
(Based on S.O 59 - 28 Feb., 1944 Transfer of personnel from the 386th, 323rd, & 322nd BG to the 394th BG)
 
I would also appreciate any information on the whereabouts of the family of F/O Thomas Q. Raney Jr. "T.Q." was my fathers co-pilot. I believe he passed away in the mid eighties, but I would like to pass on some information that I believe his family would appreciate, per my fathers request. If any knows the whereabouts of the rest of his crew, I would also appreciate that info.
 
Thanks,
John D. McCallum

Date:
6/19/2005
Time:
9:06 AM
 
Roy Bozych, Historian, 323rd BG, 454th BS
Comments: 323rd BG and 454th BS Reunion in Washington D.C. Our 30th reunion will be held Thursday, September 1st thru Monday, September 5th (Memorial Day). The reunion is open to all members of the 323rd Bomb Group, their family and friends, whether you were a pilot, aircrew, ground crew or office clerk. The reunion is also open to any B-26 Groups or Squadrons who no longer are holding reunions. Further details are available at our website: http://www.323bg454bs.org/Reunion2005.html

Date:
6/18/2005
Time:
7:32 AM
 
I have news and pictures of the recent commemoration service held in West Wales for the crew of the above Marauder. The ship was lost on its maiden ferry flight to the UK.
 
Here's the story.
On 4th June 05 I organized a service of commemoration for the crew of B-26 41-34765 'Lil' Lass'. The crew flew into Carn Llidi Mountain, St. David's, West Wales, in foggy weather on 4th June 1943. They were on the last leg of a Trans-Atlantic ferry flight on the Southern route; North Africa to St. Eval, Cornwall. Of the formation of 8 ships, 2 crashed in Wales (both fatal), 1 belly-landed on a beach in Ireland, 2 crash-landed at RAF bases in England, the other 3 landing without incident. The 2nd ship which crashed in Wales, came down 60 miles east of 'Lil' Lass'; this ship was 'Mi' 'Laine' - pilot - Lt. Jack Reiss 449BS 322BG. The ship was actually the CO's (Major Berry) ship, but Berry was slightly injured during their stop at Ascension Island and had to drop out of the crew. Lt. Shoop took his place. The ship hit a farm building and disintegrated, again in foggy weather conditions. The inquiry into the events of this day blamed the weather. It also came to light that the B-26 that came down in Ireland, 'Ridge Runner' (Lt. Seeley's crew), was the only ship which had a radio capable of contacting a ground station.
 
The memorial is in the form of a propeller blade found near the crash site 5 years ago. It has been refurbished and set in concrete, with an interpretation plaque giving the names of the crew. The 30 minute service included a choir, a short speech by myself, followed by one-minute's silence at 16:15hrs; the time of the crash. A bugler then sounded the Last Post, then bang on queue came a fly-by - it surely brought a lump to my throat!
 
Attending the service at St. David's on 4th June were:
Relatives of the crew
Major Matt Goodrich US Army
Welsh Affairs Officer (US Embassy)
Mayor of St. David's
 
Along with 50 other guests, some of whom remembered the crash. The crew of Lil' Lass, which was named after the pilot's eldest daughter; aged 1 at the time (present at the service):
 
Lt. Robert Lawrence NY
Lt. Hulbert Robertson TX
F.O. James Jackson GA
Sgt. William Brown MT
 
The crew of Mi 'Laine (named after Major Berry's wife):
 
Lt John Reiss TX
Lt Eugene Carby GA
Lt Earl Shoop PA
Sgt. Raymond Shoemaker PA
 
The quest for information continues! I'm trying to contact other members of the Lil' Lass crew who flew over by air transport. These were Sgt ARTHUR PRAMUK and Sgt CHARLES O'CONNELL. If any of your veterans recall these last two men, I'd be glad to hear from them. More picture to follow.
 
Steve Jones
Wales

 

Date:
6/15/2005
Time:
9:54 PM
 
My dad is Gilbert C. Luna. He served with the 387th bomb group, 559th bomb squadron. He was an engineer and top turret gunner on the ship "THE FRONT BURNER". He participated in 65 missions over Europe. I would like to make contact with John R. Wright - radio operator. Can anyone help? Please contact me his son Gilbert Luna Jr.
 
Gilbert - unfortunately, I did not know your father, but I was a recent member to join the 559th. I have sent cc. to two others who may - or can spread your interest. Up until recently, I wrote a newsletter for the 559th but have since retired. The newsletter would be an ideal place to place your request as it goes to many of the earlier members. When I say earlier members I mean crew-members that were stationed earlier in the war in England. My interpretation of your entry in the b26.com was that your dad was in the group that flew their missions out of England. Theresa Redmond, 559th Secretary, has a few copies left of the 559th Squadron History (price $35 prepaid) that may give you information on the squadron members and other details that may be of interest to you. Thanks for contacting b26.com. I wish I could help you more. Bob Destiche, Lt.Col. USAF (R).

Date:
6/15/2005
Time:
9:51 PM
 
I loved the Marauder as a kid during WW II. They would come through our town on freight train flat cars, [fuselage on one, and wings and engines on another], and while they were sitting in the freight yard on sidings, we would slip in and sit in the cockpit and pretend to fly missions, that is, until the Railroad detectives would catch us and chase us out. The city where this occurred was Evansville, Indiana. We also had a Republic plant that produced over 7,000 P-47 Thunderbolts [lived about a mile from the plant] and the sky was always full of them. The wonderful sound of the Pratt & Whitney R- 2800 round engines still is in my mind and soul. The B-26 was always one of my favorite airplanes.....awfully slick design and way ahead of its time. Of course, it ended up with the best combat record of WW II for medium bombers, even with all the bad press it received in the early days. I eventually went to work for the Martin Company in flight test during the 50's, and left in 62, when they quit building aircraft, and went with NASA. Best regards, Bob Burns

Date:
6/15/2005
Time:
9:21 AM
 
Lt. Ernest J. Nackord
United States Army Air Force
September 8, 1924 Pacific Grove, California
Class 44-K
Primary Aircraft --B26 Martin Marauder
Other Aircraft --P-61, B-29, A-26
DOS Oct '42 to May '46
 
Graduated from B-26 transition school in Frederick, Oklahoma and certified as Aircraft Commander. I was without a doubt the worst pilot in the Army Air Forces. I even crashed a Marauder on take-off. ( The left tire blew and the strut collapsed...no serious injuries....I cut the palm of my hand as I said "hello" to the nose wheel....which had broken glass and thorns on it. ) I never saw any real combat and spent time with the Free French as an instructor. I was/am proud of being a B-26 Pilot, albeit not the best. I survived though. Visit my web page: http://www.worldwar2pilots.com/AAF-B-Nack1.htm
 
That was yours truly over the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco...actually we went under it twice!...double stupids....no problem for me, I was the lowest ranking officer and if it became necessary (got caught) I was prepared to state that when I was at the controls, I was simply following orders of the other two pilots aboard...1st Lt R. Chamberlain later killed in crash...and 1st Lt. K. Montgomery (later Colonel now deceased as are most of us). But what a ride we have had. Everybody should be so lucky.
 

Date:
6/14/2005
Time:
6:43 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: Hank Dabney
Location: Chanute Field
 
Hi, I was really pleased to find your site and so many wonderful stories and memories. My Grandpa was a propeller mechanic and B-26 pilot in WWII. Unfortunately, he went into the hospital a couple days ago and I don't think he is going to make it out.
 
He didn't go overseas and his efforts can't compare to what so many of the people here did, but he served proudly and I have heard him talk about the B-26 my entire life. I'm sorry for not having many details, but I thought I would share what I remember.
 
Grandpa was a civilian working as a mechanic at Chanute Field in Illinois when the war broke out. He had apparently gained quite a good reputation when he was drafted.
 
He took flight training in the B-26 with a one-armed Frenchman out on the East Coast somewhere who drilled it into him that he had to surge those engines through an unusual number of times because they suffered from vapor lock. He said that Frenchman was the best he had ever seen and he was certain he saved his life.
 
At the time he said there was a lot of fear of the B-26 and he became sought out as "That B-26 man." I guess this was before they made some modifications as he said people were scared to death of the plane and there were craters at the end of the runway to justify their fears.
 
He said one time he was on approach with a new Colonel when the Colonel told him to drop the gear - he nodded "No!" The Colonel insisted, and Grandpa said the bird shook and shuddered like nothing he had ever seen before or since.
 
Now I don't remember if it was a B-25 or a B-26 or maybe even another model, but he said that Mr Martin had his own personal plane that was one of those models that had to make a stop at Chanute for some repair work. He said that the plane was bright silver with a red interior.
 
Anyway, I just love him dearly and, though I've heard the same stories countless times, I enjoy hearing them as much as I did the first time.
 
He lived about 5 miles from Chanute Field and spent most of the war based there. I know he flew to different places and he flew P-38s, but never in combat.
 
I honestly have never seen a picture of him with any guys in his squadron - they wanted to keep him at Chanute and they did. I mean, in my eyes he practically won the war single-handedly, but the reality is he was just another guy doing his duty - he didn't really have the same experience as the guys who were being shot at did.
 
He wasn't with a bomber group - he flew B-24s, B-25s, B-26s, P-38s, etc., but mainly in the line of repairing them and sometimes ferrying them. He did say he flew down to Australia with a group right after the war, but I don't know much about that. I'm going to see him Friday - if he's up for it I'll ask him more questions.
 
If by any chance someone knew him I would love to hear about it.
Dirk Richmond

Date:
6/12/2005
Time:
5:34 PM
 
Howdy from Texas,
Am looking for information about my brother in law, 1st Lt/Captain Robert C Craig, more known as Bob, who served with the 13th Jungle AF in the South Pacific. Just discovered your website, while looking for the story of Booger Red, a Texas legend. Seems a B-26 was named after Booger Red, which led me to look further for stories or websites about the B-26 planes and flyers who flew in them. Seems like your website entries deal with men and planes which flew in the ETO, Med areas. Bob learned his flying at a southeastern US Air Corp training field, his daughter has a picture of him and others in front of a group of Stearman trainers. She has another picture of him and others at a 13th AF location in the Pacific, and I believe a picture of his aircraft, "Murder One." I understand he was both a crewman and a pilot on different times, but not much else is known except for some personal information.
 
Would be interested in finding out what squadron the "Murder One," was in which might tell us more about his own participation in the missions of that squadron.
 
I found several of the stories on your website very interesting. Perhaps some reading might tell his children some of what men who flew those planes what they went thru, even in a different theater of war.
 
Regards,
Noel Garland

Date:
6/12/2005
Time:
9:32 AM
 
Hello Joey, I have received your B26.com Guest Book request ( click here ) for information on Joseph Paduano. He was a great tail gunner on my crew and was credited with shooting down one German fighter on the 23 December 1944 mission to Mayen, Germany. Best Regards---Col. W. Clyde Harkins

Date:
6/10/2005
Time:
10:02 PM
 
I am Bob Carden 17thBG 37th bomb squadron in response to James Ken Moore - 397 Bomb Group. James question -what Hotel was used for Basic training? I took Basic training at Miami Beach and stayed in The Kent Hotel (see below), just one block from the ocean. My Brother served with the 397th BG from Venlo Holland. Hope this helps. Bob Carden
 

Date:
6/7/2005
Time:
7:34 AM
 
I am a 32 year old daughter of a WWII veteran and have a photo of my father taken, we believe, as they were leaving for Europe. he passed away in 1984 and all we really have is this photo (with each man's signature on front and home town on back) and his discharge papers. I am hoping for any info on crew/missions or how to locate them in archives:
 
Paul Roland Ermler, 494th Bomb Squadron (M), staff sergeant, airplane armorer gunner. Battles and Campaigns: Ardennes, Rhineland, Central Europe GO 33 Wd 45
 
Other crew:
 
1.) George Cermak, Lake Village, Indiana (pilot?)
2.) Henry Ausburn, Port Byron, NY (co-pilot)--I found his 83 year old brother. Henry was killed in Korea 1951 on his last flight before going home
3.) Jerry McKinney, Lone Wolf, OK
4.) Joseph E. Seiler, New Orleans, LA
5.) Cletus Muller, Whitemore, Iowa (died of heart attack in 1981)
 
Thank you for any response/suggestions,
Suzette Ermler
 
...large image

Date:
6/6/2005
Time:
9:42 PM
 
My name is Joe Seelinger. My Dad was a Flight Surgeon, Dr. George F. Seelinger, in the 344th BG, 494th BS from about 1943-1945. He was in private practice on Long Island in Sea Cliff and Westbury until his untimely death in 1950 from pancreatitis. I've had a photo album of his for some time now and only recently studied it. It has a photo of plane logos, planes in formation over Holland and Germany, one plane on fire in the air after being hit, bridges over the Rhine being bombed, and some of B-26 crash sites with planes identified by number. In some cases the crews are also identified. I don't particularly want to give these up but if anyone is interested, I can have them scanned and sent.
 
Thanks.
Joe Seelinger

Date:
6/6/2005
Time:
6:30 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Oliver W Hartwell
Bomb Group: 391
Bomb Squadron: 573
Years in service: 44-45
Comments: This was my dad. He was a bombardier on aircraft 334165 T6-H that crash landed wheels up in Dec 1944 with what appears to be flak damage. Dad was killed in a B29 crash June 15, 1947, he was the bombardier on board B29A 44-62228, 64th BS. The crash happened in the Hawks Mountains near Perkinsville, Vermont. I am interested in learning who the other crew members were onboard aircraft 165 in Dec 1944.
 
Thanks for the help.
Charlie (Hartwell) Ford
 
 
Charlie,
December 2nd 1944 the 391st Bomb Group was tasked to attack Saarlautern defended area, Germany. On approach to the target the formation was subject to intense flak and during the period 43-34165 T6-H was hit. It was struck by a 88mm shell which burst inside the fuselage making a hole large enough to drive a jeep through, instantly killing the turret gunner S/Sgt Jesse M Elerbee and wounding the radio gunner T/Sgt James B Sims. The tail gunner John J Wagner calmly administered first aid to James Sims. The pilot 1.Lt Edmond B Dunn was simultaneously wounded by another burst of flak, and while the copilot 2.Lt Edwin H Armstrong flew the aircraft, the togglier S/Sgt Oliver W Hartwell administered first aid to the pilot. Dunn then resumed the controls. The intercom system was out, and because of the gaping void communication between crew members fore and aft was impossible. To add to this precarious situation the bombay was loaded with 250lb fragmentation bombs. There was no rudder control since the flak burst had ripped out the control cables. The hydraulic system had been washed out and there was no navigator on board. The planes radio had been silenced and a thick undercast of cloud extended to within two hundred feet of the ground preventing navigation by pilotage. The flight leader Captain Joseph J Boylan seeing the difficulty left the formation to drop back to lead the stricken B26 home, but this plan was thwarted when they became separated in the cloud. For more than an hour the pilot flew the Marauder at minimum altitude until a navigational check point was sighted and a course was steered towards base. With wheels up and no flaps Lt Dunn set the B26 down on its belly in the centre of the runway, a landing so smooth that the tail section remained fastened to the fuselage and the bomb load remained undisturbed. Tail gunner Wagner had placed the inert Sims in such a position that the wounded radio man Suffered no further injury. Ground crew found the wounded man tied securely to the remnant of the fuselage.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
6/4/2005
Time:
8:34 PM
 
Good evening,
Following the message of Henri Fabry regarding the mid-air collision on March 21,1945.  The two aircraft in question were A26C 43-22523 and 43-22507 of 416 BG. Full details can be supplied upon request.
 
Best regards from rainy Belgium !
Luc V.

Date:
6/4/2005
Time:
5:36 PM
 
In response to the son of 1st Lt. John G. Pederson, my father told the same exact story. The letter that I just read refers to Mr. Pederson actually staying in this newly built hut made of debris. My father passed away in 1984. He told me the story about a new pilot who had this bad dream "nightmare". Dad and him shared a bunk bed in a canvas tent. The man's first mission was to be the next day. I believe this to be Mr. Pederson. He fell out of his bunk and actually physically tore his way out of the tent. Dad woke him and asked him what was going on. The man told my father that he had a bad dream, that his plane took off of the runway and crashed and he was actually trying to make his way out of the wreckage, well the next day first mission the plane crashed, all aboard died except this soldier with a dream. He was able to tear his way out of the wreckage and survive. True Story. Sitting in the chair is dad. Hope to hear from you son of John G. Pederson and when I do I will scan the letter that my father wrote to my mom on April 18, 1944. Spencer Seymour
 
R.F. Jones, Art Hess, Dave Little, Bob Wavering
and Roy Seymour Sardinia '44

Date:
6/4/2005
Time:
11:08 PM
 
I'm trying to find info on my uncle SSgt Joe Paduano (Chip) served with the 387 Bombardment Group, 558th Bombardment Squadron with Col Walter "Clyde" Harkins on the B26 Screaming Eagle. Chip was on the Mayan Bridge raid on Dec 23 1944. Thank you, Joey P.

Date:
6/4/2005
Time:
8:05 AM
 
Name: Jack Miller
Research 322nd BG Members.
Bomb Squadron: 450th BS
Dater of interest: 12/23/44
Comments: My name is Jack Miller, 45 Years old, active Pilot and Historian: I'm looking for crew members or relatives of the crew flown by Lt. J. Eckrick. His Plane was excavation on 3.October 2003 in a bomb-crater near the Belgian border at the village of Scheid, Germany. The crew bailed out. The digging was made by a searching-team of Prum. Please could someone help me to get contact to them. Contact me by email.
 
Thanks, Jack

Date:
6/4/2005
Time:
6:23 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: James Edward Gorman
Bomb Group: 397 Bomb Group
Bomb Squadron: 597 Bomb Squadron
Years in service:
Graduation Class:
Class Location:
Comments: My name is Sean Gorman and I am the son of James. I don't have any records or anything about my fathers time in the service. I believe he flew a plane called the "Mama Liz"? I have one picture of that time period and some metals from him. I came late in life for my parents and didn't get much information about that time for my Dad. Also he wasn't very forthcoming about his experiences during the war. I believe he did a recording for the archive in Akron but don't have any more information than that! My dad has now past away after a battle with Alzheimer's and I am now able to look into what happened to him during those years? If there is anyone out there that would have any information about him I would love to hear from you! Below is my contact information.
 
Thank you in advance,
Sean Gorman
 
Mama Liz was a B-26B-55-MA of 397th BG 597th BS; serial 42-96120, squadron code 9F-R. Attached photo can be found at link below. This photo is also on page 36 in Frederick A. Johnson's book on Martin B-26 Marauder (ISBN 1-58007-029-9).
http://afhra.maxwell.af.mil/wwwroot/photo_galleries/merhar/Photos/01097628_018.jpg
 
Mama Liz was shot down on June 24th 1944, pilot was Captain Moses J. Gatewood Jr. It was reported that it was last seen in a spin. MACR # 6197. There are two references to Captain Gatewood below, with detailed description of events:
 
http://www.b26.com/marauderman/moses_gatewood.htm
http://www.b26.com/marauderman/andy_anderson.htm
 
Alf Egil Johannessen

Date:
6/3/2005
Time:
6:13 AM
 
I would like to contact Phil Weiss regarding Col Eugene D Wallace because he was my 6th grade teacher at Yorba Linda Junior High (Yorba Linda, CA) back in 1974. Mr. Wallace had a tremendous impact in my young life and if he still needs info for his book I would be more than gracious to help him preserve the memory of Mr. Wallace. Sincerely, Vincent Peralta

Date:
6/1/2005
Time:
10:00 PM
 
Chester, I just re-read the report ( Mission No. 308 ) and found the information - - should have read more carefully the first time! Again I am totally amazed at the things that can be learned from the internet.
 
Over 20 years ago I began to look for information on our two local WW2 pilots, both lost in action, one being Fred Sumlin of the 386th, and the other Billy Burt of the 57th FG, ironically both lost in freak accidents rather than direct enemy fire. Their remains were brought home after the war and placed in our little local cemetery, with their squadron numbers on the headstones. Billy flew his P-47 into a utility pole next to his target in Italy when strafing a group of German trucks.
 
I'll never forget the "air show" Fred gave us in late summer of '44 before he and crew shipped out from Barksdale. He did things you would not have thought a B-26 would do. I was 15 years old and we lived on the side of a hill overlooking a creek bottom about 50 miles from Barksdale. I would hear a couple of them coming through the treetops and hit the front yard just in time to get a glimpse. I swear I saw the upper surfaces of the wing more than once as they swept down into the creek bottom.
 
I was not sure about Fred being a first pilot until reading your report, but from what we heard back then, I guess he was one of the "hot" ones.
 
God bless you and all the other guys for keeping the memories alive.
 
Fred Mitchell

Date:
6/1/2005
Time:
9:46 PM
 
Could you please tell me what progress has been made in building an air force museum in Wash. DC? You have a great site and I am very moved to read the stories, and am amazed at the information you are able to provide. My Father-in-law was stationed at Boxted in U.K., grounds crew. My grandson and I visited there 2 years ago. We were given a tour by the group that keeps the history alive, they do a great job, wonderful people who still thank our air force for being there. Thank you to all the air crews, and keep up the great site. Barbara Pallister

Date:
6/1/2005
Time:
8:41 PM
 
I am looking for any information on my grandfather Walter Grasser. I have a picture of him standing in uniform in front of a fighter plane. That's all I have. Thanks Sandy

Date:
5/30/2005
Time:
9:29 PM
 
Trying to get any information on my Father's WWII experiences.
 
Roy Dismukes
386th Bomb Group
553rd Squadron
l940-l945
 
Thanks for any info.
Elizabeth
 
Hello Elizabeth, I received your e-mail requesting information concerning your father. He flew a total of 63 missions with the 386th Bomb Group. You can see where he flew in the formation on four of his missions. Go to my web page listed below and click on, "Formation Diagrams", then click on page 6, you will see a small picture of mission number 176, click on that number and you will get a large page account of the formation. You can also print it for your record. There are three more mission formation diagrams which your father flew on--they are, Group missions number 187, 194 (D-Day), and 222. I believe your father's rank spanned from Flight Officer to Captain.
 
John Depute was shot down on November 18, 1944. For the complete story go to my web page and click on 294. He was flying with Captain Robert Harris that day. Prior to that, John Depute flew 63 missions with your father.
 
Tallyho,
Chester Klier--Historian, 386th Bomb Group
Web page address: http://www.b26.com/historian/chester_klier.htm

Date:
5/30/2005
Time:
12:23 PM
 
Hello,
I am the daughter of George F. Reed, and my mother's maiden name was Virginia Jane Battaglia. My father was one of the chief inspector's for the Glenn L. Martin plant, in Omaha, Nebraska, near Offut Base in Omaha, Nebraska, during the war years. My mother was a welder.
 
My dad was born in Muncie, Indiana. If you have any information, on the reunion activities, please let me know. This was a very important era in our American history. I was proud of my parents, that they took part in our armed forces. My father is not doing so well, he will be 96 years, young June 13 we have mutual birthdays.
 
This memorial day, is special in my heart, for the Glenn L Martin plant is very important in our military history.
 
Thanks,
Virginia Jean Reed

Date:
5/29/2005
Time:
6:29 PM
 
Any help identifying the men in the pictures?
 
Hell Cat Black Jack
large image large image
 
Left: Hell Cat 41-17903 of 17th BG 37th BS is here photographed when on a US Bond Tour July 1943. Accompanying on this tour was Lady Halitosis 41-17765 of 320th BG 441st BS (had 43 missions) and Jabbo's Sky King 2nd 41-31609 of 319th BG 439th BS.
 
Right: Black Jack 42-107581 TQ-Y of 387th BG 559th BS piloted by Colonel Jack E. Caldwell lost a wing from a FLAK hit over Dunkirk on April 12th 1944. MACR # 3745.
 
Pilot Captain B. M. Lloyd: 1st Lt Bryan Lloyd was pilot on original crew of 41-17852 Bronco of 34th BS
Co-Pilot 1st Lt H. A. Kohnert: 2nd Lt Harold A. Kohnert was co-pilot on original crew of 41-17873 of 37th BS
Navigator Captain Henry A. Potter: Nav-Bomb on original crew of 41-17839 Air Corpse of 95th BS (Doolittle's Navigator on Tokyo Raid)
Bombardier T/Sgt L.F. Mohesky: Nav-Bomb T/Sgt Lee F. Mohosky on original crew of 41-17914 Defiant of 432nd BS
Radio Operator T/Sgt D.B. Smith: Radio-Gunner S/Sgt Dean B. Smith on original crew of 41-17809 Gimszy Inc Bombs & Bullets
Armorer-Gunner T/Sgt H. E. Barr: Armorer-Gunner Sgt Harry E. Barr on original crew of 41-17839 Air Corpse of 95th BS
Engineer S/Sgt F.A. Ross: Armorer-Gunner S/Sgt Frank A. Ross on original crew of 41-17843 of 95th BS
 
Alf Egil Johannessen

Date:
5/29/2005
Time:
5:47 PM
 
I’m currently the Command Chief (senior enlisted advisor to the commander) of the 386th Air Expeditionary Wing. Can you help me locate the origin of the 386th’s insignia? I know the four patches are those of the 552d, 553d, 554th, and 555th squadrons, but I’d like to find out what kind of animal (greyhound possibly) is at the top of the patch and what it’s sitting on as well as the significance of the two. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you! Marty K.
 
386_logo.jpg (18865 bytes)
 
Hello Martin, thank you for your interest in the 386th Bomb Group, happy to learn the 386th Number is still active and doing an important Air Force assignment. I hope to answer your questions about the 386th Bomb Group Insignia during World War Two. Our Group leader was Colonel Lester J. Maitland, a true air a test pilot during World War One flying Spads, Sopwith, and Newport aircraft. For more about his decades of aviation history exploits, click on my web page address listed below, then click on "My Author's Preface", paragraph number four.
 
Early on Colonel Maitland called members of the 386th together for their first meeting in the base theater at MacDill Field. He told them when the war was over, there would be only one group with the best combat record. He told them that he intended for that to be the 386th!
 
The 386th Bomb Group Insignia: The four squadrons are represented thereon with a dog resting on five flat stones. The dog's name was, "Marauder", the Group's mascot at Lake Charles Air Base. Marauder was also the name of the Martin B-26 Aircraft which we flew. The dog had an unusually long snout which is characteristic of a breed know as the Whippet. They were used in dog racing along with a similar dog breed, the Greyhound.
 
The dog is seen resting upon five flat stones--there is nothing official about those stones. However I believe they represent the four squadrons along with the 386th Group Headquarters. Considering Colonel Maitland's aforementioned statements about being the best; I think the stones are a symbol indicating that he was laying a rock solid foundation for the 386th to build upon.
 
For official list of the Group's war time accomplishments, go to my web page and click on, "Battle Honor's". The 386th flew its first combat mission on July 30, 1943. I flew the first of my 66 missions with the Group the following day.
 
Sincerely,
Chester P. Klier--Historian, 386th Bomb Group
 
Dear Chester:
Most interesting and good that the current 386th thinks of the past. Don't think the new outfit has quite the risky job the Crusaders had!
 
Hard to believe it is 62 years since this then 15 year-old kid first saw B-26s put down on Boxted. The memories are still there and bright, much more so than of things that happened in later years.
 
I expect you know that a bunch of local enthusiasts have had three successful fly-in shows on a grass strip on the old airfield. Two P-51s put down last year. They plan another show this September. Alas no B-26s around now. To see one of those beauties come in would really be something. So sad so very few survived into peacetime. Most blown up as salvage on airfields in Germany. Criminal.
 
Keep well and happy.
Roger Freeman
 
Sir,
Thank you so very much for the information on the 386th's patch! First I'd like to say: "Happy Memorial Day" to you and your comrades for being part of our country's "greatest generation". Your contributions in making our country such a tremendous place to live can NEVER be overrated! Like you, my father was an integral part of WWII. He was a radio operator/gunner on a B-17 with the 99th BG(H) and flew out of North Africa. I've attached a picture of his plane, "Sweater Girl". He flew the first 50 missions in her and she went on to fly all but 10 of the group's 395 combat missions.
 
The 386th Air Expeditionary Wing now flies C-130s ferrying Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines into and out of the Iraq and Afghanistan. We have an unbelievable mission effectiveness rate and are the best tactical airlift unit in the theater, something Colonel Maitland would have been proud of!
 
Thanks for your help and may God continue to bless you!
Marty K.
 
Large Image

Date:
5/28/2005
Time:
7:35 PM
 
Today, I went to the "Memorial Day" in the American cemetery of Neupré. I am astonished - there was a lot of people from around world and also a lot of Americans. Here are some pictures. Philippe
 
Ardennes American Cemetery Ardennes American Cemetery

Ardennes American Cemetery

Ardennes American Cemetery
 
Thank you, Philippe!

Date:
5/28/2005
Time:
7:16 AM
 
27 May 2005
 
Dear Marauder Men,
 
Thank you for your service to our country. My father was a Marauder Man. His name was Lt. Jim Horvath, 37th Bomb Squadron, 17th Bomb Group, from Manchester, CT. He was a B-26 bombardier/navigator. I recently found his WWII diary along with a few photographs. Pictured with my father were Joe Lynch, 17th Bomb Group HQ, of Fort Worth, TX and Lloyd Love, 37th Bomb Squadron, 17th Bomb Group of Louisiana. Others mentioned in the diary included Joe Warner (17BG/37BS), Charlie Paradise, Matt Wilson, McHugh (James W. McHugh (?), 17BG/37BS), and Major MacKean. Did anyone know any of these men? His diary indicated that he flew 66 missions out of North Africa, Corsica, and Sardinia from 4 January 1944 through 14 September 1944. His targets included Cassino, Florence, Anzio beachhead, and Rome.
 
If you knew him, or have any record of such missions, could you contact me via email?
 
Thank you very much,
Jim Horvath, III
 
Ref Lt. Jim Horvath
Hello Jim - I am Malcolm D. Enlow Jr. My Dad - Malcolm D. Enlow was a Marauder Man, and grew up with Lloyd Love whom you mentioned in one of your Dad's pictures. I just this week talked to Lloyd - he lives about 7 miles from me. He too has a diary, and he completed 73 missions with the 17BG/37BS . I just this week sent information to Mike here at B26.com about Lt. Lloyd Love. I can provide Lloyd's contact info. He is retired, says he spends most of his time up late at night watching the History /Discovery channels, sleeping in in the mornings. He doesn't have a computer, but I plan on carrying a laptop out to his place and showing him B26.com. Also you need to start searching for a book called "Daddy of Them All" Story of The 17th Bombardment Group In World War II by Victor C. Tannehill. Please scan your pictures, and information about your Dad, and place on this site. I think it's a great tribute to all the great Marauder Men.
 
I just got through talking to Mr. Lloyd Love, he is very excited as he was Lt. Jim Horvath's room mate in Sardina. Mr. Lloyd Love ask me to forward his phone number to Jim - he would love to talk to him!
 
Thanks,
Malcolm D. Enlow Jr. (Don)
 
My special thanks to B26.COM, and Don Enlow from Louisiana for helping me to connect with "Marauder Man" Lloyd Love. Mr. Love happens to have been one of my father's roommates when they were both stationed in Sardinia in 1944 (17th BG, 37th squadron). Thanks to Mike and Don, I was able to telephone Mr. Love in Louisiana Sunday night and had a wonderful 35 minute conversation with him! It was special. I look forward to speaking with him again. I hope that others are as fortunate as I.
 
Best regards,
Jim Horvath III
 
Thank you Jim, Don and of course, Mr. Love! You've all made my day. MS

Date:
5/27/2005
Time:
5:39 PM
 
I just rec'd. a info packet from NARA, Military Personnel Records, and my request for info stated that the info I wanted was lost in the fire back in 1973. So I just started surfing and found this web site. Much to my surprise, the very first listing at the guest book mentioned my father. That listing was on 12/31/02, sub. Domitilio Lucero. Also listed was the names of the lost B26 with 2.Lt C. Letzring as pilot for that day. Well low and behold, there's my father's name on the missing planes list, S/Sgt. T. Netecke. Any information you have would be greatly appreciated. Thank you. William Netecke

Date:
5/27/2005
Time:
5:22 PM
 
I recently visit your interesting B26 site, and wants to ask you for two requests.
 
I am Vice-President of the "Forced Landing Association", whose members make researches and inquiries about all allies aircraft which were shot down in our region (west of PARIS).
 
1°) I will be very interested if possible to have a contact with the nephew of Lt. John W. COLSCH ; 391st bomb Group, 574th BOMB Squadron (2003 GUEST BOOK. Date 3/1/2003). I have information for him concerning the location of his uncle's B-26 crash site at CHERISY, near DREUX (Eure et Loir) on August 13, 1944. The Cherisy's town council wants in a near future to honour those brave airmen who died in this crash.
 
2°) I also have information for Mike WILSON, Date 1/17/2005 . I know exactly the crash site of Lt. Donat DAUTEUIL's B-26 (391st BG, 575th BS), near EVREUX (Eure), on May 27, 1944. We have many parts of his aircraft. I know also D. DAUTEUIL's address.s.
 
Thank you very much for your help.
 
Sincerely
Jean-luc GRUSON

Date:
5/26/2005
Time:
10:29 PM
 
My father, Jess M. Gallegus served in the 30th repair Squadron support group at Stanstead near Heathrow Air Base in 1943 April. Jess served in France, Belgium Holland, and Germany. He returned home in January 1946. Jess is now 82 years young and is still full of hell!! He recalls with great fondness all of his wartime experiences and would like to share his history with you or any other historian or wartime GI. He can be reached via email and phone. He would love to hear from anyone from his Squadron or Group who still remains.
 
Sincerely,
Jim Gallegus
Son

Date:
5/26/2005
Time:
10:13 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: William F. Guyan "Bill" from Amsterdam, NY
Bomb Group: 391st
Bomb Squadron: 572nd
Years in service: 1943-1945 (Ardennes, Central Europe, Normandy, Rhineland, Northern France)
Graduation Class: 1943
Class Location: Tampa, FL
Comments: My father, Bill Guyan, would be thrilled to hear from his fellow veterans. He is a very healthy and active 82. I would love to hear from anyone who remembers my father or who was in his group/squadron. I am very interested in his military career but like many WWII vets, he is reluctant to talk about it much.
 
My name is Betsy Donnelly and I can be reached via email. Thank you very much!

Date:
5/26/2005
Time:
10:12 PM
 
Hello. I've been doing research on Frederick T. Clive, who was engaged to my mother prior to his death on March 22, 1943. I have a photograph of him with crew members that I found on a web site. He is not listed as a member of the crew that was missing in action (nor is Harry Feigenbaum, also photographed). I'm wondering if they took the place of Clarence Sox or William Weeks and if so, why? Were remains ever found? An you tell me anything else about the crew members?
 
Thanks,
Jeannie Parker
 
My father, Joe Donato, who is still alive, spoke of his good friend, Fred Clive, who was KIA, my father said that when he returned home, Fred’s fiancé came down from Boston to speak to my father about Fred’s death. If you wish to contact us, you can email me.
 
Joe Donato Jr.

Date:
5/26/2005
Time:
6:10 AM
 
My cousin 1st Lt. William Corkrean was a B26 pilot. He was shot down toward the end of the war, I believe over Holland. As I recall he had around 25 missions. Would you have any record? Thanks, Robert Corkrean

Date:
5/25/2005
Time:
6:14 AM
 
I am the son of Clarence V. Erickson a co-pilot of a B-26 out of England in WWII. He was with the 391st bomb group and the 575th squadron. He passed away in 1972 which was long before the people who were in WWII started telling their stories. I have recently started piecing material together and have a good start and I am interested in making contact with anyone who served with my dad. I am also interested in finding out if there are any gatherings being planned for this year that will include either the 575th or the 391st.
 
With the Memorial Day weekend approaching I want to thank those who served our country in WWII - you are truly The Greatest Generation.
 
Thank-you,
Rich Erickson

Date:
5/23/2005
Time:
10:04 PM
 
I am trying to find out about my Uncle who was shot down (reportedly) over Belgium. I believe his death date was September 23, 1944 as part of the 344 Bomb Group. His name was George H. Roesser, originally from Philadelphia. His rank was Sgt. and he would have been about 24 or 25 years old. Can you point me in any direction toward where I can find out information on him?
 
Thank you very much.
 
Sincerely,
John R. Reis
 
344th BG 494th BS 42-107679 shot down by flak over Holland September 23 1944, MACR 9735. Target was Venlo Marshalling Yard, Holland.
 
CREW:
Pilot: 1st Lt. Carson W. Carrington
Co-pilot: 2nd Lt Frank Brackoneski
Bombardier: 2nd Lt S.F. Thistlewaite
Engineer Gunner. S/Sgt Wayne L. Martin
Radio Gunner: Sgt G.H. Roesser
Tail Gunner: S/Sgt M.J. Flynn
 
Alf Egil Johannessen

Date:
5/23/2005
Time:
9:52 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Harry Havnoonian, Sr.
Bomb Group: 336
Bomb Squadron: 480
Years in service: 1942-1946
Airbases: MacDill, Lake Charles and Lowry Field, Avon Field, Page Field ( Ft. Meyers, Fl.)
Class Location:
Comments: Gunnery instructor and armament deployment. Also, I was present at the June 21st,1944 B26 crash near DeQuincy, Louisiana. Plane number 41-35076. Research by my son and I have shown no details exist concerning this plane crash. Photos in my possession are marked restricted/classified and we believe this was due to the secretive "bomb sight" that was being tested aboard that plane. Air force historical museums and societies have no record of this crash.
________________
 
My father has many pictures to share of his time stateside. How can establish "his" web page on B26.com?
 
Sincerely,
Frank Havnoonian
 
Thanks to all those who served.

Date:
5/23/2005
Time:
9:09 PM
 
Hello fellow airmen, I was a waist gunner radioman with the 368th squadron 306th bomb group flew from St. Quentin France and Holland and Belgium. Hit Stuttgart, Frankfurt and a number of other towns. I remember black flak looking like black popcorn and shrapnel like gravel against the plane. I also threw chaff during evasive action. Saw some German 109’s come directly into my gunner area. I fired a lot of rounds but he peeled and shot up some planes in the next squadrons. Bombed area near Battle of the Bulge. Weather was like soup. Flak heavy. My pilot and crew were great. Will look and see other targets. I never kept in touch or went to any reunions but always felt a bond with marauder airmen. God Bless. Vic Katz, 597th Bomb Squadron, 397th Bomb Group

Date:
5/22/2005
Time:
10:02 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: Melford L. Garrison
Bomb Group: we think it is the 335th out of Barksdale, LA
Bomb Squadron: ?
Years in service: 1942-1946
Graduation Class: ?
Class Location: ?
Comments: My father was a gunner in the B26 out of Barksdale Field in Louisiana during WW2. His crew was not shipped overseas due to the war ending. We are looking for anyone who might remember him and help us find out more about his squad, group and crew. We are making a much over due shadowbox for him and would like to try to locate the correct patches and wings for him. Any help would be appreciated.
 
Thank you,
Lynn Garrison

Date:
5/22/2005
Time:
8:52 AM
 
Just sitting here doing a little research on a non related matter and ran across this web site. My dad flew B26's in WWII, and made a B26 documentary about 15 years ago. I was a combat helicopter gun ship pilot in Vietnam, so we had fun sharing stories of combat, flying and the camaraderie of those with who we shared life and death. Just thought I send the email, to let you know how much my dad loved this part of his life.
 
Mike Hankey

Date:
5/21/2005
Time:
9:42 PM
 
I am Bob Carden 17th 37th.Is there any one out there that can identify this B-26. I brought the picture home after the end of the war. I hope the picture comes out OK.
 
Thanks,
Bob
 
 
Leo - 44-67916 TQ-G "Texas Queen" 387th.Bomb Group 559th.Bomb Squadron.
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
5/21/2005
Time:
7:42 AM
 
My father, Edward Leo Proctor Jr., was a radioman on a B-26 in the Mediterranean area during WWII. I have been compiling his recollections and scanning the few photographs that we have of his service. I am attaching the two photographs that we have of his crew. One photograph is of his training group at Barksdale, and the other, we think, is of his crew at their base in Sardinia.
 
He was in the 320th Bombardment Group, 444th Bomber Squadron. The pictures have faded but I am assuming that the planes that he and his fellow crewmen are pictured with are B-26s, as that is what he flew on. Could you look at the pictures and verify that they are B-26s?
 
By the way, were all B-26s called "Marauders?" (Martin B-26s were...)
 
Regards,
David Proctor
Edward Leo Proctor Jr., Marauder Man, 320th Bombardment Group, 444th Bomber Squadron Edward Leo Proctor Jr., Marauder Man, 320th Bombardment Group, 444th Bomber Squadron
David,
Your father did indeed fly the B26 Marauder with as you said the 444th Bomb Squadron 320th.Bomb Group. However, he did not fly combat with the crew he graduated from Barksdale with. I picked him up on August 28th 1943 on a mission to Aversa marshalling yards, Italy. His crew that day and for at least four further missions was:
 
2.Lt Meyer pilot; 2.Lt English copilot; S/Sgt Ferrara bomb/nav; Sgt Williams engineer/gunner; Sgt Proctor radio/gunner and Cpl Harrison armourer/gunner.
 
All B26's flown by the USAAF, Royal Air Force, South African Air Force and Free French Air Force were known at Marauders. Those used by the US Navy and Marines were referred to as JM-1's and JM-2's.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
5/20/2005
Time:
7:29 AM
 
From a Marauder Man - Life is all about choices...

Date:
5/19/2005
Time:
6:12 AM
 
I too, am conducting some research among the Marauder Men and would be pleased to open a stream of communication in such reference. Perhaps ultimately we can each assist in filling in one-another's "blanks". I am currently looking for any details pertaining to a tail gunner named James O'Keefe (45 missions, 6 kills, flying out of Sardinia's allied AFB/landing strip). Sadly, this is all I have to work with in an effort to create a profile for his brother, also Army Air Corps. attached to the (Mighty) 8th, out of Great Britain). I have just rec'd this rudimentary data and little else is known as this writing. That is not unusual. I do this "all day long" I work as a Military Historian and I work out of a State Veteran Home.
 
Thanks,
Vyle Raven-Greyv
 
James J. O'Keefe is listed as deceased in the Marauder Man directory. He is listed as being in the 441st Bomb Squadron, 320th Bomb Group (North Africa/Italy, etc.).

Date:
5/18/2005
Time:
6:22 AM
 
Marauderman's name: Rufus Garland (R.G.) Starnes
Pilot instructor
Rufus was my father-in-law. He was eventually qualified in every AAF medium and heavy multi-engine bomber from the B-17 to the B-29, but spent most of his service as a B-26 flight instructor. He was a brilliant man of few polished credentials, able to size up a situation and act quickly with little hesitation. He served in California, New Mexico, Florida, Texas, and elsewhere. I'd love to hear from anyone who remembers RG. Sadly, his lovely bride Alicia passed in November, 2004; RG died in August, 1994 of prostate cancer. He left three kids and six grandchildren, and one sad son-in-law. Michael G.

Date:
5/17/2005
Time:
7:01 AM
 
Hi my father Victor R. Garza was a bombardier on Truman's Folly 323BG 453rd Sq 9th AF based at Earl's Colone in England during WW11. He flew 64 missions and I remember every word he said about his bombing experience! He died in 1990. Roger Garza (son)

Date:
5/17/2005
Time:
4:48 AM
 
Sirs: I just discovered your great web-site today, I am helping my son learn more about what his grandfather did in ww2. To my surprise, while checking through the 320th BG roster, I did not find his name! His name was James Harwood Wagar, he was a bombardier with the 443rd BS. He just passed away 3 weeks ago at age 87. Any help I could get in straightening this out would be appreciated. Thank you in advance for your consideration. Jack Borland

Date:
5/15/2005
Time:
5:03 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: James Ken Moore
Bomb Group: 397th
Bomb Squadron: 599th
Years in service: 3
Graduation Class: ?
Class Location: ?
Comments: Basic Training Miami, Radio School Scott Field Ill, Gunnery MacDill, Columbia, SC, Azon Bomb Training Emerson Radio NYC, Hurn England, July -Sept 44, Entered France in Sept of 44, Athies France, Venlo Holland and home through Marseille in Nov 45. Looking for others who served in this area. My Dad was part of the ground crew with this unit 6/44-5/45. I have some details on daily life. Any idea which hotel in Miami was used for basic training?  David Moore

Date:
5/14/2005
Time:
4:35 PM
 
Warren Hoerr
323 Bomb Group
456th Bomb Squadron
T/Sgt-ROM
42-45
Combat '44: 68 Missions
Pilot: Ted Witt
Co-pilot: none
Bomb-a-Gator: Eugene Cinquemanl
Tail Gunner: Henry Zilinski
Engineer: David W. Davis

Date:
5/14/2005
Time:
2:19 PM
 
Hello,
 
I am looking for information on my uncle, Henry Clayton Smith. He was a tail gunner on a B26 in WW2. His plane was shot down over Holland and he was killed. I would like to find out as much information as possible on his squadron and missions and all pictures I can. Thank you.
 
Rick Smith
 
In 344th BG history book there is an account of the following loss of 494th BS on September 25th 1944, mission # 147 Marshalling Yards Venlo (Holland):
 
Pilot: 1st Lt Jack B. Comstock
Co-Pilot: 2nd Lt Peter S. Orth
Bombardier: 2nd Lt. M.J. Meal
Engineer-Gunner: S/Sgt A.W. Johnson
Radio-Gunner: S/Sgt A.J. Reilly
Tail Gunner. Sgt H.C. Smith
 
This loss is listed on September 23rd 1944 in the records I have: 43-34406 K9-? MACR# 9733.
 
At Army Air Forces.com also listed on 23rd of Sept 1944.
 
An eventual confirmation regarding date, BG and BS from Mr. Smith will clear the picture...
 
Best regards
Alf Egil Johannessen
 
PS: 344th Bomb Group m "Silver Streaks": History & Remembrances World War II by Lambert D. Austin (Editor) ISBN 0-941072-20-7

Date:
5/12/2005
Time:
9:18 PM
 
My Uncle was a co-pilot of a B-26 and his first operational station in Europe was Stoke on Trent, England. My uncle like me was a Chicago Lad born and bread. He enlisted in 43 at the recruiting station formerly located at 63rd Street and Narragansett Avenue. He completed his boot camp at Rantoul A.F.B. in Rantoul, Illinois and was then sent too George Washington University in Saint Louis, Missouri for navigation training and then was sent too Lubbock, Texas for flight training after completion of his initial combat flight training he was assigned too Barksdale A.F.B. in Louisiana and assigned too a B-26 unit. Uncle Lou was and a few hundred others were ordered out and boarded a train for Hoboken, New Jersey were he was shipped out too Europe on board the Q.E.1 which by no means by this time was a pleasure cruise, the way he described it was three men to a bunk, and if they caught you smoking by a porthole you were shipped back state side in irons and given new quarters in the Fort Leavenworth Barracks for the entirety of the war maybe then some. I read his diary but it is packed in one of the boxes I have stored in my basement and since I moved too Wisconsin I have been to busy at work and other fatherly pursuits to unpack these parcels. The motto of my Uncles unit was the " The Daddy of em All" I think he was a member of the 93rd Bomb Group but I'm a little fuzzy about his Squad. I would like to know more about my Uncle from those of you whom are still around whom knew 1st LT. Louis W. Makk. Any one whom can help please contact me. I thank you one and all.
 
Brian A. Morgan
 
Brian,
Your father served with the 17th Bomb Group 95th.Bomb Squadron. The unit at Stoke-on-Trent was a holding and forwarding Depot and not a combat unit. He would have arrived there from the U.S.A and then he would have been assigned to the 17th.Bomb Group.
 
The 17th was in action in the Mediterranean Theatre of Operations from November 1942 moving through bases in North Africa at Telergma, Algeria; Sedrata, Algeria; Djedeida, Tunisia; Sardinia and Corsica before reaching Dijon, France in November 1944.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
5/12/2005
Time:
6:17 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: T-Sgt Jerome J. Schrenk (Deceased 1986) 5th Air Force
Bomb Group: 22nd
Bomb Squadron: 19th
Years in service: 43-45
Graduation Class: ?
Class Location: ?
Comments: Sgt. Schrenk was a Flight Engineer on B-26’s and B-24’s and a photo tech before then. I am hoping to find anyone who served in this group and would like to exchange stories and or photos of same. Sgt. Schrenk is the father of my significant other.  Her family are in possession of quite a few unlabelled photos of New Guinea, and many planes and bomb runs. It would be nice to learn something of these photos for the family and other vets as well.
 
Thank you, Barry
 
The book about 22nd BG: DUCEMUS WE LEAD by Frederick A. Schroeder is available. On page 139 there is a story about B-26 41-17953 of 22nd BG which ditched 100 miles NW of Darwin, Australia, on November 3rd 1942. Pilot was Captain Charles I. Hitchcock. Aerial engineer on that flight was a man named Sgt. J. G. Schank.

Regards,
Alf Egil Johannessen

Date:
5/8/2005
Time:
8:56 PM
 
Dear Sir, found your web site and enjoyed it very much. Have been doing some research on my father and he was a member of the 17th Bomb Group, 95th Squadron. I think he was only with the unit while it was in Dijon, France, as he had been in B-17s previous to that time. His name was 1Lt. Howard P. Husband. Has anyone researched all the air crews? I would love to find out more. Hope this helps with your research. Thanks, Dana H. Prater

Date:
5/8/2005
Time:
6:24 PM
 
Greetings from NC, my name is David Jones... I am responding to a post on 4-24-05 by Gregory Botkin. He says he is looking for the field. I have been there many times since 2001, the field is abandoned now, but it was a NATO base for awhile....no structures, but runways are there and the roads around the field were the taxiways. The field has four huge windmills on it now so is easy to find. They show up on maps and you can see the perimeter of the field. I have researched this quite a bit over the years (fascinating)....my uncle, Wetzel Kimball was stationed here in Oct '44...died in crash 20 miles east Nov. 5, '44 - 387 BG 557 BS.... if anyone wants more info on this, send email - I hope this is helpful...DLJ.

Date:
5/6/2005
Time:
6:51 AM
 
I was discharged October 30, 1945, after having been a part of the Headquarters of the bomb group from December 1944. I was the personnel clerk of the headquarters in the chateau. I was looking for information as to the name of the chateau. I was billeted in a private house in the village behind the chateau. I finally became a corporal there. I worked in a room next to the barber. My name is William J. Micheal. I would appreciate any information about the chateau, name, location, pictures, etc. I have my record of discharge too, but the record of my service was evidently burned in a fire. I would appreciate hearing from other 17th BG headquarters personnel who might remember me. W.J. Micheal
 
Name: Chateau de Salverte (see photo)
Location: Village Rouvres-en-Plaine (see map) near Dijon
17th BG, 34th BS and 432nd BS HQ
 
The 37th BS and 95th BS had their HQ at a chateau in the village of Bretèniere (see map; located west of Rouvres-en-Plaine)
 
Regards,
Alf Egil Johannessen
+++++++++++++++
William, the Count that owned the Chateau died many years ago. I think his nephew now owns it. It had a fire many years ago and at the last time I was there it had not been repaired. The Count did not like to live there. He preferred Paris. He always came to meet me if I told him I was going to visit the Chateau. He spoke some English and always gave a toast to the Americans that saved France. He was at Dunkirk and lost 50% of his men. Served seven years in WW2. His great uncle was Lyautey. Port Lyautey was named for him and he is the man responsible for the train route that goes from Tunis to Casablanca. Also he was related to General Foch. The Chateau was in his wife's family and part of the marriage arrangement was that he had to live in it. He did not like that at all. I have been to the Chateau five times. The last time his nephew met me there. It has changed since you and I were there. I lived in a tent in the area surrounding the Chateau. I have pictures of the interior before the fire. It was really nice. I am sure we passed many times while there. I was a flight chief at that time.
 
Ronald Macklin
34th Bomb Squadron
Chateau de Salverte, Breteniere, west of Rouvres-en-Plaine Chateau de Salverte, Breteniere, west of Rouvres-en-Plaine

Date:
5/3/2005
Time:
1:13 PM
 
Somebody can tell me what happened to the B-26G (43-34297/AN-A) of the 386 BG 533 BS ? Hit by Flak or engine failure ? This aircraft crashed at Tilly (Belgium) on 28/11/1944. One of the crew members was killed (1st Lt Vernon BLUE from California). I think the others bailed out. Somebody can help me with the names of the other crew members ? Thanks a lot. Regis Decobeck, Waterloo (Belgium)
 
Hello Regis: I saw your request in guest book dated May 3, 2005 concerning a crash of a 386th B.G. B-26 from the 553rd B.S. The date was November 28, 1944. It was Group mission number 298. The number of the plane was 334297 AN-A. The pilot was 1st Lieutenant Leonard S. Sentner. His co-pilot was 1st Lieutenant Vernon Blue. Bombardier was 1st. Lieutenant Albert H. Westendorf. Enlisted crew were, Tech Sergeant Harvey A Lincoln, Tech Sergeant J.R. Angelo, and Staff Sergeant A.N. Shew. Approximate flight time on the plane during the mission was two hours and forty-five minutes. The pilot and his co-pilot attempted to land their disabled aircraft which crashed in the process. The other four members of the flight crew had bailed out. Co-pilot Lt. Blue was killed in the crash, Lt. Sentner survived. His next scheduled mission was on December 3, 1944, however he was compelled to abort the mission for unknown reasons. At a later date he was promoted to the rank of Captain.
 
Chester P. Klier-- Historian, 386th B.G.
Web page: http://www.b26.com/historian/chester_klier.htm

Date:
5/1/2005
Time:
4:54 PM
 
I am replying to a entry in the B26 '05 guest book. The writer was Gary Tuene, dated 4/4/2005. Inquiry about his Father a B26 crewmen 42-46 and 17 BG,95 Sqd. No I can not say I knew your Father- sorry. However it is likely I had seen him and would have been on some of the same missions. My info: Pilot B26, 17BG,95Sqd. Overseas About March 44 to June 45 , 63 missions, based Sardinia, Corsica, and Dijon?, France. The picture of your Dad was the enlisted barracks area in Sardinia or Corsica, the B26 photos are close to being like many I have. I have not studied the identifications of the planes as yet. I have not kept the list of my missions but remember many of them. It is normal for combat crews to be quartered in different areas, and even eat in different mess halls depending on rank or the GI system. I explain this just to help you understand what the difference in my activities and contacts might be from your Fathers. Anyone in the same Squadron had a lot of closeness and friendship and total support. As normal, I hung around with the guys I was quartered with by assignment and they were all Combat pilots or Bombardier/Navigators . Even combat crew members were separated by the above. There was no effort of any individuals to isolate themselves or show biases because of rank! I was anxious to get my message on it's way to you. Thanks for offering me the opportunity to further communicate with anyone related to a B26 Marauder combat crew member, especially of the 95th . We were all "family." Thanks again. Max Petrisek

Date:
5/1/2005
Time:
2:45 PM
 
This past Monday, April 25,2005, a small article appeared in our local newspaper, The Valley Times News.
 
Monument honors US plane crew
LeTheil, France -- A memorial to the crew of the B-26 Marauder, Shady Lady III, piloted by Lt. Thomas L. Alford of West Point, Ga. has been erected in LeTheil, France. The monument is close to the site where the plane went down on Feb. 15, 1944. (Monday, April 25, 2005 11:39 AM EDT) .
 
Do you have any information on this? Thomas Alford was my uncle and all I ever knew about him was that he was killed in World War II. Any web links or other information would be helpful.
 
Thanks,
Waymon Harper

Date:
5/1/2005
Time:
10:24 AM
 
Paul Guertin, Marauder Man, 322 Bomb Group, 451 Bomb Squadron

Date:
4/29/2005
Time:
5:25 AM
 
Robert F. Ockey
37th Bombardment Squadron
11 Jan '43 - 31 July '45
 
This is being sent in memory of my Father, Robert F. Ockey who flew 61 missions as the top turret gunner in a B-26 nicknamed the "Holy Crow." His missions were over Italy and France. I have his medals, orders, and a number of pictures for anyone interested. In one picture the following names are written on the bottom: Schindler (pilot), Butler (co-pilot), Nicholson (bomb-nav), Simoncelli (eng-gunner), Schneider (radio-gunner), and Ockey (arm-gunner). My Father spoke very little about his war experiences even though I pestered him with many questions. When I was young, I used to get into his "sock" of memorabilia and play with the foreign coins. There was a heavy piece of torn metal there and he did tell me that on one mission, he bent down for some reason and at that moment that piece of flak came through the turret and bounced off his guns. He said he put it in his pocket and went back to firing. There are a few other stories, but the main reason for this post is in the hopes of helping any of the men, or their families I have mentioned above. My Father passed two years ago. Thank you.

Date:
4/28/2005
Time:
6:14 PM
 
I didn't see my father's name on your crew listing for the 320th Bomb Group. My father's name is Cyril R. Johnson (Pfc) and was the gun mechanic for tail #45, 442 squadron. I believe the nose art name was "Dinamite". This particular plane had 150 plus missions before it crash landed outside of Dijon, France in April 1945.
 
Ralph B. Johnson

Date:
4/27/2005
Time:
6:32 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: John D. Perry Jr.
Bomb Group: 386th
Bomb Squadron: 553rd
Years in service: 1944
Graduation Class: July 1, 1944
Class Location: pre-flight training at Ellington Field, gunnery training at Laredo, Tex., and graduated from the bombardier school at Midland, Tex., July 1, 1944, as a second lieutenant. he took his final training before going over seas at Lake Charles, La.
Comments: He was killed December 15, 1944, over Aremburg, when his plane exploded after being struck by bombs released by another friendly plane, while flying a mission over Germany. My Dad (John's brother), told me that he was KIA during the Battle of the Bulge over Aachen, Germany?
 
My Aunt told me he flew an A20 or an A26? Apparently his Gravestone say's US Army? His Photo's show him wearing the 8th Air Force patch (prior to going over seas). I'd like to know more information and clarify the differences above. Also: Planes serial #, name of plane, missions flown etc... Thanks, Robert M. Perry (John's  nephew)

Date:
4/26/2005
Time:
6:32 AM
 
My Godfather was a crewman on Martin Marauders. I believe he was a flight engineer at a training facility in Boca Raton, FL. His name is Lloyd Chaltry. He's still alive and well. I recall him telling some harrowing stories about his experiences.
 
Stephen Benesh

Date:
4/26/2005
Time:
5:14 AM
 
Hello, I'm looking for any information on my wife's father, Lt. Joseph B. Weston from Neosho, MO. He was stationed at St. Quentin at least until March 1945. He received the DUC for the 387th BG raid in Germany in Dec 1944. Was also stationed in Laredo TX AAF prior to going to France in late 1944. He had a friend at St. Quentin named Sgt. Jerry Farrell. Any help appreciated.
 
Thanks,
Dennis Babbitt

Date:
4/25/2005
Time:
5:09 PM
 
Harmon, George M, 442nd Bomb Squadron, 320th Bomb Group.
Son checking in.
Richard Harmon

Date:
4/25/2005
Time:
9:15 AM
 
In memory of the crew of US Army Air Forces
Martin B-26C Marauder, Aircraft No. 41-34765
 
1st Lt Robert Eugene Lawrence, Pilot, USAAC 8th Air Force, 22 years of age.
2nd Lt Hulbert H Robertson, Navigator, USAAC 8th Air Force 23 years of age.
Flight Officer James Grady Jackson, Co-pilot, USAAC 8th Air Force, 20 years of age.
S/Sgt William A Brown, Engineer, USAAC 8th Air Force, 21 years of age.
 
Killed in a crash, 4th June 1943, near St Davids, Pembrokeshire, Wales, UK Aircraft struck rocky crag in poor visibility. Recorded as 8th Air Force 335 Bomb Group.
 
For years we have gone to the coast near St David's, Pembrokeshire, West Wales. It's a great place for family holidays, it's unspoilt within a national park. Over the years we had heard that a wartime aircraft had crashed on the high crag above the coastline. As rumours were so varied, and even a local writer had published completely inaccurate information about the tragic aircraft, I set out to research what had really happened. As I have always been interested in flying, it became quite a quest! My boys, and some friends also were keen to find out what the truth really was. Over the years walking and climbing over that beautiful spot, in summer weather, a few fragments of the aircraft would be found, and that would lead to more questions from my boys and a greater resolve to learn more. After nine years or so, with the help of another researcher, the exact aircraft has now been identified. It was a USAAF Martin Marauder B-26C that crashed whilst on the final stage of a ferry flight to the UK from the States via S America and Africa. The crew had taken off from Port Lyauty (now Kenitra), Morocco bound for St Eval in Cornwall (South West England). The flight would have been approx 1070 to 1090 nautical miles, I guess mostly over water. If you look at a map, it looks like they missed St Eval. I now have a copy of the actual accident investigation report from the USAF Safety Agency. On that day, the 4th June 1943, the crag in Pembrokeshire was obscured in cloud, the B-26 struck at high speed; nobody stood a chance. It's strange, but when I saw the names of the crew on the report for the first time, it was as if they were friends that I had never met. Largely due to the work of researcher Steve Jones, the full names and details of the crew are now known. Lt Robertson was buried at the American Military Cemetery at Cambridge, and I have visited his grave. The other three were returned to the US, after the war, for burial.
 
A Memorial Ceremony for the crew is to be held on the 4th of June 2005 at Whitesands Bay near St David's Pembokeshire.
 
The timing will coincide with the time that the aircraft crashed, 1615 hours. A propeller from the aircraft, found a few years ago on the hillside, has been protectively treated and will form part of the lasting memorial to the fallen crew.
 
Respectfully,
 
Paul Cartwright
Stourbridge, England

Date:
4/24/2005
Time:
12:36 PM
 
My father, Col. O. Baker Steely (USAF, Ret.) flew the 26 out of England in WWII. I do believe Doolittle was his CO at one time. Anyway, he is alive and well - 90 years!. I have his story on audio tape. He's sharp as a tack and can still reel out stats. Brian Steely

Date:
4/24/2005
Time:
12:24 PM
 
--I am the grandson of Clyde D Willis who flew on the lead ship as a RO/Gunner on the Ijmuiden Raid on 17 May 1943 tail 41-17982 (do not know the Planes nickname) and was on the same raid three days prior in "Too Much Texas" ( I do not currently have the tail #)
--I do not know what kind of info you need but I am mainly looking for pictures of my grandfather and his crew. As well as the Lat/Long Coordinates of the lead ships crash site (41-17982). I am a pilot in the AF and hope to see it from the air and land before my time comes.
--Currently I am planning on writing everyone in the 452 Sq directory, although I assume by now most of them are deceased. Hopefully someone will have some pics/info.
--His first hand information is available at http://clydedwillis.tripod.com/ and may be of some help to you if you desire.
--My contact information is available at www.CLKWILLIS.com under contact info at the top-far right. Currently I have no more info than what is available on his web site other than a few declassified orders. If there is anything I can do to assist the archives please let me know I would be more than happy to help.
 
Sincerely,
Chris Willis

Date:
4/24/2005
Time:
9:42 AM
 
I will be in Clastres in two weeks...where is the airfield in relationship to the village? My uncle, Carl Heline, spent his last days there before killed Feb 14, 1945. Gregory Botkin
 
Interesting challenge, found that there is an airfield named Saint Simon-Clastres (LFYT) located West of Clastres at N 49 45' E 3 13'. http://qfu.free.fr/requete.php?code=LFYT
 
Guess some 387th BG veterans could confirm the location....i's a small village: http://siclastres001.free.fr/index.htm
 
Alf Egil Johannessen
 

Date:
4/24/2005
Time:
8:36 AM
 
I am a historical amateur and I am trying to reconstruct some phases of WWII which have interested my city : Ferentino - Italy (between Rome and Monte Cassino). In particular I am interested on two missions of 24th and 25th of May '44 , and eventually if you can on other minor missions against Ferentino (that I think have not interested B-26 Marauder but A-36 Apache and other bombers) : on September '43, 22nd January '44 , 17th and 23rd march '44, 29th and 30th of April '44 . About two missions of 24th and 25th of May '44. I like to know much more about pilots, crews and their photos or videos, planes, starting airport (Decimomannu?) targets and results of missions.
 
Thanks,
Pietro Scerrato

Date:
4/16/2005
Time:
4:55 PM
 
I am writing in response to Christian Enders questions about the March 11th afternoon mission to Siershahn. My dad Theodore V. Harwood was a pilot for the 456th on that mission. According to his mission log, there were 33 planes each carrying 16 250 lb bombs. The target was a convoy, communication center, and a troop mass. According to John Moench’s book, the lead pilots were Noble and Pulver. Ted Harwood II

Date:
4/15/2005
Time:
6:26 AM
 
I am looking for info on a cousin, Donald Fancher, who supposedly flew in Marauders.  The family story is that he was the 15th man over France on D-Day.
 
He was from either Forestville, N.Y. or Sheridan, N.Y.  I believe he was a sergeant and a gunner - and that's about all I have. He is deceased and I don't know where any of his family members are - or how much they know.
 
Any information on him, or perhaps the correct site to contact would be greatly appreciated.
 
Caroline Swabb

Date:
4/14/2005
Time:
6:44 AM
 
I found this very interesting site this evening while doing some research into my father’s years of service in the Army Air Corps. I hope to make contact with individuals who flew with my dad in WWII or family members of those individuals. My dad passed away 33 years ago, long before the members of The Greatest Generation started telling their stories. My sisters and I don’t have a great deal of information but we are starting to piece together items that are giving us a great deal of insight into the life of an airman in WWII.
 
My father’s name was Clarence V. Erickson who was in the 575th Squadron and the 391st bomb group. He was in the service from sometime in 1941 until late in 1945. According to a log record that I have found, that had been stored away in a trunk for close to sixty years, he was listed as a co-pilot and toward the end of his time as a pilot of a B-26. He kept very meticulous records. His flight training seems to have been at Coffeyville, Kansas and Altus, Oklahoma. His first sortie is recorded as February 25, 1944 and the last one appears to be August 13, 1944 for a total of 68 missions. There are several pictures of nose art that show the name of the plane was “Scrumptious”. Nice art work.
 
Any information dealing with the 391st bomb group would be greatly appreciated. If anyone knows about possible reunions for the 391st group or the 575th squadron in this sixtieth year since the Marauder men flew their final missions of WWII please direct me to a web site.
 
Please, Marauder Men keep telling your stories because there are many people out here who want to know about that short period of time in your lives, so many years ago, that helped to give us the freedoms we know today.
 
Thank you for making this site and this information available to the general public.
 
Rich Erickson

Date:
4/12/2005
Time:
8:55 PM
 
I got this b26.com link from Bob Carden. I was a co-pilot in the 432nd sq. of the 17th BG. My crew was:
 
Pilot - Lt. Laurence Clement
Co-pilot - Mahlon Kiscaden
Bomb/Nav - F/O Don Faustman
eng/gunner - Sgt Wm. Evans
radio/gunner - Cpl Bob Morales
Arm/gunner - Cpl Gordon Pappas
 
We flew our missions out of Dijon between Mar and May 1945.
 
I have an album of various pictures.
Mahlon Kiscaden

Date:
4/11/2005
Time:
10:06 PM
 
My father William Mayfield was a top turret gunner with the 42nd Bomb Wing in Sardinia and my brother and I are trying to track down more information regarding this group after if left for Europe in 1943 (from duty in North Africa). If you have any info we would appreciate it. Ed Mayfield

Date:
4/10/2005
Time:
8:41 PM
 
My uncle, S/Sgt George S. Farfaras was killed on May 26, 1944 while on a 9th USAAF mission over Chatres, France, He was a radio operator assigned to the 387 Bomber Group/557 Bomber Squadron flying in a B-26 # 42-96199. Also killed S/Sgt Clyde Morton and S/Sgt William Brown. Prisoners took included the Pilot, Co-pilot and Bombardier.
 
Pilot: Lt SMITH Robert N. XXXX689 Prisonnier
Co-pilote: Lt BARTHOLOME Neil G. XXXX649 Prisonnier
Bombardier: 2ème Lt WRIGHT Walter L. XXXX006 Prisonnier
Mécanicien: S/Sgt MORTON Clyde N. XXXX975 Tué
Radio-opérateur: S/Sgt FARFARAS George S. XXXX932 Tué
Mitrailleur: S/Sgt BROWN William L. XXXX054 Tué
 
I never knew my uncle (my mother’s older brother). I was born in 1943. I would like to learn about him. Who knew him, flew with him, trained with him and anything else about the missions he flew and about the day he was shot down. The more I read about the history of the 9th USAAF and the B-26, the more I am interested in writing about the men who flew these missions. Thanking you all for your gallant service. If you knew S/Sgt George Farfaras or know someone that may have known him, please contact me. Thank you, Jim Bergeris (former combat medic 1st Cav Div., Vietnam.)

Date:
4/9/2005
Time:
5:25 PM
 
I am writing from Germany in order to find out information for a current research project on my school. It is about the bombardment of a small village called Ebernhahn in World War 2. The attack happened on March 11 in 1945 and was executed by 323rd and 394th bomb group (9th Air Force) with the target Siershahn, a neighbor village (according to a mission file I received). Could you give me any information about reason for the attack and course or about the pilot's names? Are there still some veterans alive I could contact? I am looking forward to hearing from you.
 
Yours Sincerely,
Christian Enders

Date:
4/9/2005
Time:
11:15 AM
 
My name is John MacDonald smart son of Douglas Alexander Smart USA - this was a very interesting site. Best Regards to you.

Date:
4/8/2005
Time:
12:05 PM
 
To: Alan Crouchman or "Mickael from France". I was looking at past posts from 2003 ad saw a post from "Mickael" asking for more information about an accident on 5 September 1944 in France that cost the lives a a B-26 crew, save the tail gunner. That was the crash involving my father, Lt. Elvin Galmish, about whom I have been trying to find more information as I was 5 days old at the time of his death. "Mickael" was writing to Alan Crouchman as historian for the 387th BG for more information. I would be interested in knowing what Mickael - or Mr. Crouchman - knows about my father's accident, especially if Mickael has any eyewitness information from France. Thank you. Larry Galmish

Date:
4/7/2005
Time:
7:05 AM
 
Name: Carroll C. (Bob) Calkins
Group: 323
Squadron: 456
In Service: 1941-45
Graduated: OCS 42-C
Location: Miami Beach, FL
 
I was on the original orders of September 42 for the 323rd bomb group at MacDill Field, FL, and assigned to the Motor Pool. This was the era of one-a-day in Tampa Bay. I was on the flight line when an overshot landing was gunned to recover, flipped over and burned on the runway --a horrible thing to see. In 1972, talking to John Steinway regarding a story I was writing about pianos, it turned out that he saw it too. I also remember when the test pilot from Martin took a B-26 up, cut an engine, feathered the prop, and brought it in for a perfect landing. Explaining the procedure to the pilots ended the one-a-days'.
 
When we were in Myrtle Beach, I was making some photographs and Colonel Fitzgerald asked me if I knew how to develop film. I said yes (a few rolls when in high school). He said "you are now the group photo officer". A mobile lab in a trailer had arrived on the base and someone had to sign for it. A perusal of the files turned up a master sergeant who had graduated from the army photo school and had some years of experience. He knew a couple of other photographers and we were in business. Just before going overseas some brass from Washington, who ranked our Commanding officer Col. Thatcher, assessed the group for combat readiness. I was called in to tell about our photo-readiness, which was deemed unacceptable. Col. Thatcher lit into this guy saying "We are a bomb group and not going over there to take pictures." Little did he know.
 
When we arrived at Earls Colne, one of the nicest buildings on the base was the photo lab, taken over by the Intelligence people. Then one day some trucks cam and dumped crates and crates of aerial cameras, hand cameras, film, chemicals and photographic paper in their front yard, with an official document ordering that cameras be installed in bomb bays, and 14 sets of prints showing where bombs landed would be ready for pick up and distribution to higher echelons within hours of every mission.
 
Another search of the files revealed that enough qualified photo personnel to fill our needs were assigned elsewhere and immediately transferred. On the first mission with cameras installed, those in the first echelon got excellent pictures of the surrounding countryside as the pilots turned for home before the bombs hit the ground. The following echelons photographed mostly smoke, those at the end of the raid showed some of what the bombs had hit. It was decided that there must be a hand-held camera in the lead plane at the waist-gun position on the inside of the turn after release to record first strikes. . I couldn't ask any of my guys to do this, so I volunteered. The bulky hand-held Ks-20 camera took 50 shots on a roll of film four inches wide. On my first mission I swung the machine gun inboard, lay on my belly and looked down to see the bombs fall and trigger the shutter as they hit. The pictures were good and this would become standard procedure. Some of my guys volunteered to take gunnery instruction and become air crew with the added combat pay. Their training would take a while so I took a quick gunnery course and flew the next couple of missions. I could fly when I wanted to, and by the end of the war volunteered for 36 missions (with no combat pay) .
 
After the war, when the 323rd moved to Gabingen Airdrome in Augsburg Germany, so many pilots had gone home that there was no one to fly the L4 (Piper Cub) to Germany. I had 40 civilian hours in a Cub, was checked out, and flew it to Augclurg, with my buddy Bill Fuchs. That plane was mine to fly when I wanted. It's great to believe that all of us in the 323rd played a role in the winning of one of the most important wars on this tired old planet.

Date:
4/6/2005
Time:
6:32 AM
 
My dad is George Winston "Russ". I know he was the only survivor when the plane was shot down in Germany on Dec. 23, 1944. He was a POW until April of 1945. He was in the 9th Air Force,98th Wing, IX command, 397th group of the1stPathfinders. If anyone out there knows this story or the other crew members who were lost I would be interested in the names. Dad hasn't spoke of this until lately as he is 85 years old now. He did receive during his service the Oak Leaf and three clusters, Purple Heart and the Distinguished Flying Cross. He was listed as an engineer gunner on a b-26. Major Vaner A. Smith signed his flight record in Dec. 1944 with the last line stating: "closed out missing in action". Thanks for any info.
 
Danny,
December 23rd 1944 the Longsworth crew of the 1st Pathfinder Squadron (Provisional) were tasked with leading the 391st Bomb Group to bomb the Ahrweiler railroad bridge. The mission was intercepted by a large number of enemy fighters and in total sixteen B26's were shot down. The Longsworth crew was one of these B26's and the crew that day were Capt E G Longsworth, 2.Lt A E DeSaunier, Capt W G Wilson, T/Sgt G R Winston S/Sgt R R Alley. It may be of interest to note that the crew had not been with the Pathfinder Squadron very long and the December 23rd mission was only the fifth with this unit.
 
Prior to transferring to the 1st Pathfinder Squadron, your father and his crew flew 4 missions with the 596th.Bomb Squadron 397th.Bomb Group.
 
Regards
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
4/4/2005
Time:
8:33 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Lawrence Pierucconi
Bomb Group: Not sure, but photos have names like Munich, Germany and Florence, Belgium
Bomb Squadron:
Years in service:
Graduation Class:
Class Location:
Comments:  This is my deceased great uncle, I would like to learn more about his service and bomb group including missions.  I have photos.  I also have one titled, Trip to Nuremburg.
 
Mike
 
Mike,
Your great uncle would have been with the 344th.Bomb Group.
 
Regards
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
4/4/2005
Time:
8:00 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: SMSgt John D. Goolsbee Sr.
Bomb Group: 344th
 
Comments: I did a search for the Weary Lera, the B-26 my Grandfather was a tail gunner for. My family has not been able to find any information for this aircraft much less a picture or two of the nose art. I read through all of 2004s posts but was not able to find what cued the search engine. If anyone has any info please contact me. He passed away last September and I would like to be able to present my grandmother and the rest of my family with some information/pictures. We would be thrilled to find anything.
 
Thanks.
Adam Burns
 
Adam,
The Weary Lera was B26 42-95878 but did no combat missions with the 344th.Bomb Group. It was transferred to the 1st Pathfinder Squadron (Provisional) on May 22,1944 and served with this squadron until Dec 23 1944 when it was shot down by enemy fighters while leading the 322nd.Bomb Group.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
4/4/2005
Time:
7:48 PM
 
Hi, My uncle, Billie/Billy/Bill Thornblom, was in the 597th Bomb Squad, 397th Bomb Gp. His plane was taking off in a long line of other bombers. His plane did not gain the altitude it needed and crashed. It burst into flames. Billie was the radio operator. He was trapped under the heavy radio equipment. He managed to pull himself free. But he died in a hospital in France within a few days, from severe burns to his lower body. He died either 5-2-45 or 4-25-45. He was 22 years old. He had blue eyes and light wavy blonde hair, and I understand, always a smile. I wonder if anyone remembers him or the crash? Or could show me what his plane would have looked like? Would someone have a photo he might have been in?
 
Carolyn Hierholzer
 
Carolyn,
The accident you refer to took place on 19th April 1944 when the B26 flown by Lt Elmer Frank and crew crashed on take off. One bomb exploded on impact killing six of the crew and seriously injuring two others.
The crew that day consisted of:
 
Elmer J Frank pilot
Russell D Jenks copilot
Casimir Szaj bombardier
Elmer T Funke navigator
John D Foley gee operator
Stephen Kmetz engineer/gunner
Billy Thornblom radio/gunner
George Shulman armourer/gunner

Attached is a photograph of a 597th.Bomb Squadron B26.

Regards
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com
 

Date:
4/4/2005
Time:
6:34 PM
 
Name: Gary (Garret) Teune
BombGp: 17th Bomb group
Squadron: 95th
Years: 43-46
Location: Chicago, Illinois Comments: I am the son of a B-26 tail gunner, Gary (Garret) Teune and am trying to get a hold of anyone who knew him.  I also have pictures of him, his crew and B-26 in action at:
 
http://www.teune.com/photos/thumbnails.php?album=12
 
I will soon have flight records and crew lists there as well. Please email me or post a reply there if you remember anything about my father. I would love to talk, and learn more about my father's service to his country in WWII, thank you so much.
 
Ed Teune

Date:
4/3/2005
Time:
7:21 PM
 
Hello,
My name is Shey Cavin. I was recently in Jasper, AR for a canoe trip down the Buffalo River and I heard the story of a WWII bomber which crashed into a mountain top there in 1942. I learned that a crewman on that fated flight was Lt. Kenneth Reddy and I've been searching for information on the crash with his name. I'm interested in learning more about this incident and I found the following post at B26.com:
 
I have researched and have complete information on a b26 that crashed in Arkansas during WW2. The six crew members were killed. The pilot was Lt. Kenneth Reddy who was the co-pilot on the no. 11 B-25 that took off from the Hornet for the Arnold Tokyo Raid. Its something I have done over the past year since retiring and was something my father saw happen. I never knew exactly where it happened because I was only 4 years old at the time and didn't remember a lot of details. I did the research and had a lot of difficulty in locating the site. However I finally did locate it and verified the location with a large amount of buried wreckage that I found with a metal detector. I would be willing to post the story and the account of their last flight if you were interested. Click here for original post
 
I would like to contact this gentleman and hear what he found during his research.
 
Thank you,
Shey Cavin

Date:
4/1/2005
Time:
9:01 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: Glen F. Stewart
Bomb Group: 344th BG
Bomb Squadron: 494th
Years in service: 1942 - 1945
Comments: Enlisted man, served as radio operator and waist gunner. The two pilots were Norman Nelson and Owen Lansdown. The crew seems to have served as a unit throughout the European operations without an individual loss. They flew on Sexy Sal, Sexy Sal II, and Sexy Sal III. Glen Stewart, my dad, talks some but has no interest at the current time about the internet. I'm trying to get him interested in the site.
 
Can you recommend some initial steps or archival locations I can go to learn more about what he actually did that he might not talk about or remember. I would like to get him to a point where he shares his experiences on the website and with others. He has some grandchildren that are also very interested. He and either Nelson or Lansdown are the only two left of his crew.
 
Any direction would be appreciated.
 
Thanks,
David Stewart

Date:
3/30/2005
Time:
3:24 PM
 
John Raymond Smart was trained as a pilot/navigator in the Army Air Corps and served in the 320th Bomb Group, 443rd Sqdn. His last duty assignment was in North Africa. The only information the family ever had was that he was flying copilot in the B-26 Marauder (airplane nicknamed "Boomerang") and was shot down. According to a press release at the time, some of the crew was seen in the water in and around a life raft. No rescue was attempted because there was a German sub nearby. Recently, Nancy (Robert's wife) found a memorial in Florence Italy mentioning the group and his name. One can assume their missions were in Italy and they were probably shot down over the Med. According to the original press release they were shot down Oct 19 or 20th, 1943 and seen in the water again on the 21st and for a couple of days but not after that.
 
Thank you,
Alan Hardie
 
Alan,
On Oct 23,1943 the 320th Bomb Group was tasked to bomb the railroad bridge west of Guardea, Italy. En route to the target the B26 flown by 2.Lt John J Turner and crew was observed to be trailing smoke and left the formation apparently under control. On the formations return an oil slick was observed at sea with the crew afloat in a life raft who fired a distress signal. Another life raft was dropped to the survivors, but the number of survivors could not be determined. No further sightings were made although a search had been mounted.
 
The crew was:
2.Lt John J Turner pilot; 2.Lt John Raymond Smart, copilot; S/Sgt Leffler bomb/navigator: S/Sgt Watt, engineer/gunner; S/Sgt Chavez, radio/gunner and S/Sgt Miles, armourer/gunner.
 
Regards
Trevor J Allen
historian b26.com

Additional info added January 14, 2011:
- Correction: The B-26 that 2.Lt Smart was copiloting when lost was # 41-34912 "Rambling Wreck"
C. A Christensen
- I can add one thing the crew were from the 443rd Bomb Squadron, but 41-34912 was a 441st Bomb Squadron ship. Trevor J Allen

Date:
3/28/2005
Time:
5:43 AM
 
My husband of nearly 60 year recently died of cancer (March 10, 2005). He discovered your website several months ago and has really enjoyed it. Here is his info.
 
Name: Harold Wilbert Hansen
Bomb Gp: 344
Squadron: 494
Years: 43-45
Location: Ellengton Field, Texas
Comments: As a 1st Lt., Harold was stationed in England and France. He flew 65 missions as a b-26 pilot, and was discharged in July 1945 in Leavenworth, Kansas. The name of his plane was "The Freddie Dees." Harold never knew where the name came from but he thought it was the greatest plane ever.
 
Take Care,
 
Ann Hansen

Date:
3/27/2005
Time:
7:00 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: James J Crumbliss
Bomb Group: 322nd
Bomb Squadron: 451st
Comments: I am the granddaughter of James Crumbliss who served in WWII with the 451st Bomb Squadron. I was just looking through some of the websites about his squadron and came across your site. I was wondering if you happen to know about or remember my grandfather, & if you do, do you have any pictures of him during the war? He's still with us of course, but I would LOVE to have a picture of him during his war days.
 
Thank You,
Valerie Crumbliss Hackworth

Date:
3/26/2005
Time:
5:41 PM
 
Hi, my name is Jerry Klein. I was Squadron Navigator with the 587th Bomb Squadron, 394th Bomb Group that was based in Chelmsford, England from 1942 to 1944 after training together in the States at MacDill AF Base in Florida, at Kellogg in Michigan and at various other bases in in Indiana and Oklahoma. Our CO was Col. Robert E. Keating. The Squadron bombardier was Ray Gunn. I'd like to hear from anyone who remembers those days with the 587th in the States or overseas.

Date:
3/26/2005
Time:
10:14 AM
 
Some time between July 18, 1944 and July 30, 1944 a B-26 piloted by Lt. Jerome Gross made a belly landing on an RAF or English air field. This plane was part of the 9th AF-397 BG - 599 Sqdn. Any info that you can supply as to actual location, fate, crew, etc. would be appreciated. The tail gunner was my father, John Deems.
 
Debra Deems
 
Debra,
Lt Gerome M Goss and crew crashlanded at Newchurch on May 24,1944 with one engine flak damaged and rudder inoperable.
 
Regards
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
3/25/2005
Time:
8:01 PM
 
My name is David Dickason; my father was Francis Dickason with the 440th. I have his mission list, which starts on 11-28-42 (Salon A/D) and goes to 07-03-44 (M/T and supplies @ Savona, Italy). Don't understand what the "A/D" and the "M/T" mean. He was a T/Sgt, logging 16 missions as a radio operator and 50 missions as a bombardier.
 
Is there anyone who has any memories/stories of my Dad?
 
David Dickason
 
David,
A/D aerodrome, M/T motor transport.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
3/24/2005
Time:
9:12 PM
 
Additional information the 319th Bomb Group did not serve in the ETO.  They flew the B-26 in the MTO until November 1944 when they converted to the B-25, until December 31,1944 ; were withdrawn from combat, and returned to the US, to convert to the A-26 for service in the 7th AAF in the Pacific, where they flew missions until the end of the war. They have the distinction of being the only Medium Bomb Group to fly all three Medium bombers in combat.  James S. Peters

Date:
3/24/2005
Time:
6:37 PM
 
Hello: My name is Harry Morris, Jr...my father is Harry Morris, Sr. from Ohio who was stationed in England with 344th BG-497th BS as a mechanic working on the B-26's. He married and Irish lady and I was born in Cambridge, England in 1944. With the dwindling of vets would there be anyone who might have a memory of my father....Thank-you ..Harry, Jr.

Date:
3/21/2005
Time:
6:45 AM
 
From a letter - Peyton Magruder to Bernard Mallon, February 23, 1964:
 
... While we submitted proposals for all three engines (WAC 3350, WAC 2600, P & W 2800) ... I personally had chosen the 2800 single stage, single speed engine with turbo supercharger for the basic B-26 design and designed the entire aircraft, particularly the wing, for this engine combination although provisions were made to substitute the larger WAC 3350 if and when this became desirable. Read more...

Date:
3/20/2005
Time:
5:48 PM
 
My name is Henri Fabry now living in Rome, Italy. When a six-years' old in native Belgium I watched the return of a bombing mission from Germany of B-26 Marauders on 21 March 1945. The place of the crash is the village of PEER in Eastern Belgium. Suddenly one B-26 fell down crashing another B-26 flying below. I still vividly remember one B-26 spiraling down and (only) one white parachute open in the blue sky. By bicycle, I got to 200 meter from the burning plane and watched Canadian ground personnel from the near-by military airport (Kleine-Broghel/Petit Broghel) carrying out the corpses.
 
At the occasion of the sixtieth anniversary of the liberation of our village, people wanted to honour those service men but no record could be found so far. This is perhaps not the right forum for such question but is the nearest I found so far. I would be grateful if someone could to give some information on this flight incident or a clue as to where to find something more.
 
Henri, I have no mid air collision for 21st March 45,but I do have one for the 28th March 45. 344th.Bomb Group,496th Bomb Squadron. 2.Lt Arthur M Williamson and crew, and 2.Lt Walter H Hedstrom and crew. Regards, Trevor.

Date:
3/20/2005
Time:
12:39 PM
 
Thomas L. Friedman: Europe should sell arms to itself, first
Thomas L. Friedman The New York Times
Monday, March 7, 2005
 
WASHINGTON:  I simply do not understand why President George W. Bush is objecting to the European Union's selling arms to China, ending a 16-year embargo. I mean, what's the problem?
 
There is an obvious compromise that Bush could put on the table that would defuse this whole issue. He should simply say to France, Germany and their EU partners that America has absolutely no objection to Europeans' selling arms to China - on one condition: that they sell arms to themselves first. That's right, the United States should support the export to China of any defense system that the Europeans buy for their own armies first. Buy one, sell one. Read more...

Date:
3/20/2005
Time:
12:39 PM
 
Richard Zinkowski, Marauder Man, 322nd Bomb Group, 452nd Bomb Squadron

Date:
3/19/2005
Time:
4:51 PM
 
First of all .... I would like to express my thanks to all of you Brave Marauder men of WWII. You and all of the rest of "Our Greatest Generation" really did save the world. The hardships and sacrifices that all of you made will never be forgotten. I am of the baby boomer generation (Air Force Vietnam veteran) and my Father and many of my Uncles served during WWII. I have recently begun researching my family's extended Military Heritage. My Uncle "Whitfield 'Jack' Pine" was a B-26 pilot. I believe that he served in the 559th Bomb Squadron 387th Bomb Group. I have found a reference to him in a web site correspondence from Charles 'Chuck' Cline - Mr. Cline was relating that his last mission was on April 19th, 1945 and that my uncle "Lt. Pine" had been the Flight Leader of that mission. I also have an old newspaper clipping from 1945 (??) that was a write up of my Uncle receiving a DFC for getting his plane and crew safely back to base after being heavily damaged. It did not mention any specific locations.
 
I'm hoping that someone may have known my Uncle and could help me fill in some missing information about his Military service. His Military Records were lost in the fire that destroyed many veterans records. Thanks in advance for any help that any of you may be able to provide.
 
Ron Kreusel

Date:
3/18/2005
Time:
6:43 PM
 
I would like to get in touch with Steve Jones regarding the status of the memorial he is trying to create for the crews of the 4 June 1943 crashes. One of the crew members, Sgt. William Brown, was my cousin.
 
Thank you.
Sylvia Winters

Date:
3/15/2005
Time:
7:32 AM
 
Are you still collecting stories/experiences on the B-26. I used to be a flight engineer in the 70th Ferrying Sqdn. Let me know if you are interested.
 
James Womack
Major, USAF, Retired
 
Yes Jim, we are interested in all Marauder Men's stories - thanks for sharing yours.

Date:
3/14/2005
Time:
8:06 PM
 
I wonder if this Navy Squadron knows the history of their namesake? (I think they do)
 
Dave Hornbarger, son of Bill Hornbarger 387th/557th
 

Date:
3/12/2005
Time:
10:43 AM
 
Historic "firsts" add significant accomplishments of the Martin B-26 Marauder that placed it will ahead of its time and proved it to be the premier USAAF bomber of WWII.  A recognition it never received during the war nor since.
 
Jack Havener
 
More information...

Date:
3/12/2005
Time:
7:45 AM
 
I had come across your website while attempting to find information regarding my uncle's service in the Army Air Corp during WWII. He was Cpl John F. McGettigan - XXXX1127 of the 391st bomb Group and 575th Squadron. He was a few days shy of his 20th birthday when he was killed. Several other relatives have been doing the same and we have read the story by Bob Mynn detailing the Arhweiler Mission of Dec. 23, 1944.
 
It was during this mission that my uncle's plane - Fifinella #42-95932 was shot down. From other web searches, I knew to locate the MACR. I received the microfiche report & it contains a basic report with a summary from a Major Herschel Harkins who was believed to have had last sight of the plane.
 
His report naturally details mostly what his aircraft went through; he does mention two other aircraft by serial #, neither of which is the Fifinella. His basic information is that other than his plane & #43-34410(?), the other four planes in his flight were destroyed between 1206 & 1215. So I guess I must assume that one of the other four was the Fifinella? Additionally, I asked for any KU report since the plane was shot down over Germany. They said no report existed. However, in searching through guestbook archives, I believe someone had responded to a request for information from relatives of Lt. Clark Tavener, the pilot of the Fifinella who was KIA. In the response, there was an indication that my Uncle Jack was buried by the Germans 5 mi west of Lunebach & then interred in St. Avold Cemetery in France. I have not been able to discover any information regarding that, and do not know that any of his surviving brothers were aware of what had happened to his body immediately after death. Jack was listed as MIA for quite some time & a younger brother who served with the Army Infantry - 2nd Div. - Indianhead, spent some of his time searching for him in POW camps as they moved across France & into Germany.
 
How was information on his burial in Lunebach uncovered? I would have hoped it was part of the MACR or a KU-report, but it doesn't appear so. My Uncle Jack now rests in Arlington National Cemetery, so I assume there would have to be some type of paperwork or documentation to have retrieved the body for re-interment in the United States. Is there any other archive or agency to whom I should make an information request?
 
I have made earlier requests for all four of my uncles personnel records but have received the response that many others have about a fire destroying the mid-part of the alphabet and no records being available.
 
Some other points to note re: MACR. It lists my uncle as EG for crew position which I believe is Engineer Gunner, though some earlier crew list had RG next to his name. Sgt. Joseph Wyne is listed on the MACR as RG. Additionally an attachment to the MACR indicates that "Wyne" is the correct spelling of his name & Wynne is incorrect. A bombing route map & list of next of kin for notification purposes completes the MACR. In the MACR the nickname of the aircraft is given as "Fifinella Dog".
 
I thank you so much for your website that honors all who gallantly served their country in its time of need. I keep in my prayers all those who serve in the armed forces.
 
Anne L.
 
Anne,
Fifinella was 42-95932 coded O8-T. Sometimes the enlisted men in the crew would change duties, although they mainly kept to their basic trade. It was not uncommon for a radio/gunner to serve in the engineer/gunners position
and vice versa.
 
Regards
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
3/11/2005
Time:
7:17 AM
 
Q.  If Army discharge papers indicate medals were earned and those medals are now lost, is there a US Agency that supplies replacement medals for WWII veterans?
A.  They can be replaced by sending copies of the pertinent papers to:
 
National Personnel Records Center--GSA
Military Personnel Records
9700 Page Avenue
St. Louis, MO 63132
 
Chester
 
Chester P. Klier--Historian, 386th B.G.
http://www.b26.com/historian/chester_klier.htm

Date:
3/11/2005
Time:
6:38 AM
 
B-26 322 Bomb Group, 449th squadron Beauvais France and Venlo Holland. Flew 35 missions over France and Germany as Radio -Operator -Gunner  Sept 1944  -Sept  1945. My pilot was Robert Pedersen of Antioch, IL who is now deceased . William Hugelman, Navigator of Winner SD (now deceased ) Raymond Cannon of Cincinnati, OH was tail gunner and and Robert Packard, Engineer. Just received this message so will probably follow up later .   Keith Korell, Marauder Man

Date:
3/11/2005
Time:
6:31 AM
 
To who asked the question & requested a response to 2/9/05 entry. " Why so many early B26 accidents & should it be called the "Flying Prostitute?" What the B26 should be called will not change by more careful evaluation- the name will & should "stick" as it was as stated. As a copilot, pilot, flight leader & combat command pilot I might contribute to reasons for accidents or the reputation.. The question partly answers itself as it was "questions of the early days of the planes history. The B26 was put into service at a faster than normal pace, few instructor pilots thus all learned as we went along. The modifications were helpful especially adding wingspan and engine power. As of about the beginning of '44 the supposed pilot apprehension, the modifications, learning curve and the integration of machine & man progressed at a fast rate. Sure there was a need & effort to quickly get crews & new planes into combat posture. There were few problems with pilots or B26 after this period. Those of us that flew the B26 as well as those that maintained or had any "part of the chain" were confident and delighted to have such a reliable plane. This feeling of exceptional performance became reinforced for anyone that came back safely with a shot up plane. No complaints, no mysteries, not one specific "FAULT" about the progression of the B26 or anyone who had a part in it's excellent performance. Just a commitment and a job well done. This is about 60 years later but the conviction remains. Max Petrisek, Pilot, 17th Squadron

Date:
3/10/2005
Time:
11:16 PM
 
Greetings!
 
My name is Terri Bonner, and my dad, Edson Pyle, flew the Marauder in North Africa and the Mediterranean during WWII. He was with the 319th. He is still living, and his memory of those times is still very clear. What type of information would you like? I would be happy to sit with him and do the typing for him. His eyesight is very bad at this time. Terri

Date:
3/10/2005
Time:
8:42 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: S/Sgt. Manuel S. Albuquerque "Albie"
Bomb Group: Headquarters Squadron, Ninth Bomber Command
Years in service: 42-45
Comments: My father was with the Ninth Bomber Command in Elveden and later Chartres. He was not a flier. He was, I believe, the squadron armorer. I know he kept the sidearms/rifles for the squadron. I have a bunch of pictures that he brought back with him. One in particular shows the plane of "Col. Caldwell" going down, 1 chute opened. I believe that this may be the Col. Caldwell from the 387th BG, but I don't know. Col. Caldwell was his favorite officer, I think. I'd like to find out more about the picture, the incident, as well as talk to anyone who knew my father back then. He passed away this past July.
 
I've attached a picture of him with friends. He is sitting on the hood.
 
All replies are appreciated!
 
Carl Albuquerque

Date:
3/7/2005
Time:
11:56 PM
 
My father, Rene Thuillez was a tail gunner on a B26. He was in the 397th Bomb Group, 599th Bomb Squadron. Do you have any records on him? Anything would be greatly appreciated. Respectfully,  Rebecca Thuillez

Date:
3/7/2005
Time:
9:34 PM
 
I hope you or someone can point me in the right direction as I don't know where to start. My father passed away several years ago and I'm now trying to piece together some history of him for my son. My dad passed away before he has a chance to see him. From what I can gather my father was part of the Army Air Corp 42nd Bombardment group. I've done some research and have found that there was a book available back then of their history. I don't know how successful I will be in locating a copy, but I have people looking. I want to try and find how I might get replacement medals for the places he was in during WWII. I have a bad microfiche copy that was sent to me of his discharge. Apparently his papers burned in the fire the archives had years ago. So Who should I be talking about that and other than the book is there any where else I can go for the history of the 42nd? Thanks for your help, Martha Shaffer

Date:
3/6/2005
Time:
10:07 AM
 
I found Sgt. Sampson's unit!!! It was the 443rd!!!! Are there any living members who remember radio/gunner Sgt. Bill Sampson? He was wounded aboard the Reddy Teddy on a raid over Italy in 1943. A head wound I believe. He flew out of Sardinia. His son would very much like to meet someone who knew his father. Any Reddy Teddy Crew members out there? If you knew Sgt. Sampson, you could really touch someone's life by responding. It would mean so much to Jim Sampson to know more about his father's role in the war. Bill passed on a couple of years ago in a car accident. He never spoke much of his experiences there. Also, does anyone know if there is a year book for this unit ? Keith C Garrick.

Date:
3/6/2005
Time:
9:26 AM
 
Hello, anyone know anything of the service of Capt. Richard Mclachlan? He was my father and I have a photo of he and the crew standing in front of a b-26 with number 1886 on the side. Any info would be appreciated. Jay R. Mclachlan

Date:
3/4/2005
Time:
10:54 PM
 
I found this by accident, just playing around on the Internet. I am Matt Gemery's daughter. He was a bombardier in the 555th Bomb Squadron, 386th Bomb Group. This was so great to find. I have this picture and many more. He was lost in an air plane accident on January 5,1955 in the Gulf of Mexico, I was only 8 at the time. I also have a book he help draw and write while in the POW camp. I have 3 children, 2 son-in-laws 5 grand children (named Matthew after my Dad) and 1 great grand son. My Dad would have been so proud of all of them. I was only 8 when he was killed and now I am 58. I may have been young but the memories I have are wonderful. This was so great to find, I love hearing things about my Dad since I lost him so long ago. Peggy Nalley

Date:
3/3/2005
Time:
2:21 PM
 
Looking for people who knew my dad:
 
Frank Smigla
S/Sgt
B-26
Milestoe
WWII

Date:
3/3/2005
Time:
9:07 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: Sgt Victor Turner Spivey, Jr.
Bomb Group: 344th
Bomb Squadron: 496th
Years in service: 1943-1945
Graduation Class: ?
Class Location: Western Training Command
Comments: My brother-in-law, Victor Spivey, was killed in a collision of aircraft returning from a mission over Germany on 28 March 1945. His sister (my wife) and I would like more information on his service with the 496th, missions that he flew, names of his crew, details of the accident and contact with any members of his unit that knew him. We want to write a biography of him for the benefit of his surviving family, four sisters and numerous nieces and nephews.
 
Barrett Duff

Date:
3/3/2005
Time:
1:32 PM
 
Name: Harry Kelly Jr
Bomber Group 394th
Squadron 585th
B-26 Pilot
Flew missions out of Cambria, France. Then went to Venlo, Holland and last to Kissengen, Germany. Crew: John Dalbacon, Murray Bernstein, Lee R. Green, Lorie Ice. Would like to contact this crew again.

Date:
3/1/2005
Time:
7:57 AM
 
Hello Just to say thanks , I was just one of the many kids that bummed gum from you chums, watch the building of the airfields at Stansted and Dunmow and watch your buddies at Debden all through the war , Stansted be a short bicycle ride from where I lived.
 
Thanks for for all you have done, belated 3 score years later.
 
Michael Vincent

Date:
2/22/2005
Time:
12:07 AM
 
My father is a Marauder Man: Clayton F Allen, XXXX545, 1 Lt, N/B, ETO, 8th AF, 322 BG, 452 BS, 41-17985 "Too Much of Texas" B-26-B-4. He doesn't talk much about the war, but I have some information, and he may be coaxed to talk more. He flew the first mission out of England on 14 May 1943, and cried for the losses on 17 May 1943. After that, his faith sorely tested, he completed his 50 missions, and went home in Feb 1944. What else would you like to know? Do you have the web site for Clyde D Willis? He was Radio/Gunner in my father's plane on the first mission, and become a POW on the second mission. He died last June, but leaves behind a fabulous collection of stories and details. My dad will be 88 years old in May! Judith Allen Roberts

Date:
2/19/2005
Time:
9:34 AM
 
I'm not a B-26 crewman but am interested in Joe Connery. I am a Connery also, living in Tulsa, OK. My Dad, Michael J. Connery, was a WWI foot soldier, born in Iowa in 1893. He was the youngest of 9 children. His parents and the five youngest (my dad and four sisters) came to Oklahoma in the early 1900's. He died in 1950.
 
I had three brothers (all deceased now) Horace (Mike), born in 1925, Bill, born in 1927, and Tom, born in 1930. All were in the Navy, the first two in WWII and Korea, the last in Korea timeframe. I too was career navy, entering in 1956 and retiring in 1977.
 
Is there a possibility that we might be related to Joe Connery?
 
Thanks,
Jack Connery

Date:
2/17/2005
Time:
6:57 AM
 
I am writing in memory of my father – Harold Lafayette Simmons, armorer-gunner. I am sorry I do not have the information regarding his squadron or plane, but I do know he was a tail gunner on a B-26 in WWII. I grew up hearing stories of the bravery and heroism of our servicemen, and I am so proud to be the daughter of someone who served his country. My father thought the B-26 was the most beautiful aircraft ever produced, and although my sister and I were very protected from any horror stories of the war, we grew up with an appreciation of our lifestyle – thanks to you. Daddy was in Paris in 1945, and I know he served with a gentleman named Johnnie H. Noles, radio-gunner. They met during the war and remained close friends until my father’s death in November, 2004. I would welcome hearing from anyone who knew, or served with them. If I can dig through the paperwork that he left, I will post more detailed information of his service record. You are truly the greatest generation.
 
Update: After visiting my mother, I found out more information. Bomb Squadron 495th, Bomb Group 344th. He enlisted May 24, 1943 and received his orders on December 18, 1944 at Hunter Field, Ga. The information on the extract included shipment for B26 combat crews, FY-555-FA. Their crew was #26 and included P, 2nd Lt Lewis R. Powers, CP, 2nd Lt Neal S. Steffen, B, Flt O Alfred Ferroulo, EG, Cpl James H. Shirer, ROG, Cpl Johnnie H. Noles, and AG, Cpl Harold L. Simmons. We found several pictures of the boys relaxing, and lot’s of pictures of the B-26’s. I would welcome any information from anyone who served with my father, or family members.
 
Tiea Simmons

Date:
2/16/2005
Time:
4:13 PM
 
Great site. Wonderful information. Can anyone find us a picture of the patch used by the 573rd? Sure hope so. Thanks, Maryellen and Bill Jacobson
 

Date:
2/10/2005
Time:
8:58 PM
 
Hello, I am Czech historian. Having writing book about last year of WW2 in former Czechoslovakia I have found out some information from Czech and German archives about raid May 3rd 1945 on Stod ammunitions plant, except photos. I would like to ask you if we could share with information because I lack information from Allied sources. If you have interest to cooperate, don't hesitate contact me. I am looking forward to your letter. Michal Plavec, Ph.D
 
Michal,
The 9th.Bomb Division flew its final wartime mission on 3rd May 1945, dispatching 130 A26's of the 386th,391st,409th and 416th Bomb Groups and 8 B26's of the 1st Pathfinder Squadron (provisional) to attack the Stod Ammo Plant in Czechoslovakia. Eight Pathfinders and 124 A26's dropped on Shoran with good to excellent results. The bombing force suffered no loss or damage.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
2/10/2005
Time:
8:45 PM
 
Hello, Weston L Moore, XXXX711, 37th Bomb squadron 17th group is a hero. Missing in action March 22, 1943. I can find no MACR for that date can anyone provide me with any information? Moore is listed on the American Battle Monuments Commission. I have on loan a copy of the 17th Bomb Group book, however, the text mentions March 21 & 23 but nothing on the 22nd. Can you tell me what the mission was or what was going on at the time. There wouldn't happen to be a photo of Lt. Grey's aircraft and crew? If not is there a good photo of a 37th marked B26? Thanks again for the info you sent, I knew nothing of what happened. If I run across a photo of Moore I will sent it along. Blue Skies to you. Frank Jasek
 
Frank,
22 March 1943 the B26 flown by Lt Robert W Grey and crew was hit by flak, with the left engine on fire and the wing shot off it crashed in a straight dive five to six miles north of Cape Bizerte. Three parachutes were seen by other observers. The mission was a sea sweep off the NE coast of Tunisia. The B26 was 41-17883. I am sorry I do not have a photograph of this particular B26. At this time the 37th did not carry any special identification markings on its B26's these not being used until November 1944.
 
The original crew was as follows:
1.Lt Robert W Gray pilot
2.Lt Weston L Moore copilot
1.Lt James W Forte bomb/nav
S/Sgt William T Weeks radio/gunner
S/Sgt Clarence F Sox engineer/gunner
S/Sgt Thomos H Rotolo armourer/gunner
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
2/9/2005
Time:
11:53 PM
 
I have a question for Martin B-26 Marauder pilots and aircrew. I'd first like to relate a commonly held belief about the Martin B-26:
 
The early history of the B26 was riddled with accidents and fatal crashes brought about by lack of experience in the aircrews and mechanics who serviced the planes. Because of its reputation as killer in its early days the B26 caused fear in the hearts of many aircrews. It was only after all the bugs were ironed out that the B26 got the reputation it deserved as being the safest combat aircraft to fly, with a loss ration of 0.1% per mission flown. Imagine the effect all those losses had on young men aged between 18 and 25.
 
My question: Does the Martin B-26 Marauder deserve to be known as "The Flying Prostitute"? Was it the plane or pilot error or both?  On one side are those who call the plane a flying prostitute and say "Once a Day in Tampa Bay". On the other side people say the plane was "new, fast and a good pilot could fly it".
 
First response below plus 9 additional replies from Marauder Men.
 
Don Frisbie, Pilot, 394th BG
7 Feb 2005

Date:
2/9/2005
Time:
10:30 PM
 
Jack D. Loftin
Based at A-72, near Peronne, France
 
Crew members:
Jack Festi, pilot
James Fomby, co-pilot
Clarence Luck, radio operator
Al Hawpe, engineer
Jack Loftin, tail gunner
 
I am the only member of this crew that is still living, I will be 80 in July. All the others were dead by 1995 or prior too. Most remembered mission: Eller railroad bridge, Dec 23, 1944. Was shot down by German fighters 2/22/45. Liberated by Patton's Third army 4/29/45.

Date:
2/9/2005
Time:
9:23 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Henry E Heyser
Bomb Group: 394th Bomber
Bomb Squadron:
Years in service:
Graduation Class: Class 42-G 8/5/42
Class Location: Moore Field
Comments: I am looking for any information on my Father Lt. Col Henry E Heyser who was a pilot with the 394th Bomber Group. He was awarded the silver, gold, and bronze star as well as the Croix de Guerre. It would be very nice to find out any details of the medals. I am not sure of his years in service because he was medically discharged because of tuberculosis. My Father passed away in 1987 and I am so very sorry that I didn't ask more about the details about his service in WWII. Thank you for help in obtaining any information.
 
Kristin Roberts

Date:
2/8/2005
Time:
10:56PM
 
I am looking for information about my father and his military service. I found a picture of him with Missouri Mule II and its crew: Danny Peebles (my father), Flavil Ray Edgin, John B. "Willy" Cartmill, Don W. Billings, Robert N. Mink, John T. Brewer, Mike Garvie, George Parker and Charles E. Franzwick. There is another picture of him with the B26B-55 Missouri Mule II and the crew is: George W. Parker, pilot; Floyd Hurstle Shoemaker, co-pilot; John B. Cartmill, bombardier; Danny Peebles; Robert N. Mink, engineer; Michael Joseph Garvie, crew chief; Don W. Billings, radio; John T. Brewer, armorer; Charles E. Franzwick, assistant crew chief.
 
I believe my father was a bombardier and navigator. He fought in WWII and in the Korean War.
 
I am looking for:
1) personal accounts about him
2) sources for finding information
3) information about having a researcher at the archives look for information
 
Thank you very much.
Carol Ina Ramsak
 
Carla,
I just saw your message - wow...!! I sure knew Danny... a great fellow in my book. We flew together --I have those same photos you mentioned. Send me you mail address and I will send you some items I believe you will be interested in.... I look forward to hearing from you.
 
George W. Parker
Major, USAF (Ret)

Date:
2/6/2005
Time:
10:59 AM
 
I was a top turret gunner on a B26 with the 391st, 573rd Bomb squadron. My pilot's name was James E. Gonyer. We flew 27 missions over Germany without a scratch to any one. We blew a tire on takeoff with 2000# bombs on board & landed safe, just ran off run way, didn't hurt the plane. On another mission over Coblenz & Locker lake, our bombardier salvoed 2000# bombs & the bomb bay doors didn't open fast enough & they were flapping & causing so much drag we couldn't maintain formation. I fished both doors shut with the bomb winch & haven't liked fishing since. That catwalk wasn't very wide & the wind was great but we made it back safe. Floyd F. Mauth

Date:
2/5/2005
Time:
11:34 PM
 
I'm a writer preparing a book on the New Guinea front in 42-43. On May 25, 1942, a B-26 in the 22d Bomber Group, Fifth Air Force, based at Garbutt, Townsville, Australia, crash-landed in the waters of Wide Bay, New Guinea, after bombing the upper Japanese drome at Rabaul. On board were:
 
Lt. Massie (P)
Lt. Wallace (CP)
Lt. Hughes, M.C. (N)
Lt. King (B)
Cpl Wolenski (E)
Sgt. Swann (R)
Pvt Dukes (Ph)
Pvt Bordner (G)
 
I believe that Dukes and Wolenski died when the ship sank. Subsequently, during travels in the bush of New Guinea, Massie and King were reported captured by the Japanese, while Swann died of pneumonia. Wallace, Hughes and Bordner survived for several months in the bush before being rescued by Catalina in March 1943. During their ordeal in the bush, the men were aided by Australian coast watchers and missionaries. I am writing a book about these men. I seek any guidance any of you might offer about how to find the survivors of this B-26 flight, so that I might ask them about the people who helped them in the bush.  Thanks, Phil Weiss
 
Phill,
Crew was:
2.Lt Harold L Massie - pilot
2.Lt Eugene D Wallace - copilot
2.Lt Marvin C Hughes - navigator
2.Lt Arthur C King - bombardier
Cpl Stanley A Wolenski - engineer
Cpl Dale E Bordner - radio
S/Sgt Jack D Swan - photographer
Pvt Joseph C Dukes - gunner
 
After crashing into the sea Dukes and Wolenski did not surface and were drowned. Swan's shoulder was broken, Hughes had a badly gashed leg and cut feet. Bordner had a puncture wound below the knee and King was bashed up. All had cuts on their faces and heads, but Massie and Wallace seemed to be better off, and Massie began to swim for the beach and a village which appeared to be 3/4 of a mile away. Fortunately for the survivors it was Sunday and a church service was being held in the village. As the survivors neared the beach villagers came out in a canoe and helped them ashore. They were fed stewed bananas and chicken and blankets and cloth supplied for bandages. The two watches they possessed had stopped at 10.54 am. For the next few days Japanese bombers passed overhead looking for survivors. Bordner, Hughes and Swan were still not able to stand up. On the fourth day Massie took off to find the other white man. He was gone fourteen days and returned 10th June. He finally had found Pvt John Leslie Stokie NGVR 239. Pvt Stokie was able to provide a mosquito net, some twist or trade tobacco, three razor blades and scissors so that they could keep clean and shaved to get the respect of the villagers. They were warned of three no-no's, not to touch the native women, nor their pigs and not to enter their gardens without permission. In mid June Massie, Wallace and King were able to bathe and shave and on the 21st Swan was able to walk about. Food was running short in the village so Massie, Wallace and King left the village. Because of their wretched physical condition Hughes, Bordner and Swan were allowed to stay. En route to Stokie's Massie collapsed on the trail, he would not eat and the wounds on his legs became ulcerous. He then had to carried on a blanket litter.17th July was Wallace's 23rd birthday. Going inland at the end of July they found the natives less friendly and at the next village they were ordered to leave. On 27 July Massie and King left the village and that was the last time they were seen. In September Hughes Wallace and Bordner left the village with Swan now being carried by natives in a blanket stretcher. In October Wallace found a doctor boy in a deserted village who agreed to let him build a hut and gave him space to plant a garden. In about a month a native boy brought Wallace a verbal message that Swan had died in his sleep. They found that Massie and King had been betrayed to the Japanese by natives. Meanwhile the garden had only produced weeds and the three airmen survived eating caterpillars, grubs, toads, snakes and lizards. Finally a message arrived from Stokie stating that if they cared to join him he had plenty of native food and a small supply of medicine. On 6th March 1943 a B24 Liberator flew low over the village and their signals were seen. Next day another Liberator dropped food, atabrine tablets, cigarettes, matches, a gallon of black paint, a brush and four white sheets with instructions to paint on the sheets the serial number of the ranking airman and the name of their squadron commander. Another B24 dropped flashlights, batteries and instructions to use a secret code that a Catalina flying boat would come to pick them up. The three survivors, Stokie and three of his native helpers were picked up at 1.15am 25th March. Purple heart medals were pinned on the survivors. Later Dukes Swan and Wolenski were posthumously awarded the Silver Star with Massie, Wallace, Hughes, Bordner and King receiving the same medal. In addition Massie and Wallace were awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. Massie, Wallace, Hughes, King and Bordner were also awarded The Soldiers Medal.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com
 
Dear Mr. Allen:
My son accidentally happened onto the B26.COM guest book web page last week. He forwarded it on to me today and asked me to send a reply. Chad was just a little boy when Dale Bordner passed away several years ago. His wife Lou died just a few years ago. They were very dear friends of ours and their daughter Jackie is married to my cousin. My husband and I had never heard this story until the time of Dale’s death. Lou, Dale’s wife, gave my husband a copy of an article (Jungle Adventure…Three Survivors of a ten-month ordeal in the wilds of New Britain tell their story…by Sidney James) published in Life magazine, I believe on June 28, 1943. It is a 9 page story that gives the account of the Imogene VII mission.
 
A quote from that article….“The adventure concealed in the foregoing communications, which cover a ten-month period, began at dawn on May 24, 1942 when a flight of three Martin Marauders (B-26’s) took off on a bombing mission from Seven Mile Airdrome in New Guinea. Their destination was an airport at Rabaul, on the northeastern tip of New Britain Island, where they were to drop oil incendiary bombs on a concentration of Jap planes. It was a routine mission.”
 
Still today, it is unbelievable to us, that we spent hour upon hour, over a few drinks, talking about everything that happened in the world…and never once, was the Martin Marauders mission mentioned. My husband and son Chad are avid readers of WWII history and can’t believe they never had the chance to hear of Corp. Dale Bordner’s heroic and historic story of a radio operator on the Imogene VII.
 
Jackie, Dales daughter, isn’t well, but her brother is still living. I feel sure he and Jackie’s husband Roger may be able to provide you with some information. You can forward this email on to Phil Weiss and he can get in touch with me by sending a reply to the attached email address.
 
Sincerely,
Jean M.

Date:
2/4/2005
Time:
6:23 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: 1st. Lt. George Noel Stith
Bomb Group: 387
Bomb Squadron: 557
Years in service: 2 - 3
Graduation Class: ?
Class Location: ?
Comments: This post is by the brother of George Noel Stith, 1st Lieutenant, U.S. Army Air Corps. He was shot down over Belgium on 23 December 1944. He was the pilot on a B-26. The co-pilot was Lt. Lutman, the bombardier was Lt. E.D. Sutter. Others were onboard. They were hit by flack and although my brother made every attempt to keep the airplane aloft until all could bail out it was not possible. The wing separated from the fuselage and it was over. According to E.D. Sutter, to which I have talked, the airplane struck the ground only 8 miles from allied lines and ground personnel was sent get them.
 
My brother, although his dream before enlisting, was to fly a P-38, was in love with the B-26. Here's to him, his crew and to every hero of WWII that played a part in the freedom of the U.S.A. just as our young heroes are doing at this time in Iraq.
 
EJ Stith
 
Mr Stith,
The others on board that day were, S/Sgt Henry R Stevens, Sgt Floyd R Monroe, Cpl Walter A Neilson and Cpl Ralph G Childress who was fatally wounded by enemy aircraft.
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com
 
Hello - please forward my email address to the EJ Stith who posted the message below. My father, Sgt. Floyd R. Monroe, was mentioned in Trevor Allen's reply as a part of his brother's crew. Thank you. Karen Monroe

Date:
2/3/2005
Time:
11:48 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Joel Jacobs Welch, Jr. - Master Sergeant
Bomb Group: 323rd
Bomb Squadron: 454
Years in service: 1942-1945
Comments: My dad served under Col. Wilson R. Wood. He was a bombardier in World War II in the 323rd Bomb Group. He flew 65 missions, became a Master Sergeant at age 21, received a Purple Heart and a Distinguished Flying Cross. My sister has my dad's diary/journal which documents all 65 missions he flew, along with his flight jacket, medals, and other small items. Just wondered if you may have any information or pictures of this group he served with. I just wanted to comment how much I have enjoyed your website and maybe you can list his name somewhere on this wonderful website. Thank you for your service to our country and for this great history lesson for many to view.
 
M/Sgt Welch is mentioned on pages 120 and 121 in John O. Moench's book "Marauder Men" ISBN 1-877597-06-6. This is about the raid to Amsterdam-Schipol Dec 13 1943. Colonel Wood is mentioned several times, photos too. They ought to get this book, as it will answer many of their questions.
 
Regards,
Alf Egil Johannessen

Date:
2/3/2005
Time:
9:39 PM
 
Captain Walter A. Wagner
BombGp: 28th Composite
Squadron: 73rd
Years: 42-43
Class: unknown
Class Location: unknown
Comments: I am searching for information regarding my grandfather, Capt. Walter A. Wagner. He was a navigator with the 73rd BS during the Aleutian Campaign. I've learned that he was squadron navigator on October 16, 1942, assigned to the lead B-26 piloted by Capt. Warren Beth, when the flight sunk and crippled the Japanese destroyers Oboro and Hatsuharu near Kiska, AK. I have the names of the men who were on that mission but haven't had much luck in finding out about any of the other missions he flew on during the Aleutian Campaign. He was killed in March 23,1951, in a plane crash in the North Atlantic along with 51 other SAC personnel. I'd like to hear from anyone who knew him or has information concerning him. Charles Wagner

Date:
2/2/2005
Time:
10:12 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Ralph Trostel
Bomb Group: 9th AF, 397th BG
Bomb Squadron: 596th BS
Years in service: 42' to 62'
Graduation Class: not sure, I'd have to go look it up
Class Location: Shreveport, La. Barksdale AFB
Comments: Not sure which class Dad was in but I can look it up if need be. He went over to the ETO on the Queen Mary with Churchill in 44'. He went from England to France right after D-Day and finished out the war in Belgium. Most of his Air Force career after that was C-46 and 47's and then KC-97's to finish up.

Date:
2/2/2005
Time:
8:03 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Lavern Helpingstine
Bomb Group:  319th
Bomb Squadron: 439th
Years in service: 1942
Graduation Class: Unknown
Class Location:  Unknown
Comments:  My name is Ron Miller.  I am the son of Lavern Helpingstine who was killed on a November 11, 1942 mission over France.  I am seeking any information available regarding the circumstances of his service and death.
 
Ron,
The B26 in which your father was flying was not in fact on a combat mission ,but was in transit from England to North Africa. The flight was being carried out in extreme weather conditions and the B26 inadvertently strayed over France when it should have been clear of the French coast. Consequently it was intercepted by German fighters and shot down.
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
2/2/2005
Time:
5:17 PM
 
I have researched and have complete information on a b26 that crashed in Arkansas during WW2. The six crew members were killed. The pilot was Lt. Kenneth Reddy who was the co-pilot on the no. 11 B-25 that took off from the Hornet for the Arnold Tokyo Raid. Its something I have done over the past year since retiring and was something my father saw happen. I never knew exactly where it happened because I was only 4 years old at the time and didn't remember a lot of details. I did the research and had a lot of difficulty in locating the site. However I finally did locate it and verified the location with a large amount of buried wreckage that I found with a metal detector. I would be willing to post the story and the account of their last flight if you were interested.

Date:
2/1/2005
Time:
3:28 PM
 
I am trying to find information about Robert J. Levendusky aka Bob Landon - I found a transcript of the 2nd Bombardment Squadron (M) 22nd Bombardment group (M) and am trying to find out if this Bob Levendusky was born in Jeannette PA, the son of Joe and Vera Levendusky - have last track of Bob, his brothers Ed and Ted and sister Jeanne. Thanks, Judy Levendusky

Date:
1/30/2005
Time:
7:57 AM
 
Bob Putney, Marauder Man, before settling down in Napa County, Putney lived in San Francisco and served in the U.S. Army Air Corps. During his stint in the military he flew many missions over Europe in a B-26 Martin Marauder. On one of the tables set up inside the fire house Saturday displayed his military medals, including a purple heart, a replica of the plane he flew and photographs of Putney in his military days. Read more...
 
What bomb group and squadron was Bob in?

Date:
1/27/2005
Time:
6:57 AM
 
My father, Warren F. Eck, was in both a Martin B26 and the Douglas A26 series.  He was a sergeant and a gunner.  One of the planes he flew in was named Sexy Betsy. His squadron was known as the Red Devil Squadron.  Contact me if you knew him or can tell me more about the Red Devil Squadron.
 
Thank you,
Chris Eck
 
Chris,
Your father served with the 555th Bomb Squadron, 386th.Bomb Group in England and Europe.
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
1/26/2005
Time:
8:56 PM
 
Did a Martin B-26 crew ever hit a Japanese sub in the Pacific on 24 Dec 1941? How about a German U-Boat in the Atlantic? If so, can you name the crew(s)? Thank you, Mike
 
Subj: Sinking of a Japanese Submarine, 24 Dec 1941
 
Dear Mike, Thank you for your e-mail message to AFHRA/RSA seeking verification of the names of the co-pilot aboard a USAAF aircraft which attacked a submarine off the western coast of the United States on 24 December 1941.
 
The unit history of the 95th Bombardment Squadron (AFHRA SQ-BOMB-95-HI, 20 Aug 1917-Dec 1943) notes that on 24 Dec 1941 a B-25B aircraft from the squadron sighted and attacked "an enemy submarine" from 800 ft. while on patrol off the coast of Oregon. The submarine was subsequently claimed as "destroyed." Unfortunately, the passage in question in the unit history notes only that the B-25's pilot was a Lt Holstrum and the bombardier a PFC Hammond.
 
The above reference is the only one we were able to locate that documents the 24 Dec 1941 episode. Any other surviving records for the 17th Bombardment Group or 95th BS for this period will be found in the National Archives and Records Administration.
 
We hope that the above information proves useful to you. If we can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.
 
Best,
Sincerely,
James H. Kitchens, III, Ph.D.
Archivist
 
***
 
Mike, Good question but I have no knowledge of a B26 attacking or sinking a U-boat or Japanese submarine. Yes the 17th Bomb Group did fly anti submarine patrols but as noted in B25's. The 319th ran a few anti sub patrols in the Mediterranean prior to entering combat in the bombing role, but they never claimed a sinking.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
1/24/2005
Time:
7:05 AM
 
Hi Mike, I received an e-mail from you. You had received a letter from Beth P. and had talked to her on the phone. She was the girlfriend of my uncle Lt. John W. Colsch who flew a B26 65 missions and was killed Aug. 13, 1944. After some time I did call Beth. We talked and have been corresponding ever since. She gave me the pilots wings my uncle gave to her and I have them displayed in my hutch. The family is thrilled to have them and to learn of Beth. I also had a letter from John in which she was mentioned. I sent her a copy and also some family pictures. I want to thank you for making this possible. Without your work with this website, it would not have happened. I did get to Matching Green in England the summer of 2003 and found that a fascinating experience. It was just as he had described it in his letters. We stopped in the Matching Green pub and looked at pictures displayed on the wall but did not see any of John. I also was able to get the book "Return of the Marauder Men" which has been very interesting. How did you get interested in this particular plane and research? (A: My great uncle Bob Brockett)  I would love to have my uncle represented on your website. What do you need to get started? (Send pictures and text either by mail or email.)  I can tell you right now, he was probably the smallest B26 pilot who flew. He was a little under the regulation height.
 
Regards,
Jan Huff

Date:
1/23/2005
Time:
12:49 PM
 
T/Sgt Bob Carden (Robert Leo Carden. EdD ) Born 4-19-1925 (1st Tactical Air Force 17th Bomb Group 37th Bomb Sqd.)
 
Entered Service July 14 1943
Basic Training Miami, FL.
Radio Operator Mechanic School Sioux Falls, SD.
Gunnery School Yuma, AZ.
Flight Crew Training Lake Charles LA.
 
My crew flew a B-26-G from West Palm Beach, FL. to England by the Southern Route, and then from England to Dijon France. After arriving in England I saw my brother Allen, he came over on a ship. We took RTU together at Lake Charles. He was assigned to a B-26 group in the 9th' Air Force 397 Bomb Group and flew from Venlo Holland. 1st Lt Robert Grubb was his pilot.

Date:
1/22/2005
Time:
9:00 PM
 
To whom it may concern: I am trying to find out more information about my father Irwin Jerome Steinhardt #XXXX4381. He was a radio operator waist gunner on a B26 Marauder ( The Lilly Marlene ) He served in the European Theatre of operations, He was a staff sergeant. He was stationed at many bases ( Buckingham field Fla., Barksdale field La., Dow field Bangor Me. ) before being sent over seas July 1944. His crew members that I have read in his log book are Crumb, Castrellon, Cavanaugh, Broderick, Britton, Jerguson. The many places that I have read about in his log book are Stoney Cross England August 15th. 1944, Maupertus France August 25 1944 , Chateaudun France September 18 1944 , Clastres France November 2 1944. If there is any one out there that can help me with my research. Andy Steinhardt
 
Found a Crumb and a Britton in the 387th, 558th. Need additional information.
 
*****
The dates also points to 387th BG - below dates for establishment of bases in 1944 according to John F. Hamlin's book "Support and Strike!":
 
Stoney Cross July 21st 1944
Maupertus (F) September 1st 1944
Chateaudun (F) September 18th 1944
Clastres (F) November 4th 1944
 
Alf Egil Johannessen, Norway
 
*****
I've found more info on Steinhardt, he was indeed from 387th 558. I found his name in the personnel list from January 1945. S.SGT Irwin J. Steinhart XXXX381 3rd OLC ( last report in May 1945 he had 6th OLC) . Also found 1st.Lt Edward A. Crumb Jr XXXX434, 5th OLC and1st.Lt. Thomas C. Britton XXXX916 2nd OLC. In addition to the bases mentioned by Alf Johanessen, the 387th 558 moved from France to Y44, Beek Limburg province where they left June 1945 and joined in the VE Day Celebrations
 
Richard Kunne, Netherlands

Date:
1/22/2005
Time:
8:20 PM
 
First Lieutenant John O. Merrill distinguished himself by heroism while participating in aerial flight as B-26 Pilot, 387th Bomb Group, 9th Air Force, Mayen, Germany, on 24 February 1945. On that date, while flying the lead formation with three aircraft at an altitude of approximately 9,000 feet, his plane sustained a direct enemy antiaircraft hit. The right engine and wing caught fire, crippling his aircraft Undaunted by the impending crash or explosion and the burning and badly crippled state of his plane, Lieutenant Merrill retained his composure and continued to operate the remaining controls of his plane with such skill and efficiency that he succeeded in holding the aircraft on a level keel. Although rapidly losing speed and altitude, he completed the bomb run, ensuring his bombs were released on target He then gave orders to his crew members to bail out. He continued to control the position of the aircraft in order to permit crew members to save their own lives, with total disregard for his own safety. The outstanding heroism and selfless devotion to duty displayed by Lieutenant Merrill reflect great credit upon himself and the United States Army Air Corps.

Date:
1/21/2005
Time:
6:25 AM
 
Hello! My uncle, Sgt. Lawrence B. Faulkner, was the flight engineer and top turret gunner on the Loretta Young, and the Son of Satan. I think both were part of the 554th BS, 386BG in Dunmow, England. My sister was the squadron sweetheart or something. She was born in Jan. 1943, and the squadron members would pat her baby picture before a mission. I remember a lot of what I would call "sea stories" that my uncle used to tell me growing up. He was the oldest member of his crew (26), and the others called him pappy. If you want more information I'll get with my sister and see what she has. From what I know, my uncle flew 51 missions. He said every time they got close to being rotated back home, they would up they requirement until they made them stay for the duration. He flew one of the last bombing runs over Normandy before the invasion.
 
My name is Temple Smith. I hope this is useful. I am very proud of my uncle. He was truly part of "The greatest generation".

Date:
1/20/2005
Time:
11:17 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: Don Frisbie
Group: 394th and 336th
Squadron: 586th and 479th
Graduation Class: 43B
Location: Stockton, Calif.
Comments. I was an instructor pilot with the 479th Bomb Squadron at Avon Park, MacDill and Lake Charles. Donat Dauteuil was one of my students. I had heard that he was KIA and was interesting to read otherwise. Hope you have some luck finding the crew members. Have you any contact with other members of his Group or Squadron?
 
Don Frisbie

Date:
1/18/2005
Time:
7:29 PM
 
Marauderman's Name: TO/Sgt. John D. Foley
Bomb Group: 397th
Bomb Squadron: 597th
Years in service: 4
Graduation Class: unk
Class Location: unk
Comments: T/Sgt. Foley was my father's only brother. He was killed on 19 April 1945 while his B26 was attempting to take off to bomb a target in Germany. He was on his 49th mission. He left a wife and a baby daughter that he had never seen, both are alive and well today.
 
I have one picture of his plane and crew, that appears to have been taken not long before the crash using the "mission bombs" as a guide. It is my understanding that eight men were in the plane that day, and only two survived.
 
Any information about my uncle, his plane, his unit, their missions would be greatly appreciated.
 
Respectfully, Kevin Foley

Date:
1/18/2005
Time:
11:31 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: Lt. Harvey Dale Adams
Bomb Group: 323 BG
Bomb Squadron: 456th
Years in Service- 1942- 48?
Graduation Class:1942?
Class location: Lawton, OK

Comments: I'm looking for anyone who might have served with my uncle, Harvey "Dale" Adams during WWII. He served as 1st pilot with a crew of B-26 Martin Maraudermen which included Frank Simmerly, Robert Hooper, Kelly Hill, James Hewitt, Angelo Abbitasta. He flew 41 missions with this crew, and at one point, their plane was shot down. All survived as they bailed over friendly territory. Later he flew 200 missions for the Berlin Airlift. I would love to find any of his crew who might still be living, especially Kelly Hill, for whom my uncle named one of his sons. Uncle Dale died of cancer in 1962 . Thank you.
 
Stacy Schnellenbach Bogle
 
Stacy,
Your uncle would have flown several different planes during his combat tour. He was shot down in B26 42-107538 WT-T.

Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
1/17/2005
Time:
3:05 PM
 
My name is Mike Wilson. My father was 2nd Lt John T. Wilson - XXXX1201. The crew was as follows:
 
Pilot Dauteuil, Donat
CP Wilson, John T
B Koehler, Martin
N
FE Wade, Charles
RG Rider, Eugene
AG Polaski, Walter
 
Mission No 72, 27 May 1944
Mission to Paris, France
 
My father was a B26 Co-Pilot stationed in Matching England. He left the U.S. on the 6th of Feb. 1944 and arrived the 16th of March, 1944. My father died in 1979 and I have been trying to research his time while in the armed forces. According to the link - 391stbombgroup.com, the taxi sheet shows plane # 41-31716 of the 575th Squadron was hit by flak on May 27, 1944 and all 6 members bailed out. The crew was as follows: Pilot- Donat Dauteiul, co-pilot- John T. Wilson, Navigator-Martin G. Koehler, EG- Charles C. Wade, RG- Eugene F. Rider, AG- Walter F. Poleski. I have been unable to locate any of the crew members or anyone who might have witnessed this event. Anyone with any information on how I might contact them or one of their relatives, I would appreciate it very much.
 
My father broke his leg when he landed and was a pow at Luft III. I have letters he wrote from there and unfortunately lost a scrapbook depicting life in the prison camp. Again if anyone remembers being with him as a POW, I would like to know. Dave Garnham, if you have any information please contact me and Don Frisbie I can assure you Dauteuil made it back.
 
If there is a way to contact Redfield Sweet, Dave Garnham or if any other member of Mission NO 72 I would appreciate you letting me know.
 
Thanks,
Mike

Date:
1/17/2005
Time:
2:14 PM
 
Lt. James Austin Shettles
Bomb Group: 322
Bomb Squadron: 451
Comments My father's first cousin, Lt. James Austin Shettles served with the 322nd bomb group in the European theatre. I know he was killed in an accident on March 18, 1945, while getting into formation, but that is about all I know. My father was only 10 years old at the time and doesn't remember much and most who remembered Lt. Shettles are gone.
 
If anyone served with James and could tell me more about his war years, I would be very grateful. Thanks Gary

Date:
1/17/2005
Time:
5:21 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: 1st Lt. Irving M. Lerman
Bomb Group: 387
Bomb Squadron: 559
Years in service: 1941?-1944
Graduation Class: 1942
Class Location: Lakewood Army Airfield
Aviation Cadet, AFRTC, Santa Ana, California
314th B. Sq., MacDill Field, Florida
Theatre: European
Home: Cleveland, Ohio
Comments: I recently found that a son of one of my great grand uncles was KIA during a mission on 02 March 1944. The ship fell between Brugge and Ostend, Belgium. He was the bombardier-navigator. Also buried near Coxyde, Belgium at the same time (first interment) seems to be Arnold Warmuth and possibly two unknown men. It appears F/O Goplin was the pilot of the same aircraft. Other information may indicate Sgt. James W. White and S/Sgt. John H. Gober may have been in the same ship, but I am not sure. The second interment was in Champigneul, France. Final interment was near him home in the U.S.A. I found that it appears he got married at home after enlisting, but before he went to England.
 
I do not know how accurate some of the above information really is since it is not terribly clear at this time even after looking at all the documentation I have accumulated. I do not know the ship name, tail number, or for sure who he was serving with and their duties. That information would be interesting to find as well as more about this assignment, pictures, logs, and any other information. I am excited about finding this site B26.com and look forward to hearing more information from someone out there.
 
Thomas Lerman
 
Thomas,
"Hot Garters" was B26 41-31698 TQ-N and the crew on March 2 1944 was F/O Oliver E Joplin. pilot (pow); 2.Lt Arnold F Warmuth, copilot (K.I.A); 1.Lt Irving M Lerman, bombardier (K.I.A); S/Sgt John H Gober, R/G (M.I.A); Sgt. James W White, E/G (M.I.A) and Sgt Richard E Byren, A/G (P.O.W).
 
Regards
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
1/12/2005
Time:
6:30 AM
 
Hi. I'm Jim Colvert, a somewhat elderly Marauder Man. I was a B-26 and A-26 pilot in the 554th from January to June, 1945. I flew 22 missions, 8 in the B-26 and 14 in the A-26. I flew the last 386th mission (Stod Ammo/D) May 3. Unfortunately, I didn't keep a diary when I was flying combat and have no very detailed information about the missions I flew. I do have about a dozen of the briefing forms I made before the missions; I once had all 22, but 10 or so have inexplicably disappeared over the decades. I'm thinking of asking Trevor to research all 22 missions. I wrote an account of one I flew in January, 1945: the target was the Bendorf bridge. This piece was published in the Air Force Academy publication "War, Literature, and Art (Vo 9, No 1 (Spring/Summer 1997). Thanks for the opportunity of joining what seems to be a lively community of old, old 386th pilots. Jim Colvert
 
Jim Colvert guest book 1/12/05--Saw your request for data concerning your service with the 386th Bomb Group. I have some mission data near the end of the war for you as follows: April 8, 1945 you flew an A-26 ship number 579 RU-Y in the second box Lead flight. That was 386th B.G. mission number 392. April 12, 1945 you flew in number three position high flight in the second box. You flew ship 563 RU-A. That was a very bad weather day. I wrote a story about that particular mission which was made into film documentary. I narrated the action in a fifteen minute segment of a one hour presentation. You can read the story on my web page http://www.b26.com/historian/chester_klier.htm.  That was 386th B.G. mission number 395. You flew in high flight number three. April 20, 1945, you flew an A-26 number 322418 RU-O called, "KIWI BOID" That was George Horn's ship. That was 386th B.G. mission number 404. You were high flight number two position. The last 386th B.G. mission of the war was flown May 3, 1945 which was mission number 409. The A-26 you flew was number 139577 RU-C in the first box number six in the high flight.
 
Chester P. Klier--Historian, 386th B.G.

Date:
1/11/2005
Time:
10:47 PM
 
Hello. I found this site on the Internet and wanted to inquire. I only just today learned of my father's participation in the 450th Bomb Squadron of 322nd Bomb Group, 9th Army Air Force. PFC. Milton Safran, serial # XXXX5981, Army Air Force. Enlisted in Columbia, SC May 26, 1943. Served in Europe from 2/15/1944 until 12/23/1945. Ground Crew for the 450th Bomb Squadron of the 322nd Bomb Group, 9th Army Air Force. His squadron flew B-26 Marauders. He was stationed briefly at Andrews Field, Essex, England and then was moved to France 9/25/1944. His ribbons included the American Campaign, European Campaign with 5 campaign stars (the campaign stars were for Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Central Europe and Air Offensive Europe), Good Conduct and World War II Victory.
 
Is this the correct site to inquire if anyone knew my father? His name was Milton Safran. My father died when I was young in a commercial airline crash and never said much of his military days. I am looking to piece together what I can for his grandkids. Thank you for your response. Mike Safran

Date:
1/11/2005
Time:
7:36 PM
 
I am searching for information on Donald W. Carson XXXX073. I was told that he flew a B-26, had 56 +/- mission and that he may have flown with the 437th Bomb Squadron. What information do you have on Mr. Carson? Sincerely, Charles
 
Charles,
He flew with the 437th.Bomb Squadron 319th.Bomb Group,42nd Bomb Wing. Unfortunately we cannot give you a mission listing for Donald because the 319th mission records are missing. Apparently because the Group moved from the Mediterranean to the Pacific its records were lost at some point in 1945.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
1/10/2005
Time:
9:03 PM
 
To Roy Peters Re: posting 8 November 2004 from William E Johns
 
Like your uncle, James M. Peters, I was a co-pilot on a B-26 Marauder crew in the 554th Squadron, 386th Bomb Group. I have looked in the copies of orders I retained. His name and mine are on the Headquarter 1X Bomber Command Special Order 226 dated 13 August 1944 returning our crews too the "zone of the interior". On this order his rank is 1st Lt. Both crews had completed the 65 combat missions (or more) to qualify under the Combat Crew Rehabilitation Policy dated 2 August 1944. I recall travel by troop ship from Liverpool to Boston, then for me by train to Ft Lewis, WA and a month at home.
 
The next orders I have which contain both our names are issued by Headquarters AAF Pilot School (specialized 2-engine) Laughlin Field, Del Rio, Texas. Special Orders Number 267 dated 24 Oct 1944 assigned us both to the 2514th Army Air Force Base Unit (Section B) with primary duty as Pilot Two-Engine Instructor Trainee. I had processed through the Santa Monica, California Redistribution Station. Your uncle had processed through the Miami Beach, FL Redistribution Station. His arrival date at Del Rio was 22 October 1944 and mine was 23 October. Those orders show his rank as Captain--a promotion which had come after leaving England and before reporting for duty at Del Rio.
 
Our "studfents" at Del Rio were other returning combat veteran pilots who were to receive 2-engine (Martin Marauder) training.
 
On 10 Feb 1945 I obtained leave to return to Washington state to marry on Feb 18. After returning to Del Rio with my new bride on 1 March, she very clearly recalls my introducing her to Capt. Peters one day and my coming home the next day to tell her the plane he was flying had exploded in flight with no survivors. It was a great shock and sadness for both of us.

Date:
1/10/2005
Time:
6:39 AM
 
Marauderman's Name: Guerino Del Pesco
Bomb Group: 394
Bomb Squadron: 586
Years in service: 2 but unknown at this time
Graduation Class: 1942
Class Location: Unknown at this time
Comments: My uncle Reno was in the 394th BG, squadron 586. His plane was the Mi Lei Fo and he was KIA. I read a post by Albert J. DiLuzio posted on 09/23/2003 who stated that his father was the wireless operator and waist gunner on the plane. Any info about the crash and/or my uncle would be wonderful. If Mr. DiLuzio reads this or someone can pass this along to him, please email me as I  would love to talk.
 
Nino Del Pesco
 
Nino,
The B26 that Guerino was shot down in on November 18th 1944 was the second B26 to carry that name and had flown only 3 missions when it was lost. A direct flak hit under the right engine sheared off about four feet of the right wing. The B26 flipped over and went into a spin from which it never recovered. One parachute was seen to open before it crashed at the edge of the city of Gey. Later it was determined that all nine of the crew had died.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian b26.com

Date:
1/10/2005
Time:
4:28 AM
 
My father, Carroll L. Crawley, USNR, was a pilot on a JM-1 in the Pacific theater. He was a Navy/Marine aviator and flew various missions during his tour of duty. I have is flight log books as well as copies of some of his orders, medals and pictures of his plane and one of him in full flight gear in font of the nose of his plane (probably in the Pacific).
 
My father died in 1975. If any of your group can give me some information about his service I would appreciate it. I will try to get more information about his unit. I can copy his flight log and scan it and email it to your group in the next few days.  I can also copy and email the pictures that I have.
 
Thanks,
C.L. Crawley, Jr.

Date:
1/8/2005
Time:
9:29 AM
 
Hi. My name is Michael Legutko. My dad Louis Legutko was a b-26 pilot in the 320th BG. I am trying to get any history on him possible. H passed away 3 years ago after a bout with lung cancer. He told me many stories about his experience. He also said that he never acquired any of his medals and commendations. I would like to know how to obtain these for myself and his grandchildren. Any help you could give me would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Michael Legutko

Date:
1/8/2005
Time:
8:56 AM
 
Happy 1 Year Wedding Anniversary to Mr. & Mrs. Richard Ainsworth.  Ol' Rich flew fly with the 558th BS/387th BG.

Date:
1/7/2005
Time:
10:44 PM
 
Robert Stevens Tate, Pilot, 452nd BS/322nd BG

Date:
1/7/2005
Time:
7:54 PM
 
The Monument at the Roadside
 
History of the American B26 bombers, which crashed at December 23, 1944 near Demerath and Steineberg. Researched and written by Hermann-Josef Stolz, Mehren, Germany.
 
The monument was disposed as a memorial to the crew, but also as a memorial against war and forgetting. It also reminds of the people of Demerath, who had the courage to bury the dead as required by their Christian belief, although this was forbidden by the Nazis.
 
What happened then at this December 23, 1944 - one day before Christmas?
After the bad weather, which remained over the whole area of the front since the December, 16 1944 had gone sometimes the sun was breaking through the clouds. Therefore on this Saturday the air activity was more than seen in many weeks by the allieds. The 9th Air Force was told to eliminate the railways and the supply-roads behind the front. At this time railway still was a very important potential to supply the forces at the front. This day is known as "Black Saturday" in history of the 9" Air Force because they lost 36 B26-Marauder bombers only at this day over the Eifel area.  Read more ...


Date:
1/7/2005
Time:
11:34 AM
 
Captain Hugh Fletcher, bombardier with the 452nd BS/322nd BG, and his dog Salvo at Andrews field, 1944
 
We need photographs (images for the web site) of Mr. Fletcher and Salvo.

Date:
1/6/2005
Time:
6:18 AM
 
Lester E. Barton  BombGp: 322 Squadron: 451 Years: 1941-45 Class: 42 Location: Chanute Field, IL  Comments: I am looking for old friends of my deceased uncle, 1st. Lt. Lester E. Barton. He was a Pilot with B-26 Marauders. He was killed over Beauvais/Tille, France on Mar. 18, 1945 in "The Great Squadron Tragedy." He served under Lt. Col. Glenn Nye. His plane was a B-26 Bomber, listed as # 43-34155 coded SS-J. He had a younger brother who was a "Gunner" that died July 20, 1943. He flew with the B-25C's plane no. # 42-64597, 379th Bomb Squadron, 310th Bomb Group. He was killed over Italy, Monte Carvino Airdome. They were both born in Indiana. Please email me if you can remember anything about my two uncles! Thanks, Judy
 
March 18- Great squadron tragedy. While forming for a mission, the No. 6 ship in Lt. Alex Cordes' flight collided with Cordes' ship. The concussion knocked No. 3 ship out of the sky. Lt. Cordes, the only man to survive in the three ships, was thrown clear of his plane and opened his chute in time to land safely. The following officers and men were killed: Capt. George Snokelburg, Lts. Lester Barton, Victor Kasten, Ernest Moffitt, Wesley Myers, Ray Rice, John Regmund, James Shettles, and Lawrence Watson, Sgts. Thomas Colley, Jack Callaway, Jack Fox, Thomas Lamb, James Jolley, Manuel Escamilla, Joe Pratt, Frank Wittig, and John Templeton.
 
The 451st squadron mid air collision was indeed a tragedy and happening over its base it was seen by all on the ground. There was only one survivor, Lt Alex Cordes, the pilot of one of the three B26's involved.

Regards,
Trevor Allen historian B26.com

Date:
1/4/2005
Time:
10:20 PM
 
Mike,
 
Thanks for replying. I was unable to send to the Michael Groom, Jr. address. It must be changed.
 
I found two pictures, and I thought I had more. I will make copies and send them to you. One is a photo showing Capt. Groom with another pilot, Max Guthrie. The other is a color picture of the B26 Capt. Groom flew for most of his missions. It was B26 131643 YU-G "Bat out a Hell". YU signified the 323rd Group.
 
Soon after arrival at the 455th Sqdn, I was assigned to recently promoted Capt. Mike Groom who was a new flight leader. He then needed a navigator-bombardier. His co-pilot was Lt. George H. Oakes. They had both received British DFC medals for staying with their plane after bailing out the rest of the crew. They stayed with the plane until they could keep from crashing onto an English village.
 
Capt. Groom and Lt. Oakes proceeded to show their new bombardier the ropes on his first leave to London. Mike Groom was a handsome, tall Texan from McAllen. He called his home Rancho Contento. He was one of the best pilots in the Squadron and his plane was one of the fastest and most reliable. We flew many missions together as we moved from Earl's Colne to Beaulieu in England then in Lessay, Chartres, and Laon in France. We lived in tents in France, and at Laon we settled in for the winter. We also went on liberty together to Paris having many adventures.
 
Mike was proud of his Texas heritage and enjoyed explaining and demonstrating matador moves with lively Spanish expressions. When Mike and Lt. Oakes finished their missions it called for a great goodbye and farewell party. We all eventually lost track of each other. But bitter-sweet memories remain. They were both great pilots and close comrades. One of the great regrets is that we could not locate each other for the annual Squadron reunions. OIe, Mike! Vaya con Dios.
 
Russell Hall
 
Thanks for the note, Mr. Hall.  It's important for people who sign the guest book to remember to send a email when they change email addresses.  This assures a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to communicate with a Marauder Man.

Date:
1/3/2005
Time:
9:39 PM
 
I have a 2nd Cousin who flew the Martin B-26B and later B-26C-11. He was shot down and missing on a combat mission on June 18, 1942. The mission was flown from Sedrata to Olbia, Sardinia. My cousin's name was 1LT J. Lee Schoonover (first name is initial J.) This information was found in his pilot's logbook, he was attached to the 9th AF, 319th BG, 437th Squadron. There was a photo in Time or Life magazine of an earlier aircraft he had flown on a combat mission that was shot up very badly and he was forced land wheels up. My great uncle Leland A. Schoonover (J. Lee's father) was very upset over this photo.
 
Some Chronology of His service career:
 
Flight training: basic PT-22 Visalia, CA. Jan. 1942 to 3-24-1942
BT-13 & AT 6 Minter Field, CA. 4-01-42 to 05-23-1942 (advanced and instrument)
AT-17 Roswell NM June 3 to July 8 1942 Multi-Engine (I assume)
B-26B Drane Field Tampa, FL 8-7-1942 qualified limited pilot in type 8-26-1942
 
J. Lee operated in and around Tampa and Puerto Rico until Dec. 11, 1942. On Dec. 11 the crew departed Georgetown to North Africa via Belem, Natal, Ascension to Accra. On Christmas Eve 1942 he flew from Accra to Roberts and on Christmas Day from Roberts to Bathurst, followed on the day after Christmas to Marrakech. on the 29th from Marrakech to Tafarouli and on the 5th of January 1943 to LaSenia he was attached to the 319th BG 437th Squadron on 25 January. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and Purple Heart, both posthumously.
 
I have never met J. Lee because I was born on the same date he was born but 26 years later. Nearly two years after his last mission. His birthday was Dec. 7, 1920, mine is Dec. 7, 1946. I am also the only other pilot in our immediate family, a flight instructor and at one time a first officer in DC-8s and Boeing 727s and later flew crew with the US Navy in P-3 Orions. My late uncle and my father were both very close to J. Lee and I became close through pictures and stories of their childhood. I would like to hear from anyone who may have served or known J. Lee. His parents are both long gone and they never knew for sure what happened to their only beloved son, he has a marker in the cemetery in Lucerne, Mo. where he was raised but he does not rest there next to his parents. My father and I would certainly like to know as much as we could find out as well.
 
Gary R. Wertz
 
Gary - the 42nd Bomb Wing operated initially in the Mediterranean Area of Operations flying from bases in North Africa, Sardinia and Corsica. Targets during this period were in North Africa, Sicily, Italy and the South of France. Three B26 Bomb Groups were in this Wing,17th,319th and 320th. During October 1944 the 319th lost its B26's and re-equipped with B25's. Shortly thereafter returning to the USA. In November 1944 the 17th and 320th Groups, still with 42nd Bomb Wing, came under control of 1st Tactical Air Force. The Groups moved to bases in France and flew bombing sorties mainly in Germany in support of the US Armies moving up from the South of France and into Southern Germany.
 
Regards,
Trevor Allen
historian - b26.com

Date:
1/2/2005
Time:
9:41 AM
 
Elliott S. Moorhead III, Marauder Man, 322 Bomb Group, 452 Bomb Squadron

Date:
1/1/2005
Time:
8:31 AM
 
Happy New Year!

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