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41-24465

B-17 Flying Fortress

Assigned 368BS/306BG [BO- ] Westover 17/8/42; Thurleigh 16/10/42; Missing in Action to the ERLA works in Antwerp 5 April 1943 with Pilot Robert W. Seelos (POW). Co-pilot: Alexander Kramarinko (Evaded - POW); Navigator: William W. Saunders (POW); Ball turret gunner: William H. Keskey (Evaded - POW); Left Waist gunner: William E. Baker (Evaded - POW); Right Waist gunner: Raymond E. Walls (Evaded); Tail gunner: Roland Magee (POW); Bombardier: James E. Murray (KIA); Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Stanley P. Stemkoski (KIA); Radio Operator: Fred R. Hampton (KIA). Hit by Flak and shot down by Oblt Otto Stammberger (4/JG26), lost #1 engine and unable to feather, crashed in the Heikant hamlet, 4km South West of Kalmthout, North of Antwerp, Belgium. Missing Air Crew Report 15534. MONTANA POWER.

Service

Units

  • 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers

    306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers

    Group
    Constituted as 306th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on 28 Jan 1942. Activated on 1 Mar 1942. Trained for combat with B-17's. Moved to England, Aug-Sep 1942, and assigned to Eighth AF Eighth Air Force in September 1942 Station 111 Thurleigh. During combat,...

  • 368th Bomb Squadron

People

  • William Baker

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers
    William Baker was an original member of the Group. He flew as Left Waist gunner on the Robert W. Seelos crew and was shot down on 5 April 1943 in B-17 #41-24465 'Montana Power'. MACR 15534. ...

  • Fred Hampton

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers
    Fred Hampton was Radio Operator on B-17 #41-24465 'Montana Power', shot down 5 April 1943 in Belgium. Killed in Action (KIA).

  • William Keskey

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers
    Shot down 5 April 1943 in B-17 #41-24465 'Montana Power.' Initially evaded with the help of Dutch, Belgian and French individuals, he was arrested in Bordeaux, France on 18 June 1943, trapped in the net of Belgian traitor Prosper De Zitter, working for...

  • Alexander Kramarinko

    Military | Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers
    On 6-September-1942 while serving as Co-Pilot of B-17 41-24516 'Meltin' Pot' the aircraft lost 2 engines off Londonderry after flight from Newfoundland. Landed in shallow water and all crew members walked ashore. ...

  • Roland Magee

    Military | Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers
    Roland Magee was Tail Gunner on B-17 #41-24465 'Montana Power', shot down 5 April 1943 in Belgium. Prisoner of War (POW). He had lost his eye to a Flak fragment during the attack. After landing in parachute, he was hidden by a farmer near Loenhout ...

  • James Murray

    Military | Lieutenant | Navigator / Bombardier | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers
    James Murray was a last minute substitute Navigator and not a regular member of Pilot Robert W. Seelos' crew. Seelos, Murray and 8 other men were shot down 5 April 1943 in B-17 #41-24465 'Montana Power'. James Murray was Killed in Action (KIA).

  • William Saunders

    Military | Lieutenant | Bombardier / Navigator | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers
    William Saunders was on his 13th mission when he was shot down 5 April 1943 in B-17 #41-24465 'Montana Power' - Robert W. Seelos crew. Hit by flak and then fighters on a mission to the ERLA works in Antwerp, Belgium. Parachuted into Wuustwezel, near...

  • Robert Seelos

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Pilot | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers
    Pilot of B-17 #41-24465 'Montana Power'. Hit by flak and shot down by fighters on his 19th mission, the 5 April 1943 one to the ERLA works in Antwerp, Belgium. MACR 15534. Parachuted into Wuustwezel, North of Antwerp and was immediately made prisoner....

  • Stanley Stemkoski

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Top Turret Gunner | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers
    Stanley Stemkoski was Engineer/Top Turret Gunner on B-17 #41-24465 'Montana Power', shot down 5 April 1943 in Belgium. Killed in Action (KIA). Note : The crew list in the MACR and his gravestone at the Ardennes American Cemetery have him as Stanley P....

  • Raymond Walls

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Right Waist Gunner | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers
    Raymond Walls came over to Thurleigh with the 352nd Service Squadron then transferred to the 368th Bomb Squadron on 27 January 1943. He only completed 6 missions before being shot down. ...

Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 50

    5 April 1943
    The industrial area of Antwerp, Belgium is the primary target of this mission. More specifically the Erla aircraft and engine factories are the highest priority. 79 B-17s are depatched: 91BG (20); 303BG (21); 305BG (18); 306BG (20). 64 of the 79 are...

Places

  • Thurleigh

    Military site : airfield
    Built for RAF use in 1941-42, Thurleigh was initially used by RAF Bomber Command before being handed over to the Eighth Air Force. Its runways and hardstandings were improved, and the B-17s of the 306th Bomb Group began using the base. It was their...

Events

Event Location Date
Failed to Return (FTR) Heikant, Kalmthout, Belgium 5 April 1943

Hit by Flak & shot down afterwards. Crashed near Kalmthout, Belgium.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
31 August 2015 12:51:08 ED-BB Changes to nicknames, description, events, person associations, place associations and mission associations
Sources

MACR 15534 (error in the initial editing : MACR 15533 = for the loss of B-17 Serial 42-5072 lost on the same mission)
Research on the crew members for website www.evasioncomete.org (> >> Recherche / Search on 41-24465)

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:40:02 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 15533 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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