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41-24506

B-17 Flying Fortress

B17-F 41-24506 'The Shiftless Skonk; was assigned 324BS/91BG [DF-G] Bangor 2-Sep-42; Bassingbourn 29-Sep-42; Despatched on 23-Nov-1942 to bomb the U-Boat pens at St. Nazaire, France. The Group was unable to bomb because of 10/10 cloud cover and headed back to Bassingbourn. The aircraft was attached three different times by enemy aircraft, but managed to return to England. However the field at Bassingbourn was fogged in, so the pilot attempted an emergency landing at Watford but struck a pylon and crashed field near Black Boy pub, Leavesden, UK, killing two of the crew outright. Three others died of their injuries later.

P 1Lt Nathan M. Corman (RTD); CP2 Lt. Allen P. Lowry (RTD)
N 2Lt John A. Ball, Jr.,(KOM); B 2Lt Gene F. Davis (KOM)
E/TTG TSgt Lloyd G. Martin (RTD); RO SSgt Leroy H. Bonshine (RTD)
BTG Sgt Shelby L. Welton (KOM); WG SSgt Walter J. Wright (KOM)
WG Sgt Herbert Hoffman (KOM); TG SSgt Earl E. Teats (RTD)

Service

Units

  • 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars

    91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars

    Group
    The 91st Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated at Harding Field, Louisiana on 15-April-1942 and went to MacDill Field, Florida for the first phase of training from 16-May-1942 to 25-June-1942. The Group was then assigned to 2nd Air Force at Walla...

  • 324th Bomb Squadron

    324th Bomb Squadron

    Squadron
    Home of the Memphis Belle

People

  • John Ball

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Killed in Action (KIA) Crashed 23 November 1942 in B-17 41-24506 'The Shiftless Skonk' while serving as Navigator. Aircraft crashed near Watford/Leavesden on returning from a mission. Plane had been attacked by fighters. At rest at the Cambridge...

  • Leroy Bonshine

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Radio Operator | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    On 23 November 1942 in B-17 41-24506 'The Shiftless Skonk' while serving as Radio Operator, the aircraft crashed near Watford/Leavesden upon returning from a mission. Plane had been attacked by fighters. SSgt Bonshine Returned to Duty (RTD)

  • Nathan Corman

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    23 November 1942 in B-17 41-24506 'The Shiftless Skunk' while serving as Pilot. Crashed near Watford/Leavesden on returning from a mission. He hit a pylon on the crash landing killing five crew members. Plane had been attacked by fighters.

  • Gene Davis

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Bombardier | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Killed on Mission (KOM) 23 November 1942 in B-17 41-24506 'The Shiftless Skonk' while serving as Bombardier. Aircraft crashed near Watford on returning from a mission. Plane had been attacked by fighters. At rest at the Rest Haven Cemetery, Menard...

  • Herbert Hoffman

    Military | Sergeant | Waist Gunner. | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Killed on Mission (KOM) 23-November 1942 on B-17F 41-24506, 'The Shiftless Skonk' while serving as Waist Gunner. Aircraft crashed near Watford/Leavesden on return from aborted mission to St. Nazaire, France. Aircraft had been attacked by fighters...

  • Allan Lowry

    Military | First Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    On 23 November 1942 in B-17 41-24506 'The Shiftless Skonk' while serving as Co-Pilot. Aircraft crashed near Watford on returning from a mission. Plane had been attacked by fighters. ...

  • Lloyd Martin

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Engineer/Top Turret Gunner | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    On 23 November 1942 in B-17 41-24506 'The Shiftless Skonk' while serving as Engineer/Top Turret Gunner, the aircraft crashed near Watford/Leavesden on returning from a mission. Plane had been attacked by fighters. TSgt Martin Returned to Duty (RTD)

  • Earl Teats

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Crashed 23 November 1942 in B-17 41-24506 'The Shiftless Skonk' while serving as Tail Gunner. Aircraft crashed near Watford/Leavesden on returning from a mission. Plane had been attacked by fighters.

  • Shelby Welton

    Military | Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Killed on Mission (KOM). Crashed 23 November 1942 in B-17 41-24506 'The Shiftless Skonk' while serving as Ball Turret Gunner. Aircraft crashed near Watford on returning from a mission. Plane had been attacked by fighters. At rest at the Cambridge...

  • Walter Wright

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Killed on Mission (KOM) 23 November 1942, B-17F 41-24506 'The Shiftless Skonk' while serving as Waist Gunner. Aircraft crashed near Watford/Leavesden on returning from a mission. Plane had been attacked by fighters. At rest at Maple Grove Cemetery,...

Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 23

    23 November 1942
    The U-Boat pens at St. Nazaire, France are the Primary (P) for this mission. A combined force of 50 B-17s despatched from 91BG (10), 303BG (12), 305BG (20) and 306BG (8) to attack this target. 91BG is not able to put any of their group on the target,...

Places

  • Bassingbourn

    Military site : airfield
    Now home to a museum all about the aifield and its USAAF residents (http://www.towermuseumbassingbourn.co.uk/) , Bassingbourn opened in 1938 as part of the RAF's pre-war expansion programme. The RAF continued to use it until late in 1942 when its long...

Events

Event Location Date
Crashed Leavesden Aerodrome, Watford, Hertfordshire WD25 7BZ, UK 23 November 1942

Severely damaged by fighter attacks, crashed in a field near Watford/Leavesden, UK upon return from mission to St. Nazaire, France. Aircraft was listed as a Category -E loss (damaged beyond repair) and salvaged.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
02 December 2014 20:40:19 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 2-Dec-2014. Edited map location of crash.

Date Contributor Update
02 December 2014 19:28:34 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 2-Dec-2014. Edited description, dates edited to conform to military-style signification, crew information formatted, all per "Losses of the 8th & 9th AIr Forces" Stam Bishop & John A. Hey MBE

Date Contributor Update
07 November 2014 21:53:03 Lee8thbuff Changes to nicknames
Sources

Lee Cunningham 7-Nov-2014. Correct typo in nickname.

Date Contributor Update
07 November 2014 20:56:41 Lee8thbuff Changes to production block number, manufacturer, nicknames, markings, description, events, unit associations, place associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 7-Nov-2014. "Losses of the 8th & 9th AIr Forces" Stan Bishop & John A. Hey MBE.

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

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log

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