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41-24565

B-17 Flying Fortress

Assigned 359BS/303BG [BN-P] Bangor 9/10/42; Molesworth 25/10/42; force landed RAF Chipping Warden 23/1/43 with Ross Bates, 10RTD; Missing in Action 28m Gelsenkirchen 5/11/43 with Ambrose Grant, Co-pilot: Frank Hall, Navigator: Jim Berger, Bombardier: Marion Blackburn, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Tony Kujawa, Radio Operator: Ed Sexton, Ball turret gunner: Chester Petrosky, Waist gunner: Harold Kraft, Tail gunner: Francis Andersen (9 Prisoner of War), Waist gunner: Joe Hauer (Killed in Action); flak hit crashed Wouw, four miles W of Roosendal, Holl. Missing Air Crew Report 1157. THE RAMBLIN' WRECK aka IDAHO POTATO PEELER.

Service

Units

  • 8th Air Force

    8th Air Force


    Eighth Air Force Bomber Command became the Eighth Air Force on February 1944, it oversaw bombardment of strategic targets in Europe until 1945. ...

  • 303rd Bomb Group

    303rd Bomb Group

    Group
    The 303rd Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated on 3-Feb-1942 at Pendleton Field, Oregon. They assembled at Gowen Field, Idaho on 11-February 1942 where it conducted flight training until 12-Jun-1942. The Group then moved to Alamogordo Field, New...

  • 359th Bomb Squadron

People

  • Francis Andersen

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down 5 November 1943 in B-17 41-24565 'The Rambling Wreck. ' Prisoner of War (POW). This was his 8th mission per the MACR #1157.

  • James Berger

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down 5 November 1943 in B-17 41-24565 'The Ramblin' Wreck. ' Prisoner of War (POW).

  • Marion Blackburn

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Bombardier | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down 5 November 1943 in B-17 41-24565 'The Rambling Wreck. ' Prisoner of War (POW). Earlier 10/14/43 on return from Schweinfurt mission, with B17 42-5482 'Cat O'Nine Tails' running out of fuel landed at Bedfordshire. Crew returned.

  • Richard Browning

    Military | Lieutenant | Navigator | 303rd Bomb Group
    28-Feb-42 Assigned as Navigator of B-17F 41-24565 [BN-P] "Idaho Potato Peeler Kids", 303BG/359BS at Gowen Field, Boise, Idaho. 25-Oct-42 Arrived at Molesworth, UK aboard "Idaho Potato Peeler Kids" ...

  • Claude Campbell

    Military | Colonel | Pilot | 303rd Bomb Group
    Assigned to 359BS, 303BG, 8AF USAAF. 30 x combat missions. ETD Awards: DSC, AM (3OLC), WWII Victory, EAME, UN and Korean medals. Post war: Remained in USAF, serving in Korean conflict.

  • George Dominick

    Military | First Lieutenant | Bombardier | 303rd Bomb Group
    Assigned to B-17F 41-24581"The '8' Ball", 303BG/359BS on 1-Jul-1942. Arrived aboard that aircraft at Molesworth, UK on 21-Oct-42. He only participated in 3 Operations with the 359BS (See Biography events). His final disposition has not been determined....

  • Walter Dooley

    Military | First Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down 14 May 1943 in B-17F 42-5243 "FDR's Potato Peeler Kids", 303BG/359BS. Battle damaged aircraft crashed into North Sea. Killed in Action (KIA).MACR 15593 Mission participation (UNDER CONSTRUCTION) See Biography events.

  • Richard Fortunak

    Military | Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner, Tail Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group
    1-Jul-42 Assigned as a Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24581 [BN-O],"The '8' Ball", 303BG/359BS at Alamogordo Field, Alamogordo, New Mexico and arrived aboard that aircraft at Molesworth, UK on 21-Oct-42. ...

  • Ambrose Grant

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Pilot | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down 5 November 1943 in B-17 41-24565 'The Rambling Wreck. ' Prisoner of War (POW).

  • Franklin Hall

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down 5 November 1943 in B-17 41-24565 'The Ramblin' Wreck. ' Prisoner of War (POW).

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Places

  • Molesworth

    Military site : airfield
    Molesworth was one of the early stations used by the Eighth Air Force in the UK, first occupied by the 15th Bomb Squadron’s Douglas Bostons in June 1942. Built in 1940 and extended and improved in 1942, Molesworth is most associated with the 303rd...

Events

Event Location Date
Failed to Return (FTR) Germany 5 November 1943

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
06 January 2020 22:53:20 jmoore43 Changes to description
Sources

Corrected the first name of Waist gunner, Harold Kraft, per MACR #1157 records on the 303BG website.

Date Contributor Update
06 January 2020 21:03:55 jmoore43 Changes to description
Sources

Corrected the spelling of the Tail gunner's, Francis Andersen, last name per the MACR #1157 on the 303BG website.

Date Contributor Update
06 January 2020 20:40:04 jmoore43 Changes to description
Sources

Added 3 spaces in the "Description" for readability.

Date Contributor Update
06 January 2020 20:02:19 jmoore43 Changes to description
Sources

Corrected the spelling of the last name of the Waist gunner, Joe Bauer to Hauer per MACR 1157 (see Description).

Date Contributor Update
06 January 2020 19:39:27 jmoore43 Changes to description
Sources

Corrected the spelling of the last name of the Co-pilot in the "Description".

Date Contributor Update
06 January 2020 19:11:36 jmoore43 Changes to nicknames
Sources

Capitalized A/C nickname "Idaho Potato Peeler".

Date Contributor Update
06 January 2020 18:49:23 jmoore43 Changes to unit associations
Sources

Added a connection to 8th AF.

Date Contributor Update
06 January 2020 18:47:21 jmoore43 Changes to nicknames
Sources

Added A/C nicknames mentioned in the A/C description.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:40:03 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 1157 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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