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41-24566

B-17 Flying Fortress

B-17F 41-24566 'Zombie' [BN-W] was assigned 303BG/359BS [BN-W] at Alamogordo Field, New Mexico on 23-Jun-42. Stationed at Kellogg Field, Battle Creek, Michigan until 3-Oct-42 when it went to Bangor, Maine for deployment to England.; Molesworth 25-Oct-42. Shot down 20-Dec-42 by enemy aircraft, crashed in Channel, off Dieppe, France while on a mission to bomb the German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France. 10KIA MACR 15708. Participated in 4 Operations (1 aborted) See Biography events

18-Nov-42 Mission #1 - U-Boat pens at St. Nazaire, France (See Biography events)
22-Nov-42 Mission #2 - U-Boat pens at Lorient, France (See Biography events)
12-Dec-42 Mission #3 - Railroad marshalling yards at Rouen, France - Aborted (See Biography events)
20-Dec-42 LAST OPERATION - Mission #4 - Air Depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France MIA

Service

Units

  • 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

  • Thomas Bachom

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down 20 December 1942 in B-17 41-24566 'Zombie', 303BG/359BS while serving as Radio Operator on a mission to bomb the German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France. Killed in Action (KIA). MACR 15593. Participated in 4 Operations (1 was aborted)....

  • Donald Brightbill

    Military | First Lieutenant | Navigator | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down 20 December 1942 in B-17F 41-24566 'Zombie' 303BG/360BS, while serving as Navigator on a mission to bomb the German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France. MACR 15593. Killed in Action (KIA). Participated in 4 Operations (1 was aborted). See...

  • 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.

  • Wilmer Dyar

    Military | First Lieutenant | Bombardier | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down 20 December 1942 in B-17F 41-24566 'Zombie', 303G/259BS while serving as Bombardier on a mission to bomb the German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France. Killed in Action (KIA). MACR 15593. Participated in 4 Operations (1 was aborted) See...

  • Herbert Kalhoefer

    Military | First Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 303rd Bomb Group
    Assigned to 303BG/359BS on 23-Jun-42 at Alamogordo Field, Alamogordo, New Mexico. Arrived at Molesworth on 25-Oct-42. Biography UNDER CONSTRUCTION.

  • Harold Kinsey

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down 20 December 1942 in B-17F 41-24566 'Zombie' 202BG/359BS while serving as Right Waist Gunner on a mission to bomb the German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France. MACR 15593. Killed in Action (KIA). Participated in 4 operations (1 Aborted)....

  • Francis McMurtry

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down on 20 December 1942 in B-17F 41-24566 'Zombie' while serving as Co-Pilot. Killed in Action (KIA). Originally assigned to 1LT Arthur E. Reddig's crew in B-17F 41-24568 "Lady Fairweather". Flew two missions with 1LT Reddig: 18-Nov-42 and 22-Nov...

  • Bernard Millett

    Military | Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down 20 December 1942, in B-17F 41-24566 'Zombie', 303BG/359BS while serving as Ball Turret Gunner on a mission to bomb the German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France. Killed in Action (KIA). MACR 15593. Participated in 4 Operations (1-Aborted)...

  • Warner Renner

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group
    Shot down on 20 December 1942 in B-17F 41-24566 'Zombie', 303BG/359BS while serving as Left Waist Gunner on a mission to bomb the German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France. Killed in Action (KIA). MACR 15593 Body found February 1, 1943 and taken...

  • Eugene Romig

    Military | Colonel | Commanding Officer | 303rd Bomb Group
    13 Feb-42 Assigned as Operations Officer of 303 Bomb Group at Pendleton Field, Pendleton, Oregon with the rank of Major. 15-Sep-42 appointed Commanding Office of 303BG/359th Bombardment Squadron. See Biography events. MISSION participation currently...

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Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 21

    18 November 1942
    The U-Boat pens at Lorient and La Pallice, France are the Primary (P) targets for this mission. However, those at St. Nazaire, France are attacked by 21 B-17s of 303BG when they are mistaken for those of Lorient. The force attacking Lorient is composed...

  • VIII Bomber Command 22

    22 November 1942
    The U-Boat pens at Lorient, France are the Primary (P) target of this mission. A combined force of 68 B-17s despatched from 91BG (18), 303BG (18) 305BG (23) and 306BG (9) against the target but a 10/10 could cover prevents all but 11 from 303BG from...

  • 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,...

  • VIII Bomber Command 25

    12 December 1942
    This mission is composed of two elements. First element: The German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France is the Primary (P) target for a force of 78 B-17s despatched from 91BG (19), 303BG (20), 305BG (21) and 306BG (18). However, the target is...

  • VIII Bomber Command 26

    20 December 1942
    The German Air Depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France is the Primary (P) target for a combined force of 80 B-17s despatched by 91BG (17), 303BG (21); 305BG (23) and 306BG (19). 60 B-17 are effective on the target, but 7 are MIA and 1 is DBR. ...

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
Assigned to Group Alamogordo, NM 88310, USA 23 June 1942

Assigned to the 306BG/359BS on 23-Jun-42 at Alamogordo Field, New Mexico.

Original Crew

P 1LT Orville S. Witt; CP 2LT George C. Woodman
N 2LT Donald H. Brightbill; B 2LT Wilmer E. Dyar
E/TTG SSGT Lyle C. Woods; RO CPL Edmund R. Thornton
BTG SSGT Warner E. Renner; LWG Not assigned
RWG Not assigned; TG SSGT Lawrence C. Thomas

Station Transfer Battle Creek, MI, USA 7 August 1942 – 3 October 1942

Stations at Kellogg Field, Battle Creek, Michigan.

Station Transfer for Deployment Bangor, ME, USA 3 October 1942 – 24 October 1942

Transferred to Bangor, Maine in preparation for deployment to England.

Mission #1 B-17F 41-24566, 303BG/359BS Saint-Nazaire, France 18 November 1942

CREW

P 1LT Orville S. Witt, Jr. (RTB); CP 1LT Herbert E. Kalhoefer (RTB)
N 1LT Donald H. Brightbill (RTB); B 1LT Wilmer Dyar (RTB) E/TTG TSGT Lyle C. Woods (RTB); RO TSGT Thomas F. Bachom (RTB)
BTG CPL Bernard W Millet (RTB); LWG SSGT Warner E. Renner (RTB)
RWG SSGT Harold A. Kinsey (RTB); TG SSGT Laurence W. Thomas (RTB)

Mission #2 B-17F 41-24566, 303BG/359BS Lorient, France 22 November 1942

CREW

CMP MAJ Eugene A. Romig (RTB); CP 2LT Walter E. Dooley (RTB)
N 1LT Donald H. Brightbill (RTB); B 1LT Wilmer Dyar (RTB) E/TTG TSGT Lyle C. Woods (RTB); RO TSGT Thomas F. Bachom (RTB)
BTG CPL Bernard W Millet (RTB); LWG SSGT Warner E. Renner (RTB)
RWG SSGT Harold A. Kinsey (RTB); TG SSGT Laurence W. Thomas (RTB)

Mission #3 B-17F 41-24566, 303BG/359BS - Aborted Rouen, France 12 December 1942

CREW

CMP Eugene A. Romig (RTB); CP 1LT Herbert E. Kalhoefer (RTB)
N 1LT Donald H. Brightbill (RTB); B 1LT Wilmer Dyar (RTB) E/TTG TSGT Lyle C. Woods (RTB); RO TSGT Thomas F. Bachom (RTB)
BTG CPL Bernard W Millet (RTB); LWG SSGT Warner E. Renner (RTB)
RWG SSGT Harold A. Kinsey (RTB); TG SSGT Laurence W. Thomas (RTB)
Mission Aborted.

Failed to Return (FTR) Over Water (OW) English Channel 20 December 1942

Shot down by enemy aircraft near the Channel coast.

Mission #4 B-17F 41-24566, 303BG/359BS - MIA Romilly-sur-Seine, France 20 December 1942

CREW

P 1LT Orville S. Witt, Jr. (KIA); CP 2LT Francis M McMurtry, Jr. (KIA)
N 1LT Donald H. Brightbill (KIA); B 1LT Wilmer Dyar (KIA)
E/TTG TSGT Lyle C. Woods (KIA); RO TSGT Thomas F. Bachom (KIA)
BTG CPL Bernard W Millet (KIA); LWG SSGT Warner E. Renner (KIA) [body washed up 1-Feb-43]
RWG SSGT Harold A. Kinsey (KIA);TG SSGT Laurence W. Thomas (KIA)

Mission to bomb the German air depot at Romilly-su-Seine, France.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
11 December 2015 00:29:38 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 1-Dec-2015. Added Mission #5 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 12-Dec-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/006.pdf

Date Contributor Update
11 December 2015 00:23:36 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 10-Dec-2015 . Added Mission #2 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 22-Nov-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/003.pdf

Date Contributor Update
11 December 2015 00:17:07 Lee8thbuff Changes to description and events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 10-Dec-2015. Added Mission # 1 event per 303Bg website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 18-Nov-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/002.pdf

Date Contributor Update
09 December 2015 00:34:09 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 8-Dec-2015 Correcting Mission #5 title and noteformat.

Date Contributor Update
09 December 2015 00:31:17 Lee8thbuff Changes to description and events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 8-Dec-2015. Added Mission #5 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 20-Dec-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/007.pdf

Date Contributor Update
09 December 2015 00:23:45 Lee8thbuff Changes to description and events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 8-Dec-2015. Added transfer to Bangor, Maine per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Orville S. Witt crew page: http://www.303rdbg.com/c-359-witt.html

Date Contributor Update
09 December 2015 00:11:57 Lee8thbuff Changes to description and events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 8-Dec-2015. Added ASsigned to Group event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Orville S. Witt crew page: http://www.303rdbg.com/c-359-witt.html

Date Contributor Update
08 December 2015 23:55:15 Lee8thbuff Changes to description and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 8-Dec-2015. Added Mission particpation list to Biography summary and made connections to all mission participations per my research on 303BG Mission Reports, 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/

Date Contributor Update
04 December 2014 20:37:58 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 4-Dec-2014. Corrected typo on BACHOM.

Date Contributor Update
04 December 2014 20:33:35 Lee8thbuff Changes to nicknames, markings, description, events, place associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 4-Dec-2014. Edited description, converted dates to military-style designations, added aircraft nickname; added target information, formatted crew information to include rank and proper name; all information per MACR 15708 and "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces" Stan Bishop & John A. Hey MBE.

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

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 15708 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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