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41-24569

B-17 Flying Fortress

B-17F 41-24569 "Memphis Tot: [GN:V] was assigned 427BS/303BG [GN-W] Bangor 5-Oct-42; Molesworth 22-Oct-42.

Missing in Action 4-Feb-43 The primary target was to be the railroad marshalling yards at Hamm, Germany, secondary target was to be the industrial areas of Osnabruck, Germany, and the the port area of Emden, Germany was the target of last resort. Hamm and Osnabruck were obscured by clouds, so Emden was attacked. The aircraft sustained severe damage from enemy fighters and crash-landed in the Waddenzee, five miles north-east of Den Helder, Holland. 3KIA 7POW 1DIC MACR 15348.

Participated in the following 9 Operations (4 were aborted):
(See Biography events for crew information)

22-Nov-42 Mission #1 - U-Boat pens at Lorient, France - Aborted.
6-Dec-42 Mission #2 - Carriage and wagon works at Lille, France - Aborted.
12-Dec-42 Mission #3 - Railroad marshalling yards at Rouen, France.
20-Dec-42 Mission #4 - German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France.
30-Dec-42 Mission #5 - U-Boat pens at Lorient, France.
13-Jan-43 Mission #6 - Lille Fives Losomotive Works, Lille, France.
23-Jan-43 Mission #7 - U-Boat pens at Lorient, France - Aborted.
2-Feb-43 Mission #8 - Railroad marshalling yards at Hamm, Germany.
4-Feb-43 Mission #9 LAST OPERATION - Industrial areas of Osnabruck, Germany

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...

  • 427th Bomb Squadron

People

  • Jack Belk

    Military | Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group
    1-May-42 Assigned as an Aerial Gunner to 303BG/427BS at Gowen Field, Boise, Idaho, with the rank of Sergeant. 303BG personnel record does not indicate that he was assigned to any particular crew at that time and does not indicate when he arrived at...

  • Merel Bradley

    Military | Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group
    10-Jul-42 Assigned as the Tail Gunner of B-17F 41-24619 [GN-S] "S-for-Sugar", 303BG/427BS at Alamogordo Field, Alamogordo, New Mexico. Arrived in the UK with the crew of 41-24619 aboard B-17F 42-2966, 303BG/427BS on 28-Oct-43. B-17F 41-24619 was...

  • Dale Brandfas

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 303rd Bomb Group
    1-May-42 Assigned as Radio Operator of B-17F 41-24619 [GN-S] "S-for-Sugar", 303BG/427BS at Gowen Field, Bosie, Idaho. 12-Oct-42 Re-assigend to B-17F 41-24569 [GN-V], "Memphis Tot" 303BG/427BS at Dow Field, Bangor, Maine. 22-Oct-42 Arrived at Molesworth...

  • Edward Bryant

    Military | Captain | Bombardier | 303rd Bomb Group
    1-May-42 Assigned as Bombardier of B-17F 41-24619 [GN-S] "S-for-Sugar", 303BG/427BS at Gowen Field, Bosie, Idaho. 12-Oct-42 Re-assigend to B-17F 41-24569 [GN-V], "Memphis Tot" 303BG/427BS at Dow Field, Bangor, Maine. 22-Oct-42 Arrived at Molesworth, UK...

  • Philip Callery

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group
    1-May-42 Assigned as Tail Gunner of B-17F 41-24619 [GN-S] "S-for-Sugar", 303BG/427BS at Gowen Field, Bosie, Idaho. 12-Oct-42 Re-assigend to B-17F 41-24569 [GN-V], "Memphis Tot" 303BG/427BS at Dow Field, Bangor, Maine. 22-Oct-42 Arrived at Molesworth,...

  • Lloyd Cole

    Military | Captain | Pilot | 303rd Bomb Group
    1-May-42 Assigned as Pilot of B-17F 41-24619 [GN-S] "S-for-Sugar", 303BG/427BS at Gowen Field, Boise, Idaho. 22-Oct-42 Arrived at Molesworth, UK as Pilot of 41-24569 [GN-V] "Memphis Tot" 303BG/427BS. ...

  • Clarence Coomes

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Aerial Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group
    1-May-42 Assigned as an Aerial Gunner of B-17F 41-24619 [GN-S] "S-for-Sugar", 303BG/427BS at Gowen Field, Bosie, Idaho. 12-Oct-42 Re-assigned to B-17F 41-24569 [GN-V], "Memphis Tot" 303BG/427BS at Dow Field, Bangor, Maine. 22-Oct-42 Arrived at...

  • Albert Diffenbach

    Military | Captain | Bombardier | 303rd Bomb Group
    2-Aug-42 Assigned as a Bombardier on B-17F 41-24619 [GN-S] "S-for-Sugar" at Biggs Field, El Paso, Texas. 25-Oct-42 Arrived at Molesworth, UK aboard "S-for-Sugar" but there is no record that he flew any missions with that aircraft. 303BG Mission Report...

  • Robert Driggs

    Military | Lieutenant | Navigator | 303rd Bomb Group
    1-May-42 Assigned as Navigator of B-17F 41-24619 [GN-S] "S-for-Sugar", 303BG/427BS at Gowen Field, Bosie, Idaho. 12-Oct-42 Re-assigend to B-17F 41-24569 [GN-V], "Memphis Tot" 303BG/427BS at Dow Field, Bangor, Maine. 22-Oct-42 Arrived at Molesworth, UK...

  • Philip Gallery

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group

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Missions

  • 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 24

    6 December 1942
    The German airfield of Drucat at Abbeville, France is the primary target for 19 B-24s despatched from 44th Bomb Group but are recalled. One squadron of 6 does not hear the recall and proceeds to the target, 1 B-24 MIA. ...

  • 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. ...

  • VIII Bomber Command 27

    30 December 1942
    The U-Boat pens at Lorient, France are the target for this mission. A combined force of 77 B-17s are despatched by 91BG (19); 303BG (16); 305BG (13) and 306BG (18). Only 40 are effective on the target. All but 1 B-17 from the 18 despatched by 306BG is...

  • VIII Bomber Command 29

    13 January 1943
    The primary target for this mission is the Atclier d'Hellemmes locomotive works, associated steel works and the railroad marshalling yards at Lille, France. The attacking force is composed of 72 B-17s from: 91BG (13); 303BG (19); 305BG (23) and 306BG ...

  • VIII Bomber Command 30

    23 January 1943
    The port area and U-Boat pens at Lorient, France are the primary target for this mission. 305th Bombardment Group is selected as the lead group, but condensation on the bombsight of the lead aircraft in the Group prevents the 305BG from bombing Lorient...

  • VIII Bomber Command 32

    2 February 1943
    All six 8th Air Force Bomb Groups operting from Great Britain are ordered on a mission to bomb the marshalling yards at Hamm, Germany. 61 B-17s and 22 B-24s are despatched but the formation runs into severe weather over the North Sea and the mission in...

  • VIII Bomber Command 33

    4 February 1943
    The marshalling yards at Hamm, Germany are again designated as the primary target for this mission follwing the abortive attempt of 2-Feb-43. However, weather and extreme cold frustrate this operation also. The main attacking force consists of 65 B-17s...

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 Bangor, ME, USA 5 October 1942

Assigned to 303BG/427BS at Dow Field, Bangor, Maine.

Arrived in UK Molesworth, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire PE28, UK 22 October 1942

Aircraft arrived at Molesworth, UK. The original crew that flew the aircraft to the UK was:

P CPT Lloyd R. Cole; CP 2LT Robert N. McCune
N 2LT Robert P. Driggs; B 2LT Edward N. Bryant
E/TTG SSGT Bliss D. Purinton; RO SSGT Dale F. Brandfas
BTG SGT Arch Witte, Jr.; WG SSGT Alarence S. Coomes
TG SGT Philip J. Callery; Operations Officer CPT Edgar E. Snyder
This crew had originally been assigned on 1-May-42 to B-17F 41-24629 [GN-S] "S-for-Sugar", 303BG/247BS at Gowen Field, Boise, Idaho.

Mission #1, B-17F 41-24569, 303BG/427BS - Aborted Lorient, France 22 November 1942

Crew 41-24569 "Memphis Tot", 303BG/427BS

P CPT Lloyd R. Cole (RTB); CP 2LT Robert N. McCune (RTB)
N 2LT Charles R. Grice (RTB); B Not carried
E/TTG SSGT Bliss D. Purinton (RTB); RO SSGT Dale F. Brandfas (RTB)
BTG SSGT Arch Witte, Jr. (RTB); LWG SSGT Clarence S. Coomes (RTB)
RWG SGT Merel D. Bradley (RTB); TG SGT Philip J. Callery (RTB)

Mission #2, 41-24569, 303BG/427BS - Aborted Lille, France 6 December 1942

Crew 41-24569 "Memphis Tot", 303BG/427BS

Command P LTC George L. Robinson (RTB); P CPT Lloyd R. Cole (RTB)
CP 2LT Robert N. McCune (RTB); N 2LT Robert P. Driggs (RTB)
Command N 1LT Samuel H. Anderson (RTB); B 2LT Edward N. Bryant (RTB)
E/TTG SSGT Bliss D. Purinton (RTB); RO SSGT Dale F. Brandfas (RTB)
BTG SSGT Arch Witte, Jr. (RTB); LWG SGT James R. Van Etten (RTB)
RWG SGT Edward T. Levering (RTB); TG SGT Philip J. Callery (RTB)

Mission #3, 41-24569, 303BG/427BS Rouen, France 12 December 1942

Crew 41-24569 "Memphis Tot", 303BG/427BS

Command P LTC George L. Robinson (RTB); CP CPT Lloyd R. Cole (RTB)
N 2LT Robert P. Driggs (RTB); B 2LT Albert W. Diffenbach (RTB)
E/TTG SSGT Bliss D. Purinton (RTB); RO SSGT Dale F. Brandfas (RTB)
BTG SSGT Arch Witte, Jr., (RTB); LWG SGT James R. Van Etten (RTB)
RWG SSGT Clarence S. Coomes (RTB); TG SGT Philip J. Callery (RTB)

Mission #4, 41-24569, 303BG/427BS Romilly-sur-Seine, France 20 December 1942

Crew 41-24569 "Memphis Tot", 303BG/427BS

P CPT Lloyd R. Cole (RTB); CP 2LT Robert N. McCune (RTB)
N 2LT Robert P Driggs (RTB); B 2LT Edward N. Bryant (RTB)
E/TTG TSGT Lucian W. Means, Jr., (RTB); RO SSGT Dale F. Brandfas (RTB)
BTG SGT Jack Belk (RTB); LWG SGT James R. Van Etten (RTB)
RWG SSGT Clarence S. Coomes (RTB); TG SGT Philip J. Calley (RTB)

Mission #5, 41-24569, 303BG/427BS Lorient, France 30 December 1942

Crew 41-24569 "Memphis Tot", 303BG/427BS.

P MAJ Charles C. Sheridan (RTB); CP CPT Glenn E. Hagenbuch (RTB)
N 2LT Walter M. Soha (RTB); B 2LT Roy R. Moser (RTB)
E/TTG TSGT Charles E. Zipfel (RTB); RO SSGT Gordon D. Miller (RTB)
BTG SGT Edward T. Levering (RTB); LWG SGT Edward Z. Harmon (RTB)
RWG SGT James L. Pennington (RTB); TG SGT George W. Henderson (RTB)

Mission #6, 41-24569, 303BG/427BS Lille, France 13 January 1943

Crew 41-24569 "Memphis Tot", 303BG/427BS.

P CPT Lloyd R. Cole (RTB); CP 2LT Robert N. McCune (RTB)
N 2LT Robert P. Driggs (RTB); B 1LT Lyle D. Sherwood (RTB)
E/TTG SSGT Bliss D. Purinton (RTB); RO SSGT Dale F. Brandfas (RTB)
BTG SSGT Arch Witte, Jr. (RTB); LWG SSGT Clarence S. Coomes (RTB)
RWG SGT Phillip J. Callery (RTB); TG SGT James R Van Etten (RTB)

N CPT Glenn E. Hagenbuch (RTB); B 1LT Lyle C. Sherwood (RTB)
E/TTG 2LT Edward N. Bryant (RTB); RO SSGT Gordon D. Miller (RTB)
BTG SSGT Dale F. Brandfas (RTB); LWG SGT James L. Pennington (RTB)
RWG SGT Edward T. Levering (RTB); TG SGT Jack Belk (RTB)

Mission #7, 41-24569, 303BG/427BS - Aborted Lorient, France 23 January 1943

Crew 41-24569 "Memphis Tot", 303BG/427BS.

P CPT Lloyd R. Cole (RTB); CP 2LT Robert N. McCune (RTB)
N 2LT Robert P. Driggs (RTB); B 2LT Edward N. Bryant (RTB)
E/TTG SSGT Bliss D. Purinton (RTB); RO SSGT Dale F. Brandfas (RTB)
BTG SSGT Arch Witte, Jr. (RTB); LWG SGT Phillip Callery (RTB)
RWG SSGT Clarence S. Coomes (RTB); TG SGT James R. Van Etten (RTB)

Mission #8, 41-24569, 303BG/427BS - Aborted Hamm, Germany 2 February 1943

Crew 41-24569 "Memphis Tot", 303BG/427BS.

P CPT Lloyd R. Cole (RTB); CP 2LT Robert N. McCune (RTB)
N 2LT Robert P. Driggs (RTB); B 2LT Edward N. Bryant (RTB)
E/TTG TSGT Bliss D. Purinton (RTB); RO TSGT Gordon D. Miller (RTB)
BTG SSGT Arch Witte, Jr. (RTB); LWG SSGT Clarence S. Coomes (RTB)
RWG SGT Phillip Callery (RTB); TG SGT Bernard Jurosek (RTB)

Failed to Return (FTR) Waddenzee 4 February 1943

Sustained damage from fighter attacks and crash-landed in the Waddenzee, five miles north-east of Den Helder, Holland.

Mission #9, 41-24569, 303BG/427BS - FTR Osnabrück, Germany 4 February 1943

Crew 41-24569 "Memphis Tot", 303BG/427BS.

P CPT Lloyd Cole (DOW-DIC); CP 2LT Robert N. McCune (KIA)
N 1LT Robert P. Driggs (POW); B CPT Edward N. Bryant (POW)
E/TTG SSGT Bliss D. Purinton (POW); RO TSGT Gordon D. Miller (POW)
BTG SSGT Arch Witte, Jr., (POW); LWG SSGT James L. Pennington (KIA)
RWG SGT James R. Van Etten (KIA); TG SSGT Phillip J. Callery (POW)

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2016 23:39:30 Lee8thbuff Changes to description and events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2016. Added Mission #9 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 4-Feb-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/014.pdf

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2016 22:24:46 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2016. Added Mission #8 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 2-Feb-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/013.pdf

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2016 22:17:45 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2016. Added Mission #7 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 23-Jan-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/011.pdf

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2016 22:10:27 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2016. Added Mission #6 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 13-Jan-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/010.pdf

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2016 22:00:19 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2016. Added Mission #5 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 30-Dec-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/008.pdf

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2016 21:35:17 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2016. Added Mission #4 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 20-Dec-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/007.pdf

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2016 21:25:49 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2016. Added Mission #3 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 6-Dec-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/006.pdf

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2016 21:15:31 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2016. Added Mission #2 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 6-Dec-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/005.pdf

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2016 21:01:20 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2016. Added Mission #1 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/003.pdf

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2016 20:49:28 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2016. Added Arrived in UK event per "The B-17 Flying Fortress Story", Roger A. Freeman with David Osborne and 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Lloyd R. Cole crew page: http://www.303rdbg.com/c-427-cole.html

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2016 20:34:56 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2016. Added Assigned to Unit event per "The B-17 Flying Fortress Story", Roger A. Freeman with David Osborne.

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2016 20:23:37 Lee8thbuff Changes to description and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2016. Added Mission Participations to Summary Biography; made connections to ALL Missions per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Reports: http://www.303rdbg.com/

Date Contributor Update
28 January 2015 20:13:32 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 28-Jan-2015. Added "Dean" to George Dean Miller in crew list per original data ingest and in resolution of a DUPLICATE entry by Paul Andrews Project Bits and Pieces.

Date Contributor Update
27 January 2015 18:49:43 Lee8thbuff Changes to nicknames, markings, description, events, place associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 27-Jan-2015. Added nickname and markings per "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces" Stan Bishop & John A. Hey MBE; Added FTR event, rank, crew position, full proper name and dispositions per MACR 15348; Made connections to Place and Mission within existing website data; Edited Description with target information per 303BG Mission Report of 4-Feb-43, converted dates to military-style signification.

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

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 15348 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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