Skip to main content
Edit entry 

42-31673

B-17 Flying Fortress

B-17G 42-31673 'Lassie Come Home' was delivered Cheyenne 6-Dec-43; Kearney 17-Dec-43; Harrisburg 8-Jan-44; New Castle 9-Jan-43; Presque Is 11-Jan-44; Prestwick 16-Jan-44; Assigned 96BG Snetterton 16-Jan-44; transferred 322BS/91BG [LG-B] Bassingbourn 27-Jan-44. On 16-Aug-44 the aircraft was on a mission to attack the aircraft factories at Halle, Germany. Attacked by approximately 25 enemy aircraft, setting the radio room in fire and exploding in mid-air. Crashed Deiderode, SW of Gottingen, Germany. (one of six aircraft lost in about 30 secs). 4KIA 5POW Missing Air Crew Report 8183. Aircraft had logged 76 missions.

P 2Lt Leonard F. Figie (POW); CP 2Lt Dale W. Whitson (KIA)
N 2Lt Frederick Seibel (KIA); NG/Toggelier SSgt Harlan B. Williams (POW)
E/TTG TSgt Walter L. Carpenter (POW); RO Sgt Edmund J. Mikolatis (KIA)
BTG Sgt Frederick D. Baldwin (KIA); WG Walter Salo (POW)
TG Sgt John F. Wallaszek (POW)

NOTE: Roger A. Freeman in "The B-17 Flying Fortress Story" and Stan Bishop in "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces" both have this aircraft with Radio Call Sign LG:B. LG is the known prefix for 322nd Bomb Squadron. Both these sources claim that B-17G 42-31673 was assigned to 91BG/322BS. However, the Missing Air Crew Report (MACR) 8183 lists 324th Bomb Squadron which agrees with the AAM ingest data for the crew members. It would seem that the correct resolution of this disparity is that B-17G 42-31673 was assigned to 322BS BUT flown on this mission by a 324BS crew.

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...

  • 322nd Bomb Squadron

People

  • Frederick Baldwin

    Military | Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Shot down 16-Aug-44 in B-17G 42-31673 'Lassie Come Home' while serving as Ball Turret Gunner. Aircraft was attacked by German fighters, exploded in mid-air, and crashed at Deiderode, Germany. Killed in Action (KIA)

  • William Burtt

    Military | Captain | Bomber pilot / Fighter pilot | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Assigned to 322BS, 91BG, 8AF USAAF. Damaged by fighters on mission to Frankfurt on 29-Jan-44 in B-17G 42-37987 'Man O War - Horsepower Ltd' managed to return to England on two engines and crashed near Sittingbourne, Kent when the third engine went out....

  • Walter Carpenter

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Top Turret Gunner | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Prisoner of War (POW) Shot down in B-17G 42-31673 'Lassie Come Home' while serving as Engineer/Top Turret Gunner. Aircraft was attacked by German fighters. He was able to bale out of the stricken aircraft just before it exploded in mid-air and crashed...

  • Leonard Figie

    Military | Captain | Pilot | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Shot down 16-Aug-44 in B-17G 42-31673 'Lassie Come Home' while serving as Pilot. Aircraft was attacked by fighters on mission to Halle, Germany, exploded in mid-air and crashed at Deiderode, Germany. Prisoner of War (POW). ...

  • Edmund Mikolaitus

    Military | Sergeant | Radio Operator/Waist Gunner | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Shot down 16-Aug-44 in B-17G 42-31673 'Lassie Come Home' while serving as Radio Opeartor/ Wasit Gunner. Aircraft was attacked byGerman fighters, exploded in mid-air and crashed at Deiderode, Germany. Killed in Action (KIA)

  • Walter Salo

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Shot down 16-Aug-44 in B-17G 42-31673 'Lassie Come Home' while serving as Waist Gunner. Aircraft was attacked by German fighters but he was able to bale out of the stricken aircraft before it exploded in mid-air and crashed at Deiderode, Germany....

  • Frederick Seibel

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Shot down 16-Aug-44 in B-17G 42-31673 'Lassie Come Home' while serving as Navigator. Aircraft was attacked by fighters and crashed at Deiderode, Germany. Killed in Action (KIA)

  • John Wallaszek

    Military | Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Shot down16-Aug-44 in B-17G 42-31673 'Lassie Come Home' while serving as Tail Gunner. Aircraft was attacked by German fighters but he managed to bale out of the stricken aircraft just before if exploded in mid-air and crashed at Deiderode, Germany....

  • Dale Whitson

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Shot down 16-Aug-44 by fighters in B-17G 42-31673 'Lassie Come Home' while serving as Co-Pilot. Aircraft was attacked by German fighers, exploded in mid-air, and crashed at Deiderode, Germany. Killed in Action (KIA).

  • Harlon Williams

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Nose Gunner/Toggelier | 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars
    Shot down 16-Aug-44 in B-17G 42-31673 'Lassie Come Home' while serving as Nose Gunner/ Toggelier. Aircraft was attacked by German by fighters. He was able to bale out of the stricken aircraft just before it blew up in mid-air and crashed at Deiderode,...

Missions

  • 8th Air Force 556

    16 August 1944
    Aircraft factories and oil refineries are the primary targets for this mission. A total of 1090 heavy bombers are despatched. See Mission Details for particulars. ...

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...

  • Snetterton Heath

    Military site : airfield
    Intended to be an RAF bomber base, construction of Snetterton Heath started in Autumn 1942 but continued until mid-1943, because it was extended after allocation as an Eighth Air Force bomber base. It had eventually three concrete runways, 50...

Events

Event Location Date
Failed to Return (FTR) Deiderode, 37133 Friedland, Germany 16 August 1944

Attacked by German fighters. Exploded in mid-air. Crashed at Deiderode, Germany.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
15 December 2014 18:40:13 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Dec-2014. Added NOTE to description.

Date Contributor Update
15 December 2014 18:29:02 Lee8thbuff Changes to markings
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Rec-2014. Corrected Aircraft code letter in Radio Call Sign per "The B-17 Flying Fortress Story" and "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces" Stan Bishop & John A. Hey MBE.

Date Contributor Update
14 December 2014 18:38:53 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 14-Dec-2014. Correction to spelling WG Walter Salo.

Date Contributor Update
14 December 2014 18:36:48 Lee8thbuff Changes to nicknames, markings, description, events, place associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 14-Dec-2014. Added nickname, made Place and Mission connections within existing website data; Added detail and Map location to FTR event, added target information and loss detail to Description and converted dates to military-style signification per "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces" Stan Bishop & John A. Hey MBE; Added crew position,rank, full proper name, rank and disposition per MACR 8183; Added markings and radio call sign per "The B-17 Flying Fortress Story" Roger A Freeman & Dave Osborne. Formatted crew display.

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

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 8183 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

Share