Skip to main content
Edit entry 

42-40744

B-24 Liberator

Crew interned in Turkey.
Pilot 1/Lt Harold L James - INT, Co-Pilot 1/Lt Robert W Schwellinger - INT, Navigator 2/Lt William R Gilliat - INT, Bombardier T/Sgt Grover A Edmiston - INT, Engineer S/Sgt Max C Cavey - INT, Engineer T/Sgt Harold M Thompson - INT, Radio T/Sgt Earl L Zimmerman - INT,
Waist S/Sgt Hugh R McLaren - INT, Waist S/Sgt John P Morris - INT, Tail S/Sgt Robert L Hamilton - INT.

Service

Units

  • 389th Bomb Group

    389th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 389th Bomb Group, known in more familiar terms as "the Sky Scorpions", flew strategic bombing missions in B-24 Liberators from Hethel, England. They also sent detachments to join bases in North Africa at Benghazi No. 10, Libya, between 3 July 1943...

  • 565th Bomb Squadron

People

  • Max Cavey

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Top Turret Gunner | 389th Bomb Group
    Shot down by fighters and crashed near Luxembourg, Belgium on a mission to Gotha, GR on 24 Feb 1944 in B-24 42-100280 'Lil Audrey'. Prisoner of War (POW). ...

  • Grover Edmiston

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Bombardier; Togglier | 389th Bomb Group
    Joined 44th BG 10 April 1942. Flew 12 missions. Transferred to 389th BG 15 June 1943. ...

  • William Gilliat

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 389th Bomb Group
    Interned in Turkey on 8/1/43 while on TDY to 9thAF for Ploesti raid in plane 42-40744. Shot down by fighters and crashed near Luxembourg, Belgium on a mission to Gotha, GR on 24 Feb 1944 in B-24 42-100280 'Lil Audrey'. Prisoner of War (POW).

  • Robert Hamilton

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 389th Bomb Group
    Interned in Turkey while on TDY to 9th AF for Ploesti raid on 8/1/43 in B-24 42-40744. Earlier June 25, 1943 on training mission, B24 42-40774 collided with another ac

  • Harold James

    Military | Captain | Pilot | 389th Bomb Group
    James was piloting B-24 42-40774 "Heaven Can Wait"on a training flight on 25 June 1943 when he was involved in a mid-air-collision with B-24 42-40687 piloted by 1st Lt Edward Foble. James managed to land the aircraft at Hethel, but his navigator 2nd Lt...

  • Hugh McLaren

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Waist gunner; ball-turret gunner | 389th Bomb Group
    Drafted into AAF in 1942 at age 20 while living in Gary, Ind. Assigned to Eighth Air Force. Assigned as gunner to B-24 crew headed by pilot Joseph H. Hardison while training at Tucson, Ariz. Later transferred to 389th Bomb Group, 565th Bomb Squadron as...

  • John Morris

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 389th Bomb Group
    Interned in Turkey while on TDY to 9thAF for Ploesti raid on 1 August 1943 in B-24 42-40744 He was later released. ...

  • Robert Schwellinger

    Military | Captain | Pilot / Co-pilot | 389th Bomb Group
    Robert Schwellinger was born in Toledo, Ohio and graduated in 1939 from Woodward High School. He enlisted in the Army nearly a year before Pearl Harbor. ...

  • Harold Thompson

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Engineer | 389th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 565BS, 389BG, 8AF USAAF. ...

  • Earl Zimmerman

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 389th Bomb Group
    Flew missions with 389th BG from 9 July 1943 to 25 April 1945. ...

Missions

  • Operation Tidal Wave

    1 August 1943
    Operation TIDAL WAVE. B24D Liberators attack the oil refineries at Ploesti, Romania. The bombers flew low to avoid radar detection and dropped time delayed bombs. Out of the 177 B-24s that took part in the raid 167 managed to attack their targets. 57 B...

Events

Event Location Date
Failed to Return (FTR) İzmir, Turkey 1 August 1943

Failed to Return, mission to bomb Ploesti oil refineries, pilot Harold L James. Crew interned at Izmir, Turkey. MACR 243.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
21 January 2019 13:53:49 Emily Changes to nicknames
Sources

Removed nickname.

"Heaven Can Wait" belonged to B-24 42-40774 the two aircraft appear to have been confused as they served in the same group and have similar serial numbers

Information contained in WALLACE R. FORMAN, B-24 NOSE ART NAME DIRECTORY, is incorrect

Date Contributor Update
21 January 2019 03:59:07 Dieterle Changes to nicknames
Sources

WALLACE R. FORMAN, B-24 NOSE ART NAME DIRECTORY, INCLUDES GROUP, SQUADRON AND AIRCRAFT SERIAL NUMBERS AND PHOTO AVAILABILITY (North Branch, MN: Specialty Press Publishers and Wholesalers, 1996 ) 32, 136.

Date Contributor Update
29 October 2018 10:03:40 Emily Changes to nicknames and unit associations
Sources

Removed Nickname. "Heaven Can Wait" belonged to B-24 42-40774 the two aircraft appear to have been confused as they served in the same group and have similar serial numbers

Date Contributor Update
12 April 2016 19:56:54 Gene Cole Changes to description and person associations
Sources

Gene Cole, grand nephew.

Date Contributor Update
11 March 2015 18:36:00 Al_Skiff Changes to nicknames, description, events, unit associations, person associations and mission associations
Sources

AAM database / MACR 243

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:40:52 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

MACR 1851 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

Share