Caption : “Lt. Thornton and crew of the 92nd Bomb Group beside a Boeing B-17 “Flying Fortress”. England, 15 November 1943.” (Official USAAF photo).
Note : Lt Thornton was shot down with his crew on the following day’s mission to Knaben, Norway on board B-17 “Flagship” # 42-29996 - Lt Thornton is standing, 5th from left top row and the only other identifiable man is Right Waist Gunner S/Sgt Otto F. Trammer, 2nd from left top row.
The others are most probably Co-Pilot 2nd Lt Whitney M. Bray; Navigator 2nd Lt David C. Besbris; Bombardier 2nd Lt Arthur A. Carmell; Top Turret Gunner S/Sgt John Geegee; Radio Operator T/Sgt Laurence E. Dennis; Ball Turret Gunner S/Sgt Dean M. Sommers; Left Waist Gunner S/Sgt Charles H. Hartnett; Tail Gunner S/Sgt Rolland A. Galloway.
Four others are members of the ground crew. S/Sgt Dean Sommers 1st from left top row. T/Sgt Laurence Dennis 1st on right, top row
The 92nd Group sometime after arrivial in the UK converted to the role of in-theater combat crew indocrination and training. For this role, the Group traded its B-17F complement and obtained the B-17E, mostly from the 97th BG which was departing for...
Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator
David Bresbis was a Navigator in the 92nd Bomb Group/407th Bomb Squadron. He was serving in that function on B-17 #42-29965 when it ditched for lack of fuel in the English Channel on return from the 6 September 1943 to Stuttgart, Germany. All ten men...
Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot
Whitney Bray enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) in Canada before the United States' entry into the conflict. He trained as a Pilot at No.4 Service Flying Training School in Saskatoon, Canada before being sent to England. After a number of...
Military | Second Lieutenant | Bombardier
Arthur Carmell enlisted in the Air Corps and followed Bombardier training as a Bombardier Cadet at the San Angelo Army Air Field, Texas, Class of 1942. After completing his training, he was sent overseas and assigned to the 92nd Bomb Group/407th Bomb...
Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator
Laurence Dennis graduated from Farmington Community High School in the class of 1938. After his enlistment in the Air Corps in September 1941, he trained as a Radio Operator at Scott Field. Sent overseas, he was assigned to the 92nd Bomb Group/407th...
Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner
After his enlistment in August 1942, Rolland Galloway followed gunnery training. Promoted to Staff Sergent, he was sent overseas and assigned as a Tail Gunner in the 92nd Bomb Group/407th Bomb Squadron in England. He was Tail Gunner on B-17 #42-29965...
Military | Staff Sergeant | Top Turret Gunner
John Geegee enlisted in the Air Corps in July 1942 and trained first at Miami Beach, and Fort Myers, Florida. He followed gunnery courses in Goldsboro and Johnson Field, South Carolina, receiving his gunner's wings at Fort Myers, Florida. He was then...
Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner
After 4 years of High School, Charles Hartnett started working as a mail clerk in 1940. He enlisted in July 1942 and trained as an aerial gunner. Sent overseas, he was assigned to the 92nd Bomb Group/407th Bomb Squadron in England. He was on board B-17...
Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner
After graduation from Buffalo High School in Kansas, Dean Sommers attended Chanute Junior College. Living in 1940 in Colfax, Wilson County, Kansas, he enlisted in June 1942 in Missouri and trained as an aerial gunner. Sent overseas, he was assigned to...
Military | Captain | Co-Pilot; Pilot
Shot down on 6 September 1943 as Co=Pilot in B-17 #42-29965. Plane ditched in Channel. Returned to base. Shot down 16 November 1943 as Pilot of B-17 #42-29996 'Flagship'. Prisoner of War (POW).
Military | Staff Sergeant | Right Waist Gunner
Otto Trammer enlisted in September 1942 and trained as an aerial gunner. Sent overseas, he was assigned to the 92nd Bomb Group/407th Bomb Squadron in England. He was Right Waist Gunner on board of B-17 #42-29965, which went down in the Channel for lack...
B-17 Flying Fortress
Delivered Cheyenne 18 March 43; Gore 28 March 1943; Presque Isle 5 May 1943; Assigned 333BS/94BG Earls Colne 12 May 1943; Rougham 13 June 1943; transferred 407BS/92BG [PY-L] Alconbury 26 July 1943; Missing in Action Stuttgart 6 September 1943 with,...
B-17 Flying Fortress
Delivered Cheyenne 23 March 1943; Dow Field 10 April 1943; Assigned 407BS/92BG [PY-R] Alconbury 24 April 1943. Was flown by Captain Donald G. Parker on the 17 July 1943 mission to Hannover, Germany. Hit by Unteroffizier Ernst Breton of JG11, it was...
16 November 1943
This mission was directed at targets in Norway. It was composed of three elements. The first element was a combined force of 189 B-17s from 1st Bomb Division that included: 384BG (21); 303BG (20); 379BG (22); 351BG (20); 91BG (20); 381BG (22); 305BG ...
Military site : airfield
Built originally to accommodate two RAF bomber squadrons, the first USAAF unit to occupy the base was the 15th Bomb Squadron in September 1942. Podington was then used as a satellite for nearby Chelveston. Work to lengthen the runways, although this...