B-24 42-94812 'Little Warrior' shown with Pilot John Jay Oling (standing third from right) at Mountain Home, Idaho, before flying the to the UK. John Jay Oling (490th BG/850th BS) confirms that he flew this plane to England. At no time was it ever called "Little Lakassaky". The crew did want to put on a somewhat risqué name but their concept was squashed as being too bold. The crew then came up with the 'Little Warrior' design which was quickly approved. The crew hired a sergeant to paint the design on the nose. It turned out so poorly that Lt Oling removed it and repainted the nose art himself. It remained unchanged until the day that Lt. Hansen's crew went down with the plane.
The 490th Bomb Group, like the 486th and 487th Bomb Groups transitioned from flying B-24 Liberators to B-17 Flying Fortresses, which were used in combat missions from late August 1944. Based at Eye, Suffolk, the Group were focused in the early months...
Assigned to 850BS, 490BG, 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 862BS, 493BG, 8AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) mission to Fallersleben; flak hit holed fuel tanks/lines causing conflagration, flames from cockpit to rear of bomb bay. Crew Lt's J.H. Hansen, S.A...