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John S Saunders


Shot down 8 November 1942 in B-17 41-24472 while serving as Ball Turret Gunner. POW but Died in Captivity (DIC) at the German Army Hospital at Lille, France.


Units served with

  • 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers

    306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers

    Constituted as 306th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on 28 Jan 1942. Activated on 1 Mar 1942. Trained for combat with B-17's. Moved to England, Aug-Sep 1942, and assigned to Eighth AF Eighth Air Force in September 1942 Station 111 Thurleigh. During combat,...

  • 369th Bomb Squadron


  • 41-24472

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17F 41-24472 was assigned 369BS/306BG Westover 19-August-1942; Thurleigh 2-October-1942. The aircraft was shot down 8-Nov-42 by enemy fighters and AA fire while on a mission to bomb the Actlier d' Hellemmes locomotive factory at Lille, France. The...


  • VIII Bomber Command 17

    8 November 1942
    Two Primary (P) targets are the objects of this mission: the German airfield of Drucat at Abbeville, France and the Atclier d'Hellemmes locomotive works at Lille, France. 91BG despatches 15 B-17s to Abbeville and 301BG and 306BG despatch a combined...

Associated Place

  • Thurleigh

    Military site : airfield
    Built for RAF use in 1941-42, Thurleigh was initially used by RAF Bomber Command before being handed over to the Eighth Air Force. Its runways and hardstandings were improved, and the B-17s of the 306th Bomb Group began using the base. It was their...


Event Location Date
Born Bloomfield Hills, MI, USA
Died Lille, France 8 November 1942

Taken prisoner and died in a German Field Hospital at Lille, France.

Buried Netherlands American Cemetery, 6269 NA Migraten, Netherlands 1945

Remains were recovered and buried in a temporary grave Plot NN, Row 12, Grave 276, Netherlands American Cemetery. The American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) has no current burial location for this airman, which is a fairly good indication that his remains were repatriated to the United States after the war.


Date Contributor Update
22 November 2014 23:09:11 Lee8thbuff Changes to events and aircraft associations

Lee Cunningham 21-Nov-2014. Added Died and Buried events per MACT 16133 and American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) record and "Lossed of the 8th & 9th Air Forces" Stan Bishop and John A. Hey MBE

Date Contributor Update
29 October 2014 23:08:37 Lee8thbuff Changes to biography, events, place associations and mission associations

Lee Cunningham 29-Oct-2014. Missing Air Crew Report (MACR) 16133; "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces" Stan Bishop & John E Hey MBE.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:16:40 AAM AAM ingest

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / Roll of Honor, Losses of the 8th and 9th AFs Vol. 1 by Bishop and Hey p. 44 , MACR 16133