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Laurence Edwin Dennis Jr

Military

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 Bomb Squadron. He was on board of B-17 #42-29965, which went down in the Channel for lack of fuel on return from the Stuttgart mission of 6 September 1943. All ten men on board rescued by a French boat and returned to base. Laurence was on board B-17 #42-29996 on his 23rd mission when the plane was shot down over Norway on the raid to Knaben. Captured by the Germans, he was a POW for 18 months at Stalag 17B.

Service

People

  • David Besbris

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    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...

  • Whitney Bray

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    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...

  • Edward Bruni

    Military | Major | Bombardier | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    Edward Bruni graduated from St. Mary of the Mount High School in 1934. He was a winning football coach of the high school from 1937-39, together with Eppie Graner, and coached three champion teams and one co-champion team in the Catholic League. ...

  • Arthur Carmell

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Bombardier | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    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...

  • Fred Champion

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Bombardier; Togglier; Waist Gunner | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    Fred Champion was assigned to the 92nd Bomb Group/407th Bomb Squadron in England. He was serving as Waist Gunner on board B-17 #42-29996 on the 17 July 1943 mission to Stuttgart, with Pilot Captain Donald G. Parker. Badly damaged by enemy fighters, the...

  • John Disher

    Military | Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner/Radar Controller | 100th Bomb Group
    Served as Ball Turret Gunner when shot down on 6 September 1943 in B-17 #42-29965. Plane ditched in Channel. Slighly injured in the ditching, returned to base like the other nine men on board who were rescued by a French boat. Flew a total of 25...

  • Rolland Galloway

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    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...

  • John Geegee

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Top Turret Gunner | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    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...

  • Charles Hartnett

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    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...

  • Lohnas Knapp

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    A 1940 graduate of Cornell University, Lohnas Knapp enlisted in the Air Corps in November 1941 and trained as a Navigator on B-17s. Sent overseas, he was assigned to the 92nd Bomb Group/407th Bomb Squadron. Slightly wounded on his 23rd mission during...

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Units served with

  • 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few

    92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few

    Group
    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...

  • 407th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 42-29965

    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,...

  • 42-29996 FLAG SHIP

    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...

Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 91

    6 September 1943
    This mission was planned as massive attack of 338 B-17s on the industrial areas of Stuttgart, Germany and would be supported by a formation of 69 B-24s flying a diversion. This would be the first action from the UK for the B-24 Groups that had recently...

  • VIII Bomber Command 131

    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 ...

Associated Place

  • Alconbury

    Military site : airfield
    Alconbury had been constructed as a satellite airfield for RAF Upwood and Wyton and was used by RAF Squadrons: Nos. 15, 40 and 156. In preparation for the arrival of American heavy bombers, the base was developed in 1942 with the runways extended. When...

  • Podington

    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...

Events

Event Location Date
Born Sparland, IL 8 December 1918

the son of Laurence E. and Alice Edna (Harrison) Dennis

Lived in Farmington, Fulton County, Illinois, United States 1941

Graduated from Farmington HS Class of 1938

Enlisted Camp Grant, Rockford, Illinois, United States 26 September 1941

as a Private in the Air Corps

rescued English Channel 6 September 1943

He was on board of B-17 #42-29965, which went down in the Channel for lack of fuel on return from the Stuttgart mission of 6 September 1943. All ten men on board rescued by a French boat.

Captured near Konsmo, Norway 16 November 1943

after his B-17 # 42-29996 was shot down on the mission to Knaben, Norway on 16 November 1943.

Prisoner of War (POW) Krems, Austria 16 November 1943 – 3 May 1945

Interned at Stalag XVII B in Austria. Freed by US troops in May 1945.

Died Sterling, IL 7 December 2015
Buried Trivoli, IL 61569, USA 19 March 2016

Pleasant Grove Cemetery near Trivoli, IL

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
20 December 2016 03:51:16 busy33bee Changes to events
Sources

as told to wife

Date Contributor Update
20 December 2016 03:34:53 busy33bee Changes to biography and events
Sources

I'm his wife and he told me this information.

Date Contributor Update
02 December 2016 08:25:55 ED-BB Changes to biography and events
Sources

Modified detail in Bio (rescue 6 September 1943)

Date Contributor Update
29 November 2016 10:46:03 ED-BB Changes to middlename, suffix, service number, biography, awards, events, person associations, place associations, aircraft associations and mission associations
Sources

NARA WWII Enlistment records
MACR 1384

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:18:08 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

MACR 1384 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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