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William C Florentine Jr.

Military

On 13-Nov-43 as pilot of P-38H 42-66732, 55FG/338FS he was despatched to provide escort to B-17 bombers attacking at Bremen, Germany. His flight encountered German fighters attempting to attack the bombers over Holland and there was an engagement. His aircraft was attacked by German fighters near Shoonebeek, Holland, but he was able to bale out and was captured as a Prisoner of War (POW). The aircraft crashed at Shoonebeek, Holland.

Service

Units served with

  • 55th Fighter Group

    55th Fighter Group

    Group
    The 55th Fighter Group were the first P-38 Lightning Group to go fully operational from England. The pilots flew long-range escort missions for bombers flying over occupied Europe and racked up 'kills' of their own by destroying enemy aircraft in...

  • 338th Fighter Squadron

Aircraft

  • 42-66732

    P-38 Lightning
    P-38H-5-LO 42-66732 was assigned to the 55FG/338FS at Nuthampstead, UK. On 13-No-43 the aircraft, piloted by 2LT William C. Florentine, Jr. was despatched along with other P-38s from the 55FG to escort B-17 bombers attacking at Bremen, Germany. The...

Missions

  • VIII Fighter Command FO-180 BOMBER ESCORT

    13 November 1943
    This mission is composed of two fighter elements. The first element is a force of 45 P-38s from 55FG despatched to escort the B-17 formations attacking at Bremen, Germany. 7 aircraft Failed to Return (FTR) 4KIA 3POW. 2 are Damaged Beyond Repair (DBR)...

Associated Place

  • Nuthampstead

    Military site : airfield
    Built during 1942-43, Nuthampstead was the nearest Eighth Air Force heavy bomber base to London. It had three concrete runways, 50 loop hardstandings and two dispersed T2 hangars. It was first occupied from September 1943 to April 1944 by the 55th...

Events

Event Location Date
Born
Prisoner of War (POW) Barth, Germany 13 November 1943 – 12 June 1945

Held at Stalag Luft 1, Barth-Vogelsang, Prussia. Officially Returned to Military Control (RMC) 12-Jun-45.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
14 July 2015 23:06:59 Lee8thbuff Changes to biography, awards, events, place associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 14-Jul-2015. Added Decoration and POW event per National Archives Records Administration (NARA) WWII POW database; Made connections to Place and Mission within existing website data; Added Description based on "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces", Stan Bishop & John A. Hey MBE and MACR 1270.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:27:46 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 1270 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database / Ted Damick, VIII Fighter Command pilots list

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