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Clifton R. Fincher

Military

On 23-Jan-43 in B-17F 41-24580 "Hellcat Agnes" while serving as Ball Turret Gunner the aircraft was shot down by fighters and came down between Brest, France and the coast. He parachuted to safety and was captured as a Prisoner of War (POW). Participated in 4 Operations, each on in a different 303BG/358BS aircraft.

Service

Units served with

  • 303rd Bomb Group

    303rd Bomb Group

    Group
    The 303rd Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated on 3-Feb-1942 at Pendleton Field, Oregon. They assembled at Gowen Field, Idaho on 11-February 1942 where it conducted flight training until 12-Jun-1942. The Group then moved to Alamogordo Field, New...

  • 358th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 41-24526 Leapin Liz

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17F 41-24526 "Leapin Liz". Assigned 358BS/303BG [VK-J] Bangor 19-Sep-42; Molesworth 16-Oct-42; Missing in Action St Nazaire 3-Jan-43, shot down by enemy aircraft, crashed off St Brevin, Bay of Biscay, France. 10KIA Missing Air Crew Report (MACR)...

  • 41-24580 Hellcat Agnes & No Monkey Business

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17F 41-24580 "Hellcat Agnes" was assigned 358BS/303BG [VK-C] Bangor 11-Oct-42; Molesworth 16-Oct-62. Participated in 6 Operations - 2 Aborts (See Biography events) ...

  • 41-24582 One O'Clock Jump

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17F 41-24582 'One O'Clock Jump', assigned 358BS/303BG [VK-G] Bangor 11-Oct-42; Molesworth 16-Oct-42; Despatched 12-Dec-42 on mission to bomb the German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France but weather prevented bombing of that target and the...

  • 41-24606 Werewolf

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17F-27-BO 41-24606 "Werewolf" was assigned 358BG/303BG [VK-H] Kellog Field, Battle Creek, Michigan on 14-Sep-42; Arrived at Molesworth, UK 16-Oct-42. ...

Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 20

    17 November 1942
    The U-Boat pens at St. Nazaire, France are the Primary (P) target for a combined force of 49 B-17s despatched from 91BG (20), 303BG (16) and 306BG (13). Another element of 14 B-24s despatched from 93BG also joins the bombing force on St. Nazaire. The...

  • VIII Bomber Command 24

    6 December 1942
    The German airfield of Drucat at Abbeville, France is the primary target for 19 B-24s despatched from 44th Bomb Group but are recalled. One squadron of 6 does not hear the recall and proceeds to the target, 1 B-24 MIA. ...

  • VIII Bomber Command 26

    20 December 1942
    The German Air Depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France is the Primary (P) target for a combined force of 80 B-17s despatched by 91BG (17), 303BG (21); 305BG (23) and 306BG (19). 60 B-17 are effective on the target, but 7 are MIA and 1 is DBR. ...

  • VIII Bomber Command 30

    23 January 1943
    The port area and U-Boat pens at Lorient, France are the primary target for this mission. 305th Bombardment Group is selected as the lead group, but condensation on the bombsight of the lead aircraft in the Group prevents the 305BG from bombing Lorient...

Associated Place

  • Molesworth

    Military site : airfield
    Molesworth was one of the early stations used by the Eighth Air Force in the UK, first occupied by the 15th Bomb Squadron’s Douglas Bostons in June 1942. Built in 1940 and extended and improved in 1942, Molesworth is most associated with the 303rd...

Events

Event Location Date
Mission #1 SGT Clifton R. Fincher w/B-17F 41-24606, 303BG/358BS Saint-Nazaire, France 17 November 1942

Served as Ball Turret Gunner on B-17F 41-24606 "Werewolf", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the U-Boat pens at St. Nazaire, France (RTB OK)

Mission #2 SGT Clifton R. Fincher w/B-17F 41-24582, 303BG/358BS Lille, France 6 December 1942

Served as Ball Turret Gunner on B-17F 41-24582 "One O'Clock Jump", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the carraige and wagon works at Lille, France. (RTB OK)

Mission #3 SGT Clifton R. Fincher w/B-17F 41-24526, 303BG/358BS Romilly-sur-Seine, France 20 December 1942

Served as Ball Turret Gunner on B-17F 41-24526 "Leapin' Liz", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France. (RTB OK)

Prisoner of War (POW) Zagan, Poland 23 January 1943 – 30 July 1945

Held at Stalag Luft 3, Sagan-Silesia (now Poland) moved to Nuremberg-Langwasser. Officially Returned to Military Control (RMC) 30-Jul-45.

Mission #4 SGT Clifton R. Fincher w/B-17F 41-24580, 303BG/358BS POW Lorient, France 23 January 1943

Served as Ball Turret Gunner on B-17F 41-24580 "Hell Cat", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the U-Boat pens at Lorient, France. Aircraft was shot down by fighters but he baled out and was captures as a Prisoner of War (POW).

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
15 August 2015 17:44:46 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Aug-2015. Added Mission #4 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 23-Jan-43, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/011.pdf

Date Contributor Update
15 August 2015 17:39:54 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Aug-2015. Added Mission #3 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 20-Dec-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/007.pdf

Date Contributor Update
15 August 2015 17:35:11 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Aug-2015 Added Mission #2 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 6-Dec-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/005.pdf

Date Contributor Update
15 August 2015 17:30:25 Lee8thbuff Changes to events and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Aug-2015. Added Mission #1 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 17-Nov-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/001.pdf

Date Contributor Update
15 August 2015 17:22:42 Lee8thbuff Changes to biography, aircraft associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Aug-2015 Added Operations participation to Summary Biography and made connections to Missions per 303Bg website Mission Reports, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missions.html

Date Contributor Update
22 January 2015 18:34:37 Lee8thbuff Created entry with surname, middlename, firstname, service number, highest rank, role, biography, events, unit associations, place associations, aircraft associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 22-Jan-2015. New entry created per 303rd Bomb Group website: http://www.303rdbg.com/c-358-oconnor.html; "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces" Stan Bishop & John A Hey MBE, and National Archives Records Administration (NARA) WWII POW database.

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