Skip to main content
Edit entry 

Charles Robert Bigler

Military

Assigned to 524BS, 379BG, 8AF USAAF. 14 x combat missions. Co-pilot of B-17 42-29866 'Judy B' on Hamburg mission, when pilot Lt Willis C Carlisle was killed at controls. A/C fought of fighters whilst in uncontrolled plunge from 16,000ft to 3,500ft 25-Jul-43 RTD

Failed to Return (FTR) Le Bourget in B-17 42-29866; Shot down by flak 16-Aug-43. Evaded and returned (EVD/RTD)

Awards: AM, WWII Victory, EAME

Service

People

  • John Boyle

    Military | First Lieutenant | Bombardier | 379th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 524BS, 379BG, 8AF USAAF. 1 x combat missions. Shot down 16-Aug-1943 in B-17 42-29866. Evaded and returned (EVD/RTD) Awards: AM, PH, WWII Victory, EAME.

  • John Bradley

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 379th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 524BS, 379BG, 8AF USAAF. 14 x combat missions. Failed to Return (FTR) Le Bourget in B-17 42-29866; Shot down by flak 16-Aug-43. Prisoner of War (POW). MACR 1352 Awards: POW, WWII Victory, EAME

  • Willis Carlisle

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 379th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 524BS, 379BG, 8AF USAAF. 11 x combat missions. Fatally wounded by fighter attack in B-17 42-29866 'Judy B' on Hamburg mission. Took deflected round (ricocheted off co-pilots seat) in back. Crew fought of fighters and co-pilot returned A/C...

  • Vern Deehr

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 379th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 524BS, 379BG, 8AF USAAF. 8-Jun-43 B-17 #42276 was returning to BW1 to collect codes and allied papers left at the control office, when a/c suffered damage on landing. Crew is listed with the Reed Prov. Bomb Group. Shot down 16-Aug-43 in B...

  • James Dyson

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 379th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 524BS, 379BG, 8AF USAAF. 10 x combat missions. Took off from Gander in B-17 42-3143 en route to Prestwick, Scotland, but landed at Bunduran, Ireland 10-May-43. Shot down 16-Aug-43 in B-17 42-29866 'Judy B'. Prisoner of War (POW). MACR 1352 ...

  • Joseph Glaser

    Military | Captain | Squadron Bombardier | 379th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 524BS, 379BG, 8AF USAAF. Finished 30 missions and then volunteered for 3 more. Lead Bombardier on grapefruit mission (glide bomb) to Cologne, Germany 28-May-44. Earlier on Hamburg mission, 25-Jul-43, pilot Lt Carlisle killed, I then...

  • Benjamin Johnson

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 379th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 524BS, 379BG, 8AF USAAF. 12 x combat missions. Failed to Return (FTR) Le Bourget in B-17 42-29866; Shot down by flak 16-Aug-43. Prisoner of War (POW) MACR 1352 Awards: POW, WWII Victory, EAME.

  • Charles Kukawski

    Military | Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 379th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 524BS, 379BG, 8AF USAAF. 13 x combat missions. Failed to Return (FTR) Le Bourget in B-17 42-29866; Shot down by flak 16-Aug-43. After he was shot down, lived with about 90 different families before he was captured. Prisoner of War (POW)....

  • Paul Matthew

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 379th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 524BS, 379BG, 8AF USAAF. 10 x combat missions. Took off from Gander in B-17 42-3143 en route to Prestwick, Scotland, but landed at Bunduran, Ireland 10-May-43. Shot down 16-Aug-43 in B-17 42-29866 'Judy B'. Prisoner of War (POW) at Stalag...

  • John Stachura

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 379th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 524BS, 379BG, 8AF USAAF. 14 x combat missions. Failed to Return (FTR) Le Bourget in B-17 42-29866; Shot down by flak 16-Aug-43. Killed in Action (KIA). MACR 1352 Awards: PH.

Show more

Units served with

  • 8th Air Force

    8th Air Force


    Eighth Air Force Bomber Command became the Eighth Air Force on February 1944, it oversaw bombardment of strategic targets in Europe until 1945. ...

  • 379th Bomb Group

    379th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 379th Bomb Group (H) (heavy), based at Kimbolton, flew more sorties than any other Bomb Group in the Eighth Air Force and dropped a greater bomb tonnage than any other Group. The B-17 Flying Fortress Group was awarded two Distinguished Unit...

  • 524th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 42-29830 'Peter Wabbit'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 23/2/43; Sioux City 20/3/43; Kearney 8/4/43; Dow Fd 15/4/43; Assigned 525BS/379BG [FR-A] Kimbolton; then 524BS [WA-T]; Missing in Action Schweinfurt 17/8/43 with Erwalt Wagner, Co-pilot: Bill Barnard, Navigator: Joe Hilderbrand,...

  • 42-29866 'Judy B'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 27/2/43; Sioux City 16/3/43; Kearney 8/4/43; Dow Fd 15/4/43; Assigned 524BS/379BG [WA-L] Kimbolton 21/4/43; Missing in Action Le Bourget 16/8/43 with Chas Biglar, Bombardier: John Boyle, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Albt Tyler,...

  • 42-29898 Scarlett O'Hara

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 4/3/43; Sioux City 19/3/43; Kearney 8/4/43; Bangor 13/4/43; Assigned 524BS/379BG [WA-K/I] Kimbolton 22/4/43; Missing in Action Bochum 12/8/43 with Ralph Osborne, Radio Operator: Mildred Fambrough, Ball turret gunner: Larry Truman,...

  • 42-30158

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 20/4/43; Tinker 28/4/43; New Castle 29/4/43; Assigned 525BS/379BG [FR-X] Kimbolton 23/6/43; Missing in Action Schweinfurt 17/8/43 with Howie Koeppen, Waist gunner: Jack Posemsky (2 Killed in Action), Co-pilot: Harry Thomkpson,...

  • 42-3056

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 18/1/43; Assigned 527BS/379BG [FO-R] Presque Is 29/4/43; Kimbolton 26/6/43; Missing in Action Anklam 14/10/43 with Matt Zack{+ 524BS crew}, Co-pilot: Fritz Minder, Navigator: George Lemen, Bombardier: John Vournakis, Flight engineer...

  • 42-3175

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 10/3/43; Dow Fd 15/4/43; Assigned 95BG 22/4/43; 3m, transferred 524BS/379BG [WA-T] Kimbolton 22/6/43; Missing in Action Hamburg 25/7/43 with Frank Hildebradt, Co-pilot: Don Rogers, Navigator: Leon Baxter, Bombardier: Albt Johnson,...

  • 42-3258

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 13/4/43; Bangor 31/5/43; Assigned 527BS/379BG [FO-T] Kimbolton 11/6/43; Missing in Action Bremen 8/10/43 with Bill Hickey, Co-pilot: Bill Isengard, Navigator: Pasquale Natale, Bombardier: Jim Cudworth, Flight engineer/top turret...

  • 42-3325

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 7/5/43; Dow Fd 30/5/43; Assigned 524BS/379BG [WA-Y] Kimbolton 1/6/43; Missing in Action Brunswick 30/1/44 with Ken Davis, Co-pilot: Chas Fowler, Navigator: Paul Clark, Bombardier: Stan Dolgin, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Alex...

Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 67

    25 June 1943
    This mission was intended to be the first major attack on the industrial area of Hamburg, Germany but weather and contrails made fromation flying too difficult and dangerous. As a result, the main formation 197 B-17s from: 91BG (18); 92BG (23); 303BG ...

  • VIII Bomber Command 83

    16 August 1943
    This mission consists of two elements of B-17s despatched to bomb the German airfields of Le Bourget (Paris), Poix and Abbeville, France. The first element is a combined force of 180 B-17s from: 91BG (21); 92BG (17); 303BG (20); 305BG (20); 306BG (20);...

Associated Place

  • Kimbolton

    Military site : airfield
    Planned for RAF use, Kimbolton airfield was built by W and C French Ltd. in 1941. The airfield was increased in size to accommodate a full US heavy Bomb Group, and the first such unit to us it was the 91st Bomb Group, who arrived in September 1942....

Events

Event Location Date
Born Logansport, Indiana, USA 4 June 1922
Lived in Rochester, IN 1942
Married Watertown, SD 21 March 1943

Married Betty Eloise Jennens in Watertown, SD

Based Kimbolton May 1943 – 1944

Assigned to 524BS, 379BG, 8AF USAAF.

Returned to base pilot KIA Hamburg, Germany 25 June 1943

Hamburg mission in B-17 42-29866; Despite pilot being KIA and a plunge of 12,500ft whilst under fire by fighters. Returned to base and to durty RTD.

Failed to Return (FTR) Le Bourget, France 16 August 1943

Failed to Return (FTR) Le Bourget in B-17 42-29866; Shot down by flak 16-Aug-43. Evaded and returned (EVD/RTD)

EVD France 16 August 1943 – July 1944

Evaded capture with assistance from French resistance, returning to his unit by Apr-44.

Died Mesa, AZ 19 February 2001
Buried Calumet Park Cemetery, Merrillville, IN 23 February 2001

Calumet Park Cemetery
Merrillville,
Lake County, IN

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
16 July 2019 20:22:22 Al_Skiff Changes to events
Sources

https://www.fold3.com/image/28693474
https://www.fold3.com/record/36622668-charles-r-bigler
379th Bombardment Group (H) Anthology, November 1942-July 1945
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/184400106/charles-robert-bigler
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/196479249/betty-eloise-bigler

Date Contributor Update
16 July 2019 18:36:06 Al_Skiff Changes to middlename, nickname, service number, highest rank, biography, awards, events, person associations, unit associations, place associations, aircraft associations and mission associations
Sources

https://www.fold3.com/image/28693474
https://www.fold3.com/record/36622668-charles-r-bigler
379th Bombardment Group (H) Anthology, November 1942-July 1945
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/184400106/charles-robert-bigler
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/196479249/betty-eloise-bigler

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:05:53 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 1352 / MACR 1352; 379th Bombardment Group Anthology, pg 274 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

Share