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Claude A Hamilton

Military

1-Apr-42 Assigned as an Aerial Gunner with the 303BG/360BS at Gowen Field, Boise, Idaho. 303BG records do not indicate that he was assigned to a particular aircraft at that time. Neither do the indicate on what date he arrived at Molesworth, UK nor by what aircraft or means he arrived there.

14-Feb-42 First combat mission as Bomb Toggler on B-17F #42-5262, 303BG/303BS on a mission to bomb the railroad marshalling yards at Hamm, Germany. Severe cold and terrible weather forced Wing Command to recall the entire 303BG formation. RTB OK.

31-Mar-43 Killed in a mid-air collision in heavy cloud cover while on a mission to Rotterdam while serving as a Bomb Toggler in B17F-25-BO #41-24559 "Ooold Soljer" and B-17F #42-29573 "Two Beauts" 303BG/358BS Crashed at Mears Ashby. This occured less than an hour from takeoff with each carrying 6 bombs for the mission to Rotterdam. 303rd reports a memorial to the two crews is there.

Participated in 8 Operations (2 were Aborted) See Biography events
Air Medal, Purple Heart

Service

People

  • Keith Bartlett

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 303rd Bomb Group
    12-Mar-42 Assigned to 303BG/360BS in B-17F #41-24559 "Ooold Soldier" as 2LT and Co-Pilot. Gowen Field (Boise), Idaho. ...

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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...

  • 360th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 41-24559 Ooold Soljer

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17F 41-24559 'Ooold Soljer' was assigned 360BS/303BG [PU-C] Bangor 14-Oct-42; Molesworth 16-Oct-42. ...

  • 42-5262

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 27-Oct-42; Bury 6-Dec-42; Assigned 360BS/303BG [PU-F] Molesworth 29-Jan-43; Missing in Action Lorient 6-Mar-43. Shot down by enemy aircraft, crashed into the Bay of Biscay, off Penmarch Point. 2KIA 8POW Missing Air Crew Report 15536. ...

  • 42-5434 "BOB’S BOUDOIR", Lady Luck

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 8/12/42; Morrison 6/2/43; Assigned 360BS/303BG [PU-J] Molesworth 6/3/43; crash landed Alresford, Hants., UK, 26/9/43 with Bob Cogswell [injured in crash], Co-pilot: Dallas Kendall, Navigator: Ed Cobb, Bombardier: Frank Kulesa, Flight...

  • 42-5723

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17F-5-VE 42-5723 [PU:D] was delivered Long Beach 30-Sep-42; Tulsa 4-Oct-42; Wayne 5-Nov-42; Salina 27-Nov-42; Assigned 360BS/303BG [PU-D] at Molesworth, UK 13-Feb-43; battle damaged over Vegasak on 18-Mar-43 crash landed with wheels up in field four...

Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 34

    14 February 1943
    The marshalling yards at Hamm, Germany are once again slated at the primary target for this mission. A force of 74 B-17s are despatched: 91BG (20); 303BG (17); 305BG (17); 306BG (20), but weather once again forces the mission to be recalled before...

  • VIII Bomber Command 37

    26 February 1943
    After 10 days of weather related delays of the bomber offensive, a mission is organised with the port facilities of Emden, Germany as the primary target. However, Emden is obscured by cloud cover and all formations divert to attack the port facilities...

  • VIII Bomber Command 40

    6 March 1943
    German U-boats continue to attack convoys headed fro Great Britain in the North Atlantic with good success. Many of the U-boat packs operate from St. Nazaire, Lorient and Brest, France, so destroying harbour facilities at these locations remain a...

  • VIII Bomber Command 43

    13 March 1943
    The railroad marshalling yards at Amiens/Longeau, France are the primary target for this mission but the rail line at Romescamps, the German airfield at Abbevile/Drucat and two other targets of opportunity are also bombed. 80 B-17s are despatched: 91BG...

  • VIII Bomber Command 45

    18 March 1943
    The U-Boat pens at Vegesack-Bremen are the primary target of this mission. 76 B-17s are despatched: 91BG (18); 303BG (20); 305BG (18) and 306BG (20). These are joined by 17 B-24's: 44BG (9) and 93BG (15). Of the 103 aircraft despatched 97 are effective...

  • VIII Bomber Command 46

    22 March 1943
    The U-Boat pens and harbour facilities at Wilhelmshaven, Germany are the primary target for this mission. 76 B-17's are despatched: 91BG (21); 303BG (18); 305BG (18); and 306BG (19). These are joined by 26 B-24's: 44BG (12) and 93BG (14). Of this force...

  • VIII Bomber Command 47

    28 March 1943
    The railroad marshalling yards at Rouen/Sotteville are the primary target. 79 B-17s are despatched: 91BG (22); 303BG (18); 305BG (19); 306BG (20). Of the 79 B-17's despatched 70 are effecrive on the target. One B-17 is MIA and 9 are damaged. The bomber...

  • VIII Bomber Command 48

    31 March 1943
    The shipyards ar Rotterdam, Holland are the primary target. 78 B-17s are despatched: 91BG (20); 303BG (20); 305BG (19) and 306BG (19). The weather prevents bombing by 91BG and 306BG reducing the total effective on the target to 33 of the 78 despatched....

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
Born Swisher County, Texas
Assigned to Unit Boise, ID, USA 1 April 1942

Assigned as an Aerial Gunner with the 303BG/360BS at Gowen Field, Boise, Idaho.

Mission #1, SSGT Claude A. Hamilton, W/B-17F 42-5262, 303BG/360BS - Aborted Hamm, Germany 14 February 1943

Served as Bomb Toggler on B-17F 42-5262, 303BG/360BS on a mission to bomb the railroad marshalling yards at Hamm, Germany. Severe cold and weather forced Wing Command to recall the entire 303BG formation. RTB OK.

Mission #2, SSGT Claude A. Hamilton, W/B-17F 42-5723, 303BG/360BS - Aborted Wilhelmshaven, Germany 26 February 1943

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 42-5723, 303BG/360BS on a mission to bomb the U-Boat pens at Wilhelmshave, Germany, but mechanical failures forced the pilot to abort the sortie. RTB OK.

Mission #3, SSGT Claude A. Hamilton, W/B-17F 41-24559, 303BG/360BS Lorient, France 6 March 1943

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24559 "Ooold Soljer", 303BG/360BS on a mission to bomb the U-Boat pens at Lorient, France. RTB OK.

Mission #4, SSGT Claude A. Hamilton, W/B-17F 42-5723, 303BG/360BS 13 March 1943

Served as Bomb Toggler on B-17F 42-5723, 303BG/360BS on a mission to bomb the railroad marshalling yards at Amiens, France. RTB OK.

Mission #5, SSGT Claude A. Hamilton, W/B-17F 42-5723, 303BG/360BS - RTD Bremen-Vegesack, Bremen, Germany 18 March 1943

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 42-5723, 303BG/360BS on a mission to bomb the U-Boat construction yards at Vegesack, Germany. The aircraft received battle damage but the pilot managed to bring it back in a crash landing at Molesworth, UK. He was not injured. RTD OK

Mission #6, SSGT Claude A. Hamilton, W/B-17F 42-5434, 303BG/360BS Wilhelmshaven, Germany 22 March 1943

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 42-5434, 303BG/360BS on a mission to bomb the port area and U-Boat pens at Wilhelmshaven, Germany. RTB OK.

Mission #7, SSGT Claude A. Hamilton, W/B-17F 42-5434, 303BG/360BS Rouen, France 28 March 1943

Served as Bomb Toggler on B-17F 42-5434, 303BG/360BS on a mission to bomb the railroad marshalling yards at Roeun, France. RTB OK.

Mission #8, SSGT Claude A. Hamilton, W/B-17F 41-24559, 303BG/360BS - KOM Rotterdam, Netherlands 31 March 1943

Served as Bomb Toggler on B-17F 41-24559 "Ooold Soljer", 303BG/360BS on a mission to bomb the shipyards at Rotterdam. Holland. Aircraft sustained a mid-air collision during assembly and crashed. He was listed as Killed on Mission (KOM)

Buried 1945

Cambridge American Cemetery, Plot G, Row 2, Grave 5.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
28 February 2020 22:51:57 jmoore43 Changes to biography
Sources

Added a "#" to the A/C serial number in the "Summary biography" to aid clarity.

Date Contributor Update
30 October 2019 17:53:00 jmoore43 Changes to person associations
Sources

Added a connection to Keith O. Bartlett.

Date Contributor Update
09 March 2016 20:08:05 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 8-Mar-2016. Correcting typo in Mission #8 event.

Date Contributor Update
05 March 2016 22:22:06 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 5-May-2016. Added Burial event per "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces", Stan Bishop & John A. Hey MBE. and American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) records.

Date Contributor Update
05 March 2016 22:19:09 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 29-Feb-2016. Added Mission #7 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 28-Mar-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/026.pdf

Date Contributor Update
05 March 2016 22:15:26 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 29-Feb-2016. Added Mission #7 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 28-Mar-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/026.pdf

Date Contributor Update
05 March 2016 22:12:18 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 29-Feb-2016. Added Mission #6 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 22-Mar-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/025.pdf

Date Contributor Update
05 March 2016 22:07:05 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 29-Feb-2016. Added Mission #5 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 18-Mar-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/024.pdf

Date Contributor Update
05 March 2016 22:01:42 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 29-Feb-2016. Added Mission #4 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 13-Mar-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/023.pdf

Date Contributor Update
05 March 2016 21:57:42 Lee8thbuff Changes to biography, aircraft associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 5-May-2016. Completes Participations statement in Summary Biography; Made connections to All Aircraft and Mission per 303BG website, Gary Moncure, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/

Date Contributor Update
29 February 2016 22:13:11 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 29-Feb-2016. Added Mission #3 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 6-Mar-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/020.pdf

Date Contributor Update
29 February 2016 22:10:10 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 29-Feb-2016. Added Mission #2 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 26-Feb-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/017.pdf

Date Contributor Update
29 February 2016 22:06:41 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 29-Feb-2016. Added Mission #1 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 14-Feb-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/015.pdf

Date Contributor Update
29 February 2016 22:01:57 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 29-Feb-2016. Added Assigned to Unit per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian: Keith O. Bartlett crew page: http://www.303rdbg.com/360bartlett.html

Date Contributor Update
29 February 2016 21:59:16 Lee8thbuff Changes to biography, place associations, aircraft associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 29-Feb-2016. Added inital assignment info, first mission info and Participations statement to Summary Biography; Made connections to Place, Aircraft (through 12-Mar-43) and Missions (through 12-Mar-43) per 303NG website, Gray Mocnur, Historian: Keith O. Bartlett crew pageL http://www.303rdbg.com/360bartlett.html

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:06:21 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / Unit history, Losses of the 8th and 9th AFs Vol. 1 by Bishop and Hey, p. 94, 303rd web site, ABMC web site, Roster

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