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Eugene Amasr Colburn

Military

Damaged by fighters and flak enroute on a mission to Schweinfurt, GR and crashed on the return near Amiens, FR on 24 Feb 1944 in B-17F #42-3517 'Happy Warrior'. Evaded (EVD).
Travelling through France with the help of French civilians and Résistance members, he crossed over into Spain on 4 June, reached Gibraltar on 3 July and was flown back to England on 4 July 1944.

Service

People

  • John Avery

    Military | Lieutenant | Navigator | 351st Bomb Group
    Damaged by fighters and flak enroute on a mission to Schweinfurt, GR and crashed on the return near Amiens, FR on 24 Feb 1944 in B-17F #42-3517 'Happy Warrior'. Evaded (EVD).

  • John Boehm

    Military | Second Lieutenant | 351st Bomb Group
    Prisoner of War (POW) Feb. 24, 1944

  • Richard Caughman

    Military | Lieutenant | Pilot | 351st Bomb Group

  • Howard Langer

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner, Waist Gunner | 351st Bomb Group
    Damaged by fighters and flak enroute on a mission to Schweinfurt, GR and crashed on the return near Amiens, FR on 24 Feb 1944 in B-17F #42-3517 'Happy Warrior'. Prisoner of War (POW). Evaded until captured on 27 Mar 1944. POW

  • John Mattila

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 351st Bomb Group

  • James McGinty

    Military | Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 351st Bomb Group
    Damaged by fighters and flak enroute on a mission to Schweinfurt, GR and crashed on the return near Amiens, France on 24 Feb 1944 in B-17F 42-3517 'Happy Warrior'. Evaded capture.

  • Richard Perkins

    Military | First Lieutenant | 351st Bomb Group
    Prisoner of War (POW) Feb. 24, 1944

  • Eugene Strassburger

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Top Turret Gunner | 351st Bomb Group
    Damaged by fighters and flak enroute on a mission to Schweinfurt, GR and crashed on the return near Amiens, FR on 24 Feb 1944 in B-17F #42-3517 'Happy Warrior'. Killed in Action (KIA).

  • Paul Young

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 351st Bomb Group
    Damaged by fighters and flak enroute on a mission to Schweinfurt, GR and crashed on the return near Amiens, FR on 24 Feb 1944 in B-17F #42-3517 'Happy Warrior'. Evaded (EVD).

Units served with

  • 351st Bomb Group

    351st Bomb Group

    Group
    The 351st Bomb Group flew strategic bombing missions from their base at Polebrook, Northamptonshire from April 1943 to June 1945. The Group's most famous member was Hollywood actor Clark Gable, who flew four/ five missions with them as an observer...

  • 508th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 42-29821

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 22/2/43; Wichita 20/3/43; Bangor 8/4/43; Assigned 508BS/351BG [YB-F] Polebrook 17/4/43; blew up en route Ludwigshafen 7/1/44 {21m} with Harvey Anderson, Navigator: Doug Webb, Bombardier: Bill Udick, Ball turret gunner: Frank McNamara...

  • 42-30994

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 30/8/43; Gt Falls 9/10/43; Scott 28/10/43; Assigned 401BG 30/10/43; transferred 508BS/351BG [YB-T] Polebrook 21/11/43; {30m} 487BG Sudbury 15/7/44; Salvaged 29/5/45. VOX POP II aka OLE DAD.

  • 42-3517 Happy Warrior

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 12/7/43; Rapid City 10/8/43; Assigned 508BS/351BG [YB-O] Polebrook 27/9/43; Missing in Action 15m Schweinfurt 24/2/44 with Richard Caughman, Navigator: John Avery, Radio Operator: John Mattila, Ball turret gunner: Paul Young, Waist...

  • 42-3523

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Long Beach 22/7/43; Denver 16/8/43; Assigned 510BS/351BG [TU-M] Polebrook 24/9/43; Missing in Action {11m} Oschersleben 11/1/44 with George Procak, Co-pilot: George Neely, Navigator: Jerrold Trumbower, Bombardier: Jim Keating, Flight engineer...

  • 42-37731

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 10/8/43; Dalhart 17/8/43; Assigned 510BS/351BG [TU-A] Polebrook 22/9/43; transferred 508BS [YB-A]. Missing in Action on its 12th mission, to Bordeaux on 31 December 1943 with Pilot Major John R. Blaylock; Navigator: James Taylor; Tail...

  • 42-37827

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 11/9/43; Gr Island 29/9/43; Assigned 509BS/351BG [RQ-J] Polebrook 27/10/43, then 508BS [YB-J]; Missing in Action {24m} Schweinfurt 13/4/44 with Gilbert Whitchurch, Co-pilot: Gene Sylvester, Navigator: Newton Wilbur, Flight engineer/top...

  • 42-5823

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Long Beach 28/2/43; Pueblo 12/3/43; Presque 8/4/43; Assigned 508BS/351BG [YB-C] Polebrook 17/4/43; {31m} 2 Base Air Depot, Lt Staughton 5/4/44; Returned to the USA Tinker 6/8/44; Reconstruction Finance Corporation (sold for scrap metal in USA...

  • 42-6151 Round Trip

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Long Beach 6/8/43; Cheyenne 9/8/43; 424 Sub Gp Gr Island 3/9/43; Assigned 508BS/351BG [YB-M] Polebrook 24/9/43; 26m transferred 486BG Sudbury 17/7/44; 490BG Eye 8/44; 863BS/493BG Debach with Chas Gibson, damaged by fire 11/6/45; Salvaged ....

Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 106

    2 October 1943
    This mission is composed of three elements, two or which are directed at the industrial areas of Emden, Germany and the other at the German airfield at Woensdrecht, Holland. The first element is a formation of 163 B-17s from 1st Bomb Division which...

  • VIII Bomber Command 108

    4 October 1943
    This mission is composed of five elements. The first element is a combined force of 104 B-17s from: 306BG (16); 92BG (17); 395BG (17); 303BG (19); 379BG (18) and 384BG (17) despatched to bomb the industrial areas of Frankfurt, Germany. 77 aircraft are...

  • VIII Fighter Command FO-172 BOMBER ESCORT

    7 November 1943
    A combined force of 283 P-47s from 56FG; 78FG; 352FG; 353FG; and 356FG are despatched to escort the B-17 formations attacking at Wesel and Duren, Germany. The 78FG flew the first double-group mission composed of two formations 'A' and 'B. 1 aircraft...

  • 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 ...

  • VIII Fighter Command FO-191 BOMBER ESCORT

    26 November 1943
    This mission is composed of two fighter elements. The first element is a combined force of 28 P-38s from 55FG and some of 20FG/73FS despatched to escort B-17 formations attacking Bremen, Germany. There are no losses of claims in this element. ...

  • VIII Bomber Command 151

    11 December 1943
    This mission is a massive raid of 583 heavy bombers on the industrial areas of Emden, Germany. The first element is a combined force of 242 B-17s from 1st Bomb Division that included: 91BG (24); 92BG (18); 303BG (20); 305BG (21); 306BG (20); 351BG (40)...

  • VIII Bomber Command 154

    13 December 1943
    The port areas at Bremen and Kiel, Germany are the primary targets for this mission. This is the first mission where more than 600 aircraft are despatched. This mission is comprised of 8 elements. The first element consists 182 B-17s from: 91BG (31);...

  • VIII Bomber Command 164

    24 December 1943
    This mission is directed at V-Weapon sites in the Pas-de-Calaise area of France. The attacks are made between 1330-1510hrs. The mission is composed of three elements. The first element is a force of 277 B-17s from 1st Bomb Division that included: 91BG ...

  • 8th Air Force 174

    4 January 1944
    The port area of Kiel, Germany and the railroad marshalling yards at Munster, Germany are the Primary targets of this Mission which is organised as two elements: one going to Kiel and the other to Munster. Roger A. Freeman begins to designate aircraft...

  • 8th Air Force 233 BIG WEEK - DAY 5

    24 February 1944
    BIG WEEK resumes with full intensity against the German aircraft industry. Bomber tactics are changed slightly in that each Air Division will be directed at more widely dispersed primary targets whoch it is thought will frustrate concentration...

Associated Place

  • Polebrook

    Military site : airfield
    Polebrook was laid down for RAF Bomber Command use in 1940-1941. Built by George Wimpey and Co. Ltd, it had short runways which were lengthened for USAAF heavy bomber use. The RAF used the base for operational trials - including of B-17 Flying...

Events

Event Location Date
Born Marion, Alabama, United States 27 February 1921
Enlisted Fayette, AL 35555, USA 20 August 1942 – 24 February 1944

Training Stations: St. Petersburg, Florida- Gulfport, Mississippi- Harlington, Texas- Blythe, California -
Dyersburg, Tennessee

Evaded 60120 Mory-Montcrux, France 24 February 1944

Shot down over Germany February 24, 1944. Aircraft 42-3517 on Mission 84, Schweinfurt, Germany- target: Ball Bearing Plant. Missing in action five months. Escaped through French Underground. Escape & Evasion Report E&E 824.

Discharged Montgomery, AL, USA 27 October 1945

Maxwell Field, Alabama

Died Fayette, AL 35555, USA 20 July 2004

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
24 September 2018 08:22:52 ED-BB Changes to middlename, biography and events
Sources

Escape & Evasion Report E&E 824 ( https://catalog.archives.gov/id/5555464 )
WWII Draft Cards

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 15:06:30 Leisa Cunningham Changes to events
Sources

added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 01:25:19 Leisa Cunningham Changes to events
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added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 01:19:28 Leisa Cunningham Changes to highest rank
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added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 01:18:51 Leisa Cunningham Changes to events
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added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 01:14:10 Leisa Cunningham Changes to awards
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ADDED BY DAUGHTER

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 01:12:39 Leisa Cunningham Changes to service number
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ADDED BY DAUGHTER

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:51:17 Leisa Cunningham Changes to events
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added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:48:51 Leisa Cunningham Changes to aircraft associations
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added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:44:32 Leisa Cunningham Changes to aircraft associations
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added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:43:36 Leisa Cunningham Changes to mission associations
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added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:37:52 Leisa Cunningham Changes to mission associations
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added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:35:42 Leisa Cunningham Changes to mission associations
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added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:34:29 Leisa Cunningham Changes to mission associations
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added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:33:14 Leisa Cunningham Changes to place associations and mission associations
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added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:22:00 Leisa Cunningham Changes to mission associations
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added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:18:49 Leisa Cunningham Changes to person associations
Sources

Added by daughter.

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:16:44 Leisa Cunningham Changes to person associations
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Added by daughter.

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:15:28 Leisa Cunningham Changes to person associations
Sources

added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:06:53 Leisa Cunningham Changes to events
Sources

Added by daughter

Date Contributor Update
16 February 2016 00:01:55 Leisa Cunningham Changes to events
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Added by daughter.

Date Contributor Update
09 February 2016 18:34:22 Leisa Cunningham Changes to media associations
Sources

Added by daughter.

Date Contributor Update
08 February 2016 19:48:22 Leisa Cunningham Changes to media associations
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Photo of Eugene A. Colburn added by daughter.

Date Contributor Update
08 February 2016 19:47:00 Leisa Cunningham Changes to events
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Date of Birth added by daughter.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:09:21 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 2773 / MACR 2773, Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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