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Gene A Witterstetter

Military

27-Jul-42 Assigned as Co-Pilot of B-17F 41-24563 [PU-H], "Garbage", 303BG/360BS at Alamogordo Field, Alamogordo, New Mexico. 16-Oct-42 Arrived Molesworth, UK aboard "Garbage".

11-Nov-42 as Co-Pilot in B-17F 41-2456 'Garbage', while on a training flight, the aircraft sustained a mid-air collision with an RAF aircraft and had to make a "belly" landing Luton, UK. There were no injuries but the aircraft was dmaged beyond repair and later slavaged for parts. Poor weather conditions contributed to accident on landing 'Garbage'

Shot down 3 January 1943 in B-17F 41-24620 'Snap! Crackle! Pop!' while serving as Co-Pilot. Killed in Action (KIA). MACR 15464

Participated in 4 Operations. See Biography events.

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...

  • 360th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 41-24563

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Assigned 360BS/303BG [PU-H] Bangor 14/10/42; Molesworth 16/10/42; on training flight with Arthur Adams, Co-pilot: Gene Witterstetter, Navigator: Glen Herrington, Bombardier: Mike Libonatti, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Lew Hart, Radio Operator:...

  • 41-24602 Yardbird II

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17F 41-24602 was assigned 360BS/303BG [PU-A] Bangor 14-Oct-42; Molesworth 16-Oct-42; On the 29-May-43 mission to bomb the U-Boat pens at St. Nazaire, France the aircraft was damaged by flak over the target and then attacked and shot down by fighters...

  • 41-24620 Snap! Crackle! Pop!

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17F 41-24620 'Snap, Crackle, Pop' assigned 360BS/303BG [PU-D] Bangor 14-Sep-42; Molesworth 16-Oct-42; Missing in Action St Nazaire 3-Jan-43 shot down by enemy aircraft, crashed Escoublac Forest, West of St Nazaire, France. 7KIA 3POW MACR 15464....

  • 42-2973 IZA VAILABLE

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Assigned 360BS/303BG [PU-G] Presque Is 27/11/42; Molesworth 13/12/42; Returned to the USA 2/7/44; Reconstruction Finance Corporation (sold for scrap metal in USA) Arledge 22/11/44. IZA VAILABLE.

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 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 27

    30 December 1942
    The U-Boat pens at Lorient, France are the target for this mission. A combined force of 77 B-17s are despatched by 91BG (19); 303BG (16); 305BG (13) and 306BG (18). Only 40 are effective on the target. All but 1 B-17 from the 18 despatched by 306BG is...

  • VIII Bomber Command 28

    3 January 1943
    The U-Boat pens at St. Nazaire, France are once again the target for this mission. This is proving to be a particularly difficult target to destroy due to its massive, reinforced concrete design. It consists of 14 individual pens connected together in...

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
Assigned to Aircraft Alamogordo, NM 88310, USA 27 July 1942

Assigned as Co-Pilot of B-17F 41-24563 "Garbage", 303BG/360BS at Alamogordo Field, Alamogordo, New Mexico.

Arrived in UK Molesworth, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire PE28, UK 16 October 1942

Arrived at Molesworth, UK ac Co-Pilot aborad B-17F 41-24563 "Garbage", 303BG/360BS.

Aircraft Accident Luton, Luton, UK 11 November 1942

Served as Co-Pilot of B-17F 41-24563 "Garbage" when it sustained a mid-air collision with an RAF aircraft while on a training mission. Aircraft made a "belly" landing at Luton, UK and ws damaged beyond repair. He was not injured.

Mission #1, 2LT Gene A. Witterstetter, w/B-17F 41-24603, 303BG/360BS 17 November 1942

Served as Co-Pilot of B-17F 41-24602 "Yardbird II" on a mission to bomb the U-boat pens at St. Nazaire, France. RTB OK.

Mission #2, 2LT Gene A. Witterstetter, w/B-17F 41-24603, 303BG/360BS Romilly-sur-Seine, France 20 December 1942

Served as Co-Pilot of B-17F 41-24602 "Yardbird II" on a mission to bomb the German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France. RTB OK.

Mission #3, 2LT Gene A. Witterstetter, w/B-17F 42-2973, 303BG/360BS Lorient, France 30 December 1942

Served as Co-Pilot of B-17F 42-2973 "Iza Vailable" on a mission to bomb the U-boat pens at Lorient, France. RTB OK.

Killed in Action (KIA) Bois d'Escoublac, 44500 La Baule-Escoublac, France 3 January 1943

Killed when aircraft sustained damage from AA fire and enemy fighters and crashed into the Forest of Escoublac, France.

Mission #4, 2LT Gene A. Witterstetter, w/B-17F 41-24620, 303BG/360BS - KIA Saint-Nazaire, France 3 January 1943

Served as Co-Pilot of B-17F 41-24620 "Snap! Crackle! Pop!" on a mission to bomb the U-boat pens at St. Nazaire, France. The aircraft was shot down and he was killed in action (KIA).

Buried 1945

Buried in the Brittany American Cemetery, Plot L, Row 13, Grave 9

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
24 January 2016 23:36:25 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 24-Jan-2016. Added Mission #4 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 3-Jan-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/009.pdf

Date Contributor Update
24 January 2016 23:33:01 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 24-Jan-2016. Added Mission #3 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 30-Dec-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/008.pdf

Date Contributor Update
24 January 2016 23:29:53 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 24-Jan-2016. Added Mission #1 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 17-Nov-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/001.pdf
Lee Cunningham 24-Jan-2016. Added Mission #2 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 20-Dec-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/007.pdf

Date Contributor Update
24 January 2016 23:24:19 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 24-Jan-2016. Added Aircraft Accident event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 17-Nov-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/001.pdf

Date Contributor Update
24 January 2016 23:20:38 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 24-Jan-2016. Added Aircraft Accident event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Arthur I. Adams crew page: http://www.303rdbg.com/c-360-adams.html

Date Contributor Update
24 January 2016 23:17:53 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 24-Jan-2016. Added Arrived in UK event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Arthur I. Adams crew page: http://www.303rdbg.com/c-360-adams.html

Date Contributor Update
24 January 2016 23:16:00 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 24-Jan-2016. Added Assigned to Aircraft event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Arthur I. Adams crew page: http://www.303rdbg.com/c-360-adams.html

Date Contributor Update
24 January 2016 23:13:14 Lee8thbuff Changes to biography, aircraft associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 24-Jan-2016. Added initial assignment and arrival in UK info to Summary Biogrpahy; made connections to Aircraft and Missions per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Arthur I. Adams crew page: http://www.303rdbg.com/c-360-adams.html

Date Contributor Update
15 January 2015 20:44:31 Lee8thbuff Changes to biography
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Jan-2015. Added information on B-17F 41-2456 to description per information contained in record if Arthur I. Adams.

Date Contributor Update
15 January 2015 20:40:37 Lee8thbuff Changes to service number, role, biography, awards, events, place associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Jan-2015. Added SN and KIA event per MACR 15464; made connections to Place and Mission within existing website data; Added Burial event per American Battle Monument Commission (ABMC) record.; minor edits to description.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:10:36 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 15464 / MACR 15464, Losses of the 8th & 9th AFs by Bishop and Hey / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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