Skip to main content
Edit entry 

43-37788

B-17 Flying Fortress

Delivered Cheyenne 21 May 1944; Hunter 3 June 1944; Grenier 15 June 1944. Assigned 709BS/447BG Rattlesden 17 June 1944. Missing in Action Munich 13 July 1944 with Pilot Russell D. Hilding, Bombardier Raymond E. Wojnicz (2 Prisoner of War); Co-pilot: George C. Mong, Navigator: Claude A. Kelly, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Fred D. Gleason, Radio Operator: Horace R. Dimartino, Ball turret gunner: Harry E. White, Waist gunner: Emory J. Markham, Waist gunner: Erwin R. Williams, Tail gunner: Joe W. Stewart (8 evaded- 6 back in UK by 18 August 1944). Hit by Flak over the target, 3 engines out, #4 feathered, later out of gas. Last seen straggling behind the formation and under control. The crew bailed out over Northern France and the plane crashed near Vendrest, north-east of Meaux, France. Missing Air Crew Report MACR 6938. Salvaged 13 October 1944.

Service

Units

  • 447th Bomb Group

    447th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 447th Bomb Group flew B-17 Flying Fortresses on strategic bombardment missions out of Rattlesden, Suffolk. With their first mission coming on Christmas Eve, December 24, 1943, their main focus was hitting sites that would weaken enemy forces...

  • 709th Bomb Squadron

People

  • Horace DiMartino

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 447th Bomb Group
    Evaded (EVD) Hit by flak and crashed at Vendrest on 7/13/44 in B-17 43-37788.

  • Fred Gleason

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Engineer/Top Turret Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    After four years of High School, Fred Gleason enlisted in January 1943. Trained as an Engineer/Gunner on B-17 bombers, he was sent to Europe. Assigned to the 447th Bomb Group/709th Bomb Squadron, he was shot down in B-17 #43-37788 on return of the 13...

  • Russell Hilding

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Pilot | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down 13 July 1944 in B-17 #43-37788 on Munich raid. Evaded for two weeks, then captured and sent to Buchenwald concentration camp for two months, then to Stalag 3, and force-mrched from there to Stalag 7A in Moosburg. Liberated 29 April 1945. See...

  • Claude Kelly

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 447th Bomb Group
    Evaded (EVD) Hit by flak and crashed at Vendrest on 7/13/44 in B-17 #4337788

  • Emory Markham

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    Evaded (EVD)/ Hit by flak and crashed at Vendrest on 7/13/44 in B-17 #43337788

  • George Mong

    Military | Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 447th Bomb Group
    Evaded (EVD) Hit by flak and crashed at Vendrest on 7/13/44 in B-17 #4337788

  • Joe Stewart

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    Evaded (EVD)/ Hit by flak and crashed at Vendrest on 7/13/44 in B-17 4337788

  • Harry White

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    Hit by flak and crashed at Vendrest on 7/13/44 in B-17 #43-37788, Evaded (EVD).

  • Erwin Williams

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Right Waist Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    Evaded (EVD) Hit by flak and crashed at Vendrest on 7/13/44 in B-17 #4337788

  • Raymond Wojnicz

    Military | Captain | Bombardier | 447th Bomb Group
    A Bombardier in the 447th Bomb Group/709th Bomb Squadron, Ray Wojnicz was shot down in B-17 #43-37788 on the Munich mission 13 July 1944. Initially evaded with the help of French patriots, he was guided to Paris. Due to infiltration of the evasion...

Missions

  • 471

    13 July 1944

Places

  • Rattlesden

    Military site : airfield
    Built for the Eighth Air Force in 1942, Rattlesden had three concrete runways, 50 hardstandings and two dispersed T2 hangars. Intended to be a twin-engine B-26 bomber base, it was originally a satellite for nearby Rougham, and first occupied from...

Events

Event Location Date
Failed to Return (FTR) near Vendrest, France 13 July 1944

Hit by Flak above the target, managed to reach France where crew bailed out. Crashed near Vendrest.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
16 May 2017 11:53:03 ED-BB Changes to markings, description, events and mission associations
Sources

MACR 6938

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:41:24 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 6938 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

Share