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44-6085

B-17 Flying Fortress

For the book (An Aviator’s Dream - The Man From Painted Woods) Mostly photos and articles on my father, Lt Ernest Anders Erickson, I am assembling, have spent a lot of time researching the fate of his last ship.

Erickson flew for his final 15 missions, aboard (44-6085) the "Lili of the Lamplight," from May 31st (his 20th mission) to August 12, 1944, when he completed his 34th mission.)
It was painted on his leather bomber jacket, also mentioned in letters, he wrote during the war, and one specifically scribed on August 4th 1944, (his 22nd birthday)
about the naming of the ship. A framed newspaper article hung in his office at Lockheed’s Skunk Works from Oct 1944 mentioning their ship #’d (44-6085) as the
"Lili of the Lamplight".

Unfortunately the name was never painted on the plane, but plans were underfoot, and then, very sadly the Lily went down on August 25th, 1944, a day before my dad’s final 35th mission on August 26, 1944. The Lilli of the Lamplight (44-6085) was delivered Tulsa 27/4/44; Kearney 7/5/44; Dow Fd 21/5/44; Assigned 335BS/95BG [OE-H] Horham 23/5/44; 334BS [BG-S]; 26m, Missing in Action Rechlin 25/8/44 with Albt Powell, Co-pilot: Bill Connor, Navigator: Don Overdorff, Bombardier: Phil Whalen, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Eldred Steffens, Radio Operator: Peppe Delio, Waist gunner: Henry Schneider (7 Prisoner of War); Ball turret gunner: Orlin Covel, Tail gunner: Melvin Whilhelm [broke ankle], ph-Berton Briley (3 Killed in Action); flak hit #3 & 4 feathered, on way down losing a wing before disintegrating, crashed Schwabach-Schwankenheim, near Stettin, Ger. Missing Air Crew Report 8279.

Service

Units

  • 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. ...

  • 95th Bomb Group

    95th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 95th Bomb Group was the only Eighth Air Force Group to be awarded three Distinguished Unit Citations. The first, shared by all four Bomb Wing Groups, was for the bombing of an aircraft factory under intense enemy fire at Regensburg on 17 August...

  • 334th Bomb Squadron
  • 335th Bomb Squadron

People

  • Berton Briley

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Photographer | 95th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 334BS, 95BG, 8AF USAAF. 17 x combat missions. Failed to Return (FTR) Rechlin in B-17 44-6085 25-Aug-44; flak hit #3 & 4 feathered, on descent losing a wing before disintegrating, crashed Schwabach-Schwankenheim, near Stettin, Germany Killed...

  • William Connor

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 95th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 334BS, 95BG, 8AF USAAF. Alerbert Powell crew. Failed to Return (FTR) Rechlin in B-17 44-6085 25-Aug-44; flak hit #3 & 4 feathered, on descent losing a wing before disintegrating, crashed Schwabach-Schwankenheim, near Stettin, Germany...

  • Orlin Covel

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 95th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 334BS, 95BG, 8AF USAAF. 12 x combat missions. Failed to Return (FTR) Rechlin in B-17 44-6085 25-Aug-44; flak hit #3 & 4 feathered, on descent losing a wing before disintegrating, crashed Schwabach-Schwankenheim, near Stettin, Germany....

  • Peppe Delio

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Radio Operator | 95th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 334BS, 95BG, 8AF USAAF. Albert Powell crew. Failed to Return (FTR) Rechlin in B-17 44-6085 25-Aug-44; flak hit #3 & 4 feathered, on descent losing a wing before disintegrating, crashed Schwabach-Schwankenheim, near Stettin, Germany....

  • Ernest Erickson

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 95th Bomb Group
    An Aviator's Dream: The Man From Painted Woods ...

  • Donald Overdorff

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 95th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 334BS, 95BG, 8AF USAAF. Albert Powell crew. Failed to Return (FTR) Rechlin in B-17 44-6085 25-Aug-44; flak hit #3 & 4 feathered, on descent losing a wing before disintegrating, crashed Schwabach-Schwankenheim, near Stettin, Germany....

  • Albert Powell

    Military | Colonel | Pilot | 95th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 334BS, 95BG, 8AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) Rechlin in B-17 44-6085 25-Aug-44; flak hit #3 & 4 feathered, on descent losing a wing before disintegrating, crashed Schwabach-Schwankenheim, near Stettin, Germany. Prisoner of War (POW) MACR...

  • Henry Schneider

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 95th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 334BS, 95BG, 8AF USAAF. Albert Powell crew. Failed to Return (FTR) Rechlin in B-17 44-6085 25-Aug-44; flak hit #3 & 4 feathered, on descent losing a wing before disintegrating, crashed Schwabach-Schwankenheim, near Stettin, Germany....

  • Eldred Steffens

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Top Turret Gunner | 95th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 334BS, 95BG, 8AF USAAF. Albert Powell crew. 35 x combat missions. Failed to Return (FTR) Rechlin in B-17 44-6085 25-Aug-44; flak hit #3 & 4 feathered, on descent losing a wing before disintegrating, crashed Schwabach-Schwankenheim, near...

  • Phillip Whalen

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Bombardier | 95th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 334BS, 95BG, 8AF USAAF. Albert Powell crew. Failed to Return (FTR) Rechlin in B-17 44-6085 25-Aug-44; flak hit #3 & 4 feathered, on descent losing a wing before disintegrating, crashed Schwabach-Schwankenheim, near Stettin, Germany....

Show more

Places

  • Horham

    Military site : airfield
    Horham airfield was planned and built for RAF use, but handed over to the Eighth Air Force and used initially by the 47th Bomb Group. When they joined the Twelfth Air Force in January 1943, it became home to the B-26 Marauders of the 323rd Bomb Group....

Events

Event Location Date
Crashed Schwabach, Germany 25 August 1944 – 25 August 1944

For the book (An Aviator’s Dream - The Man From Painted Woods) Mostly photos and articles on my father, Lt Ernest Anders Erickson, I am assembling, have spent a lot of time researching the fate of his last ship.
Erickson flew for his final 15 missions, aboard (44-6085) the "Lili of the Lamplight," from May 31st (his 20th mission) to August 12, 1944, when he completed his 34th mission.)
It was painted on his leather bomber jacket, also mentioned in letters, he wrote during the war, and one specifically scribed on August 4th 1944, (his 22nd birthday)
about the naming of the ship. A framed newspaper article hung in his office at Lockheed’s Skunk Works from Oct 1944 mentioning their ship #’d (44-6085) as the
"Lili of the Lamplight."

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
01 May 2020 14:13:25 Mark Erickson Changes to place associations
Sources

I am Mark Jon Erickson, son of and biographer of Lt. Ernest Anders Erickson. Lt. Erickson was a pilot with the 95th Bomb Group of of Horham Airfierld. He flew 35 missions in 1944 with the 334th Squadron. All information I post here is backed by documents
and first hand knowledge of each specific item or photograph. A comprehensive website has been set up on my father's activities in the Air Corps from 1942-1945, here at: http://markerickson.com/Family_History/Ernest_Erickson/
I can be contacted at markericksonstudio@gmail.com

Date Contributor Update
14 February 2020 21:38:20 jmoore43 Changes to description
Sources

Added a space in front of the words "Tail gunner" in the A/C “Description” for clarity. Also spaces in other places in the A/C “Description” for clarity.

Date Contributor Update
18 March 2016 20:27:38 Mark Erickson Changes to description and events
Sources

My father, Lt. Ernest Anders Erickson (95thBG) was a pilot aboard the "Lili of the Lamplight
(44-6085) and eleven other B-17s from March through September 1944. He flew all his 35
missions out of Horham Airfield in the UK. I am using his Horham crew photograph as my profile photo here.

http://markerickson.com/Family_History/FH/

Date Contributor Update
18 March 2016 20:17:06 Mark Erickson Changes to media associations
Sources

My father, Lt. Ernest Anders Erickson (95thBG) was a pilot aboard the "Lili of the Lamplight
(44-6085) and eleven other B-17s from March through September 1944. He flew all his 35
missions out of Horham Airfield in the UK. I am using his Horham crew photograph as my profile photo here.

http://markerickson.com/Family_History/FH/

Date Contributor Update
18 March 2016 19:58:34 Mark Erickson Changes to nicknames
Sources

My father, Lt. Ernest Anders Erickson http://markerickson.com/Family_History/FH/r6-5.html was one of the pilots of 44-6085 the "Lili of the Lamplight." He has documentation on all additions i have and will be making on this site.

Date Contributor Update
14 December 2015 14:43:29 Al_Skiff Changes to unit associations
Sources

AAM DB Entry Correction.

Date Contributor Update
01 December 2015 17:17:28 Al_Skiff Changes to production block number, markings, events, unit associations and place associations
Sources

AAM DB Entry.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:41:48 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 8279 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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