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B-17 Flying Fortress

Delivered Cheyenne 5/4/43; Gore 10/4/43; Kearney 15/4/43; Wendover 2/5/43; Hill 13/5/43; Kearney 23/5/43; Dow Fd 27/5/43; Assigned 350BS/100BG [LN-P] Podington 29/5/43; Thorpe Abbotts 9/6/43; transferred 561BS/388BG Knettishall 6/43; Missing in Action Woensdrecht 19/8/43 with Bill Howe, Co-pilot: Paul Gruhn, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Jim Hiller, Radio Operator: Steve Toth, Ball turret gunner: Dale Butt, Waist gunner: George Connolly, Waist gunner: Bill Stamp, Tail gunner: Bill Ryan (8 Killed in Action), Navigator: Art Pilley, Bombardier: Joel Tutt (2 Prisoner of War); flak KO’d #4, crashed in field between Haamstede & Renesse, Hol. Missing Air Crew Report 3068. PHARTZAC.



  • 381st Bomb Group

    381st Bomb Group

    The 381st Bomb Group flew B-17 Flying Fortresses from Ridgewell, Essex between June 1943 and April 1945. The Group was awarded two Distinguished Unit Citations, the first for bombing shipyards at Bremen, whilst under heavy attack, on 8 October 1943 and...

  • 388th Bomb Group

    388th Bomb Group

    The 388th Bomb Group flew strategic bombing mission from Knettishall, Suffolk from June 1943 to the end of the war. During this time, though, detachments were sent to Fersfield, Norfolk to conduct Aphrodite missions. In these Aphrodite missions veteran...

  • 561st Bomb Squadron


  • Dale Butt

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 388th Bomb Group
    Killed in Action (KIA)

  • Gale Cleven

    Military | Major | Command Pilot, Pilot, Mission | 100th Bomb Group
    Shot down 8 October 1943 in B-17 42-3233 'Our Baby', Prisoner of War. ...

  • George Connelly

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner | 388th Bomb Group
    Killed in Action (KIA). MACR 3068

  • Paul Gruhn

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 388th Bomb Group
    Killed in Action (KIA)

  • James Hillier

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 388th Bomb Group
    Killed in Action (KIA)

  • Benjamin Howe

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 388th Bomb Group
    Shot down 19 August 1943 in B-17 42-30068. Plane ditched in North Sea.

  • Arthur Pilley

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Bombardier | 388th Bomb Group
    Prisoner of War (POW)

  • William Ryan

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 388th Bomb Group
    Killed in Action (KIA)

  • William Stamp

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 388th Bomb Group
    Killed in Action (KIA)

  • Stephen Toth

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Radio Operator | 388th Bomb Group
    Killed in Action (KIA). MACR 3068

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  • VIII Bomber Command 85

    19 August 1943
    The German airfields at Gilze-Rijen, Holland and Woensdrecht, Holland are the targets for this mission. The attacks will be made by two elements. The first element is a combined force of 125 B-17s from: 91BG (8); 92BG (19); 303BG (20); 305BG (19);...


  • Knettishall

    Military site : airfield
    Knettishall was built to Class A standard for an American Bomb Group that would be bringing up to forty heavy bombers with them in three or four Squadrons. The 388th Bomb Group, which stayed at Knettishall for their entire service in the ETO, flew B-17...

  • Podington

    Military site : airfield
    Built originally to accommodate two RAF bomber squadrons, the first USAAF unit to occupy the base was the 15th Bomb Squadron in September 1942. Podington was then used as a satellite for nearby Chelveston. Work to lengthen the runways, although this...

  • Thorpe Abbotts

    Military site : airfield
    Home of the 'Bloody Hundredth’, a Bomb Group with a reputation for high casualty rates, Thorpe Abbotts was under USAAF control from June 1943 to the end of the war. Some of the airfield survives today, and the control tower houses the 100th Bomb Group...


Event Location Date
Failed to Return (FTR) Germany 19 August 1943


Date Contributor Update
31 January 2020 23:19:46 jmoore43 Changes to description

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

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:40:26 AAM AAM ingest

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 3068 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database