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42-31174

B-17 Flying Fortress

Delivered Dallas 27/9/43; Gr Island 19/10/43; Long Beach 28/11/43; Assigned 551BS/385BG [HR-Y] Gt Ashfield 5/12/43; Missing in Action Berlin 29/4/44 with Francis Hart, Co-pilot: Carl Connell, Navigator: Jim Hastings, Bombardier: Bob Hunt, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: John Leonard, Radio Operator: Anatole Briant, Ball turret gunner: Lowell Birdwell, Waist gunner: Roy Modglin, Waist gunner: Bill Jackson (9 Prisoner of War);Tail gunner: John Neely (KIA-died in hospital 4/5/44 probably from gun shots in the attack), crashed Hartz Mountains at Eckertal, near Bad Harzburg, Ger. Missing Air Crew Report 4454. SPIRIT OF CHICAGO.

Service

Units

  • 385th Bomb Group

    385th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 385th Bomb Group, who took the nickname "Van's Valiants" after their first Commanding Officer Col. Elliot Vandevanter, flew B-17s from Great Ashfield, Suffolk. The Group led the famous attack on the Focke-Wolfe aircraft factory at Marienburg on 9...

  • 551st Bomb Squadron

People

  • Lowell Birdwell

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    Shot down 29 April 1944 in B-17 #4231174. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Anatole Briant

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 385th Bomb Group
    Shot down 29 April 1944 in B-17 #4231174. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Carl Connell

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 385th Bomb Group
    Shot down 29 April 1944 in B-17 #4231174. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Francis Hart

    Military | Lieutenant | Pilot | 385th Bomb Group
    Shot down 29 April 1944 in B-17 #4231174. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • James Hastings

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 385th Bomb Group
    Shot down 29 April 1944 in B-17 #4231174. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Robert Hunt

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Bombardier | 385th Bomb Group
    Shot down 29 April 1944 in B-17 #4231174. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • William Jackson

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Right Waist Gunner, Waist Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    Shot down 29 April 1944 in B-17 #42-31174, Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • John Leonard

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Flight engineer/Top Turret Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    Shot down 29 April 1944 in B-17 #4231174. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Roy Modglin

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner, Waist Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    Shot down 29 April 1944 in B-17 #4231174. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • John Neely

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    Shot down 29 April 1944 in B-17 #42-31174, Killed in Action (KIA). PH

Places

  • Great Ashfield

    Military site : airfield
    The airfield was built in 1942 by John Laing & Son Ltd. 108,000 tons of concrete was used in its construction, creating a Class 'A' airfield suitable for heavy bombers. The 385th Bomb Group took up residence in the summer of 1943, and remained at the...

Events

Event Location Date
Failed to Return (FTR) Germany 29 April 1944

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
21 September 2016 23:09:27 hermanns Changes to nicknames
Sources

385th BG website

Date Contributor Update
12 May 2015 19:46:27 jhleonard52 Changes to nicknames
Sources

son of John W Leonard who was the flight engineer/ top turret gunner

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:40:36 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 4454 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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