Skip to main content
Edit entry 

42-31537

B-17 Flying Fortress

Delivered Cheyenne 19/11/43; Kearney 2/12/43; Presque Is 10/12/43; Assigned 332BS/94BG [XM-B] Rougham 23/12/43 FRIDAY THE 13TH; transferred 350BS/100BG [LN-S] Thorpe Abbotts 24/12/43; 349BS [XR- ]; ran out of gas on Ruhland mission 21 June 1944 with Lt Chadwick, force landed Kiev, Russia. Missing in Action Merseburg 29 July 1944 with Pilot William T. Fitzroy, Navigator: Floyd F. Hartman, Ball Turret gunner: Bernard L. Spragg, Waist gunner: Frank W. Buschmeier, Tail gunner: Joseph P. O’Donnell (5 Prisoners of War). Co-pilot: Robert Dykeman, Bombardier: Floyd O. Douglas, Flight Engineer/Top Turret gunner: Ira L. Arnold, Radio Operator: Carmine V. Roberto (4 Killed in Action). Enemy aircraft, crashed 1km East of Punschrau, South of Merseburg, Germany. Missing Air Crew Report - MACR 7809. RANDY LOU aka BUFFALO GAL.

Service

Units

  • 100th Bomb Group

    100th Bomb Group

    Group
    "The Bloody Hundredth", so-called because of a reputation for losing a high number aircraft and crews, flew B-17s from Thorpe Abbotts, Norfolk. Their losses were not the highest of any Eighth Air Force Group but on several occasions the Group lost many...

  • 94th Bomb Group

    94th Bomb Group

    Group
    Activated 15 June 1942 at MacDill Field, Florida. Initial organization and training at Pendleton Field, Oregon on 29 June 1942. Primary flight training at Davis-Monthan Field in Arizona from 28 Aug. 42 to 31 Oct. 42; then at Biggs Field, El Paso, Texas...

  • 332nd Bomb Squadron

    332nd Bomb Squadron

    Squadron
    Part of 94th Bomb Group.

  • 350th Bomb Squadron

People

  • Ira Arnold

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Engineer/Top Turret Gunner | 100th Bomb Group
    B-17G#42-31968 'Miss Irish' returned from a mission to Marquise/Mimoyecques, Fance and made an emergency landing at Raydon after taking a direct hit from an 88mm in the radio room on 19 March 1944. Returned To Duty (RTD). Shot down by Flak on the...

  • Frank Buschmeier

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner | 100th Bomb Group
    B-17G#42-31968 'Miss Irish' returned from a mission to Marquise/Mimoyecques, France and made an emergency landing at Raydon after taking a direct hit from an 88mm in the radio room on 19 March 1944. Returned To Duty (RTD). Missing Air Crew Report -...

  • Floyd Douglas

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Bombardier / Togglier / Engineer | 100th Bomb Group
    3 December 1943 crashed on base in B-17#42-39791 "Fletcher's Castoria" with Pilot Martin Tashjian. Then 27 December 1943 accident after landing B-17#42-37772 "Flying Jenny" (also Tashjian crew) during formation flight training. All returned. Shot down...

  • Robert Dykeman

    Military | First Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 100th Bomb Group
    Robert Dykeman was Co-Pilot on B-17G#42-31968 'Miss Irish'. On return from a mission to Marquise/Mimoyecques, France on 19 March 1944, the ship made an emergency landing at Raydon after taking a direct hit from an 88mm in the radio room. Returned to...

  • William Fitzroy

    Military | Lieutenant | Pilot | 100th Bomb Group
    Was Pilot of B-17 #42-31537 on the 29 July 1944 mission to Merseburg, Germany. Shot down by Flak and crashed near Punschrau, Germany. Prisoner of War (POW).

  • Floyd Hartman

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 100th Bomb Group
    Floyd Hartman was Navigator on board B-17#42-39791 "Fletcher's Castoria" which crashed on take-off on a non-operational flight 3 December 1943, with Pilot Martin Tashjian. He and the 8 other men on board Returned To Duty (RTD). ...

  • Joseph O'Donnell

    Military | Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 100th Bomb Group
    Shot down by fighters and crashed near Punschrau, Germany on 29 July 1944 in B-17 #42- 31537 "Buffalo Gal". Prisoner of War (POW)

  • Carmine Roberto

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 100th Bomb Group
    Shot down by fighters and crashed near Punschrau, Germany in B-17#42-31537 "Buffalo Gal" on 29 July 1944. Killed in Action (KIA).

  • Bernard Spragg

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 100th Bomb Group
    B-17G#42-31968 'Miss Irish' returned from a mission to Marquise/Mimoyecques, France and made an emergency landing at Raydon after taking a direct hit from an 88mm in the radio room on 19 March 1944. RTD. Missing Air Crew Report - MACR 15220. Returned...

Missions

  • 428

    21 June 1944
    Ruhland, Germany - The target, south of Berlin, bombed by 114 fortresses with an escort of 70 Mustangs went off as planned but not before the Germans destroyed 43 B-17's and damaged 26. Landed in Russia.

  • 503

    29 July 1944

Places

  • Bury St Edmunds

    Military site : airfield
    The airfield was purpose-built for American bomb groups and as such had a 2,000 yard main runway that lain in concrete with a tarred and wood-chipped surface. The scale of bases such as this meant that very often the technical, administrative and...

  • 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...

  • Presque Isle Army Airfield

    Military site : airfield

Events

Event Location Date
Failed to Return (FTR) Punschrau, Germany 29 July 1944

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
17 September 2020 19:58:01 jmoore43 Changes to nicknames
Sources

Updated the A/C nickname per info in the A/C “Description” section.

Date Contributor Update
02 September 2020 10:34:35 ED-BB Changes to markings, description, events, unit associations and mission associations
Sources

MACR 7809

Date Contributor Update
11 May 2018 21:09:48 jmoore43 Changes to nicknames and markings
Sources

dded nickname from the attached photo.

Date Contributor Update
29 December 2017 09:43:03 Kauko56 Changes to description
Sources

own research. No place named "Pauschrau" in Germany.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:40:38 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 7809 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

Share