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42-39908

B-17 Flying Fortress

Delivered Long Beach 5/10/43; Gr Island 31/10/43; Assigned 550BS/385BG [SG- ] Gt Ashfield 30/11/43; Missing in Action Brunswick 23/3/44 with Fred Fulton, Co-pilot: Bill Snyder, Navigator: Chas Pomponio, tog-T/Sgt Tom Vogel, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: George Davis, Radio Operator: Jim Shahan, Ball turret gunner: Willis Alexander, Waist gunner: Clarry Fahnert (8 Killed in Action); Waist gunner: Vance Travelstead (evaded capture);Tail gunner: Larry Oliver (Prisoner of War); enemy aircraft, crashed near Schijndel, four miles NE of Boxtel, Hol. Missing Air Crew Report 3321.

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...

  • 550th Bomb Squadron

People

  • Willis Alexander

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    B-17G #42-39908 was attacked by fighters, fell off into a dive, burst into flames, exploded in mid-air and crashed ENE of Boxtel on a mission to Brunswick, GR on 23 Mar 1944. Killed in Action (KIA).

  • Rex Cantrell

    Military | Lieutenant | Navigator | 385th Bomb Group
    Damaged by flak before reaching the V-site target in the Pas-de-Calais, FR area on 13 Feb 1944, B-17G #42-39901 'Star Dust' returned to England and made an emergency landing at RAF Detling, Kent. RTD.

  • George Davis

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Top Turret Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    B-17G #42-39908 was attacked by fighters, fell off into a dive, burst into flames, exploded in mid-air and crashed ENE of Boxtel on a mission to Brunswick, GR on 23 Mar 1944. Killed in Action (KIA).

  • Clarence Fahnert

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner, Waist Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    B-17G #42-39908 was attacked by fighters, fell off into a dive, burst into flames, exploded in mid-air and crashed ENE of Boxtel on a mission to Brunswick, GR on 23 Mar 1944. Killed in Action (KIA).

  • Frederick Fulton

    Military | Lieutenant | Pilot | 385th Bomb Group
    B-17G #42-39908 was attacked by fighters, fell off into a dive, burst into flames, exploded in mid-air and crashed ENE of Boxtel on a mission to Brunswick, GR on 23 Mar 1944. Killed in Action (KIA).

  • Lawrence Oliver

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    B-17G #42-39908 was attacked by fighters, fell off into a dive, burst into flames, exploded in mid-air and crashed ENE of Boxtel on a mission to Brunswick, GR on 23 Mar 1944. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Charles Pomponio

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 385th Bomb Group
    B-17G #42-39908 was attacked by fighters, fell off into a dive, burst into flames, exploded in mid-air and crashed ENE of Boxtel on a mission to Brunswick, GR on 23 Mar 1944. Killed in Action (KIA).

  • James Shahan

    Military | Sergeant | Radio Operator | 385th Bomb Group
    B-17G 42-39908 was attacked by fighters, fell off into a dive, burst into flames, exploded in mid-air and crashed ENE of Boxtel on a mission to Brunswick, GR on 23 Mar 1944. Killed in Action (KIA).

  • William Snyder

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 385th Bomb Group
    B-17G #42-39908 was attacked by fighters, fell off into a dive, burst into flames, exploded in mid-air and crashed ENE of Boxtel on a mission to Brunswick, GR on 23 Mar 1944. Killed in Action (KIA).

  • Vance Travelstead

    Military | Sergeant | Right Waist Gunner, Waist Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    B-17G #42-39908 was attacked by fighters, fell off into a dive, burst into flames, exploded in mid-air and crashed ENE of Boxtel on a mission to Brunswick, GR on 23 Mar 1944. Evaded.

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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 23 March 1944

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:40:51 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 3321 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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