42-30246 Spot Remover

Personnel of the 390th Bomb Group meet local civilians in North Africa during a mission. Their B-17 Flying Fortress (serial number 42-30246) nicknamed "Spot Remover" is visible in the background. First handwritten caption on reverse: 'NA, 390 BG.' Second handwritten caption on reverse: '"Local natives gather around, slightly scared but still avid to acquire American cigarettes" 390 BG.' media-380435.jpg FRE 1630 Personnel of the 390th Bomb Group meet local civilians in North Africa during a mission. Their B-17 Flying Fortress (serial number 42-30246) nicknamed "Spot Remover" is visible in the background. First handwritten caption on reverse: 'NA, 390 BG.' Second handwritten caption on reverse: '"Local natives gather around, slightly scared but still avid to acquire American cigarettes" 390 BG.' Roger Freeman Collection

IWM, Roger Freeman Collection

Object Number - FRE 1630 - Personnel of the 390th Bomb Group meet local civilians in North Africa during a mission. Their B-17 Flying Fortress (serial number 42-30246)...

Delivered Cheyenne 3/5/43; Gore 22/5/43; Spokane 24/5/43; Geiger 26/5/43; Smoky Hill 2/7/43; Dow Fd 13/7/43; Assigned 570BS/390BG [DI-H] Framlingham 14/7/43; crash landed 21/9/43 with Keith E. Harris, repaired and back on duty; Missing in Action Rostock 20/2/44 with Bill Gaillard, Co-pilot: Gerald Steuck, Navigator: Tom Gannon, Bombardier: Francis Brodzik, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: John Doherty, Radio Operator: Ray Quinn, Ball turret gunner: Pete Whitney, Waist gunner: Jack Williams, Waist gunner: Joe Sala,Tail gunner: Lou Skrzyniecki (10 Prisoner of War); no gas, crashed Tierstrup, Den. Missing Air Crew Report 2436. SPOT REMOVER.

At 14.20 hours on 20 February 1944, on mission to Rostock the pilot, 1st Lt William M. Gaillard, called on the radio and reported that he could not get fuel from the “Tokyo-tanks”. The reserve tanks had been hit by flak over the target, and from another plane fuel had been seen pouring out. Shortly after Spot Remover left the formation, and the pilot said that he would try to get to Sweden.

At 15.35 hours the pilots made a perfect wheels up-landing at Tirstrup, and all of the crew could leave the plane unharmed. The Americans were very disappointed when they learned from Danes crowding in that they had landed in Denmark. The crew removed a machine gun and a sack of oranges from the plane and set it on fire.

Shortly afterwards the Germans arrived, but they could not prevent the plane from burning down completely. The 10 Americans went on towards the coast, but they left a clear track of orange peels. As no oranges were sold in either Denmark or Germany the Germans just had to follow the track, and at 19.30 hrs. 6 Americans were captured at Hyllested, about 10 km from the site of the forced landing. At some time between 20 February and 26 February the remaining 4 airmen including top turret gunner, S/Sgt John W. Doherty slept in two holiday cottages on the beach south of Grenaa. 8 days after the forced landing the 10 airmen had all been captured. They had also had the bad luck of having to walk about in an area crowded with Germans and their Danish helpers

Connections

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Units served with

The insignia of the 390th Bomb Group.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment

People

  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 390th Bomb Group 570th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Second Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Bombardier
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 390th Bomb Group 570th Bomb Squadron
  • Role/Job: Radio Operator
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 390th Bomb Group 570th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
  • Role/Job: Top Turret Gunner
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 390th Bomb Group 570th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Pilot
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 390th Bomb Group 570th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
  • Role/Job: Engineer/Top Turret Gunner

Places

Events

Event Location Date Description

Crashed

Parham Airfield Museum, Woodbridge, Suffolk IP13 9AF, UK 21 September 1943 Belly landing on return from scrubbed mission

Crashed

Failed to Return (FTR)

Tirstrup, Denmark 20 February 1944 - 20 February 1944 3Km from Tirstrup

Revisions

Date
Contributorpatrick.harris
ChangesChanges to markings, events and person associations
Sources

Great-Grandfather piloted a/c for most of his 25 missions. Also from 390th Bomb Group iteractive library.

Date
ContributorEmily
ChangesChanges to place associations
Sources

Knud Thygesen, Son of the farm owner where Spot Remover Crashed. (Earlier revision wrongly stated he was the Grandson)

Date
ContributorEmily
ChangesChanges to nicknames, description and events
Sources

Knud Thygesen, Grandson of the owner of the farm where Spot Remover Crashed.

Airmen.dk

Date
ContributorAAM
ChangesAAM ingest
Sources

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 2436 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

42-30246: Gallery (9 items)