Kenneth Lawrence Dilts

Military ROLL OF HONOUR

Object Number - UPL 34830 - Staff Sergeant Kenneth L. Dilts , Top Turret Gunner, 305th Bomb Group Can Do.

On 1 January 1945 Kenneth took off from Chelveston airfield on his 20th mission as a B-17 gunner. At 12:04, he called out via the aircraft’s intercom that enemy fighters were approaching. His aircraft ‘pulled up when hit by enemy aircraft and swung over to left of formation,’ described an eyewitness in a nearby B-17. ‘Some smoke was seen, but origin is not known. Enemy aircraft attacked stricken aircraft again, and it was seen to explode.’ Five of the crew escaped, and were taken prisoner. Kenneth was not one of the survivors. He was last seen by one of his crewmates, wounded and unconscious at his post. A few days later, back in Detroit, Michigan, Kenneth’s mother, Viola, received the news that her son was missing in action. His death was confirmed shortly afterwards. He is buried in Ardennes American Cemetery.

Killed in Action (KIA) 1 January 1945 at Madgeburg in B-17 44-8268.

Connections

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Units served with

People

  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 305th Bomb Group Can Do 366th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
  • Role/Job: Bombardier
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 305th Bomb Group Can Do 366th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
  • Role/Job: waist gunner
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 305th Bomb Group Can Do 366th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
  • Role/Job: Radio Operator
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 305th Bomb Group Can Do 366th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
  • Role/Job: Tail Gunner
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 305th Bomb Group Can Do 366th Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: 15119304
  • Highest Rank: Second Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Navigator

Aircraft

  • Aircraft Type: B-17 Flying Fortress
  • Unit: 305th Bomb Group Can Do 366th Bomb Squadron

Missions

  • Date: 1 January 1945

Places

Events

Event Location Date Description

Born

Detroit, Michigan, USA 26 July 1920

Other

Drafted

East Detroit, Macomb, Michigan, 16 February 1940

Enlisted

Detroit, Michigan 4 July 1942

Died

Kladen, Germany 1 January 1945

Buried

Kladen Community Cemetery 2 January 1945 Temporary burial

Buried

Ardennes American Cemetery and Memorial

Other

Employed

Packard Motor Company, Detroit

Revisions

Date14 Oct 2020 09:13:44
ContributorEmily
Date21 Dec 2018 14:58:51
ContributorPamela ann
Sources

Earls nickname was Buddy.

Date14 Aug 2018 11:14:03
Sources

American Air Museum text from displays.

Date12 Aug 2015 22:33:03
Contributorbombercommand
Date27 Sep 2014 18:17:56
ContributorAAM
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 11251 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

Kenneth Lawrence Dilts: Gallery (2 items)