Lawrence M Brustrom


Object Number - UPL 18403 - Crew #535 Edward F. Kaspshak Crew 466th BG - 785th BS Standing Left to Right: Edward F. Kaspshak (P), Peter P. Igoe (N), Thomas Baker (B),...

Prisoner of War (POW) Shot down by flak and crashed into Baltic on 7/18/44 in B-24 Spare Parts #4129350


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Units served with

Three little girls hold up a balloon celebrating the 100th mission of the 466th Bomb Group in front of a B-24 Liberator (serial number 42-95592) nicknamed "Black Cat". Handwritten caption on reverse: 'On our 100 Mission party Day- 18 Aug 1944, Attlebridge, 466th- wouldn't it be something if we could identify these girls? How could I do it?'
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment


  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 466th Bomb Group 785th Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: O-811824
  • Highest Rank: Second Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Pilot


  • Aircraft Type: B-24 Liberator
  • Nicknames: Spare Parts
  • Unit: 466th Bomb Group 785th Bomb Squadron


Aerial photograph of Attlebridge airfield, looking north, the fuel store and a T2 hangar are in the upper centre, 31 January 1946. Photograph taken by No. 90 Squadron, sortie number RAF/3G/TUD/UK/51. English Heritage (RAF Photography).
  • Site type: Airfield
  • Known as: Attlebridge Arsenal, Station 120


Event Location Date Description


New York, USA 16 November 1921


23 July 1942


Shot Down/Captured

Mont Saint-Michel, France 18 July 1944 "In the confusion we dropped out of formation and got very close to the deck. If at that point we had turned 180 degrees and made for England, we were only about 30 miles away. Instead we continued down the coast of France at treetop level for about 60 miles. Kaspshak said "If I can get some altitude we will bail out." As I never wore a parachute or Mae West I decided I better put my parachute harness on. I had no more than got it on and then looked out the bomb bay that I saw a large cathedral and we were headed right for the steeple. The pilot told us to prepare to ditch. I looked back into the waist and saw the waist gunners and tail gunner all sitting down and locking arms. I knew I should be over there but I wasn't going to be able to get to them in time, so I just sat down with my back to the bomb bay and put my hands behind my neck and then said a prayer because I knew I didn't have a ghost of a chance. Within seconds the plane lurched up over the steeple and then down into the water, which was about 20 feet deep. I was sure I was dead. If felt like something was pulling my feet down. I thought the devil was pulling me down and I wasn't about to let that happen so I began furiously kicking and all of the sudden something slipped off my feet. It was my sheepskin flying boots but I didn't realize it at the time. I felt like I had freed myself from the devil and my wings were going so good I thought I'd have a look at them. To my astonishment, I wasn't dead! I saw what appeared to be land. At the time I had no idea where I was. I was sure I wasn't looking at England though. I looked back and saw the plane. Part of the wing and fuselage were sill above the water. I shucked off the parachute harness and swam back towards the plane. Jackson (R/O), was laying on the wing with an apparent injured back and couldn't get in the water. I pulled him into the water and inflated his Mae West and floated him to the beach. Then I looked back and saw Baker (B) trying to get out of the fuselage. Evidently he was caught on something. I crawled into the fuselage and got a hold of one of his hands and pulled him out of the plane. I didn't go back to the plane again because Baker said the pilot, co-pilot, navigator and engineer were all dead. Evidently the pilot and co-pilot drowned because they couldn't get free. The navigator and engineer evidently died instantly with broken necks. I never saw them but when the Germans got them out and up to Mont St. Michel they had Baker come up and ID them." - Lawrence Bustrom


Jamestown, NY, USA 13 August 1999


Kiantone, NY 14701, USA 16 August 1999 Kiantone Congregational Church Cemetery Kiantone Chautauqua County New York, USA
Chautauqua County, NY, USA


Date10 Apr 2017 08:32:36
ContributorLucy May

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 8163 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

Date23 Oct 2015 03:04:38

Date23 Oct 2015 03:02:33

Attlebridge Arsenal - Brassfield & Wassom

Lawrence M Brustrom: Gallery (2 items)