Seymour Eisenstat

Military

Object Number - UPL 20297 - Seymour Eisenstat - 1944 (courtesy Eisenstat-Shire family)

Seymour Eisenstat grew up in Brooklyn and attended Brooklyn Technical High School before entering the service in 1943. He followed initial training at a mechanics school in Biloxi, Mississippi then, having had an opportunity to be an Aviation Cadet, he went to a navigational school in Texas.

After his training, he found himself in Savannah, Georgia, where he was assigned to a B-24 crew. Sent overseas, he was assigned as a Navigator in the 491st Bomb Group / 854th Bomb Squadron in England.

He was on board B-24 "Belle Ringer" # 42-51195 on his third combat mission when it crash-landed in Belgium on return from the 14 March 1945 raid to bomb the marshalling yards at Gütersloh, Germany. Just before the B-24 crashed, Seymour had left his position in the front of the plane and met Engineer Kenneth Kingsland near the top turret position and they hugged, happy to see the mission ending positively.

After the wing of the Liberator hit the top of a farm, Seymour was thrown to the floor, Kenneth fell on him and the engineer was crushed by the rupture of the top turret which fell on him. Kingsland died shortly thereafter and Seymour, who says he owes his life to him, was severely wounded. He had a fractured skull, broken ribs, his left leg shattered.

He remained unconscious for 60 days and stayed in various hospitals until he was brought back to the USA. There, he was first cared for at the Halloran General Hospital at Staten Island, New York. After treatment in many medical and rehabilitation facilities in the States and ultimately in Michigan, he was honorably discharged from the service on 1 January 1948.

After that, he went to school in Long Island, NY, graduated in Liberal Arts, worked for a time in the plastics industry, ending his career as a math teacher.

In the 2010 interview at http://www.greenburghpublicaccess.com/veterans-living-history/12032015-… Seymour Eisenstat tells of his service, the mission and how Engineer Kenneth Kingsland, the sole casualty, saved his life.

Connections

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Units served with

A Pathfinder B-24 Liberator (V2-P+, serial number 42-51691) of the 491st Bomb Group. Handwritten caption on reverse: '491 BG supplying troops at Arnhem, Sept 1944.'
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment

People

  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 491st Bomb Group
  • Service Numbers: 10105080 and O2022747
  • Highest Rank: Second Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Co-Pilot
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 491st Bomb Group 854th Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: 35847379
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
  • Role/Job: Gunner
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 491st Bomb Group 852nd Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: 38554536
  • Highest Rank: Sergeant
  • Role/Job: Gunner
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 491st Bomb Group
  • Service Numbers: 13084865 and 2061944
  • Highest Rank: Second Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Pilot
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 491st Bomb Group 854th Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: 31379109
  • Highest Rank: Sergeant
  • Role/Job: Flight Engineer / Top Turret Gunner

Aircraft

  • Aircraft Type: B-24 Liberator
  • Nicknames: Belle Ringer
  • Unit: 491st Bomb Group 493rd Bomb Group 852nd Bomb Squadron

Missions

  • Date: 14 March 1945
  • Official Description: Mission 886: 1,262 bombers and 804 fighters are dispatched to hit oil, rail and industrial targets in Germany; they claim 17-0-1 Luftwaffe aircraft in the air; 3 B-17s and 2 fighters are lost: 1. 526 B-17s are sent to hit oil refineries at Nienhagen...

Places

Events

Event Location Date Description

Enlisted

New York City, New York, United States 7 June 1943

Other

Severely wounded in the crash of B-24 # 42-51195

near Florée, Belgium 14 March 1945

Born

New York, United States
Brooklyn, New York, United States

Died

Hartsdale, New York, United States

Buried

Sharon Gardens Cemetery, Valhalla (Westchester), New York, United States

Revisions

Date31 Jan 2016 11:04:23
ContributorED-BB
ChangesChanges to media associations
Sources

Linked to media

Date31 Jan 2016 11:03:25
ContributorED-BB
ChangesChanges to service number, highest rank, role, biography, awards, events, person associations, place associations, mission associations and media associations
Sources

NARA WWII Enlistments records
Information from other 42-51195 crew members' families
http://www.greenburghpublicaccess.com/veterans-living-history/12032015-…

Date27 Sep 2014 18:25:04
ContributorAAM
ChangesAAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / Unit history

Seymour Eisenstat: Gallery (8 items)