William Durwood PulliamMilitary
IWM, Roger Freeman Collection
Bill Pulliam was from Kansas City, Missouri. He enlisted in 1942 and joined the 91st Bomb Group, where he worked as photographer for the 401st Bomb Squadron in the photo laboratory at Bassingbourn. Pulliam was responsible for loading strike cameras into B-17 Flying Fortresses, which would photograph bombs falling onto the target. The images would later be analysed by intelligence officers to judge the success of the mission.
If an aircraft from Pulliam’s unit landed at the wrong base, it was his job to retrieve the film. On Christmas Eve 1944, bad weather prevented several Fortresses from returning to base, and Pulliam was sent 70 miles with his colleague Sergeant Joseph Harlick to prepare the aircraft for their next raid. Driving at midnight with blacked out headlights, Pulliam and Harlick collided with an unexploded bomb which had been dropped from an ammunition truck. Fortunately the bomb failed to detonate and Pulliam returned home to Missouri at the end of the war, where he married his sweetheart Reyina in June 1945.
Awards: Good Conduct, American campaign, EAME, WWII Victory.
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Units served with
|5 August 1921
|Born Sedalia, Missouri
|Jefferson Barracks, Missouri
|18 June 1942
|Enlisted Jefferson Barracks, Missouri
|Kansas City, Missouri
|4 October 2012
|Died Kansas City, Missouri
|Memorial Park Cemetery Kansas City, Missouri
|7 October 2012
|Interred Memorial Park Cemetery Kansas City, Missouri