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John Karbowsky

Military

Killed in Action (KIA) Shot down near Bremerhaven, Germany, in B-17 "Hurry Home" #43-37818.

SSgt. John Karbowsky was a waist gunner on the "Hurry Home" during mission 648, the bombing of Bremerhaven, Germany.

Memorial to the crew of the Hurry Home:

http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=vcsr&GSvcid=652971

TSgt. Paul R. Krubel was the radio operator on the B-17G "Hurry Home" #43-37818, 447th Bomb Group, 709th Squadron, as part of a crew of 9 men.

MACR (Missing Air Crew Report) 9401 reports that on September 26, 1944, at 1610 hours, the "Hurry Home" took a direct flak hit in the right wing just after bombs away.
Eyewitness statements in the MACR report as follows: "This aircraft flew #3 in the 2nd lead element squadron of the low group of 4A wing. This group bombed Bremerhaven as a last resort target. Aircraft # 818 received a direct flak hit over target just after bombs away. At 1610 hours this aircraft was observed to be on fire with the entire right wing ablaze and part of #4 engine falling away. The aircraft went into a spin and then exploded and disintegrated. It was last seen a few miles north of the spot where it suffered initial damage. 2 to 3 chutes were seen before aircraft exploded."

MACR reports that 3 men were able to escape this aircraft:

1st Lt. Roman Pajakowski navigator
2nd Lt. George J. Dvorak pilot
T/Sgt. Galen E Miller Jr Top Turret

Pajakowski and Dvorak were taken POWs. T/Sgt. Galen E Miller Jr's body was recovered and was buried October 3, 1944, at Garrison Cemetery Wesermuende-Geestemuende in Section II, Area G, Row 51, Grave #50.

This was part of mission #648 which originated from Rattlesden as part of the Eighth Air Force 447th Bomb Group, 709th bomb squadron operations in the bombing of Bremen.

The bombing of Bremerhaven resulted in damage to U-Boat #3509 which was being constructed at the Schichau Seebeckwerft facility.

The entire crew of the B-17 "Hurry Home" #43-37818 was as follows:
1st Lt. Robert C. Calef Jr. Pilot, serial number O-821216
2nd Lt. George J. Dvorak Pilot, serial number O-706042
1st Lt. Roman R. Pajakowski Navigator, serial number O-707974
1st Lt. Donald N. Fenrenbach Bombardier, serial number O-756962
T Sgt. Paul R. Krubel Radio Operator, serial number 11069263
T. Sgt. Galen E. Miller Jr Top Turret, serial number 33574233
S. Sgt. Frank J. Martin Ball Turret, serial number 31139065
S. Sgt. Wayne S. Thompson Tail Gunner, serial number 38370670
S. Sgt. John Karbowsky Waist Gunner, serial number 33591618

TSgt. Paul R. Krubel and SSgt. Wayne S. Thompson's bodies were recovered near Cuxhaven, Germany, prior to November 3, 1944. They originally had interment at Brockeswald Cemetery Grave #96D and #97D.

Service

People

  • Robert Calef

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 447th Bomb Group
    1st Lt. Robert C. Calef Jr serial number O-821216 was killed in action near Bremerhaven, Germany, September 26, 1944. ...

  • George Dvorak

    Military | Major | Co-Pilot | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down near Bremerhaven, Germany, on 9/26/44 in B-17 "Hurry Home" #43-37818, Prisoner of War (POW). ...

  • Donald Fehrenbach

    Military | First Lieutenant | Bombardier | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down near Bremerhaven in B-17 'Hurry Home' #43-37818, September 26, 1944, Killed in Action (KIA). ...

  • Ripley Gage

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 447th Bomb Group
    Ripley Worthington Gage was the first pilot of the B-17 "Hurry Home" #43-37818. He completed his 35th and final mission with the Hurry Home on the mission prior to it being shot down over Bremerhaven, Germany, September 26, 1944. ...

  • Paul Krubel

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down near Bremerhaven, Germany, in B-17 "Hurry Home" #43-37818, Killed in Action (KIA). ...

  • Frank Martin

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down near Bremerhaven, Germany, in B-17 "Hurry Home" #43-37818, Killed in Action (KIA). ...

  • Galen Miller

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Top Turret Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    TSgt. Galen E. Miller Jr was killed in action September 26, 1944. He was a crew member of the B-17 "Hurry Home" #43-37818. ...

  • Roman Pajakowski

    Military | First Lieutenant | Navigator | 447th Bomb Group
    MACR (Missing Air Crew Report) 9401 reports that on 26-Sep-44, at 16:10 hours, the "Hurry Home" took a direct flak hit in the right wing just after bombs away. ...

  • Wayne Thompson

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down near Bremerhaven, Germany, in B-17 "Hurry Home" #43-37818 during mission 648, the bombing of Bremerhaven, Killed in Action (KIA). ...

Show more

Units served with

  • 447th Bomb Group

    447th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 447th Bomb Group flew B-17 Flying Fortresses on strategic bombardment missions out of Rattlesden, Suffolk. With their first mission coming on Christmas Eve, December 24, 1943, their main focus was hitting sites that would weaken enemy forces...

  • 709th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 43-37818 Hurry Home

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 26/5/44; Hunter 5/6/44; Dow Fd 17/6/44; Assigned 709BS/447BG [IE-J] Rattlesden 28/6/44; Missing in Action Ludwigshafen (1st mission) 26/9/44 with Pilot 1st Lt. Robert C. Calef, Bombardier: 1st Lt. Donald N. Fehrenbach, Flight...

Missions

  • 648

    26 September 1944

Associated Place

  • Rattlesden

    Military site : airfield
    Built for the Eighth Air Force in 1942, Rattlesden had three concrete runways, 50 hardstandings and two dispersed T2 hangars. Intended to be a twin-engine B-26 bomber base, it was originally a satellite for nearby Rougham, and first occupied from...

Events

Event Location Date
Born Arlington, Virginia, USA 7 April 1924
Died Bremerhaven, Germany 26 September 1944

MACR (Missing Air Crew Report) 9401 reports that on September 26, 1944, at 1610 hours, the "Hurry Home" took a direct flak hit in the right wing just after bombs away.
Eyewitness statements in the MACR report as follows: "This aircraft flew #3 in the 2nd lead element squadron of the low group of 4A wing. This group bombed Bremerhaven as a last resort target. Aircraft # 818 received a direct flak hit over target just after bombs away. At 1610 hours this aircraft was observed to be on fire with the entire right wing ablaze and part of #4 engine falling away. The aircraft went into a spin and then exploded and disintegrated. It was last seen a few miles north of the spot where it suffered initial damage. 2 to 3 chutes were seen before aircraft exploded."

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
23 March 2020 20:53:04 jmoore43 Changes to biography
Sources

Added a "#" and a "-" to the A/C serial numbers (several places) in the "Summary biography" to aid clarity.

Date Contributor Update
15 March 2017 06:09:10 Paul5 Changes to media associations
Sources

archive photos

Date Contributor Update
02 December 2015 04:40:00 Paul5 Changes to media associations
Sources

MACR 9401

Date Contributor Update
25 November 2015 02:10:45 Paul5 Changes to biography
Sources

MACR 9401

Date Contributor Update
24 November 2015 05:08:07 Paul5 Changes to biography
Sources

MACR 9401

Date Contributor Update
23 November 2015 06:43:05 Paul5 Changes to service number, biography, events, person associations, place associations, mission associations and media associations
Sources

MACR 9401

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:15:28 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 9401 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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