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John Basil Blatz


On a mission to Klein Machnow, Berlin on 6 Mar 1944, another B-17 from the 388th went out of control after being attacked by fighters and collided with B-17G #42-40054 which exploded and crashed SE of Emmen, Holland. Killed in Action (KIA). Died of severe burns after crash.

AM w/ 2 Oak Leaf Cluster/ PH



  • Riley Bissonette

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot/Pilot | 388th Bomb Group
    Crash landed while on a cross-country training flight in B17#42-37844. RTD

  • Paul Brown

    Military | Captain | Pilot | 388th Bomb Group

  • John Mouat

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 388th Bomb Group
    John C. Mouat was born in 1921 in a log cabin atCuster, Montana near the battlefield where General Custer and many of histroops were massacred in 1876.During World War II, the author piloted 8thAir Force Flying Fortresses to targets in Germany and was...

Units served with

  • 388th Bomb Group

    388th Bomb Group

    The 388th Bomb Group flew strategic bombing mission from Knettishall, Suffolk from June 1943 to the end of the war. During this time, though, detachments were sent to Fersfield, Norfolk to conduct Aphrodite missions. In these Aphrodite missions veteran...

  • 561st Bomb Squadron


  • 42-30778 Old 66/Lady Margaret

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 28/7/43; Gore 6/8/43; Pendleton 12/8/43; Reno 14/8/43; Pierre 16/8/43; Assigned 561BS/388BG Knettishall 3/9/43; crashed on take off for France 13/8/44 with Leon Sutton, Co-pilot: Harlan Thompson, Navigator: George Healy, Bombardier:...

  • 42-30851 Little Boy Blue

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 7/8/43; Dalhart 17/8/43; Assigned 560BS/388BG [H] Knettishall 8/9/43; on assembly for Schweinfurt 19/7/44 with Walt Malaniak, Co-pilot: Aaron Brinkoeter, Navigator: Leo Ramos, Bombardier: Amos Force, Flight engineer/top turret gunner...

  • 42-3291 Miss Mac

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 30/4/43; Dow Fd 13/6/43; Assigned 561BS/388BG Knettishall 14/6/43; on training mission 12/7/44 with Major Boardman Reed, Co-pilot: Major Melvin Buckner, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Paul Weathers, Radio Operator: Ora Kelsey, pass...

  • 42-37867 'BERLIN AMBASSADOR'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 24/9/43; Gr Island 7/10/43; Assigned 561BS/388BG Knettishall 15/10/43; Missing in Action Oschersleben 11/1/44 with Gustav Hoehn, Navigator: Don Modarelli, Radio Operator: Byron Wiberg (wia, but died in hospital four days later), Ball...

  • 42-38177 'SHACK RABBITS'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 6/1/44; Gr Island 10/1/44; Grenier 24/1/44; Assigned 561BS/388BG [ -H] Knettishall 14/2/44; Missing in Action Berlin 6/3/44 with Gus Christiani, Navigator: Leon Levy, Bombardier: Ray Newark, Waist gunner: Bill Kline, Waist gunner:...

  • 42-40054

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Long Beach 16/11/43; Kearney 24/11/43; Assigned 562BS/388BG Knettishall 8/12/43; Missing in Action Berlin 6/3/44 with Capt Paul Brown, Bombardier: Rolland Gill, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Roy Joyce, Waist gunner: Elbert Moyer,Tail...


  • VIII Bomber Command 143

    30 November 1943
    This mission is directed at a single target - the industrial areas of Solingen, Germany. The mission consists of three elements. The first element is a force of 221 B-17s from 1st Bomb Division that included: 91BG (24); 92BG (20); 303BG (20); 305BG (16...

  • VIII Bomber Command 149

    5 December 1943
    This mission is composed of three elements. The first element is a combined force of 216 B-17 from 1st Bomb Division that included: 91BG (10); 92BG (19); 303BG (20); 305BG (20); 306BG (21); 351BG (35); 379BG (21); 381BG (30); 384BG (20); and 301BG (20)...

  • VIII Bomber Command 154

    13 December 1943
    The port areas at Bremen and Kiel, Germany are the primary targets for this mission. This is the first mission where more than 600 aircraft are despatched. This mission is comprised of 8 elements. The first element consists 182 B-17s from: 91BG (31);...

  • VIII Bomber Command 156

    16 December 1943
    This is a massive mission of 631 heavy bombers directed at the port area of Bremen, Germany. The force of 631 included 1 PFF-equipped B-17s from 482BG dispersed among the attacking formations. The mission is composed of three elements. The first...

  • VIII Bomber Command 159

    20 December 1943
    The port area of Bremen is the target for 546 heavy bombers. The total includes 12 PFF-equipped B-17s from 482BG. All 12 of these are effective on the target and 11 are damaged. The bomber gunners of this element claim 1-1-0 (this total included with...

  • VIII Bomber Command 161

    22 December 1943
    This mission is composed of two forces directed at two separate targets, the communication centers at Osnabruck and Munster, Germany. The force attacking at Osnabruck is composed of two elements. The first element is composed of 227 B-17s (2 are PFF...

  • VIII Bomber Command 169

    30 December 1943
    The port area and oil refineries at Ludwigshaven, Germany are the target for this massive attack of 710 heavy bombers. The despatch includes 12 PFF-equipped B-17s from 482BG, 11 of these are effective on the mission, 3 are damaged, and the bomber...

  • 8th Air Force 183

    14 January 1944
    This mission is a combined effort of 1st, 2nd and 3rd Bomb Divisions to attack V-Weapon sites near the French coast near Pas-de-Calaise. Some targets of opportunity were also bombed. A total of 20 out of 21 V-Weapon sites are hit with varying results. ...

  • VIII Bomber Command 191

    24 January 1944
    The primary target of this mission was the Zukunft power station at Eschweilier, Germany. The mision was composed of 563 bombers three elements from 1BD, 2BD and 3BD. The despatch from 2BD was recalled due to weather before it could take off. Mission...

  • 8th Air Force 200

    30 January 1944
    This mission has the aviation industry at Brunswick, Germany as the primary target. The mission is composed of a combined force pf 777 heavy bomber aircraft despatched in three elements: 1st Bomb Division; 2nd Bomb Division and 3rd Bomb Division. The...

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Associated Place

  • Knettishall

    Military site : airfield
    Knettishall was built to Class A standard for an American Bomb Group that would be bringing up to forty heavy bombers with them in three or four Squadrons. The 388th Bomb Group, which stayed at Knettishall for their entire service in the ETO, flew B-17...


Event Location Date
Born Crystal City, MO 10 December 1917
Lived in St. Louis, MO October 1940

4664 Kennerly Street

Shot Down/WIA/Captured Veenschapsweg, Schoonebeek, Netherlands 6 March 1944

Severely burned when his a/c was attacked by German fighters and collided with 42-37886.

Died Frankfurt, Germany 18 March 1944

Died of burns caused when his a/c was shot down 12 days earlier

Buried 1945

Lorraine American Cemetery and Memorial
Saint-Avold, Departement de la Moselle, Lorraine, France Add to Map
E Row 4 Grave 31


Date Contributor Update
05 November 2020 02:15:47 466thHistorian Changes to middlename, highest rank, awards, events, person associations, place associations, aircraft associations and mission associations

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:15:40 AAM AAM ingest

ABMC, MACR 3092, Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces / Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia