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Morton O Stafford Jr

Military

Killed in action on 1 August 1943 during Operation Tidal wave onboard B-24 Liberator, Hell's Wench, 42-40994.

Dispatched to North Africa in 1943 with the 93rd Bomb Group to take part in Operation Tidal Wave. Part of the crew of B-24 Liberator, Hell's Wench, 42-40994. Upon reaching the target area, Col Keith Compton the leader of the 93rd and 376th Bomb Groups, deliberately turned at the wrong IP away from Ploesti, and headed for Bucharest. The pilots following him broke radio silence and attempted to warn the element lead pilot Compton and the mission commander, on board, General Uzal Ent, but when they both failed to respond, Col. Baker broke formation and led the remainder of the two Bomb Groups, who wanted to attack the refinery area, back north and west toward Ploesti.

On approach to the target, Hell's Wench, was hit twice by flak rounds. Col. Baker jettisoned his bombs as both wings were hit, and the aircraft began leaking fuel, and became engulfed in flames. At almost the same time, the aircraft had to break formation and pull up to give his men a chance to bail out and save themselves.

But in spite of all of his attempts to gain altitude, Hell's Wench, lost speed in the climb, rolled over, crashed, and exploded in flames, killing everyone aboard. 1 Aug 1943.

Service

People

  • George Allen

    Military | Staff Sergeant | B-24 Gunner | 93rd Bomb Group
    SSgt. George Allen was killed in action on 1 August, 1943, during Operation Tidal Wave onboard the B-24D Liberator, Hell's Wench, 42-40994. ...

  • Addison Baker

    Military | Lieutenant Colonel | Commanding Officer 93rd Bomb Group - B-24 Command Pilot | 93rd Bomb Group
    Lieutenant Colonel Addison Baker was the Commanding Officer of the 93rd Bomb Group from May 17, 1943. He was killed in action (KIA) over Ploesti during Operation Tidal Wave on 1 August, 1943. ...

  • Charles Bennett

    Military | Technical Sergeant | B-24 Top Turret Gunner | 93rd Bomb Group
    TSgt. Charles Bennet was killed in action on Operation Tidal Wave onboard his assigned B-24D Liberator bomber, Hell's Wench, 42-40994. ...

  • John Carroll

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 93rd Bomb Group
    TSgt. John Carrol was killed in action (KIA) on Operation Tidal Wave onboard the B-24D Liberator, Hell's Wench, 42-40994. ...

  • Edgar Faith

    Military | Staff Sergeant | B-24 Waist Gunner | 93rd Bomb Group
    Killed in action on 1 August 1943 during Operation Tidal wave onboard B-24 Liberator, Hell's Wench, 42-40994. ...

  • John Jerstad

    Military | Major | B-24 Command Pilot | 376th Bomb Group
    Major John Jerstad was Killed In Action (KIA) on Operation Tidal Wave onboard the B-24D Liberator, Hell's Wench. ...

  • Alfred Pezzella

    Military | First Lieutenant | Bombardier | 93rd Bomb Group
    Killed in action on 1 August 1943 during Operation Tidal wave onboard the B-24D Liberator, Hell's Wench, 42-40994. ...

  • George Reuter

    Military | First Lieutenant | Navigator | 93rd Bomb Group
    KIA over Ploesti, Romania Aug 1 1943: I grew up knowing him as "Uncle Bud". He was known as "Bud" to his family. He had two sisters, and twin brothers. He was the second oldest child of my great grandparents. ...

  • William Wood

    Military | Staff Sergeant | B-24 Tail Gunner | 93rd Bomb Group
    SSgt. Willam O. Wood was Killed In Action (KIA) during Operation Tidal wave onboard the B-24D Liberator, Hell's Wench, 42-40994. 1 Aug 43. ...

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Units served with

  • 93rd Bomb Group

    93rd Bomb Group

    Group
    The 93rd Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated 1 Mar 42 at Barksdale Field, Louisiana. On 15 May 42. the Group moved to Ft. Myers, Florida, to continue advanced flight training and also to fly antisubmarine patrols over the Gulf of Mexico. They...

  • 328th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 42-40994 Hell's Wench

    B-24 Liberator
    The B-24D, 42-40994, Hell's Wench, was shot down and crashed, over Ploesti, Romania, on Operation Tidal Wave. All crewmen were Killed In Action - 10 KIA. Aug 1, 1943 ...

Missions

  • Operation Tidal Wave

    1 August 1943
    Operation TIDAL WAVE. B-24D Liberators attack the oil refineries at Ploesti, Romania. The bombers flew low to avoid radar detection and dropped time delayed bombs. Out of the 177 B-24s that took part in the raid 167 managed to attack their targets. 57...

Events

Event Location Date
Born Pennsylvania
Died 1 August 1943
Buried

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
08 October 2021 11:25:47 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

Black Sunday - Michael hill

Date Contributor Update
27 August 2019 16:02:55 Emily Changes to biography, awards, events, person associations, place associations and mission associations
Sources

Ploesti Sortie Reports, 93rd Bomb Group

ABMC

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:20:23 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

ABMC MACR 331 / Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia

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