Skip to main content
Edit entry 

Raymond Harry Buthe


Shot down 30-Nov-44 in B-17 43-38725. Killed in Action (KIA).

Excerpt from MACR 11149:
Aircraft 43-38725 was hit by flak at instant of bombs away. A large hole was observed between #3 and #4 engine. Entire right wing burst into flames and aircraft peeled off to right and lost altitude rapidly. Aircraft was not out of control and some crews report 1-2 chutes, though the majority saw no chutes. Incident was at 27,800 feet at 13:18 hours over the target. Heavy contrails prevented further observation of this aircraft or its crew.

The following information was shared by John Flynn, engineer. Interviews were conducted from October to December, 2002 by Amy Baker:
John remembers that his plane was hit right before bombs away. He was in the top turret and saw flak hit the tail and explode. He thinks it tore the tail off. John was knocked out of the top turret and landed below the pilot and co-pilot. The plane turned almost completely upside down and started to spin downward. He looked up and saw the pilot and co-pilot struggling to get out of their seats, but since the plane was in a spin, the force made it almost impossible to move. John was able to clip his chute on and throw himself out the open bomb bay doors. He looked up and saw the plane explode. After a while he looked up and noticed two chutes and knew only two of his crew probably survived.
On the ground, John was picked up by Germans and reunited with John Lafferty and Curtis Chapman. John Lafferty, the waist gunner, was able to jump out the waist window before the plane exploded. Curtis Chapman, bombardier, was still in the nose of the plane and was blown out in the explosion. He was knocked unconscious but came to in time to pull his ripcord and float to earth.

Awards: AM, PH.



  • Charles Agantovich

    Military | Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down 30 November 1944 in B-17 #43-38725. Killed in Action (KIA). ...

  • Marvin Brawer

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down 30 November 1944 in B-17 43-38725. Killed in Action (KIA). ...

  • Curtis Chapman

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Bombardier | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down 30 November 1944 in B-17 43-38725. Mission: Lumkendorf Oil Refinery, Merseburg, Germany. Prisoner of War (POW) Stalag Luft I, Barth, Germany. ...

  • Ralph Corning

    Military | Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down 30 November 1944 in B-17 43-38725. Killed in Action (KIA). ...

  • Anthony De Marco

    Military | Sergeant | Radio Operator Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down 30 November 1944 in B-17 43-38725. Killed in Action. ...

  • John Flynn

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Top Turret Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down the 30th of November 1944 in B-17 #4338725. Prisoner of War (POW). ...

  • John Lafferty

    Military | Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down 30 November 1944 in B-17 43-38725. Prisoner of War (POW). ...

  • Charles Norris

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 447th Bomb Group
    Shot down 30 November 1944 in B-17 #43-38725. Killed in Action (KIA). ...

Show more

Units served with

  • 447th Bomb Group

    447th Bomb 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...

  • 708th Bomb Squadron


  • 42-97400 Fuddy Duddy

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 26/2/44; Kearney 12/3/44 (LT Edward H. Grossheim crew, as "Little Stinker"); Dow Fd 5/4/44 (LT Edward H. Grossheim crew, as "Little Stinker"); Assigned 708BS/447BG Rattlesden 7/4/44 (renamed "Fuddy Duddy"); Missing in Action Misburg...

  • 43-38725

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Lincoln 12/9/44; Dow Fd 25/9/44; Assigned 708BS/447BG Rattlesden 28/9/44; Missing in Action Merseburg 30/11/44 with Ray Buthe, Chas Norris, Marvin Brawer, Tony DeMarco, Chas Agantovich, Ralph Corning (6 Killed in Action); Curtis Chapman, John...


  • 726

    26 November 1944

  • 731

    30 November 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...


Event Location Date
Born Elgin, Illinois 26 May 1921

Parents: Harry W. Buthe and Laura (Raywood) Buthe

Missions 21 November 1944 – 30 November 1944

Last mission: Lutzkendorf, Germany. Target:Oil Refinery

Killed in Action (KIA) Germany 30 November 1944

Shot down over Dietz, Germany. Classified: unrecoverable

Buried Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery and Memorial 1946

Walls of the Missing at the American War Cemetery at Henri-Chapelle, Belgium

Memorialized Bluff City Cemetery, Egin, Illinois 1948

Bluff City Cemetery,
Elgin, Illinois


Date Contributor Update
20 August 2021 16:04:37 Al_Skiff Changes to service number, biography, events and place associations

Date Contributor Update
18 May 2021 14:16:14 acbernstein1 Changes to middlename, biography, awards, events, place associations, aircraft associations and mission associations

Date Contributor Update
25 May 2020 13:45:08 Richard412 Changes to unit associations

Source; Richard Frohm (S/Sgt. Jack Flynn)

Date Contributor Update
24 May 2020 14:54:34 Richard412 Changes to service number, person associations and media associations

Source: Richard Frohm (S/Sgt John Flynn)

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:22:08 AAM AAM ingest

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 11149 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database