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Robert Charles Burkholder


Assigned to 750BS, 457BG, 8AF USAAF. 34 x combat missions in B-17's. Detached for Special duties with 1st Scouting Force. 47 x combat missions in P-47's. Transferred to 857BS, 492BG, 8AF USAAF. Member of the British 'GOLDFISH CLUB' for having ditched in the North Sea (12-Jul-44).

Awards: DFC (OLC), AM (8OLC), WWII Victory, EAME (6 x battle stars).



  • Robert Kaufman

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 457th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 750BS, 457BG, 8AF USAAF. Survived ditching in B-17G 42-38063 'GI Virgin'.

  • Bernard Plaut

    Military | First Lieutenant | Lead Navigator | 457th Bomb Group

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Units served with

  • 457th Bomb Group

    457th Bomb Group

    The 457th Bomb Group began combat operations during the Big Week of 20-25 February when American bombers carried out concentrated raids against German aircraft bases, factories and assembly plants. The air crews' targets on that first mission were...

  • 492nd Bomb Group (Heavy)

    492nd Bomb Group (Heavy)

    The 492nd Bomb Group were assigned to the 8th Air Force in April 1944. They flew 60 missions over occupied Europe from 11 May 1944 until 7 August 1944. ...

  • 1st Scouting Force
  • 750th Bomb Squadron
  • 857th Bomb Squadron


  • 42-102464 "What's Next?"

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 5/3/44; Kearney 5/4/44; with David Steele force landed base 16/4/44; Dow Fd 6/5/44; Assigned 750BS/457BG Glatton [G] 7/5/44; Missing in Action Le Bouget A/fd 14/6/44 with Chas Blackwell, Co-pilot: Theo Baskette, Radio Operator: Ed...

  • 42-38063 'G I Virgin'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 1/12/43; Wendover 12/12/43; Assigned 749BS/457BG [S] Glatton 26/1/44; Missing in Action Munich 12/7/44 with Bob Kaufman, Co-pilot: Bob Burkholder, Navigator: Bernard Plaut, Bombardier: D.J. Letzia, Flight engineer/top turret gunner:...

  • 43-37765 'Donna J II' 'The Duchess'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 19/5/44; Kearney 1/6/44; Grenier 18/6/44; Assigned 413BS/96BG [MZ-K] Snetterton 18/6/44 DONNA J II; transferred 750BS/457BG [B] Glatton 19/6/44; 8 ERS Halesworth 24/3/45; Salvaged 9AF Germany 10/12/45. THE DUCHESS.

Associated Place

  • Glatton

    Military site : airfield
    Glatton, which lay mostly in the parish of Conington, was built by the 809th Engineer Battalion (Aviation) of the U.S. Army in the last months of 1942. Unusually, the base's three runways surrounded Rose Court Farm, which remained a working farm...

  • Honington

    Military site : airfield
    Honington was in use by Eighth Air Force units for a longer period than any other air base in England. The air base, built in the mid 1930s as part of the RAF's expansion programme had seen plenty of action as an RAF base before it was handed over to...

  • North Pickenham

    Military site : airfield
    Built comparatively late during 1943-44 as an Eighth Air Force bomber base, North Pickenham was rather cramped as an airfield site so the main runway was shorter than typical. It had three concrete runways, 50 loop hardstandings and two dispersed T2...


Event Location Date
Born Ephrata, PA 12 December 1924

Son of Charles and Helen M Burkholder.

Based Glatton 1943 – 15 October 1944

Assigned to 750BS, 457BG, 8AF USAAF.

Enlisted Nashville, TN 13 April 1943

Nashville, Tennessee

Bombing mission 35290 Gaël, France 10 June 1943

Bombing mission Gael, France 10-Jun-43 in B-17 42-102464.

Bombing mission 28200 Châteaudun, France 1 August 1944

Bombing mission Chateaudun, France 1-Aug-44 in B-17 43-37765.

Bombing mission Schkeuditz, Germany 19 August 1944

Bombing mission Schkeuditz, Germany 18-Aug-44 in B-17 43-37765.

Based Honington 15 October 1944

Detached for Special duties with 1st Scouting Force.

Based North Pickenham 15 March 1945 – May 1945

Transferred to 857BS, 492BG, 8AF USAAF.

End of War Europe May 1945
Died Tuczon, AZ 16 January 2006
Buried East Lawn Palms Cemetery and Mortuary Tucson, Pima County, AZ 20 January 2006

East Lawn Palms Cemetery and Mortuary
Pima County, AZ


Date Contributor Update
02 February 2020 15:41:25 Al_Skiff Changes to middlename, service number, biography, awards and events

Date Contributor Update
01 November 2017 12:24:52 Lucy May Changes to nickname

Brought in source from duplicate record:
Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia /

Date Contributor Update
08 August 2017 13:19:20 Al_Skiff Changes to nickname, role, biography, awards, events, unit associations and place associations

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:23:02 AAM AAM ingest

Ted Damick, VIII Fighter Command pilots list