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Robert John Kropp

Military

Robert John Kropp was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on 18 Nov 1915. As a child, he worked as a newsboy. He graduated high school and college and worked for a long time as treasurer at McGillis and Gibbs, a company that sold telephone poles. Robert enlisted in the Army Air Corps on 22 May, 1942, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, during World War II. He was 26 years old. He was apart of the 447th Bombardment Squad and flew as navigator in 30 missions in the B-17s. The Beaty crew flew their real first mission on 4 Jan 1944 after an abort on 30 Dec 1943, target Kiel, in 42-31144 Miss America. On the way to target, they experienced oxygen failure and three men passed out. Robert's crew-mate, ROG S/SGT John Smith was awarded the DFC for enabling them to continue to Kiel despite their oxygen failure, as noted in "WW II DIARY", penned by Captain Beaty. Other instances are noted in this diary, which can be found on 447bg.com. Robert was later also awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for in-air achievements over the course of several missions, and became a member of the "Lucky Bastards Club" for surviving 30 missions. Out of the entire 710th Squadron, the Beaty crew was the only one to finish intact. Robert returned to America in late 1944, and married Bernadine Marcella Wiese. He then had two children, James Robert and Victoria J Kropp. Robert John Kropp died in his hometown on 18 Oct, 1993. He was 77 years old. He was survived by his son, daughter, and two grandchildren.

Service

People

  • Edward Beaty

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 447th Bomb Group

  • Leland Bergeron

    Military | 447th Bomb Group

  • Louis Gorrell

    Military | First Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 447th Bomb Group
    He flew from Harvard, Neb. with pilot Ed Beaty and crew to Rattlesden. They turned their plane, Maid to Please, over to another crew. It didn't come back - the first loss of the unit. He later flew right seat in Stormy Weather I and II. He and his crew...

  • Peter Linza

    Military | 447th Bomb Group

  • Theodore Sikorski

    Military | 447th Bomb Group

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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...

Aircraft

  • 42-107021

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Tulsa 31/1/44; Kearney 5/2/44; Assigned 710BS/447BG [IJ-L] Rattlesden 3/3/44; Missing in Action Augsburg 13/4/44 with Joe Thornbury, Co-pilot: Albt Cowey, Navigator: Dominick Padula, Bombardier: George Filush, Flight engineer/top turret...

  • 42-107025 Little Chum

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Tulsa 31/1/44; Grenier 5/3/44; Assigned 711BS/447BG Rattlesden 7/3/44; 710BS; crash landed base with Harry Jennings 29/1/45; Salvaged 1/2/45.

  • 42-107072

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Tulsa 12/2/44; Kearney 25/2/44; Grenier 4/4/44; Assigned 710BS/447BG Rattlesden 12/3/44; Missing in Action Brux 12/5/44 with Capt Ken Johnson, Co-pilot: Bill Phelps, Navigator: Harman Chapman, Bombardier: Bob Bloom, Flight engineer/top turret...

  • 42-31100 The Gimp

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 20/9/43; Harvard 4/10/43; Assigned 709BS/447BG Rattlesden 25/11/43; detailed mission to Dollenbergen, crashed on take off near base with Warren Beighley after #1 engine lost power 1/1/45, crew all OK; Salvaged Cat E; THE GIMP.

  • 42-31112 Paper Doll

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Dallas 21/9/43; Harvard 5/10/43; Assigned 94BG Rougham 27/11/43; transferred 710BS/447BG Rattlesden 30/11/43; Missing in Action Wilhelmshafen 3/3/44 with Francis Graham, Co-pilot: Carroll Velt, Navigator: Karol Dubiel, Bombardier: Dave Wohl,...

  • 42-31135 Suzy Sagtitz

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 25/9/43; Gr Isle 8/10/43; Romulus 12/10/43; Assigned 562BS/388BG Knettishall 14/10/43; Missing in Action Berlin 6/3/44 with Montgomery Givens, Co-pilot: Harry Teat, Navigator: Ken Betts, Bombardier: Larry McMillan, Flight engineer...

  • 42-31144 Miss America

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Dallas 25/9/43; Harvard 6/10/43; Assigned 708BS/447BG Rattlesden 21/11/43; Missing in Action Berlin 29/4/44 with Hayden Hughes, Co-pilot: Howard Barr, Navigator: Bill Allen, Bombardier: Dick Johnson, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Walt...

  • 42-31148

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Dallas 25/9/43; Harvard 7/10/43; Assigned 710BS/447BG Rattlesden 21/11/43; Missing in Action Wilhelmshafen 3/3/44 with Don Ralston, Navigator: Carl Dunker, Bombardier: Pete Vitolano, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Vane Cullen, Radio...

  • 42-31160

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 26/9/43; Harvard 10/10/43; Assigned 710BS/447BG Rattlesden 25/11/43; Missing in Action Pas de Calais 13/2/44 with Ed Kaffun, Co-pilot: Cliff Coultas, Navigator: John Brown, Bombardier: Jim Tyson, Flight engineer/top turret gunner:...

  • 42-31217

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 4/10/43; Harvard 15/10/43; Assigned 710BS/447BG Rattlesden 21/11/43; Missing in Action Berlin 29/4/44 with Harry Paris, Co-pilot: Bob Allen, Navigator: Mike Gannon, Bombardier: Ed Jekel{wia, broke left knee} Flight engineer/top turret...

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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...

  • Rattlesden Gliding Club

    Other location

Events

Event Location Date
Born Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA 18 November 1915
Enlisted Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA 22 May 1942
Based Rattlesden 29 November 1943 – August 1944
Died Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA 18 October 1993

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
24 May 2019 02:22:27 AllysonKropp Changes to biography
Sources

447bg.com

Date Contributor Update
28 March 2019 17:12:47 AllysonKropp Changes to events
Sources

http://www.447bg.com/447th%20Stories.htm

Date Contributor Update
28 March 2019 02:43:58 AllysonKropp Changes to biography
Sources

http://www.447bg.com/Beaty%20Crew.htm

Date Contributor Update
28 March 2019 02:28:23 AllysonKropp Changes to mission associations
Sources

http://www.447bg.com/Beaty%20Crew.htm

Date Contributor Update
28 March 2019 02:27:13 AllysonKropp Changes to person associations
Sources

http://www.447bg.com/Beaty%20Crew.htm

Date Contributor Update
28 March 2019 02:11:43 AllysonKropp Changes to biography and events
Sources

Added more information- wife's middle name from the birth certificate of his son, James, as well as his early job as a newsboy from earnings reported from the 1930 US Census.

Date Contributor Update
04 November 2018 21:59:49 AllysonKropp Changes to middlename, biography and events
Sources

Personal testimony from son, James Kropp.

Date Contributor Update
01 June 2018 15:59:56 AllysonKropp Changes to middlename, nickname, service number, role, biography, awards, events, person associations, place associations, aircraft associations and mission associations
Sources

http://www.447bg.com/Beaty%20Crew.htm

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:23:37 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / Unit History Roster as of 01 August 1945

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