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Rufus C Litton

Military

15-Sep-42 Assigned as an Aerial Gunner to the 303BG/359BS at Biggs Field, El Paso, Texas. Not placed with a regular combat cerw at the time. Date of arrival in the UK, not in 303BG source data.

Shot down 3 January 1943 in B-17F 41-24608 'Yehudi' while serving as Left Waist Gunner. Aircraft crashed into the sea off of Belle-Ile-en-Mer, France. Sgt Litton's body washed up on shore. Participated in 3 Operations (1-Aborted) See Biography events.

Purple Heart

Service

Units served with

  • 303rd Bomb Group

    303rd Bomb Group

    Group
    The 303rd Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated on 3-Feb-1942 at Pendleton Field, Oregon. They assembled at Gowen Field, Idaho on 11-February 1942 where it conducted flight training until 12-Jun-1942. The Group then moved to Alamogordo Field, New...

  • 359th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 41-24608 Yehoodi

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17F 41-24608 [BN-S] "Yehoodi", 303BG/359BS was assigned with a crew on 10-Jul-42 at Alamogordo Field, Alamgordo, New Mexico, The aircraft was the first of the 303rd to arrive at Moleworth on 12-Oct-42. Participated in 5 Operations (3 Aborted). See...

Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 26

    20 December 1942
    The German Air Depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France is the Primary (P) target for a combined force of 80 B-17s despatched by 91BG (17), 303BG (21); 305BG (23) and 306BG (19). 60 B-17 are effective on the target, but 7 are MIA and 1 is DBR. ...

  • VIII Bomber Command 27

    30 December 1942
    The U-Boat pens at Lorient, France are the target for this mission. A combined force of 77 B-17s are despatched by 91BG (19); 303BG (16); 305BG (13) and 306BG (18). Only 40 are effective on the target. All but 1 B-17 from the 18 despatched by 306BG is...

  • VIII Bomber Command 28

    3 January 1943
    The U-Boat pens at St. Nazaire, France are once again the target for this mission. This is proving to be a particularly difficult target to destroy due to its massive, reinforced concrete design. It consists of 14 individual pens connected together in...

Associated Place

  • Molesworth

    Military site : airfield
    Molesworth was one of the early stations used by the Eighth Air Force in the UK, first occupied by the 15th Bomb Squadron’s Douglas Bostons in June 1942. Built in 1940 and extended and improved in 1942, Molesworth is most associated with the 303rd...

Events

Event Location Date
Born Kentucky
Mission #2, SGT Rufus C. Litton, w/B-17F 41-24608, 303BG/359BS - KIA Saint-Nazaire, France 3 January 1942

Assigned as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24608, "Yehoodi" on a mission to bomb the U-Boat pens at St. Nazarie, France. The aircraft was shot down and he was Killed in Action (KIA)

Assigned to Group Biggs Field, TX 79918, USA 15 September 1942

Assigned to the 303BG/359BS as an Aerial Gunner at Biggs Field, El Paso, Texas. Not assigned to a combat crew at the time.

Mission #1, SGT Rufus C. Litton, w/B-17F 41-24608, 303BG/359BS - Aborted Romilly-sur-Seine, France 20 December 1942

Assigned as the Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24608, "Yahoodi", 303BG/359BS to replace SSGT Lloyd E. Wagner who had be given the crew position as Engineer/Top Turret Gunner. The mission was to bomb the German air Depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France, but mechanical failures forced the pilot to abort the sortie. RTB OK.

Mission #2, SGT Rufus C. Litton, w/B-17F 41-24608, 303BG/359BS Lorient, France 30 December 1942

Assigned as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24608, "Yehoodi" on a mission to bomb the U-Boat pens at Lorient, France. RTB OK.

Killed in Action (KIA) Belle Île, France 3 January 1943

Killed when aircraft sustained severe damage from flak over the target and crashed into the sea near Belle-Ile-en-Mer, France.

Buried 1945

Buried in the Ardennes American Cemetery, Plot D, Row 4, Grave 54.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
15 December 2015 23:51:11 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Dec-2015. Added Mission #3 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, HIstorian, Mission Report of 3-Jan-43: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/009.pdf

Date Contributor Update
15 December 2015 23:48:21 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Dec-2015. Added Mission #2 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, HIstorian, Mission Report of 30-Dec-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/008.pdf

Date Contributor Update
15 December 2015 23:44:28 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Dec-2015. Added Mission #1 event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Mission Report of 12-Dec-42: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/006.pdf

Date Contributor Update
15 December 2015 23:39:11 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Dec-2015. Added Assigned to Group event per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Frank A. Saunders crew page: http://www.303rdbg.com/c-359-saunders.html

Date Contributor Update
15 December 2015 23:36:08 Lee8thbuff Changes to biography and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Dec-2015. Added inital assigment to 303BG/359BS and mission participations per 303BG website, Gary Moncur, Historian, Frank A. Saunders crew page: http://www.303rdbg.com/c-359-saunders.html

Date Contributor Update
13 January 2015 23:07:02 Lee8thbuff Changes to role, biography, awards, events, place associations, aircraft associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 13-Jan-2015. Added SN and KIA event per MACR 15720; added decorations and Burial event per American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) record; made connections to Place, Aircraft and Mission within existing website data; Added crew position and crash location to Biography per "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces" Stan Bishop & John A. Hey MBE.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:24:44 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / Roll of Honor

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