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William Roderick Cameron

Military

Col. William R. Cameron took part in Operation Tidal Wave, the Ploesti bombing mission on 1 August 1943, flying the B-24D Liberator #41-24229, named, Buzzin' Bear, and returned to base. 1 Aug 43.

He flew a total of 38 combat missions. He not only came over to England with the 8th Air Force and the 44th Bomb Group, but he was the only pilot to, then, go back home with them at the end of the war. "He was one of the best combat leaders we had." was a quote by Gen. Leon Johnson "He took his plane through the Ploesti inferno lower than most other pilots and got her home with only minor damage, originally earning the Silver Star for his part in the historic raid". The Silver Star was deleted in 9th Air Force General Orders on 25 February, 1944 which was the day after his Silver Star was upgraded to the Distinguished Service Cross, on 24 February, 1944.

He married General Joseph Stillwell's daughter.

His many military medals included, The Distinguished Service Cross, The Distinguished Flying Cross with 1 Oak Leaf Cluster, and The Air Medal with 3 Oak Leaf Clusters.

Service

People

  • Thomas Clifford

    Military | Flight Officer | B-24 Navigator/Gunner | 44th Bomb Group The Flying Eightballs
    Took part in Operation Tidal Wave, the raid on Ploesti on 1 August 1943, flying B-24 Liberator 41-24229. ...

  • James DeVinney

    Military | First Lieutenant | B-24 Bombardier | 44th Bomb Group The Flying Eightballs
    Took part in Operation Tidal Wave, the raid on Ploesti on 1 August 1943, flying B-24 Liberator 41-24229. ...

  • Leighton Smith

    Military | First Lieutenant | B-24 Command Pilot | 44th Bomb Group The Flying Eightballs
    1stLt. Leighton Smith was the command pilot of, 41-24229, Buzzin' Bear, shot down by fighters over the Foggia enemy airfields, under TDY to the 9th Air Force in, 41-24229, Buzzin' Bear. Following a successful bail out, although he was burned by his...

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Units served with

  • 44th Bomb Group The Flying Eightballs

    44th Bomb Group The Flying Eightballs

    Group
    The 44th Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated 15-January-1942 at McDill Field, Florida and equipped with B-24Cs. The Group moved to Barksdale Field, Louisiana and acted as a training unit for the 90th 93rd and 98th Bomb Groups and flew anti...

  • 67th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 41-24229 Buzzin' Bear - Seeds of Satan - Miss Delores

    B-24 Liberator
    The B-24D, 41-24229, last named, Buzzin' Bear, was assigned to the 8th Air Force, the 44th Bomb Group, and the 67th Bomb Squadron in North Africa based at Benghazi Libya. Buzzin' Bear was flown by Col. William Roderick Cameron on Operation Tidal Wave...

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 Hanford, California
Enlisted 5 January 1942

Enlisted Fresno, CA as Aviation Cadet.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
20 August 2021 13:23:00 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

Black Sunday - Michael Hill

Date Contributor Update
22 March 2021 03:47:48 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

Best Web - B-24 - # 41-24229

Date Contributor Update
22 March 2021 03:46:31 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

Best Web - B-24 - # 41-24229

Date Contributor Update
22 March 2021 03:43:44 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

Best Web - B-24 - # 41-24229

Date Contributor Update
22 March 2021 03:40:40 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

Best Web - B-24 - # 41-24229

Date Contributor Update
22 March 2021 03:35:22 Kickapoo Changes to role
Sources

Best Web - B-24 - # 41-24229

Date Contributor Update
22 September 2020 23:53:09 decwriter Changes to middlename, service number, biography, awards and events
Sources

NARA files verified DSC upgrade from SS, deletion of SS in General Orders, DFC w/1 oak leaf cluster and AM w/3 oak leaf clusters. He earned at least one bronze star on the EAME Campaign Medal.

Date Contributor Update
22 September 2020 22:09:41 jmoore43 Changes to awards
Sources

Added the awards mentioned in the "Summary biography".

Date Contributor Update
22 September 2020 22:07:27 jmoore43 Changes to biography
Sources

Added punctuation to the "Summary biography" to aid clarity.

Date Contributor Update
31 January 2020 12:25:38 general ira snapsorter Changes to biography
Sources

Ploesti Sortie Reports, 44th Bomb Group

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:28:36 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

'Ploesti' by Dugan & Stewart & p224 in the book SECOND AIR DIVISION edited by Randy Baumgardner, D790.A2S45 / Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia

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