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Leo Fenster


Fenster completed 65 missions over German Occupied Europe, surviving five crash landings during his tour of duty. He recalled his fifth crash was particularly bad: 'Of all the missions, I never incurred the volume and the intensity of ground fire we suffered on this one. The Germans literally threw their entire arsenal of ack-ack. The barrage was so unbelievably intense that for a period of 15 minutes before the dropping of the bombs and 15 minutes after, the noise of the continuous explosions engulfing us was overwhelming. Our plane, for a period of 30 minutes, rocked from sid to side and up and down and frankly, I did not believe we would survive.'

After the war Fenster became an Attorney, in 1958 he was installed as President of the Santa Ana B'nai B'rith Lodge, an organisation committed to the security of the Jewish people and combatting anti-semitism, and was an active member of the Democratic party.


Units served with

Associated Place

  • Stansted Mountfitchet

    Military site : airfield
    Today, Stansted is one of the busiest airports in Britain. During the Second World War, instead of airliners delivering passengers, Stansted Moutfitchet’s aircrews in their B-26 Marauders attacked Nazi targets, paving the way for D-Day and the...


Event Location Date
Born 20 May 1922
Enlisted Santa Ana, California 15 March 1943
Died Los Angeles, California 19 January 1999


Date Contributor Update
08 July 2021 08:44:36 Emily Created entry with surname, firstname, nationality, service number, highest rank, role, biography, events, unit associations, place associations and media associations

FRE 7129 depicts Fenster being awarded his Purple Heart, Enlistment record, Recollections of fifth crash in Citizen Soldiersby Stephen Ambrose, Appointed president of Santa Monica B'nai B'rith in B'nai B'rith Messenger, 7 February 1958, Notification of Death in 344th Bomb Group Association Newsletter Milk Run, July 2010, Obituary