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Charles W Lundsberg


Force landed B-17 "Flak Shak" SN 42-97307 near Brussels, Belgium Sept. 12 1944 on 23rd mission.

Prisoner of War (POW) Bailed out over Wesermunde, Germany on Sept. 26, 1944 in B-17 "Reluctant Lady" SN 42-107035 on 24th mission.

In Memoriam

'My father was a B-17 pilot at 19 years of age, one of only five chosen early on at that age. He flew out of Great Ashfield in 1944. He was able to land his crippled aircraft on one engine in or very near Belgium in September of 1944. This was his 23rd mission and he had flown Flak Shack's first and last flights. It was the aircraft he had named an considered his own, although these guys flew a number of aircraft.

On his 24th mission he was again down to one engine in the Reluctant Lady, but the prop went to a flat pitch and when he realized he could not make it Sweden, he elected to have his crew make a controlled bail put. All were captured and survived the war as guests of the Germans.'
Remembered by Wes Lundsberg, Sycamore, IL.


Units served with

  • 385th Bomb Group

    385th Bomb Group

    The 385th Bomb Group, who took the nickname "Van's Valiants" after their first Commanding Officer Col. Elliot Vandevanter, flew B-17s from Great Ashfield, Suffolk. The Group led the famous attack on the Focke-Wolfe aircraft factory at Marienburg on 9...

  • 548th Bomb Squadron


  • 42-107035 Reluctant Lady

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Tulsa 3/2/44; Dow Fd 24/4/44; Assigned 398BG Nuthampstead 30/4/44; transferred 548BS/385BG [GX-L] Gt Ashfield 6/5/44; Missing in Action Bremen 26/9/44 with Chas Lundsberg, Co-pilot: J. M. Elzey, Navigator: Bob Smallman, Bombardier: John Wise,...

  • 42-97307 Flak Shak

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 17/2/44; Rapid City 5/3/44; Dow Fd 28/4/44; Assigned 398BG Nuthampstead 3/5/44; no ops, transferred 548BS/385BG [GX- ] Gt Ashfield 4/5/44; battle damaged Bohlen 12/9/44 with Pilot: Charles Lundsberg, Co-pilot: J.M. Ellzey, Navigator:...

Associated Place

  • Great Ashfield

    Military site : airfield
    The airfield was built in 1942 by John Laing & Son Ltd. 108,000 tons of concrete was used in its construction, creating a Class 'A' airfield suitable for heavy bombers. The 385th Bomb Group took up residence in the summer of 1943, and remained at the...

  • Stalag Luft I

    Other location


Event Location Date
Prisoner of War (POW) Barth, Germany 26 September 1944 – 1945


Date Contributor Update
05 December 2014 17:30:33 clunds Changes to biography

Updated Stalag Luft I location from knowledge

Date Contributor Update
05 December 2014 17:25:38 clunds Changes to biography and aircraft associations

Personal records - military records. Corrected spelling errors and consistency.

Date Contributor Update
05 December 2014 17:10:12 clunds Changes to nickname and highest rank

My Grandfather - personal records. Was 1st Lt throughout the war, but as of service end he was a Captain.

Date Contributor Update
24 November 2014 12:53:02 Emily Changes to biography and memoriam

Wes Lundsberg (Son), via American Air Museum Memory Book Correspondence.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:06:04 AAM AAM ingest

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 10204 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database