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Claude Alvin Turner

Military

Lt. Claude A. Turner was born in Travis Peak, Texas, on Oct 22, 1919. He trained as an aviation pilot at Kelly Field and other air bases in Texas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico. After receiving his pilot's wings, Turner was assigned to the 8th Air Force, the 93rd Bomb Group, and the 328th Bomb Squadron in Britain. He and his B-24D Liberator bomber # 42-40608, 'The Vulgar Virgin', was transferred to North Africa and the MTO (Mediterranean Theatre of Operations) - Jun 23, 1943, remaining assigned to the 8th Army Air Force, the 93rd Bombardment Group, and the 328th Bomb Squadron. Lt. Turner immediately flew a number of combat missions to the Messina, Italy, railroad yards, the Port of San Giovanni, an airfield at Vibo Valencia, Italy, an airfield at Foggia, also missions to Naples, and Rome, Italy, each time having his airplane hit and damaged by flak.

Later, in August, 1943, Lt. Turner flew 'The Vulgar Virgin' on Operation Tidal Wave, the famous mission to destroy the oil refineries at Ploesti, Romania. During his bomb run, Lt. Turner sustained two major flak hits to 'The Vulgar Virgin' over his assigned target, "White IV", The Astra Romano refinery. Knowing he could not make it home to Benghazi, Libya, Lt. Turner elected to fly to Turkey. He flew as far as Chorlu, Turkey, where he landed safely, and he, his crew, and his bomber were interned by the Turkish Air Force. He made a harrowing escape from the Turks and returned to duty in the 8th Air force. Lt. Turner received the Purple Heart for his wounds, the Distinguished Flying Cross, and the Silver Star medals for his execution, his gallantry and flying skills, in combat over Ploesti, Romania. Aug 1, 1943.

After escaping from the Turks, Lt. Turner and his navigator, Lt. James Marquis, returned to Britain and the 8th Air Force. Lt. Turner was shot down by an FW-190 fighter and killed over the North Sea in the B-24, #42-63988, 'Birmingham Blitzkrieg', after a mission over Bremen, Germany. Lt. Turner and his crew were first reported Missing In Action - MIA , and later reported Killed In Action - KIA - November 14, 1943.

Service

People

  • Donald De Armond

    Military | First Lieutenant | Bombardier | 93rd Bomb Group
    Assigned to 328BS, 93BG, 8AF USAAF. 1-Aug-43 on TDY to 9th AF, was interned in Turkey on Ploesti raid in B24 42-40608 'The Urgin Virgin' Awards: AM, WWII Victory, EAME.

  • William Dunckel

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 93rd Bomb Group
    1-Aug-43 on TDY to 9th AF, was interned in Turkey on Ploesti raid in B24 42-40608 'The Urgin Virgin' Awards: WWII Victory, EAME.

  • Charles Holbrook

    Military | Major | Co-Pilot | 93rd Bomb Group
    Assigned to 328BS, 93BG, 8AF USAAF. 8-Aug-43 on TDY to 9th AF, was interned in Turkey on Ploesti raid in B24 42-40608 'The Urgin Virgin' Later suffered skull fracture in B-24 accident. ...

  • Clarence Hood

    Military | Private | Gunner | 93rd Bomb Group
    Assigned to 328BS, 93BG, 8AF USAAF. 1-Aug-43 on TDY to 9th AF, was interned in Turkey on Ploesti raid in B24 42-40608 'The Urgin Virgin' Awards: AM, WWII Victory, EAME.

  • James Marquis

    Military | Lieutenant Colonel | Navigator | 93rd Bomb Group
    James E. Marquis was born on February 6, 1922. After completing his flight training in the U.S. Lt. James E. Marquis, was assigned to the 8th Air Force, the 93rd Bomb Group, and the 328th Bomb Squadron in Britain. He was the navigator on his B-24D...

  • John Rudell

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Gunner | 93rd Bomb Group
    Assigned to 328BS, 93BG, 8AF USAAF. 1-Aug-43 on TDY to 9th AF, was interned in Turkey on Ploesti raid in B24 42-40608 'The Urgin Virgin' Awards: PH, WWII Victory, EAME.

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Units served with

  • 8th Air Force

    8th Air Force


    Eighth Air Force Bomber Command became the Eighth Air Force on February 1944, it oversaw bombardment of strategic targets in Europe until 1945. ...

  • 93rd Bomb Group

    93rd Bomb Group

    Group
    93rd Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated 1-March-1942 at Barksdale Field, Louisiana. On 15-May-1942 the Group moved to Ft. Myers, Florida to continue advanced flight training and also to fly anti-submarine patrols over the Gulf of Mexico; they...

  • 328th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 42-63988 'Birmingham Blitzkrieg'

    B-24 Liberator
    The B-24D, SN # 42-63988, named the 'Birmingham Blitzkrieg' was flown by Lt. Claude Alvin Turner on a mission to bomb Bremen, Germany, and was shot down by an FW-190 fighter over the North Sea with the loss of Lt. Turner, the airplane, and all of the...

  • 42-40608 'The Vulgar Virgin'

    B-24 Liberator
    ...

Missions

  • Operation Tidal Wave

    1 August 1943
    Operation TIDAL WAVE. B24D 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 B...

  • VIII Bomber Command 130

    13 November 1943
    The port area of Bremen, Germany is the focus of this mission composed of three elements. The first element is a combined force of 154 B0-17 of 1st Bomb Division including 94BG (16); 385BG (17); 95BG (21); 100BG (18); 390BG (21); 96BG (40); and 388BG ...

Associated Place

  • Lete

    Military site : airfield

Events

Event Location Date
Born Austin, Texas, USA 22 October 1919

From First Baptist Church, Austin, Texas memorial service, December 21,1944

Interned Turkey 1 August 1943

Flew the B-24D #42-40608 the 'Vulgar Virgin' in the Ploesti raid. Aircraft damaged by flak over White IV and flew to Turkey. Crew interned, and Aircraft interned into the Turkish AF, Aug 1, 1943.

Died North Sea 13 November 1943

Shot down in the B-17 #42-63988' the 'Birmingham Blitzkrieg'. His plane crashed into North Sea. Pilot and crew were Killed in Action (KIA), 13 November 1943.

Buried

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
04 April 2021 03:04:09 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

Best Web - B-24 - '42-63988'

Date Contributor Update
05 March 2021 20:07:23 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

FindAGrave - Lt. Claude Alvin Turner

Date Contributor Update
05 March 2021 20:05:13 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

FindAGrave - Lt. Claude Alvin Turner

Date Contributor Update
05 March 2021 03:28:35 Firstgear Changes to awards
Sources

Adjusted medals earned in WWII.

Date Contributor Update
02 March 2021 18:02:37 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

FindAGrave - Lt. Claude A. Turner

Date Contributor Update
07 February 2021 05:24:51 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

Personal Archives - John S Young Jr

Date Contributor Update
07 February 2021 05:05:31 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

B-24 - Best Web - SN # 42-40608 - 'The Vulgar Virgin'

Date Contributor Update
04 February 2021 15:54:00 Kickapoo Changes to unit associations
Sources

B-24 - Best Web - # 42-40608 - 'The Vulgar Virgin'

Date Contributor Update
04 February 2021 15:49:51 Kickapoo Changes to biography and events
Sources

WWII Aircraft Shot Down Over The Netherlands or the North Sea

Date Contributor Update
04 February 2021 06:52:38 Bombay Changes to highest rank and role
Sources

- B-17 command pilot
Lt>1st Lt
several sources

Date Contributor Update
04 February 2021 06:44:42 Bombay Changes to middlename and awards
Sources

+middle name
ancestry.com & findagrave.com
+Air Medal
-UN Svc Medal, none such in WWII
https://www.abmc.gov/decedent-search/turner%3Dclaude-0

Date Contributor Update
04 February 2021 01:30:13 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

B-24 - Best Web - # 42-40608 - "The Vulgar Virgin'

Date Contributor Update
03 February 2021 23:48:07 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

B-24 - Best Web - #42-40608 - 'The Vulgar Virgin'

Date Contributor Update
03 February 2021 23:39:39 Firstgear Changes to awards and events
Sources

From First Baptist Church, Austin, Texas memorial service, December 21,1944

Date Contributor Update
30 January 2021 04:44:36 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

B-24 - Best Web

Date Contributor Update
29 January 2021 19:52:36 Kickapoo Changes to nickname and biography
Sources

B-24 - Best Web ---- The Great Ground-Air Battle Of 1 August 1943 - James Dugan & Carroll Stewart

Date Contributor Update
29 January 2021 19:48:25 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

B-24 - Best Web

Date Contributor Update
29 January 2021 18:20:26 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

B-24 - Best Web

Date Contributor Update
29 January 2021 04:12:14 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

Black Sunday - Michael Hill

Date Contributor Update
29 January 2021 03:28:45 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

B-24 - Best Web

Date Contributor Update
29 January 2021 03:27:44 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

B-24 - Best Web

Date Contributor Update
29 January 2021 03:24:06 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

B-24 - Best Web

Date Contributor Update
29 January 2021 01:43:54 Kickapoo Changes to biography
Sources

Personal Archives - Herb Turner - John Simmons Young Jr

Date Contributor Update
29 January 2021 01:32:24 Kickapoo Changes to biography and awards
Sources

Personal archives - Herb Turner - John Simmons Young Jr

Date Contributor Update
19 December 2020 09:22:27 Kickapoo Changes to role, biography, events, unit associations and place associations
Sources

Wikipedia - B-17 aircraft # 42-63988

Date Contributor Update
19 December 2020 09:12:51 Kickapoo Changes to role, biography, awards and events
Sources

Wikipedia - B-24 aircraft - # 42-40608

Date Contributor Update
01 April 2020 18:44:20 jmoore43 Changes to biography
Sources

Added a "#" to the A/C serial numbers in the "Summary biography" to aid clarity & consistency.

Date Contributor Update
25 September 2019 14:13:14 general ira snapsorter Changes to biography, events and mission associations
Sources

Ploesti Sortie Reports, 93rd Bomb Group

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:06:21 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

ABMC; MACR 2180, Losses of the 8th & 9th AFs Vol I pp. 221, 367 / Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 2180 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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