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Earl Shelton Baker


14 October 1943 on return from Schweinfurt mission, B17#42-29784 'Smilin'-Thru' crashed at Wiltshire with crew baling out. All returned to duty.



  • Erwin Johnson

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Pilot | 384th Bomb Group
    10/14/43 on return from Schweinfurt mission, B17#42-29784 'Smilin'-Thru' crashed at Wiltshire with crew baling out with all returning.

Units served with

  • 384th Bomb Group

    384th Bomb Group

    The 384th Bomb Group flew B-17s from Grafton Underwood, Northamptonshire, between May 1943 and June 1945. They were engaged in daylight bombing missions over Germany as part of the Allies' efforts to destroy the effectiveness of the Luftwaffe by...

  • 546th Bomb Squadron


  • 42-29784 Smilin' Thru

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    42-29784 Delivered to the Cheyenne, Wyoming Modification center on 18 February 1943. Moved to Salina, Kansas on 2 March 1943. Ferried overseas and assigned to the 366th Bombardment Squadron, squadron code KY-K, 305th Bombardment Group, station 105,...


  • VIII Bomber Command 115

    14 October 1943
    This was the 2nd mission flown against the ball bearing industry at Schweinfurt, Germany and was as equally disastrous as that flown on 17-Aug-43. It came to be known as "Black Thursday". While fighter escort was dispatched, bad weather and lack of...

Associated Place

  • Grafton Underwood

    Military site : airfield
    Grafton Underwood was built in 1941 by George Wimpey and Co. Ltd. It was the first airfield in England to receive an Eighth Air Force flying unit, when in May 1942 personnel of the 15th Bomb Squadron took up residence. As a satellite airfield for...


Event Location Date
Born Virginia, USA 20 December 1921
Enlisted Richmond, VA, USA 28 July 1942

Private, Branch Immaterial

Assigned 14 September 1943

Assigned to the 384th Bomb Group, 546th Bomb Squadron on AAF Station 106 Special Orders #96 dated 14 September 1943, Erwin C. Johnson Crew, 28 combat missions.

Died Salem, VA, USA 26 October 2014

Sherwood Burial Park
Salem City
Virginia, USA


Date Contributor Update
25 November 2018 18:16:04 bombercommand Changes to nickname and media associations

Date Contributor Update
26 May 2015 01:37:40 bombercommand Changes to middlename, biography, awards, events, person associations and media associations
Find A Grave

Date Contributor Update
01 March 2015 23:41:31 bombercommand Changes to service number and role

Date Contributor Update
01 March 2015 23:04:53 bombercommand Changes to biography, events, place associations, aircraft associations and mission associations
NARA Enlisted Data Base

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:08:00 AAM AAM ingest

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / Losses of the 8th & 9th AFs Vol I by Bishop & Hey p. 341,