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42-102467

B-17 Flying Fortress

Delivered Cheyenne 5/3/44; Gr Island 27/3/44; Grenier 7/4/44; Assigned 600BS/398BG [N8-J] Nuthampstead 27/4/44; on training mission 4/5/44 with Lt E. Ford in mid-air collision with 42-107191, damaged left wing but returned safely; Missing in Action Brandenburg (32m) 6/8/44 with Ike Alhadeff, Co-pilot: Clarry Evans, Navigator: Paul Foster, Bombardier: John Sigsworth, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Martin Chavez, Radio Operator: Orville Elsrod, Ball turret gunner: Nathan Mirell, Waist gunner: Tudor Mellville, Tail gunner: Dave Walker (9 Prisoner of War); flak, crashed Scharmbeckstotel, NW of Bremen, Ger; Missing Air Crew Report 7886 (?7885). AGONY WAGON III.

I think there may be an error in this citation and these two incidents were in separate aircraft or different crews. My father told me the story of this training accident several times. The story includes damage to the nose bubble and loss of the bombardier. He was the flight engineer. However, he was never shot down, and never used the "III" designation behind the aircraft name "Agony Wagon".

Service

Units

  • 398th Bomb Group

    398th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 398th Bomb Group flew B-17 Flying Fortresses from Nuthampstead, Hertfordshire on strategic bombing raids over Germany. The Group switched focus in the days before D-Day, when they targeted enemy positions on the Cherbourg peninsula. When the Allies...

  • 600th Bomb Squadron

People

  • Isaac Alhadeff

    Military | Lieutenant | Pilot | 398th Bomb Group
    Shot down by flak and crashed in Baltic on 8/6/44 in B-17 #42-102467, Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Martin Chavez

    Military | Master Sergeant | Top Turret Gunner | 398th Bomb Group
    Shot down by flak and crashed at Stade on 8/6/44 in B-17 #42-102467, Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Orville Elsrod

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 398th Bomb Group
    Shot down by flak and crashed at Stade on 8/6/44 in B-17 #42-102467, Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Clarence Evans

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 398th Bomb Group
    Shot down by flak and crashed at Stade on 8/6/44 in B-17 #42-102467, Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Paul Foster

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 398th Bomb Group
    Shot down by flak and crashed at Stade on 8/6/44 in B-17 #42-102467, Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Tudor Melville

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner | 398th Bomb Group
    Shot down by flak and crashed at Stade on 8/6/44 in B-17 #42-102467, Prisoner of War (POW). Air Medal July 1944

  • Nathan Mirell

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 398th Bomb Group
    Shot down by flak and crashed at Stade on 8/6/44 in B-17 #42-102467, Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • John Sigsworth

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Bombardier | 398th Bomb Group
    Shot down by flak and crashed at Stade on 8/6/44 in B-17 #42-102467, Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Robert Vallilee

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Flight engineer, top turret gunner | 96th Bomb Group
    Assigned Sept 1944

  • Dave Walker

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 398th Bomb Group
    Shot down by flak and crashed at Stade on 8/6/44 in B-17 #42-102467, Prisoner of War (POW). POW

Places

  • Nuthampstead

    Military site : airfield
    Built during 1942-43, Nuthampstead was the nearest Eighth Air Force heavy bomber base to London. It had three concrete runways, 50 loop hardstandings and two dispersed T2 hangars. It was first occupied from September 1943 to April 1944 by the 55th...

Events

Event Location Date
Failed to Return (FTR) Germany 6 August 1944

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
01 January 2021 20:26:46 jmoore43 Changes to description
Sources

Added a space before the words "Tail gunner" in the A/C “Description” to aid clarity.

Date Contributor Update
17 December 2016 13:15:19 Timothy Vallilee Changes to description
Sources

Oral history told by my father, Robert Vallilee.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:40:09 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 7886 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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