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41-11819

B-24 Liberator

The B-24D Liberator, Raunchy, 41-11819, was in the 344th Bomb Squadron, the 98th Bomb Group, and the 9th Air Force, based at Benghazi, Libya, North Africa, in early 1943.

Raunchy, was flown by Lt. Sam Neeley, in Flight 1, of the B-24Ds in the 98th Bomb Group's planes over Ploesti, Romania. It was destroyed, and 8 of it's crew were killed in action - 8 KIA, with 2 exceptions, who survived the airplane's crash and were captured - 2 WIA/POW. Operation Tidal Wave, the famous bombing mission to destroy the German held oil refineries at Ploesti, Romania, was one of the most desperate, dangerous, and daring bombing raids of WWII. The 98th Bomb Group took 67 percent casualties over their targets. Lt. Samual Neely, close friends with both Col. John Kane and Lt. John Young, who were flying off to Neeley's right side, was one the several hundred airmen killed over Ploesti. 8 KIA - 2 WIA/POW. 1 Aug 1943

Lt. Neeley, and his crew, flew in Flight 1, the 1st wave of the 98th Bomb Group's bombers attacking White IV. Neeley was flying at tree top level on the far left side of Flight 1. Raunchy, had already been heavily hit by the AA flak guns when Neeley hit a barrage balloon cable immediately after his bomb release. One of Raunchy's wings hit and did not break the cable, but pulled an explosive charge attached to it, down onto the airplane's wing, which detonated and blew the wing off, sending the bomber crashing down to the ground, killing Lt. Neeley and most of his crew, who died instantly. Somehow, and by some kind of miracle, Sam Neely's radio operator and another gunner, though badly wounded, survived the crash and were rescued to became POWs. Most of the crew members' remains were never recovered or identified. 1 Aug 1943. MACR-169.
Raunchy - Lost on the low level mission to Ploesti, Romania (FTR). Lt. Sam Neeley hit a barrage balloon cable over his target and was impacted by an explosive charge on the cable, which exploded at an altitude of 150 feet. Raunchy, crashed into a field with all crewmen, except two, killed in the crash and fire. The only two survivors of the crash were SSgt. William W. Schiffmacher and SSgt. Nick Allen. 8 (KIA) - 2 (WIA) (POW). 1 Aug 1943. MACR 169.

Raunchy's Crew Over Ploesti:

1st Lt. Samuel R. Neeley - Pilot (KIA)
2nd Lt. Herman H. Henslee - Copilot (KIA)
1st Lt. Joel I. Corn - Navigator (KIA)
2nd Lt. Eugene L. Rodgen - Bombardier (KIA)
Sgt. Karl T. Edelen - Engineer/Top Turret Gunner (KIA)
Sgt. Robert P. Schultz - Gunner (KIA)
Sgt. William W. Schiffmacher - Radio Operator (POW)
Sgt. Alfred D. Cason - Gunner (KIA)
Sgt. Nick A. Allen - Gunner (POW)

Service

Aircraft

  • 41-24311 - Hadley's Harem

    B-24 Liberator
    The B-24D, named, Hadley's Harem, was Lt. Gilbert Hadley's personal airplane and the one he flew on the mission to destroy Hitler's oil refineries at Ploesti, Romania, in 1943. As Hadley was approaching his target refinery, code named, "White IV",...

  • 41-11819 Raunchy

    B-24 Liberator
    The B-24D Liberator, Raunchy, 41-11819, was in the 344th Bomb Squadron, the 98th Bomb Group, and the 9th Air Force, based at Benghazi, Libya, North Africa, in early 1943. ...

  • 41-11825 Hail Columbia - Little Chief Big Dog - Grumpy

    B-24 Liberator
    The B-24D, Hail Columbia, 41-11825, was assigned to the 9th Air Force, the 98th Bomb Group, and the 344th Bombing Squadron. It was first assigned to the 344th Squadron's CO, Col. John R. Kane's, personal aircraft until Kane became the 98th Bomb Group's...

  • 41-11768 Kickapoo

    B-24 Liberator
    The B-24D Liberator, 41-11768, named, Kickapoo, was piloted by Lt. John S. Young from Dallas, Texas as part of the 9th Air Force, the 98th Bomb Group, and the 344th Bombing Squadron, which arrived in North Africa in early 1943. This airplane was...

  • 42-40629 The Scorpion

    B-24 Liberator
    The B-24D Liberator, 42-40629, The Scorpion, in the 8th Air Force, the 389th Bombardment Group, and the 565th Bomb Squadron, flew on Operation Tidal Wave, the bombing mission on the oil refineries, piloted by Lt. Kenneth M. Caldwell and Col. Jack Wood...

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Units

  • 9th Air Force
  • 98th Bomb Group

    98th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 98th trained for bombardment missions with B-24 Liberators during the first half of 1942. ...

  • 344th Bomb Squadron

    344th Bomb Squadron

    Squadron
    The 344th Bombing Squadron was first activated at MacDill Field, Florida as one of the original three squadrons assigned to the 98th Bombardment Group. The 344th soon moved to Barksdale Field, Louisiana, where it began to train as a Consolidated B-24...

People

  • Alfred Cason

    Military | Staff Sergeant (3rd Grade) | B-24 Gunner | 98th Bomb Group
    Sgt. Alfred David Cason was a gunner on the B-24D, Raunchy, flown on Operation Tidal Wave by Lt. Sam Neeley. Both Lt. Neeley and Sgt. Cason were Killed In Action (KIA) over Ploesti when their B-24D, Raunchy, hit a barrage balloon cable explosive. 1...

  • Gilbert Hadley

    Military | First Lieutenant | B-24D Command Pilot | 98th Bomb Group
    Lt. Gilbert Ben Hadley ...

  • Raymond Hubbard

    Military | First Lieutenant | Radio Operator | 98th Bomb Group
    Lt. Raymond B. Hubbard was assigned to the 9th Air force, the 98th Bombardment Group, and the 344th Bombing Squadron in Libya, North Africa, 1943. He flew in Operation Tidal Wave, the raid on Ploesti on 1 August 1943, flying as a Waist Gunner and Radio...

  • John Kane

    Military | Colonel | B-24 Bomb Group Commanding Officer / B-24 Command Pilot | 98th Bomb Group
    John Riley Kane was a colonel in the United States Army Air Corps and later the United States Air Force. He received the U.S. military's highest decoration, the Congressional Medal of Honor, in World War II, for his leadership, courage, and heroism for...

  • Harold Korger

    Military | Colonel | B-24 - B-52 Bombardier | 98th Bomb Group
    Lt. Harold Francis Korger was a bombardier in the 344th Bombardment Squadron, the 98th Bomb Group, and the 9th Air Force, based in Benghazi, Libya. He flew on the B-24D, Hail Columbia, with Group Leader Col. John R. Kane, on the famous mission,...

  • Royden LeBrecht

    Military | Captain | B-24 Command Pilot | 98th Bomb Group
    Lt. Royden Louis LeBrecht was a B-24D command pilot in the 9th Air force, the 98th Bomb Group, and the 344th Bomb Squadron. He flew his B-24D, he named, The Squaw, on Operation Tidal Wave, the large mission to destroy the German held oil refineries at...

  • James Lindsey

    Military | Flight Officer | B-24D Co-Pilot | 98th Bomb Group
    James Rex Lindsey ...

  • Samuel Neeley

    Military | First Lieutenant | B-24D Command Pilot | 98th Bomb Group
    Pilot Lt. Samual Neeley was a B-24 Bomber pilot in the Mediterranean Theater of Operations in WWII. He served in the 9th Air force, the 98th Bomb Group, and the 344th bomb Squadron in North Africa, flying bombing and strafing missions, mostly against...

  • Robert Nespor

    Military | First Lieutenant | B-24 Command Pilot | 98th Bomb Group
    1st Lt. Robert James Nespor, Jr. was a B-24D bomber command pilot in the 9th Air Force, the 98th Bombardment Group, "The Pyramiders", and the 330th Bombing Squadron, based at Benghazi, Libya, in North Africa. He was assigned to fly on the huge mission,...

  • John Young

    Military | Major | B-24 Command Pilot | 98th Bomb Group
    Lt. John S. Young was born and raised in Dallas, Texas. Bored with college at SMU in Dallas, and knowing the country was headed for war, he joined the Army Air Force early in 1941 and began training as an aviation cadet. He was known as "Johnny" or ...

Missions

  • Operation Tidal Wave

    1 August 1943
    Operation TIDAL WAVE. B-24D 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...

Places

  • Benina

    Military site : airfield

  • Lete

    Military site : airfield

Events

Event Location Date
FTR Failed To Return 1 August 1943

Lost on Ploesti oil refinery raid. 1st Aug 1943. Immediately after bomb release A/C struck an AA balloon cable attached with an explosive device which upon detonation caused a wing to disintegrate. 8 KIA 2 POW. The Radio operator and a Gunner survived the crash and became POW. Pilot Samuel R Neeley, MACR 169.

Assigned

344th BS, 98th BG, 9th AF.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
11 October 2021 09:08:50 Kickapoo Changes to description
Sources

Added details. - Kickapoo

Date Contributor Update
10 September 2021 22:02:05 Kickapoo Changes to markings and description
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Revised "Markings". - Kickapoo

Date Contributor Update
19 August 2021 11:49:57 Kickapoo Changes to description
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The Great Ground-Air Battle Of 1 August, 1943 - James Dugan & Carroll Stewart

Date Contributor Update
19 August 2021 11:44:32 Kickapoo Changes to description and person associations
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Details and wording additions. - Kickapoo

Date Contributor Update
19 August 2021 11:35:26 Kickapoo Changes to description
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Word changes and additions. - Kickapoo

Date Contributor Update
19 August 2021 11:28:55 Kickapoo Changes to markings and description
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Word additions and changes. - Kickapoo

Date Contributor Update
19 August 2021 11:05:48 Kickapoo Changes to markings and description
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Spelling, word spacing. - Kickapoo

Date Contributor Update
17 August 2021 13:07:35 Emily Changes to nicknames, markings and description
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Changed all instances of aircraft name into sentence case to as per best practice for accessibility.

Date Contributor Update
16 August 2021 21:31:07 Kickapoo Changes to markings and description
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Detail, wording, and spacing changes for clarity and accuracy - Kickapoo

Date Contributor Update
14 August 2021 10:33:47 Kickapoo Changes to nicknames, markings and description
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Details, wording, and spelling changes. - Kickapoo

Date Contributor Update
11 June 2021 15:52:20 Kickapoo Changes to description
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Wording changes for clarity - John S Young Jr

Date Contributor Update
07 June 2021 14:24:42 Kickapoo Changes to description
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Spelling corrected in biography - John S Young Jr

Date Contributor Update
07 June 2021 14:20:18 Kickapoo Changes to description
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Punctuation changed for clarity - John S Young Jr

Date Contributor Update
07 June 2021 14:18:10 Kickapoo Changes to description
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Wording and punctuation altered for clarity - John S Young Jr

Date Contributor Update
06 June 2021 18:39:20 Kickapoo Changes to description
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Puctuation for clarity.

Date Contributor Update
06 June 2021 18:37:01 Kickapoo Changes to description
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American Air museum In Britain

Date Contributor Update
06 June 2021 17:07:50 Kickapoo Changes to markings
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Best Web - B-24 - 'Raunchy'

Date Contributor Update
06 June 2021 17:06:11 Kickapoo Changes to production block number, markings, description and place associations
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Black Sunday - Michael Hill The Great Ground-Air battle Of 1 August 1943 - James Dugan & Carroll Stewart Best Web - B-24 - 'Raunchy'

Date Contributor Update
18 May 2021 19:24:26 jmoore43 Changes to description
Sources

Added punctuation in the "Summary biography" to aid clarity.

Date Contributor Update
02 February 2021 03:50:07 Kickapoo Changes to aircraft associations
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Into The Fire - Duane Schultz

Date Contributor Update
02 February 2021 03:48:18 Kickapoo Changes to aircraft associations
Sources

The Great Ground-Air Battle Of 1 August 1943 - James Dugan & Carroll Stewart

Date Contributor Update
02 February 2021 03:44:48 Kickapoo Changes to aircraft associations
Sources

The Great Ground-Air Battle Of 1 August 1943 - James Dugan & Carroll Stewart ---- Black Sunday - Michael Hill

Date Contributor Update
02 February 2021 03:41:45 Kickapoo Changes to aircraft associations
Sources

The Great Ground-Air Battle Of 1 August 1943 - James Dugan & Carroll Stewart

Date Contributor Update
02 February 2021 03:39:40 Kickapoo Changes to aircraft associations
Sources

The Great Ground-Air Battle Of 1 August 1943 - James Dugan & Carroll Stewart

Date Contributor Update
02 February 2021 03:34:41 Kickapoo Changes to aircraft associations
Sources

Black Sunday - Michael Hill

Date Contributor Update
02 February 2021 03:31:28 Kickapoo Changes to nicknames and aircraft associations
Sources

Black Sunday - Michael Hill

Date Contributor Update
02 February 2021 03:29:45 Kickapoo Changes to aircraft associations, unit associations and person associations
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Black Sunday - Michael Hill

Date Contributor Update
15 December 2020 12:10:59 Kickapoo Changes to description and person associations
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Black Sunday - Michael Hill

Date Contributor Update
02 December 2020 10:27:14 Kickapoo Changes to description
Sources

Ploesti The Great Air-Ground Battle of 1 August 1943 - James Dugan & Carroll Stewart

Date Contributor Update
17 October 2020 14:06:38 Kickapoo Changes to description
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Black Sunday -- Michael Hill ---- Into The Fire -- Duane Schultz

Date Contributor Update
17 October 2020 14:04:01 Kickapoo Changes to description
Sources

Black Sunday -- Michael Hill ---- Into The Fire -- Duane Schultz

Date Contributor Update
17 October 2020 13:55:29 Kickapoo Changes to description
Sources

Black Sunday -- Michael Hill ---- Into The Fire -- Duane Schultz

Date Contributor Update
21 November 2016 04:46:16 466thHistorian Changes to nicknames and place associations
Sources

http://www.taracopp.com/98th-Bombardment-Group-WWII

Date Contributor Update
13 March 2015 16:58:03 Al_Skiff Created entry with serial number, aircraft type, production block number, manufacturer, nicknames, description, events, unit associations, mission associations and media associations
Sources

AAM Database.

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