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42-38035

B-17 Flying Fortress

Delivered Cheyenne 21 November 1943. Kearney 7 December 1943. Presque Isle 12 December 1943. Assigned 550BS/385BG [SG-B] Great Ashfield 16 December 1943. Mid-air collision on 1 March 1945 (mission to Ulm, Germany) with 43-38273. Had its tail cut off and crashed on a farm near Slijpe, Belgium.
8 Killed : Pilot Charles J. Armbuster, Co-Pilot Robert W. Davis, Navigator Howard M. Tripp, Gunner Robert A. Mason, Top Turret Gunner Allan M. Saarnio, Radio Operator John R. Stringi, Ball Turret Gunner Arthur W. Herold and Waist Gunner Charles J. Slavin. Tail Gunner Joe J. Jones, who was trapped in his turret, floated down in the tail and was the sole survivor.

Service

Aircraft

  • 43-38273 Sugar Jo

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 15 JUly 1944. Kearney 24 July 1944.Grenier 8 August 1944. Assigned 550BS/385BG [SG-S] Gt Ashfield 13 August 1944. Mid-air collision on 1 March 1945 (mission to Ulm, Germany.) 8 killed : Pilot Alexander Rusecky; Co-Pilot George C....

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Units

  • 385th Bomb Group

    385th Bomb Group

    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...

  • 550th Bomb Squadron

People

  • Charles Abney

    Military | Staff Sergeant (3rd Grade) | Top Turret Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    Charles Abney was Top Turret Gunner on B-17G #43-38273 involved in a mid-air collision over Ostend, Belgium with B-17 #42-38035 (also 550th BS) on 1 March 1945 (mission to Ulm, Germany.) Crashed near Ostend, Belgium. KIA

  • Charles Armbruster

    Military | Lieutenant | Pilot | 385th Bomb Group
    Killed in Action (KIA) in mid-air collision in Belgian airspace in 'Mr. Lucky' B-17 A/C #42-38035. Collided with another 385th BG A/C #43-38273.

  • George Burger

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 385th Bomb Group
    George Burger was Co-Pilot on B-17G #43-38273 involved in a mid-air collision over Ostend, Belgium with B-17 #42-38035 (also 550th BS) on 1 March 1945 (mission to Ulm, Germany.) Crashed near Ostend, Belgium. Killed in Action (KIA)

  • Robert Davis

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 385th Bomb Group
    Robert Davis was Co-Pilot on B-17G #42-38035 involved in a mid-air collision over Ostend, Belgium with B-17 #43-38273 (also 550th BS) on 1 March 1945 (mission to Ulm, Germany.) Crashed on a farm in Slijpe, Belgium. Killed in Action (KIA)

  • William Fife

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 385th Bomb Group
    Flew 32 missions from March to September 1944. DFC/ AM w/ 5 Oak Leaf Cluster/ ETO w/ battle star

  • Arthur Herold

    Military | Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    Arthur Herold was Ball Turret Gunner on B-17G #42-38035 involved in a mid-air collision over Ostend, Belgium with B-17 #43-38273 (also 550th BS) on 1 March 1945 (mission to Ulm, Germany.) Crashed on a farm in Slijpe, Belgium. Killed in Action (KIA)

  • Joe Jones

    Military | Major | Tail Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    Joe Jones Jr was Tail gunner on B-17 "Mr Lucky" 42-38035 on the 1 April 1945 mission to Ulm, Germany. Flying on the crew's 22nd mission in the low element approaching the coast of Belgium, cloud banks rose to more than 13,000ft. ...

  • Robert Keenan

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 385th Bomb Group
    Killed in Action (KIA) - March 1, 1945 in a mid-air collision over Ostend, Belgium of his B-17 Serial 43-38273 with 42-38035 of the same formation. Awards: Air Medal, Oak Leaf Cluster, Purple Heart

  • Stanley Lejkowski

    Military | Sergeant | Waist Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    Stanley Lejkowski was Waist Gunner on B-17G #42-38035 involved in a mid-air collision over Ostend, Belgium with B-17 #43-38273 (also 550th BS) on 1 March 1945 (mission to Ulm, Germany.) He was the sole survivor of the crash and was cared for in a...

  • Robert Mason

    Military | Sergeant | Gunner | 385th Bomb Group
    Robert Mason was a Gunner on B-17G #42-38035 involved in a mid-air collision over Ostend, Belgium with B-17 #43-38273 (also 550th BS) on 1 March 1945 (mission to Ulm, Germany.) Crashed on a farm in Slijpe, Belgium. Killed in Action (KIA)

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Missions

  • 857

    1 March 1945

Places

  • 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...

  • Presque Isle Army Airfield

    Military site : airfield

Events

Event Location Date
Failed to Return (FTR) near Slijpe, Belgium 1 March 1945

crashed after mid-air collision over Belgium with another 550th BS B-17 - Serial 43-38273

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
30 November 2017 14:50:20 ED-BB Changes to description, events, unit associations, person associations and mission associations
Sources

MACR 16037

Date Contributor Update
27 December 2015 19:28:35 jmchristel Changes to nicknames
Sources

Added nickname

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:40:47 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 16036 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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