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B-17 Flying Fortress

Delivered Long Beach 18/9/43; Scott 27/10/43; Assigned 614BS/401BG [IW-M] Deenethorpe 3/11/43; transferred 487BG Lavenham 15/7/44; then to 860BS/493BG Debach, on local flight 16/8/44 with Capt Wesley Love, Co-pilot: Charles Boyce, Navigator: Fred Hughes, Bombardier: Harry Trumbo, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Bill Gittins, Radio Operator: Maurice Spiegle, Ball turret gunner: John West, Waist gunner: Howard Clayton,Tail gunner: Stan Wajda (9 Returned to Duty); on third landing aircraft went down on belly skidding to a stop; Salvaged 16/8/44. WIDDLE TWINKLE.

Probably being used for B-17 transition training.



  • 493rd Bomb Group

    493rd Bomb Group

    The 493rd Bomb Group was the last Eighth Air Force Group to become operational, flying their first combat mission from Debach, Suffolk, on D-Day, 6 June 1944. The Group was known as "the Fighting 493rd", named by their Commanding Officer Colonel Elbert...


  • Debach

    Military site : airfield
    Debach was one of the last Eighth Air Force heavy bomber bases to be completed. It was built by the 820th Engineer Battalion (Aviation) between late '43 and early '44. Pronounced locally as 'Deb-idge', the base was built to a class A standard with...

  • Deenethorpe

    Military site : airfield
    Deenethorpe was a base purpose-built for American heavy bombers, with the Class A regulation 2,000 and 1,400-yard runways. All the buildings on site,such as the accommodation and administrative blocks, were temporary. In December 1943, several local...

  • Lavenham

    Military site : airfield
    Lavenham was built as a standard USAAF bomber airfield, with fifty hardstandings, T2 hangars and 2,000 and 1,400 feet runways. John Laing and Son Ltd. carried out the work in 1943, and the airfield opened in April 1944. The 487th Bomb Group occupied...


Not yet known


Date Contributor Update
23 August 2019 19:29:11 Darren Jelley Changes to nicknames, description and unit associations

493rd BG Archives

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:40:50 AAM AAM ingest

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log