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Wayne E Harker

Military

SGT Wayne P. Harker was assigned as the Left Waist Gunner with 1LT Lawrence G. Dunnica's crew on B-17F 41-24541 "Spook", 303BG/358BS sometime after it arrived at Molesworth on 24-Oct-42. Flew 11 Operations - 4 Aborted, one of the operations was as Right Waist Gunner in B-17F 41-24577 "Hell's Angels", 303BG/358BS (See Biography events)

16-Feb-43 - Shot down in B-17F 41-24541 'Spook', 303Bg/358BS while serving as Left Waist Gunner. Aircraft was attacked by ME-109s when it descended to assist another aircraft. Went down in Channel off Brest Peninsula. The target was St. Nazaire. Killed in Action (KIA). 4 crew members survived to become Prisoner of War (POW)s

Air Medal, Purple Heart

Service

Units served with

  • 303rd Bomb Group

    303rd Bomb Group

    Group
    The 303rd Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated on 3-Feb-1942 at Pendleton Field, Oregon. They assembled at Gowen Field, Idaho on 11-February 1942 where it conducted flight training until 12-Jun-1942. The Group then moved to Alamogordo Field, New...

  • 358th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 41-24541 Spook

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17F 41-24541 "Spook" was assigned 358BS/303BG [VK-G] Kellogg Fd 14-Sep-42; Molesworth 16-Sep-42;The aircraft participated in 12 Operations - 4 Aborted (See Biography events) ...

  • 41-24577 Hell's Angels

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17F 41-24577 "Hells Angels" was assigned to 358BS/303BG [VK-D] Bangor 14-Oct-42; arrived at Molesworth 24-Oct-42; in landing accident with Irl E. Baldwin 26-Apr-43; slated to RAF 100 Squadron, but retained by 803rd BS ATD (American Training...

Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 22

    22 November 1942
    The U-Boat pens at Lorient, France are the Primary (P) target of this mission. A combined force of 68 B-17s despatched from 91BG (18), 303BG (18) 305BG (23) and 306BG (9) against the target but a 10/10 could cover prevents all but 11 from 303BG from...

  • VIII Bomber Command 24

    6 December 1942
    The German airfield of Drucat at Abbeville, France is the primary target for 19 B-24s despatched from 44th Bomb Group but are recalled. One squadron of 6 does not hear the recall and proceeds to the target, 1 B-24 MIA. ...

  • VIII Bomber Command 25

    12 December 1942
    This mission is composed of two elements. First element: The German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France is the Primary (P) target for a force of 78 B-17s despatched from 91BG (19), 303BG (20), 305BG (21) and 306BG (18). However, the target is...

  • VIII Bomber Command 26

    20 December 1942
    The German Air Depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France is the Primary (P) target for a combined force of 80 B-17s despatched by 91BG (17), 303BG (21); 305BG (23) and 306BG (19). 60 B-17 are effective on the target, but 7 are MIA and 1 is DBR. ...

  • VIII Bomber Command 27

    30 December 1942
    The U-Boat pens at Lorient, France are the target for this mission. A combined force of 77 B-17s are despatched by 91BG (19); 303BG (16); 305BG (13) and 306BG (18). Only 40 are effective on the target. All but 1 B-17 from the 18 despatched by 306BG is...

  • VIII Bomber Command 28

    3 January 1943
    The U-Boat pens at St. Nazaire, France are once again the target for this mission. This is proving to be a particularly difficult target to destroy due to its massive, reinforced concrete design. It consists of 14 individual pens connected together in...

  • VIII Bomber Command 29

    13 January 1943
    The primary target for this mission is the Atclier d'Hellemmes locomotive works, associated steel works and the railroad marshalling yards at Lille, France. The attacking force is composed of 72 B-17s from: 91BG (13); 303BG (19); 305BG (23) and 306BG ...

  • VIII Bomber Command 30

    23 January 1943
    The port area and U-Boat pens at Lorient, France are the primary target for this mission. 305th Bombardment Group is selected as the lead group, but condensation on the bombsight of the lead aircraft in the Group prevents the 305BG from bombing Lorient...

  • VIII Bomber Command 33

    4 February 1943
    The marshalling yards at Hamm, Germany are again designated as the primary target for this mission follwing the abortive attempt of 2-Feb-43. However, weather and extreme cold frustrate this operation also. The main attacking force consists of 65 B-17s...

  • VIII Bomber Command 34

    14 February 1943
    The marshalling yards at Hamm, Germany are once again slated at the primary target for this mission. A force of 74 B-17s are despatched: 91BG (20); 303BG (17); 305BG (17); 306BG (20), but weather once again forces the mission to be recalled before...

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Associated Place

  • Molesworth

    Military site : airfield
    Molesworth was one of the early stations used by the Eighth Air Force in the UK, first occupied by the 15th Bomb Squadron’s Douglas Bostons in June 1942. Built in 1940 and extended and improved in 1942, Molesworth is most associated with the 303rd...

Events

Event Location Date
Born Ohio
Mission #1 SGT Wayne P. Harker w/B-17F 41-24541, 303BG/358BS Lorient, France 22 November 1942

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24541 "Spook", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the U-Boat pens at Lorient, France (RTB OK).

Mission #2 SGT Wayne P. Harker w/B-17F 41-24541, 303BG/358BS Lille, France 6 December 1942

Served as Tail Gunner on B-17F 41-24541 "Spook", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the carriage and wagon works at Lille, France (RTB OK)

Mission #3 SGT Wayne P. Harker w/B-17F 41-24541, 303BG/358BS - Aborted Rouen, France 12 December 1942

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24541 "Spook", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the railroad marshalling yards at Rouen, France, but mechanical failures forced the Pilot to abort the mission (RTB OK).

Mission #4 SGT Wayne P. Harker w/B-17F 41-24541, 303BG/358BS Romilly-sur-Seine, France 20 December 1942

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24541 "Spook", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the German air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine, France (RTB OK)

Mission #5 SGT Wayne P. Harker w/B-17F 41-24541, 303BG/358BS - Aborted Lorient, France 30 December 1942

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24541 "Spook", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the U-Boat pens at Lorient, France, but mechanical failures forced the Pilot to abort the mission (RTB OK)

Mission #6 SGT Wayne P. Harker w/B-17F 41-24541, 303BG/358BS - Aborted Saint-Nazaire, France 3 January 1943

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24541 "Spook", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the torpedo storage areas as St. Nazaire, France, but mechanical failures forced the Pilot to abort the mission (RTB OK)

Mission #7 SGT Wayne P. Harker w/B-17F 41-24541, 303BG/358BS Lille, France 13 January 1943

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24541 "Spook", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the Five Company Locomotives Works at Lille, France (RTB OK).

Mission #8 SGT Wayne P. Harker w/B-17F 41-24541, 303BG/358BS Lorient, France 23 January 1943

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24541 "Spook", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the port area of Lorient, France (RTB OK).

Mission #9 SGT Wayne P. Harker w/B-17F 41-24577, 303BG/358BS Osnabrück, Germany 4 February 1943

Served as Right Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24577 "Hell's Angels", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the industrial areas NW of Osnabruck, Germany (RTB OK).

Mission #10 SGT Wayne P. Harker w/B-17F 41-24541, 303BG/358BS - Aborted Hamm, Germany 14 February 1943

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24541 "Spook", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the industrial areas of Hamm, Germany but weathed forced a recall of the entire despatch from 303BG (RTB OK)

Killed in Action (KIA) English Channel 16 February 1943

Killed when aircraft was shot down by enemy aircraft and crashed into the English Channel off of the Brest Peninsula, France. His remains have never been recovered.

Mission #11 SGT Wayne P. Harker w/B-17F 41-24541, 303BG/358BS KIA Saint-Nazaire, France 16 February 1943

Served as Left Waist Gunner on B-17F 41-24541 "Spook", 303BG/358BS on a mission to bomb the port area of St. Nazaire, France. The aircraft was shot down by German fighters and he was Killed in Action (KIA)

Commemorated Saint-James, France 1945

Commemorated on the Wall of the Missing, Brittany American Cemetery.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 20:07:36 Lee8thbuff Changes to biography and events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015. Added Description on assignment details and removed those two event from the Biography events based on 303BG crew page on Dunnica,

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 19:40:31 Lee8thbuff Changes to biography and events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015 Added Mission #11 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 16-Feb-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/016.pdf

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 19:37:07 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015 Added Mission #10 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 14-Feb-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/015.pdf

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 19:34:08 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015 Added Mission #9 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 4-Feb-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/014.pdf

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 19:29:01 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015 Added Mission #8 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 23-Jan-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/011.pdf

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 19:26:07 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015 Added Mission #7 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 13-Jan-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/010.pdf

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 19:22:24 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015 Added Mission #6 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 3-Jan-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/009.pdf

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 19:19:12 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015 Added Mission #5 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 30-Dec-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/008.pdf

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 19:15:38 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015 Added Mission #4 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 20-Dec-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/007.pdf

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 19:12:41 Lee8thbuff Changes to events, aircraft associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015 Added Mission #3 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 12-Dec-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/006.pdf

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 19:06:20 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015 Added Mission #2 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 6-Dec-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/005.pdf

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 19:03:11 Lee8thbuff Changes to events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015 Added Mission #1 event per 303BG website Mission Report of 22-Nov-42, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/missionreports/003.pdf

Date Contributor Update
18 August 2015 18:58:50 Lee8thbuff Changes to role, biography and events
Sources

Lee Cunningham 18-Aug-2015. Added Operation participation to Summary Biography and Assigned to AIrcraft and Arrived at Station events per Lawrence G. Dunnica crew page, Gary Moncur, Historian: http://www.303rdbg.com/c-358-dunnica.html

Date Contributor Update
19 February 2015 19:23:53 Lee8thbuff Changes to biography, awards, events, place associations and mission associations
Sources

Lee Cunningham 19-Feb-2015 . Confirmed SN added KIA event per MACR 15476; Added decorations and Commemorated event per American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) record; Made connections to Place and Mission within existing website data; Added crew position and minor edits to Biography based on "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces" Stan Bishop & John A. Hey MBE.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:27:12 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 15476 / MACR 15476, Losses of the 8th and 9th AFs Vol. I by Bishop and Hey p. 77, NARA web site, Might in Flight Daily Diary of Hell's Angels by Harry Gobrect pp. 137-8 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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