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42-31152

B-17 Flying Fortress

Delivered Cheyenne 25/9/43; Gr Island 8/10/43; Nashville 12/10/43; Assigned 339BS/96BG [QJ-E] Snetterton 14/10/43; Missing in Action on mission to METZ, France, 1/5/44, with Eugene W. Dingledine; Co-pilot: George R. Smith; Navigator: James K. MacConnell; Bombardier: DiNuncio B. Streett; Flight engineer/Top turret gunner: Vito A. Champa; Radio Operator: John R. Glass; Assistant Radio Operator-Ball turret gunner: John R. Smith; Assistant armorer-Left waist gunner: Otto Strange Jr; Right waist gunner: Lester M. Hutchinson; Armorer-Tail gunner: Gerald E. Sorensen. Flak KOd two engines going out and another on return, crashed near Lanquesaint, a few km NE of Ath, Belgium. Missing Air Crew Report 4237.
James MacConnell, Vito Champa, John Glass and Otto Strange were almost immediately made prisoner. Eugene Dingledine, DiNuncio Streett and John R. Smith were helped in their evasion by the Belgian COMET evasion network, but were later arrested. Lester Hutchinson and George Smith remained hidden in Belgium with the help of COMET and returned to Allied military control after the Liberation of Belgium in September 1944.
Gerald Sorensen joined the Belgian Resistance and was killed, together with Belgian Roger ABEELS, in a skirmish with retreating German troops at Marcq-lez-Enghien on 3 September 1944. They are buried side by side in the Ganshoren-Brussels communal cemetery. See www.evasioncomete.be website and search on 42-31152

Service

Units

People

  • Vito Champa

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Engineer-Top Turret Gunner | 96th Bomb Group
    Shot down 1 May 1944 in B-17 #4231152. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Eugene Dingledine

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Pilot | 96th Bomb Group
    Shot down by Flak over Luxemburg and crashed near Ath Belgium 1 May 1944 in B-17 #4231152. Managed to evade before being captured. Prisoner of War (POW). See his page at http://www.evasioncomete.be/fdingleew.html

  • John Glass

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Radio Operator | 96th Bomb Group
    Shot down 1 May 1944 in B-17 #4231152. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Lester Hutchinson

    Military | Sergeant | Assistant Engineer- Right Waist Gunner | 96th Bomb Group
    Shot down 1 May 1944 in B-17 42-31152. Evaded with the help of the Belgian COMET evasion network. See www.evasioncomete.be >>> Fiches tab.

  • James MacConnell

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 96th Bomb Group
    Shot down 1 May 1944 in B-17 #42-31152. Prisoner of War (POW). Member of the Eugene W. Dingledine crew. Made Prisoner of War. See entry for Eugene W. Dingledine at http://www.evasioncomete.be/fdingleew.html POW

  • George Smith

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 96th Bomb Group
    Shot down 1 May 1944 in B-17 #42-31152, Evaded (EVD). See his page at http://www.evasioncomete.be/fsmithgr.html

  • John Smith

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Assistant Radio Operator - Ball Turret Gunner | 96th Bomb Group
    Shot down 1 May 1944 in B-17 #4231152. Managed to evade capture with the help of the Belgian COMET evasion network. Arrested 14 July 1944. Prisoner of War (POW). See https://www.evasioncomete.be/fsmithjr.html

  • Gerald Sorensen

    Military | Sergeant | Armorer - Tail Gunner | 96th Bomb Group
    Shot down 1 May 1944 in B-17 #4231152. Managed to evade with the help of the Belgian COMET evasion network. Killed in Action (KIA) on 3 September 1944, fighting with the Belgian Resistance. See his page at https://www.evasioncomete.be/fsorensge.html

  • Otto Stange Jr

    Military | Sergeant | Assistant armorer - Left Waist Gunner | 96th Bomb Group
    Shot down 1 May 1944 in B-17 #42-31152, Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • DiNuncio Streett

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Bombardier | 96th Bomb Group
    DiNuncio Barbara STREETT was a bombardier. Shot down on the 1 May 1944 mission to Metz, France, he managed to evade with the help of the Belgian COMET evasion network, only to be arrested later, spending the rest of the war in German prison camps and...

Missions

  • 333

    1 May 1944

Places

  • Snetterton Heath

    Military site : airfield
    Intended to be an RAF bomber base, construction of Snetterton Heath started in Autumn 1942 but continued until mid-1943, because it was extended after allocation as an Eighth Air Force bomber base. It had eventually three concrete runways, 50...

Events

Event Location Date
Failed to Return (FTR) Belgium 1 May 1944

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
02 April 2021 13:12:34 ED-BB Changes to description and events
Sources

Added website address in Bio

Date Contributor Update
26 March 2015 11:58:06 ED-BB Changes to description
Sources

MACR 4237
Research on crew members for website www.evasioncomete.org

Date Contributor Update
26 March 2015 11:36:10 ED-BB Changes to markings, place associations and mission associations
Sources

MACR 4237
Research on crew members who were helped in their evasion by the belgian COMET network

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:40:36 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log / MACR 4237 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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