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William Amos Whitcomb

Military

Assigned to 334BS, 95BG, 8AF USAAF. Bill Thomas crew. 23 x combat missions.

7-Apr-43, B-17 42-3090 'Taint-a-bird' force landed near Clonakilty, County Cork Ireland. Crew was safe. RTD

B-17 42-3267 ditched in Bay of Biscay out of fuel 28-Jun-43. All on board returned. RTD

Shot down 29-Nov-43 in B-17 42-6039 'Wildfire', Prisoner of War (POW). MACR 1560

Awards: AM (OLC), POW, WWII Victory, EAME (2 x Battle Stars).

Service

People

  • Leslie Palmer

    Military | Lieutenant | Pilot | 95th Bomb Group
    Shot down 29 November 1943 in B-17 #42-6039, Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • William Thomas

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 95th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 334BS, 95BG, 8AF USAAF. 27 x combat missions. ...

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Units served with

  • 8th Air Force

    8th Air Force


    Eighth Air Force Bomber Command became the Eighth Air Force on February 1944, it oversaw bombardment of strategic targets in Europe until 1945. ...

  • 95th Bomb Group

    95th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 95th Bomb Group was the only Eighth Air Force Group to be awarded three Distinguished Unit Citations. The first, shared by all four Bomb Wing Groups, was for the bombing of an aircraft factory under intense enemy fire at Regensburg on 17 August...

  • 334th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 42-29787 'Wilder Nell II'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 18/2/43; Salina 5/3/43; Gulfport 31/3/43; Assigned 334BS/95BG [BG-F] Alconbury 15/4/43; Framlingham 12/5/43; Horham 15/6/43; 3m, transferred 326BS/92BG [JW- ] Alconbury 6/8/43, the transferred 525BS/379BG [FR-E] Kimbolton 4/9/43;...

  • 42-30219

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 30/4/43; Smoky Hill 12/5/43; Bangor 6/6/43; Assigned 334BS/95BG [BG-J] Horham 15/6/43; 6m, battle damaged Oschersleben 28/7/43 with Bill Thomas, rest unknown (7 Returned to Duty); Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Carl Cameron,...

  • 42-30300 'Hell N Back'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 11/5/43; Gore 24/5/43; Smoky Hill 25/5/43; Kearney 27/5/43; Dow Fd 2/6/43; Assigned 303BG Molesworth 16/6/43; transferred 334BS/95BG [BG-C] Horham 17/6/43; with E.L. Lemke force landed RAF St Eval 28/6/43; 15m, Missing in Action...

  • 42-3090 'T'aint A Bird'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 6/2/43; en route to UK aircraft force landed Clonakilty, N. Ireland 7/4/43 with Bill Thomas, Co-pilot: Jim Stapleton, Navigator: Bill Prochaska, Bombardier: Collis Hayes, Ball turret gunner: Floyd Thompson frost-bitten feet, Radio...

  • 42-3267 'Harley Charley'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 15/4/43; Dow Fd 28/5/43; Assigned 334BS/95BG [BG-A] Framlingham 28/5/43; Horham 15/6/43; (2m) Missing in Action St Nazaire 28/6/43 with Bill Thomas, Co-pilot: Jim Stapleton, Navigator: Collis Haynes, Bombardier: Bill Prochaska, Flight...

  • 42-6039 'Blondie III'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Long Beach 30/6/43; Amarillo 18/7/43; Dallas 9/8/43; Assigned 334BS/95BG [BG-H] Horham 14/10/43; 5m, Missing in Action 29/11/43 with Les Palmer, Co-pilot: Ray Grass, Bombardier: Joe Kolar, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Joe Wilbert, Radio...

Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 78

    28 July 1943
    The German aircraft industry at Kassel (Fieseler works) and Oscherleben, Germany are the primary targets of this mission. 182 B-17s from: 91BG (20); 92BG (17); 303BG (20); 305BG (21); 306BG (24); 351BG (21); 379BG (19); 381BG (20); and 384BG (20) are...

Associated Place

  • Horham

    Military site : airfield
    Horham airfield was planned and built for RAF use, but handed over to the Eighth Air Force and used initially by the 47th Bomb Group. When they joined the Twelfth Air Force in January 1943, it became home to the B-26 Marauders of the 323rd Bomb Group....

  • Stalag XVII-B

    Other location

  • Dulag Luft 12

    Other location

Events

Event Location Date
Born Mecosta, MI 4 February 1915

Son of Lena Whitcomb.

Enlisted Kalamazoo, MI 20 June 1942

Kalamazoo, Michigan

Based Horham 1943 – 29 November 1943

Assigned to 334BS, 95BG, 8AF USAAF.

Prisoner of War (POW) Krems an der Donau, Austria 29 November 1943 – May 1945

Prisoner of War (POW). Stalag XVIIb.

Baled out POW SE of Friesoythe, Germany 29 November 1943

Shot down 29-Nov-43 in B-17 42-6039 'Wildfire', Prisoner of War (POW). MACR 1560

Died 27 June 1966
Buried Maple Hill Cemetery Charlotte, Eaton County, MI July 1966

Maple Hill Cemetery
Charlotte, Eaton County, Michigan

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
26 July 2021 19:17:38 Al_Skiff Changes to middlename, service number, biography, awards, events, person associations, unit associations, place associations, aircraft associations and mission associations
Sources

https://www.fold3.com/image/659614198
https://www.fold3.com/record/89521895/william-a-whitcomb-wwii-army-enlis...
https://95thbg.mmsw.eu/person/7084
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/61267668/william-a-whitcomb

Date Contributor Update
08 January 2021 22:43:13 jmoore43 Changes to biography
Sources

Added a "-" to the A/C tail # in the "Summary biography" to aid clarity & consistency.

Date Contributor Update
08 January 2021 22:42:14 jmoore43 Changes to biography
Sources

Added a "-" to the A/C type in the "Summary biography" to aid clarity & consistency.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:27:41 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 1560 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database / Roll of Honor; MACR 1560, Losses of the 8th and 9th AFs Vol. 1 by Bishop and Hey pp. 101, 169, 391

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