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Author Topic: USAAF B-17 Crash nr Manston. 12th September 1944.  (Read 516 times)

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USAAF B-17 Crash nr Manston. 12th September 1944.
« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2017, 23:15:28 »
Boeing B-17G Flying Fortress 42-38093. 367th Bombardment Squadron, 306th Bombardment Group, 8th Air Force, US Army Air Force, based at Thurleigh Bedfordshire.
Pilot Lt Gordon L Donkin.

On the 12th September 1944 the 306th BG took part in a raid on the Ruhland oil refineries south of Berlin, part of a concentrated effort by the USAAF to destroy German fuel supplies.
367th BS sent nine aircraft, with Lt Donkin's 42-38093 as the lead aircraft of the lower group. North of Berlin the group came under heavy flak and fighter attack, 367 squadron losing four aircraft to fighters and 42-38093 badly shot up. In 42-38093 the tail gunner was killed, the radio operator and top turret gunner wounded and one of the engines shot up. The aircraft continued to the target and on the return flight came under renewed fighter attack with another engine and the intercom put out of action.

Escorted part of the way by P-51 Mustangs 42-38093, now with just a single engine, crossed the English Channel rapidly loosing height. As soon as the English coast was crossed Donkin ordered the crew to bail out but only four had time to do so. On the final approach to Manston the last engine quit and the aircraft crash landed on a smooth area, crossed a ditch and knocked down a search light tower before coming to a halt, then catching fire, the bombardier being killed in the crash.

The crew.

Lt Gordon L Donkin: pilot. Injured in crash.
Captain Donald C MacDonald: Co-pilot. Injured in crash.
2nd Lt Gerald A Weiler: Navigator. Injured in crash.
Technical Sgt Clarence B Tuers: Flight engineer/top turret gunner. Wounded in action.
T Sgt Willard M Colvin: Radio operator. Wia.
Staff Sgt Norman Morrow: Ball turret gunner. Injured in jump.
Sgt Lawrence G Joslin: Waist gunner.
Capt Arthur S Hostettler: Bombardier. Killed in crash.
S Sgt Jack B Eppler: Tail gunner. Killed in action.

7 crew returned to duty.

Norman Morrow has given a personal account of the raid @, Norman/Morrow, Norman.pdf

There is a piece about Gerald Weiler by his Great Grandson @'s rpt re Gerald Weiler.pdf
This includes two photos of the crash.
Padstow May Song Lisa Knapp


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