B-17 H (later SB-17G)

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Aug 10, 2006
I'm looking for information on a B-17 H, one of the 130 B-17Gs modified to carry the Higgins Rescue Boat. The aircraft was named the Flyn' Gator and had the name and the picture of a "gator" with wings painted under the cockpit. The timeframe is about 1945. I would like to identify the aircraft serial nuimber and the crew members. If it is acceptable protocall I can attach a picture of the aircraft and the crew.

The youngest member of the crew is a 17 year old (at that time) who would become an officer, a pilot, and serve 30 years in the USAF. He served, in combat, in WWII, Korea, and lastly in Viet Nam. He recently died and the photo of the B-17 H was discovered. As this is a rare aircraft and was a "new" concept toward the end of WWII there were few crews and most, if not all, went through the same training sites. The aforementioned crew member is Capt. Martin J. Joyce USAF Ret. (then a 17 year old private). Any information, about this B-17 H and/or the B-17 H and the crews, e.g. training, missions, etc. in general, would be helpful and very much appreciated.

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