Crew and Plane captured.

Discussion in 'WW2 General' started by teammaico, Dec 18, 2007.

  1. teammaico

    teammaico New Member

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    This is the Flatbush Floogie 42-97083 shot down 4-11-44. The guy with his elbows coving his face is my dad. Hope you all enjoy this one.
     

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  2. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Wow - great info!!! Any other info on the plane, the crew and your dad????
     
  3. drgondog

    drgondog Well-Known Member

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    I think this is it - Lt Tom Gardener a/c commander, MACR 3982, Jadebusen,GY - flak - 10 POW.

    3rd AD, 731BS/452BG.. bad day for crew. great day for all surviving.

    I noticed that another 3rd Div B-17 shot down that day was only two ships behind this one on the assy line... wonder what happened to '84'?
     
  4. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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    Very cool shots, thanks for sharing.
     
  5. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
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    Great pic's... how in the world did you get hold of them ?

    Charles
     
  6. teammaico

    teammaico New Member

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    MACR#3932
    1st/Lt Thomas Gardner Pilot
    2nd/Lt Carl West co/pilot
    2nd/Lt jacob Brown Nav.
    2nd/Lt Jack Bohman Bombardier
    T/Sgt Lee Varner Engineer (My dad, the guy with cowboy boots and his elbows covering his face)
    T/Sgt Lucius Birbeck Radio
    Sgt Raymond Stewart BT Gunner
    Sgt Henderson Head LW Gunner
    Sgt Alex Shewchuck RW Gunner
    Sgt Raymond Cutchall Tail Gunner

    Those 2 pictures have a long story and I want to share it with the world. That picture is of my dad's crew shot down 4-11-44 on Rostock mission. They set the plane down basically on a mud flat or beach. My dad is the guy near the back of the line, wearing cowboy boots and has his elbows up to cover the blood on his face. He was in the top turret when a second or third Flak shell exploded and blasted the left side of his face. He never saw out of his left eye after that. You can see a little blood on his forehead. My dad paid the german photographer $5.00 and a pack of smokes to mail a copy of those pictures to his mother to show he was OK. The guy did it. My grandmother knew my dad was alive before the government notified her he was MIA.
    Yes the entire crew lived. My dad went to stalag 17B and did the 250 kilometer force march.
    Getting back to the pictures. Before my dad died he was quite active in the POW scene and went all over America for reunions. He had the picture with him everywhere and was a member of the 452ng BG Club or brotherhood. After he died in 1992 we could no longer find those pictures. I have been thinking alot about my dad lately and a couple of weeks ago I started looking for what group he flew for and so on. So I just typed his name and POW on google and up pops Missing planes of the 452nd BG by Ed Hinrich and tells about my dads flight, mission, crew and crash. And one of the paragraphs mention this Phil Irwin who claims to have a picture of the crew and plane. So I looked up Ed Hinrich and called him and ask him about this guy Phil Irwin and if he has any contact information on Phil. He tells me the street he lives on Torquay Shiphay Devon UK. I find this guy via a photoposting site and ask them to please give him my email address so I can ask him about the photos. He contacts me Monday and sends me the JPG images via email Tuesday and is sending me the originals next week. It turns out he collected plane crash photos of German Plane crashes and has written a book about them. Anyway during one of his collecting trips to Germany he found my dad's photo in a LOT of original German government photos and buys the entire lot. It is unbeleivable that 63 years later some guy in england gives me a photo of my dad and plane crew all the way from England and he does not want a dime. He is a great man. Thats the story they all lived most went to Stalag 17B and others Luft 4 or whatever the spelling. Plane went down just west of shillig Germany. I have been checking almost every photo collecttion on the web and I have never seen any prisoner photos yet. This could be the only one left in the world.
    Jim
     
  7. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
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    The B-17 looks pretty well intact.... did the Germans salvage it ?

    Charles
     
  8. teammaico

    teammaico New Member

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    I don't know anything about that. At least 1 engine was trashed by flak. Notice the feathered prop on left side of aircraft. My dad was feathering the prop when they got hit again just above his turret. That is how he got hurt, blood on his face.
    Jim
     
  9. wilbur1

    wilbur1 Active Member

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    Iam glad to see stuff like this, it is a great story plus a tue life adventure for you and your father(granted he probably didnt want to much to do with it after the crash) but still great stuff. Thank You for sharing it!:)
     
  10. Wildcat

    Wildcat Well-Known Member

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    Great photo and story!!
     
  11. seesul

    seesul Active Member

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    Jim,

    where did you get this picture with Germans from? That´s rare...
     
  12. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Jim that was a great story - thanks for sharing it with us!
     
  13. ToughOmbre

    ToughOmbre Active Member

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    Very, very interesting story.

    Stuff like this needs to be passed down from generation to generation.

    Like the credit card ad says.....Priceless :!:

    TO
     
  14. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Thanks for sharing that with us. Very interesting.

    :salute: to your father and his crew.
     
  15. lesofprimus

    lesofprimus Active Member

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    Great stuff.... More people need to put this stuff up... Great info Bill, those MACRs sure do come in handy....
     
  16. Gnomey

    Gnomey World Travelling Doctor
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    Excellent photos and story!
     
  17. teammaico

    teammaico New Member

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  18. 452ndBGASec/Editor

    452ndBGASec/Editor New Member

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    Jim, I am the secretary/editor for the 452nd BG Association. I used the photos in the December issue with a large section on POW's. My newsletters are 40-50 pages. I actually came to this site to find a recently deceased member/veteran who was not listed as crew on Flatbush Floogie. Trying to tie it together.
    The 452nd BGA is still 650 members strong and have annual reunions.
     
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