Egon Mayer gun cam footage?

Discussion in 'Basic' started by aquarya, Oct 20, 2010.

  1. aquarya

    aquarya New Member

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    Greetings from a first-time poster (girl).

    While in Normandy this year for the D-day celebrations I ran across the story of an American B-24 gunner who had been shot down over Bouville, France on January 7, 1944 after making a bombing run on Ludwigshafen following a group of B-17's.

    I tracked him down here in the US, and just interviewed him, but could use some help in further research I'd like to do to write a book about his story.

    It could be that Egon Mayer shot this plane down (seems to be corroborated by a list I found on the Internet of 4 kills Mayer made on B-24's between 1300 and 1330 on Jan 7, 1944, one over Bouville). Does anyone know if I can track down any flight records from Mayer in Germany or elsewhere for this day? I speak fluent German, and will be there in November, but don't know where to start.

    The sole survivor I interviewed thinks rockets, not flack, mg fire or cannons, hit the plane, but he can't be sure as he was a little busy trying to survive. The first hit came from 1200 from the sun and wiped out the forward crew. The top gunner only got two short bursts in before being killed. One to two seconds later the wing with #4 engine ripped off the plane on raging fire. Approx 4-5 seconds later the plane exploded.The gunner, the lone survivor, blacked out and woke up seconds later in a field of debris at about 20,000 feet. Although wounded, he was finally able to pull the rip cord, and French Resistance were immediately on the scene to smuggle him to safety. After 3 months on the ground in France, he was successfully rescued by the British Navy.

    He is really wondering if they were wiped out solely by rockets. I was wondering if the FW190's were supplied with gun cams, and if so, if I could try to find the footage of the shooting down of this B-24 at 1315 that day.

    Any thoughts? I really appreciate any help and/or direction you can provide.

    In gratitude.
     
  2. evangilder

    evangilder "Shooter"
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    Finding specific gun camera footage can be like looking for a specific needle in a stack of needles. A couple of places to look into would be the bomb-group association that the B-24 was part of. Most of the bomb groups have associations, some have better info than others. The archives in Germany may have more info that you can glean, but I am not familiar with working with their archives.
     
  3. CharlesBronson

    CharlesBronson Well-Known Member

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    Hello aquarya

    As mr Evangilder said is a complicated bussinnes. Yes, the FW-190 had guncamera since the first operative variant FW-190A1 introduced in July 1941. If the dates and prossesing times of the 16mm film inside the Luftwaffe fighters were the correct ones, the Mayer guncam should be one ensembled inside this german newsreel, the "Die Deutsche Wochenschau" number 698, of 20th january 1944.

    http://www.archive.org/download/194...944-01-20-Die-Deutsche-Wochenschau-Nr.698.avi
     
  4. Matt308

    Matt308 Glock Perfection
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    Why this one specifically, CB?
     
  5. CharlesBronson

    CharlesBronson Well-Known Member

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    #5 CharlesBronson, Oct 20, 2010
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2010
    Well, she wrote january 7, so I suppose the time comsumed to developed and edit the film made it was only ready to show in the reich cinemas in that date. The Wochenschaus were showed every 7 days, one a week and I dont think it was ( if ever) in the day 13th wochenschau.
     
  6. Matt308

    Matt308 Glock Perfection
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    Okay. Going off the stereotype that Germans operate like clockwork, I can't begin to argue your reasoning. But seems like a shot in the dark to me at these later stages of the war. But then again, what do I know. Nada mucho.
     
  7. CharlesBronson

    CharlesBronson Well-Known Member

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    #7 CharlesBronson, Oct 21, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2010
    Yea, is a shot in the dark, but is better than nothing.I dont pretend to be an expert in german newsreels but I tell you that i ve seeing the footage once and once again trying to penetrate in the 3rd Reich idiosincracy. Just today I had dowloaded and reviewed the Woche 697 ( actually showcased in januery 12th 1944) and there are no guncams in that, the guncams appeared in the following week, so the 698 woche must be the closest.

    The complete disruption of Germany didnt come after D-day, the Wochenschau previous to this date always were more than 20 minute or so, and after June 1944, rarely surpassed the 13 minutes in lenght...coincidence ?, I dont think so.
     
  8. Matt308

    Matt308 Glock Perfection
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    Sounds more logical than my non-answer. :thumbup:
     
  9. aquarya

    aquarya New Member

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    CB that is such a wonderful possibility. I had almost given up because I was speaking with a museum historian who said that almost all of the gun cam footage had been destroyed in bombing raids. That may be true, but if it made the Wochenschau then it would have been preserved! Brilliant!

    This one shows a raid from January 11, unfortunately.

    But still a great idea nonetheless.

    Thank you!
     
  10. CharlesBronson

    CharlesBronson Well-Known Member

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    #10 CharlesBronson, Nov 2, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2010
    My pleasure. Probably so, evidently only a small pergentage of the german fighters guncam film of ww2 has survided but there are plenty to realize how hard was the fight, specially against the west allied bomber formations.

    I will investigate more about it, the woche of earlier week ( nr 697) have no guncam in it and the later ( nr 699) only a brief footage of the night fighters so...

    woche 697
    http://www.archive.org/download/194...944-01-12-Die-Deutsche-Wochenschau-Nr.697.avi

    woche 699
    http://www.archive.org/download/gov.archives.arc.43889/gov.archives.arc.43889_512kb.mp4
     
  11. aquarya

    aquarya New Member

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    Well, it was worth a try. Thanks for posting those. Perhaps if rockets were actually used to shoot the B-24 down, then the footage might have been kept TOP SECRET, and destroyed with the all the rest. Thanks again!
     
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