Airwar over Denmark

Airwar over Denmark

 By Søren C. Flensted

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B 24J 42-100351 crashed into Langelandsbæltet 20/6 1944.


The aircraft belonged to USAAF, 8 Air Force, 389 Bomb Group, 565 Bomb Squadron.
T/O Hethel. OP: Politz.


On its way to the target 42-100351 collided with B 24H 42-95144 that was flying below it. 42-95144 lost its tail and went into a spinning dive.

42-100351 lost a propeller but otherwise seemed intact and was trailing a white vapour. Probably gas or oil. After a short time it rolled over and began to spin until it hit the water approximately 2 kilometres southeast of Kelsnor on the island of Langeland at 09:50 hours.
 
Radio operator T/Sgt Branten W. Baker and Top turret gunner T/Sgt Joseph Danis Jar. bailed out of the nose wheel doors as did Navigator 2nd Lt Milton L. Hymes Jr. and Bombardier 2nd Lt Robert T. McCollum.

One flyer bailed out but his chute malfuntioned and he fell to his death. Tail gunner S/Sgt Robert W. Holly, Right waist gunner S/Sgt Richard Gordon, Left waist gunner S/Sgt John H. Danneker and Ball turret gunner S/Sgt Jessie C. Vancil is believed to have gone down with ship.

Pilot 1st Lt William Powers and Co-pilot 2nd Lt Oscar J. Boudreaux got out through the nose doors and landed in the water and were soon picked up by Skipper Jacobsen of the Danish fishing boat S 185. Jacobsen continued to search for flyers until a German patrol boat captained by Leutnant Ritter arrived and entered the fishing vesset and took the flyers with him. They were sent to Dulag Luft in Oberursel for interrogation.

It is not known which POW camps then were sent to. It is however reported that Powers was seen in Langwasser-Nürnberg POW camp in February 1945.

Those who died have no known graves and their names are found on Tablets of the Missing at Cambridge American Cemetery, Cambridge, England.


Sources: MACR, LBUK, ABMC.

 

 

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