First, to all of those men known as the Greatest Generation: thank you forever, for your services in WorldWar II that was won at great costs, and by whose sacrifices we live in freedom ever since. We are eternally indebted. You won't be forgotten.
My quest is about two things.
First, to find a picture of a crew of the 570th sq. based at Framlingham station.
So far, all efforts to find a picture of either the crew or the ac they flew on their last mission are fruitless. Of one of the crewmembers I adopted the name on the Wall of the Missing at the American Cemetery in Margraten, the Netherlands, hence the interest. Here are the specs.
The crew I'm talking of was crew 44, and their ship of that day, "Devil's Aces" was shot down by German fighters on mission 113, 28th of May 1944 near Magdeburg. I know about their combat records and all of the happenings during the bomb run, not much blanks left in there thanks to great help of people in the UK and USA as well.
Their combat record:
Crewman Role Crew No. Date A/c Serial A/c Codes A/c Name Target Crew Msn
Ingram, John H Pilot 44 9-5-1944 42-107199 DI-J Powerful Katrinka Laon-Athies FR - airfield 1
Ingram, John H Pilot 44 11-5-1944 42-31275 DI-A GI Wonder Liege BE - Marshalling yard 2
Ingram, John H Pilot 44 12-5-1944 42-31275 DI-A GI Wonder Brux CZ - oil refinery 3
Ingram, John H Pilot 44 13-5-1944 42-31275 DI-A GI Wonder Osnabruck GE - Marshalling Yard 4
Ingram, John H Pilot 44 23-5-1944 42-31275 DI-A GI Wonder Melun FR - airfield 5
Ingram, John H Pilot 44 25-5-1944 42-31275 DI-A GI Wonder Liege BE - Marshalling Yard 6
Ingram, John H Pilot 44 27-5-1944 42-31275 DI-A GI Wonder Strasbourg FR - aircraft factory 7
Ingram, John H Pilot 44 28-5-1944 42-31985 DI-P Devil's Aces Magdeburg GE - oil plant 8 KIA
(Sorry for the mix up of the columns, couldn't get it pasted better than this.)
Lt.Ingram & crew arrived at Framlingham airfield (AAF Stn 153) on 28/04/1944 from the replacement crew facility at Bovingdon airfield (AAF Stn 112) to become Crew44 assigned to the 570th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy). I have no information of their previous whereabouts.
Their usual ship apparantly was GI Wonder, of which I've found pictures but none with "my" crew.
Find underneath the crewmembers names and their fate. Sgt. Lewis is my adoptee. On all their missions, the crew's makeup was the same.
Name Position Status
2nd Lt Ingram, John H Pilot KIA identified
Lt. Banks, Douglas C copilot KIA identified
SSgt Cosgrove, Daniel J B navigator POW
SSgt Tabeling, Robert G bombardier KIA identified
SSgt Buntin, William jr C engineer/ttg POW
SSgt Czerpak, Henry radio op. KIA identified
SSgt Lewis, James J
(he is my adoptee) ball turret gunner KIA unidentified
SSgt Czyz, Edward J left waist gunner POW
SSgt McKee, Arnold right Waist Gunner KIA unidentified
(I filed for adoption of this man too)
SSgt Salmons, Kenneth A tailgunner KIA identified
The second question is about my adoptee. There aren't many stones left unturned, but none yielded any information about the guy who came to our rescue at the age of 21. If needed I have ofcourse the usual data about him, but this post is getting already long enough.
At the moment the research is widened to the whole crew, by lack of succes in the search for Sgt. Lewis' relatives. I'm in touch with relatives of the men who survived, but so far nothing emerged that is helpful to put a face on him. We're still working on the other crewmembers.
There's an awesome book about the 8AF battleplan and the ensuing course of events of that single day in May, titled "Mission 376, Battle over the Reich: 28 May 1944."
The author, Ivo de Jong, told me that at the end of all his research he had managed to get pictures of all crews that went down on that mission (think of it!), apart from two – one of them being the Ingram crew 44. He stated that till the very end, it was one of his greatest challenges. He finally used the ID of Lt.Ingram that carried his picture as a means to have the crew represented anyway.
That doesn't sound hopeful, does it.
But – miracles do happen, they say.
Thanks for reading this,