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S/SGT  Frank W. BUSCHMEIER

UNIT: 350th BOMB Sqdn POSITION: WG

 Frank Buschmeier (POW) of the John P. Gibbons and William T. (Buzz) Fitzroy crews. Gibbons crew information Fitzroy crew information 

Frank Buschmeier wearing his A-2 Jacket "LITTLE MIKE" and holding his photo. (courtesy of Patrick Daniel McCue and Frank Buschmeier)

SERIAL #: 35683437 STATUS: POW
MACR: 07809 CR: 07809

Comments1: 29 JUL 44 MERSEBURG

COMMENTS & NOTES

MEMO 1:

CREW

2ND LT JOHN P. '49 MISSIONS" GIBBONS P CPT    14 APR 45 ROYAN   (FLEW TWO TOURS - CPT SECOND TOUR 14 APR 1945 ROYAN)
2ND LT ROBERT DYKEMAN                    CP KIA     29 JUL 44  MERSEBURG  (with Lt Fitzroy Crew, Hanged by Civilians)
2ND LT EVERETT M. "E-Max" JOHNSON NAV CPT    21 JUL 44  REGENSBURG
2ND LT STERLING B. "RED" BLAKEMAN BOM CPT   25 JUL 44  ST LO
T/SGT EDWARD F. WALKER, JR           ROG KIA    19 MAR 44 MARQUIS/ MIMOYEQUES (NO BALL)
S/SGT IRA L. ARNOLD                            TTE KIA    29 JUL 44  MERSEBURG (with Lt Fitzroy Crew, Hanged by Civilians)
SGT BERNARD L. "BERNIE" SPRAGG    BTG POW  29 JUL 44  MERSEBURG (with Lt Fitzroy Crew)
SGT MYRON J. "TY" ETTUS                   RWG CPT   19 JUL 44  SCHWEINFURT/DUREN
S/SGT FRANK W. "BUD" BUSCHMEIER  LWG POW  29 JUL 44  MERSEBURG (with Lt Fitzroy Crew)
SGT ARCHIE W. "BUGS"  BUNTING         TG   RFS    REMOVED FROM FLYING STATUS AFTER FLYING 12 MISSIONS (nicknamed Bugs Bunny)

350TH SQDN… CREW, AS ABOVE, JOINED THE 100TH ON 24 FEB 1944.
CAPT JOHN P. GIBBONS WENT ON TO BE 350TH OPERATIONS OFFICER IN MID DECEMBER 1944. AFTER HOSTILITIES, HE WAS MADE 
418TH BS C.O.
CPL WALTER WAGGONER WAS THE ORIGINAL ROG ON THE CREW STATESIDE BUT CAUGHT VD FROM HIS WIFE AND DID NOT GO OVERSEAS WITH THE CREW. HE WAS REPLACED BY ED WALKER WHO WAS KIA ON MARCH 19, 1944. . 
S/SGT CARMINE ROBERTO REPLACED ED WALKER ON LT JOHN GIBBONS CREW AND WAS KIA WITH THE W.T. FITZROY CREW 
ON 29 JUL 44.  DYKEMAN, ARNOLD, BUSCHMEIRER, AND SPRAGG WERE ALSO WITH THE CREW OF W.T. FITZROY ON 29 JUL 44 MERSEBURG MISSION.  
2ND LT MAURICE H. CAIN BOM flew March 8, 1944 Berlin mission with this Crew.   
THE ENLISTED MEN WERE BUNKED WITH THE LAKIN CREW.   

Ck in Airman 2 archives for " Moses to Cleven" by John Gibbons…mpf 

ON MARCH 19, 1944 DURING A NOBALL MISSION, AN 88MM MADE A DIRECT HIT AND TORE THE ENTIRE FLOOR AND RIGHT SIDE OF THE RADIO  ROOM AWAY. ED WALKER WAS BLOWN OUT BY THE EXPLOSION.  S/SGT CARMINE ROBERTO REPLACED ED WALKER ON THIS CREW AND WAS KIA WITH THE W.T. FITZROY CREW ON 29 JUL 44.   W.T. FITZROY STATED HE SAW 12 AMERICANS HANGED AND SHOT BY THE GERMANS ON 29 JUL 44; AMONG THEM WERE DYKEMAN, ARNOLD, AND  FLOYD DOUGLAS.

MISSIONS OF FRANK BUSCHMEIER (mpf 2003)

1.     25/02/44   REGENSBURG  (flew as CP with Lt Lautenschlager)
2.     03/03/44   BERLIN (recall due to weather)
3.     04/03/44   BERLIN (flew with 95th BG in Low Squadron)
4.     06/03/44   BERLIN
5.     08/03/44   BERLIN
6.     19/03/44   MIMOYEQUES (Sgt Walker,ROG killed by 88mm flak burst in radio room)
7.     27/03/44   BORDEAUX
8.     28/03/44   CHATEAUDUN
9.     08/04/44   QUACKENBRUCK
10.   10/04/44   MALDEGEM
11.   11/04/44   ROSTOCK
12.   13/04/44   AUGSBURG
13.   18/04/44   GENSHAGEN (BERLIN)
14.   19/04/44   LIPPSTADT
15.   20/04/44   MARQUENVILLE
16.   01/05/44   SAARGUEMINES
17.   07/05/44   BERLIN
18.   09/05/44   LAON/COUVRON
19.   13/05/44   OSNABRUCK
20.   19/05/44   BERLIN
21.   28/05/44   MAGDEBURG
22.   29/05/44   LEIPZIG
23.   04/06/44   BOULOGNE
24.   06/06/44   FALAISE  D-DAY
25.   08/06/44   TOURS
26.   18/06/44   BRUNSBUTTELKOOG
27.   25/06/44   MAQUIS SUPPLY DROP
28.   29/06/44   BOHLEN
29.   07/07/44   GOTTINGEN
30.   08/07/44   BOURTH LeLENTE (jOHN GIBBONS GOES HOME FOR R&R BEFORE RETURNING FOR 2ND TOUR) ENLISTED CREW STILL NEEDS TO COMPLETE 5 MORE MISSIONS



DATE	    LAST_NAME	FIRST_NAME	RANK	POSITION	TARGET	                   CREW_NBR		PLANE_NBR
7/24/1944	THOMPSON	C.H.  	       T/SGT	BOM	           ST LO (GND SUPPORT)	35		31537
7/24/1944	TROETACHEL	P.K                  S/SGT	TG	                   ST LO (GND SUPPORT)	35		31537
7/24/1944	BUSCHMEIER	F.W.	                S/SGT	LWG	           ST LO (GND SUPPORT)	35		31537
7/24/1944	BRUNS	        D.J.	                S/SGT	RWG	           ST LO (GND SUPPORT)	35		31537
7/24/1944	SPRAGG	         B.L.	                S/SGT	BTG	                   ST LO (GND SUPPORT)	35		31537
7/24/1944	ROBERTO	C.V.	                T/SGT	ROG	           ST LO (GND SUPPORT)	35		31537
7/24/1944	BLAKEMAN	S.B.	                 LT	        NAV	                   ST LO (GND SUPPORT)	35		31537
7/24/1944	LOBDELL	        B.D.	                 LT	        CP	                   ST LO (GND SUPPORT)	35		31537
7/24/1944	FITZROY	       W.T.                 	LT	        P	                   ST LO (GND SUPPORT)	35		31537
7/24/1944	ARNOLD	       I.L.	               T/SGT	TTE	                   ST LO (GND SUPPORT)	35		31537

7/28/1944	DYKEMAN	R.	                LT	        CP	                     MERSEBURG	                35		31537
7/28/1944	O'DONNELL	J.P.	                S/SGT	TG	                     MERSEBURG	                35		31537
7/28/1944	BUSCHMEIER	F.W.	                S/SGT	RWG	              MERSEBURG	                35		31537
7/28/1944	SPRAGG	        B.L.	                S/SGT	BTG                      MERSEBURG	                35		31537
7/28/1944	ARNOLD	        I.L.	                T/SGT	TTE      	             MERSEBURG	                 35		31537
7/28/1944	ROBERTO	C.V.	                T/SGT	ROG	              MERSEBURG	                 35		31537
7/28/1944	DOUGLAS	F.O.    	         T/SGT	BOM	              MERSEBURG	                 35		31537
7/28/1944	HARTMAN	F.F.            	 LT	        NAV	                       MERSEBURG	                 35		31537
7/28/1944	FITZROY	W.T.	                         LT	        P	                       MERSEBURG	                 35		31537

7/29/1944	O'DONNELL	J.P.	                 S/SGT	TG	                      MERSEBURG	                 35		31537
7/29/1944	BUSCHMEIER	F.W.	                 S/SGT	RWG	              MERSEBURG	                 35		31537
7/29/1944	SPRAGG	         B.L.	                 S/SGT	BTG	                      MERSEBURG	                 35		31537
7/29/1944	ARNOLD    	I.L.	                T/SGT	TTE	                      MERSEBURG	                 35		31537
7/29/1944	ROBERTO	C.V.	                T/SGT	ROG	              MERSEBURG	                 35		31537
7/29/1944	DOUGLAS	F.O.       	        T/SGT	BOM	              MERSEBURG	                 35		31537
7/29/1944	HARTMAN	F.F.	                 LT	         NAV	              MERSEBURG	                 35		31537
7/29/1944	DYKEMAN	R.	                  LT	        CP	                      MERSEBURG	                 35		31537
7/29/1944	FITZROY	       W.T.                	   LT	         P	                       MERSEBURG	                  35		31537


Stories related by Lt John P. Gibbons to mpf (2002)

"While in the States on the way to his next phase of flight training , John Gibbons was reading Lt Col Beirne Lay's article "I Saw Regensburg Destroyed" (about the 100th BG and Maj. Gale Cleven's ordeal on August 17, 1943). His recollections  were " I am not this type of guy".  Three months later, he was assigned to the 100thBG, 350th BS (Clevens old Bomb Squadron) and his first mission was too REGENSBURG on 
25 Feb 44"!

"We flew the first four missions to BERLIN.  On the second BERLIN mission,  March 4, 1944, we flew as a composite with the 95th BG.  We received the recall but the Group leader in the 95th heard it differently. Being a young Second Lt, I was not going to break radio silence to tell him differently.  We also flew the March 6th and March 8th missions to Berlin.  I think I ended up going to Berlin a total of 7 times."  Once while returning from BERLIN on the deck (with my windshield was shot out), we were escorted by a P-51 named "OLD CROW" (flown  by Maj Bud Anderson of 357th Fighter Group).  We would meet again on a train while I was on leave in the States in between my first and second tour.     

"The aircraft we flew on my 6th mission was MISS IRISH, named by our Crew Chief Chandler.  The date was March 19, 1944, and we were to hit a NO BALL in France.  My plane was hit  by an  88mm shell, blowing a huge hole in the radio compartment and killing my ROG, Sgt Walker.  So much for Milk Runs!"  MISS IRISH was salvaged.  I flew MISS IRISH II, once again named by Chandler. On my 7th mission then requested that I would like to name my next aircraft which I did.  It was called "LITTLE MIKE".  

"We flew our first 5 missions as "Tail End Charlie" as was the custom for all new crews.  Once on a practice mission, I was flying so close to my squadron CO, he accused me of trying to kill him!  

"I completed my first tour, then went stateside for 30 days.  Why would someone sign up for another tour, guess I felt we had a job to complete. When I returned to the Group (along with Chadwick and Glen Rake who had also signed up for another tour of duty), I was not assigned a permenant crew nor did I have a specific job but was flying missions as a deputy leader with the 350th BS. During this time I flew my 36th mission, flying deputy lead on a mission over the Ruhr (Happy Valley as it was nick named) and we had gone over the target twice and still had not dropped our bombs. I asked my bombardier if he saw the target and upon getting the affirmative decided to break radio silence. As a green second Lt, I did not speak up on the Berlin mission, but with 35 missions under my belt, I told the other crews to form up on me and we hit the target"  

"This story is NEVER to be published but is put here for historical purpose only.  "After the 300 mission party, Father Philips wrote a letter chastising the C.O. (Col Sutterlin) about the behavior of the men and the women on the base during this party.  Father Philips recommended that Col Sutterlin be removed as C.O. and sent the letter to Eisenhour's headquarters.  The result was that Father Philips was transferred from the 100th BG. Only myself and maybe Al Paul knew of the existance of this letter…Maj John Gibbons"

Here is another Story not for publication:  about Lt Chadwick. After completing our 1st tour of duty, we both returned to the 100th for a second tour of duty.  It seems that many in Training Command had been given Command postions in ETO and one day a Squadron CO (out of training command) was giving Chadwick hell for not saluting him in his Jeep.  Well Chadwick told the Squadron CO in no uncertain terms, "I'm not going to Salute any Piss Ant Jeep" and was put on 30 days confinment to quarters.  After the 30 days were  up he reported for duty and proceeded to tell same Squadron CO; "I'm not going to fly in this piss ant squadron" and was ceremoniously transferred.  Seems he did not want to fly for someone who would confine him for not saluting a jeep, given his service record at the time, I can see why Chadwick was upset…J.P. Gibbons   
          
"I was appointed 350th BS Operations officer with help from  Maj Rosenthal and  I would fly my remaining 14 missions as a Command Pilot.  My final mission was April 14, 1945 to Royan. After hostilities ceased, I was made CO of the 418th BS."     

7 Apr 1945: Maj. John P. Gibbons, Command pilot, and Capt David Hutchinson with the following crew were leading the formation on the raid to Buchen: 

    Gibbons, J.P.       Command pilot
    Hutchinson, D.E.  Pilot
    Patterson, P.B.    Co-Pilot (Flying the TG position as Formation Officer with the Command Pilot aboard in the right seat)
    Graham, N.S.       Navigator
    Zemski, A.R.        Bombardier
    Sapper, A.C.        TTE
    Fagan, T.H.         ROG
    Mast, G.D.           BTG
    Kamper, J.W.       RWG

They were involved in the fracas that .the 100th lost Calder (LT. ARTHUR R. CALDER) and Howard's (LT WILLIAM E. HOWARD) aircraft. It was also the mission in which two 100th B-17s lost half of their stabilizers and still came home to Thorpe Abbotts. One of the A/C was "GOLD BRICK." that collided with debris. Other was 43-38514 that was a victim of a collision with a downed ME 109. There is some question as to "GOLD BRICK." This ship was reported to have it's stabilizer knocked off by the severed wing of the ME 109 that crashed into 43-38514 - and was flown by Lt Joe King. Both pilots were awarded DFC's for their fete of bringing both ships home. Griswold (Lt Griswold Smith) reports that the ME 109 that crashed into Calder's aircraft was diverted by intense fire from the formation's gunners.

The crew of J.C. Martin's (Lt Joe Carl Martin) aircraft confirmed that Joe King's aircraft was hit and damaged by the severed wing of the ME 109.

"Miss Irish" and the "MILK RUN REVISITED" March 19, 1944 (No Ball target in France)
 Miss Irish" 42-31968-This mission was supposed to be a "Milk Run"

Do you remember a contest about fifteen years ago to see which safely-landed plane had the most damage? So far, "Miss Irish" has remained unrivaled in this category. With information from the Maxwell Air Force Research Agency, which many of you are now discovering, and after numerous phone calls and recollection sessions in Little Rock, the "Miss Irish" crew has finally reached a consensus and produced a "more comprehensive and factual picture" of what happened to their plane. Having spent their first four missions on daylight bombing strikes over Berlin, the crew hoped their fifth would be a milk run. Flying Tailend Charlie in the high squadron (350th) of the 100th, heading for Dungeness, the crew went through the usual routine: test-fire guns, arm bombs, open bomb-bay doors, prepare to drop. Little black puffs of smoke over the coast of France looked "kind of like the 4th of July." As STERLING BLAKEMAN recalls, "there was a dramatic change in flak . . . All at once we found ourselves surrounded by big black oily smudges with angry red cores, all zeroed in on our plane. The big hit, when it came, created a new directional force on the plane, lifting it straight upward." Sterling hurried to the cockpit where pilot JOHN GIBBONS asked for damage assessment. Sterling and flight engineer IRA ARNOLD discovered that "a direct 88mm hit had torn out the whole floor and right side of the radio room, killing radio operator ED WALKER. Six of our twelve 500-lb. G. P. bombs were hung up in their twisted racks."

FRANK BUSCHMEIER remembers sitting in the back half of the plane "by my waist gun when I heard a burst of flak in front of the nose, then another one under the tail. There was a terrific explosion in the radio room, blowing the rear door out and sending it to where it ended up between my legs." Ed had "already fallen through the gaping hole that had been the floor." In the cockpit, John took the news "with amazing calm for a pilot who was now flying an aircraft divided at its middle almost in half." According to Sterling, "aware that the oxygen system had been knocked out, [John] was already nursing the plane down from our 21,000-ft. bomb run altitude. He and co-pilot BOB DYKEMAN were having trouble with the controls to the shredded right elevator and the rudder." Fortunately, all four engines were operational.

In the ball turret, the side windows were smashed and the front window gone, but the crew got BERNIE SPRAGG safely out. Busch spliced the cables of the elevator and rudder controls and then assisted waist gunner TY ETTUS in holding Bernie's legs while he leaned out over the hole in the radio room to pull back the shroud lines of Ed Walker's "flak-ridden and billowing chute." The trailing lines had snagged a walk-around oxygen bottle and were creating an extra drag factor. In between repairs, the "Back Half Crew," joined by tail gunner"BUGS" BUNTING, began lightening the load by throwing out as much as possible. Having fallen away from the formation and flying without any P-47 escorts, navigator MAX JOHNSON "set the shortest course to England." But over the Channel, only three bombs dropped with the conventional release mechanism. Arnold and Sterling stood on the bomb bay catwalk and worked with pliers and screwdrivers,  against time and a heavy draft, to work the other three bombs loose. "Thanks mainly to Arnold's talent for solving mechanical problems not covered in service manuals, all  three were finally jettisoned, the last one just moments before we reached the English Coast," recalls Sterling.

 In addition to the mid-section slice, "Miss Irish" sustained over 400 flak holes. Her brakes were out, and the crew had no radio communication. Over England, no one opted to jump. Flak had rendered several chutes useless, and most of the crew remembered when John had landed them safely at Moses Lake, Washington, with collapsed right landing gear. They approached a P-47 base at Raydon, near Ipswich, firing red flares. Sterling notes that "since anything but the smoothest of touchdowns would break the plane in half, it had to be a perfect landing. It was." The Raydon personnel could not believe their eyes. Their flight surgeon showed up with bottles of Scotch and gin which were "put to good use in bringing sleep to nine weary but emotionally keyed up survivors." Someone commented, "If this is what milk runs are like, I'd rather go back to Big B. again." 

But, as Rosie (Robert Rosenthal)  says, "If you came back, it was a milk run."

Note:  This is Lt William Fitzroy's original crew, which was shot down at Merseburg 29 Jul 44.

Lt. William T. "Buzz" Fitzroy           P   POW was on 35th mission
Lt. Robert Dykeman                   CP   KIA    Killed by German civilians, hanged (from Lt Gibbons Crew)
Lt. Floyd  F. Hartman               NAV   POW  (from 2nd Lt.Martin Tashjian Crew) 
 T/Sgt Floyd O. Douglas         TOGG   KIA    Killed by German civilians, hanged  (from 2nd Lt.Martin Tashjian Crew)
 T/Sgt Carmine V. Roberto       ROG   KIA    Killed by 20mm shell (from Lt Gibbons Crew)
 T/Sgt Ira L. Arnold                 TTE   KIA    Killed by German civilians, hanged (from Lt Gibbons Crew)
 S/Sgt Bernard L. Spragg          BTG   POW  (from Lt Gibbons Crew)
   Sgt Frank  W. Buschmeier      WG   POW  (from Lt Gibbons Crew
   Sgt Joseph P. O' Donnell        TG    POW  (from Lt Shelly Crew)

This appears to be  a "Pick - Up" crew.  A/C 42-31537 LN-S "Randie Lou"  Plane was named by Lt Randell Chadwick after his Daughter (she was named after Randell and his Wife Louise "Randie Lou")

W.T. FITZROY STATED HE SAW 12 AMERICANS HANGED AND SHOT BY THE GERMANS ON 29 JUL 44; AMONG THEM WERE DYKEMAN, ARNOLD, AND  FLOYD DOUGLAS.
 
Lt Dykeman, T/Sgt Arnold, Buschmeier, T/Sgt Carmine Roberto, Sgt Frank Buschmeier and S/Sgt Bernard Spragg were from Lt John P.Gibbons crew.  Lt Hartman and T/Sgt Douglas from Lt Martin Tashjian Crew, Sgt  O'Donnell from Lt J.M.Shelly crew and of course Fitzroy was the original co-pilot of the Randel T. Chadwick crew when it joined the 100th on 24 Feb 1944.  

On July 29, 1944, for the second day in a row, B-17's set out for the oil plant at Merseburg.  The formation was led by 1st Lt Herbert Howard and Austin Dunlap on a faulty course which went over Leipzig.  The 100th "A" Group followed the 390th BG.  The formation flew on a southernly course towards Merseburg and was hit in a barrage of extremely heavy flak.  In the next few minutes, the low squadron of the 100th Lead was hard hit, losing 5 of 6 B-17's. Crew members believe FW 190's and ME 109's wee radioing the formations altitude while flying in their own flak.  The "A" Group dropped wide, "B" Group hit the target.  The entire low squadron of the 100th "A" Group failed to return.  There was a 6 8/10th's cloud cover at the target.  The lead A/C was hit by flak before the target causing a formation breakup and many stragglers.  All were presumable lost to enemy fighters after passing over targets of opportunity. Witnesses: Lt Kasselbaum and Lt George Allen reported Lt Fitzroy's A/C blowing up after being hit.  German records indicate that 5 bodies were recovered.

EYEWITNESS:  "No specific information concerning the loss of this A/C is available. The formation leader for this squadron suffered flak damage prior to the target and was forced to jettison his bombs. This may have led to the beaking up of the formation for all became more of less stragglers. All were lost, presumaby to E/A after passing over the target of opportunity."
    Floyd F. Hartman

Hartman's statement  also indicates S/Sgt Carmine V. Roberto was killed before the crew bailed out over Leipzig at approx. 1045 hours.  Lt Fitzroy stated that he had seen 12 Americans Hanged and shot by Germans on the 29th of July, 1944.  Lt Dykeman, T/Sgt Douglas and T/Sgt Ira Arnold  were among them.


                                                100th Bombardment Group (H)
                                                Office of the Commanding Officer
                                                                                                                                                    11 March 1944
SUBJECT:  Commendation.
 TO:  2nd Lt. John P. Gibbons, 350th Bomb. Sqdn. (H).

1. Special recognition is merited by you and your entire crew for your superior conduct during a most perilous and strenuous initiation into combat flying.
2. Your first five operational missions were flown in the brief period of twelve days, and all were to targets of very great importance and difficulty of attack.  Your inaugural trip was to Regensburg, 25 February 1944; and you participated in each of the first four missions which had Berlin as the objective, including the tentative thrust on 3 March, the limited operation of 4 March, and the great follow-up blows of 6 and 8 March
3.  Probably few bomber pilots and crews have had such an epic introduction to battle, and your courage, resolution and effectiveness in the circumstances certainly warrant the highest praise.
4. Please accept, and convey to all members of your crew, my sincere compliments and congratulations.

                                                                                                                                                    JOHN M. BENNET, JR.,
                                                                                                                                                    Lt. Col., Air Corps,
                                                                                                                                                    (Acting) Commander,
                                                                                                                                                    100th Bomb. Group.
 


                                                                100th Bombardment Group (H)
                                                               Office of the Commanding Officer

                                                                                                                                                    21 March 1944
SUBJECT:  Commendation.
TO:  2nd Lt. John P. Gibbons, 350th Bomb. Sqdn. (H).

1. You have earned the right to very special recognition for the splendid airmanship and decision you displayed on the mission of 19 March, when you flew back from France to England, and landed successfully, a B-17 aircraft which had been blown almost in twain by a direct hit from a heavy anti-aircraft shell.
2. Experienced observers have stated that your plane was so badly damaged in the fuselage that it held together for the return flight and landing only by an apparent miracle.
3.  The fact that you did reach friendly soil with a plane in such condition, and thus saved from probable death or capture your entire crew except the one man who was literally blown out of the plane by the shell burst, attests your great skill, resolution and resourcefulness in the face of extreme danger.
4. Please accept my sincere praise and congratulation on this outstanding feat.

                                                                                                                                                  JOHN M. BENNET, JR.,
                                                                                                                                                  Lt. Col., Air Corps,
                                                                                                                                                  (Acting) Commander,
                                                                                                                                                  100th Bomb. Group.



                                     Remembering: From Moses to Cleven 
                                                                 by Capt John P. Gibbons (2003)

I arrived in Moses Lake in August 1943, and met my flight crew.  There were two incidents that happened before we were sent to England that made quite an imprint on my combat flying.  We did a lot of cross country flying and as we were returning from a midnight mission, I lined up in preparation to land, the landing gear malfunctioned and only one came down.  I did land the plane and lost only a wing tip and two props.  I gained a lot of respect and faith in the b-17 and also enhanced my confidence that I might become a reasonable pilot.

The second was on the way to England, via Sioux City and Hastings, Nebraska.  I picked up a magazine with an article by Bernie Lay on Bucky Cleven. (I think the original was in Harpers magazine and later condensed in the Readers Digest from where I read the article).  I cut this article out and read and reread it many times.  Lay described the pilots as “chip on the shoulder” and “spit in the eyes” kind of guys.  By then we had heard rumors of the Bloody 100th.  I knew I was far from a “spit in your eye” guy, so I had better learn to spit and find a chip for my shoulder.  Of course I prayed I would be assigned to an outfit other than the 100th.

We left Hastings for England on New Years Eve, 1943.  Flew to Maine, Iceland, Stonewall-Preswick, Scotland.  Saw and flew through any weather we could find that was anywhere near normal.  Picked up our orders and as a first shock, found that we were assigned to the 100th.  The second shock came when we arrived at the 350th Squadron at Thorpe-Abbotts, Bucky Cleven’s squadron.  We met Bucky the next day, except it was not Cleven. He had been shot down a couple of months earlier.  My first impression was that the new Bucky, Major Bucky Elton, was not typical of the people described by Bernie Lay.

For some ungodly reason they sent us to Northern Ireland for ground school or perhaps it was to get us used to the lousy weather.  On returning to Thorpe Abbotts I found out I would be flying co-pilot on my first mission as indoctrination to combat and my second mission as a pilot with my crew.

On the morning of February 25, 1944, I heard for the first time the loud reveille of the Corporal, drop __ and grab your socks, Gibbons, you are going on a mission!  To this day I can still hear that awakening.  I was to be co-pilot to Johnny Lautenschlager. Went to the briefing and heard everyone moan as they pulled back the curtain and the red tape reached to Regensburg.  Lay’s description of war became real.  I wasn’t much help to Lautenschlager, but I did become indoctrinated.

March 4th I was awakened by my favorite Corporal.  The briefing shocked us all as the ribbon reached all the way to Berlin. Our crew would not be flying with the 100th that day, but as a composite group and we would be low squadron for the 95th Bomb Group.  Great!  My first mission and I would have to find them, or hopefully they would find me.  The weather was awful.  Halfway through the mission, my radio operator heard a re-call.  Our leader, however, kept taking us through the clouds to Berlin.  We were warned not to break radio silence.  I wondered what he was doing.  We flew over Berlin at 26,000 ft., mushed over the target, dropped our bomb load and headed back to England.  The B-17 doesn’t fly well at 26,000.  From a pilot’s point of view, it’s like dog paddling in a pool of oatmeal.  I understand our leader, a Major, received a silver star for that mission.  I would have thrown the book at him for disobeying orders.

March 6th, again the big push to Berlin. We were briefed for a thousand bombers on this mission.  I won’t dwell on it.  I started the mission as Tail End Charlie, and wound up #2 on the lead.  I do recall at the debriefing it was concluded we were attacked by 121 German fighters.  That bothered me.  I wondered who was counting them and not shooting at them!  From the French coast to Berlin it was air to air killing! Then Berlin in a blanket of flak like I have never seen before.

The next two missions were also to Berlin.  Afterwards we were visited by Gererals Spaatz and Doolittle.  They had to visit to kill some time while their staffs got us more planes and crews.  They were great Generals that first night.  Doolittle told great stories and, as I recall, could also hold his whiskey.  They gave us a stand-down so we could practice, and practice we did.  Major Elton called for formation flying.  I was on his right wing and he called “tighten up”, so I put my left wing close to his right wing gunner.  He yells, “What are you doing, Gibbons, trying to kill me!”  It was a thought, but I pulled back and flew a loose formation so he would feel safe.  

The stand-down ended March 19th.  We were assigned to operation Crossbow.  352 bombers were to attack V-1 sites on the coast of France.  Briefing says to expect a little flak, and drop bombs while over water.  Veterans proclaimed this “No Ball” a milk run.  After Regensburg and four Berlin missions, maybe we deserved a “Milk Run”.  

On the hardstand that morning was a brand new B-17 waiting for us.  The ground crew named her “Miss Irish”.  This was a short light to the coast of France, and as we started the bomb run, we got hit on the right side just behind the wing.  The B-17 seemed to go higher with the impact.  Our bombardier did get our bomb load released while I was trying to get the plane under control.  I got enough control to get her down to 8,000 ft., and discovered we were heading back towards the target area.  It seemed they were throwing everything in their arsenal at us.  Turned east and got out of the target area.  Over the channel we dumped everything possible to lighten the load.  The top turret Sergeant’s chute had been sucked out of the plane while he was tossing his guns out the bomb bay doors.  I gave him mine, as I truly didn’t believe I would need it.  I saw an airfield (a fighter field) as we got over the English coast, and told the crew to bail out.  They preferred not to; I guess no faith in their chutes.  (We worried they might have been full of flak holes.)  Personally, I thought they were crazy.  On landing approach, I thought about the one wheel landing at Moses Lake, and prayed that the B-17 stayed in one piece long enough to land.  Fired flares, said Hail Mary’s, and touched down. 

We vacated the plane quite fast.  The hit was obviously from a German 88.  The radio operator had been blown out of the plane into the channel.  The hole in the side and top of the plane was about 12x8 and, of course, smaller holes were all over the fuselage.  The plane was too damaged to salvage so it was scrapped after its only mission.  While the fighter group looked in amazement at the B-17, the group fed us and arranged quarters for us.  The flight surgeon arrived with a bottle of scotch.  I told him we wouldn’t need it.  He replied, “By morning you will.”  What insight that man had.  Got back to Thorpe Abbotts the next day.
Regensburg, 4 Berlin missions and then the direct hit on the “Milk Run”…it was quite a baptism into the air war.  I did not encounter very many “spit in your eye” kind of pilots.  I did see fear in the eyes but it was overcome by an abundance of sheer guts and determination.  Perhaps Lay should have had a few more missions. I knew I had survived the worst and it didn’t get any better.

I do not write of the horrors of the air war.  So much of that has been written.  The sight of bombers blown up, engines on fire, bodies in the air, counting chutes and never counting ten, coming back to half empty mission huts…that was hard on morale.  I very vividly remember coming back after the March 6, Berlin raid, and Johnny Lautenschlager, who had indoctrinated me on the Regensburg raid, was no longer in the hut.  He had been shot down as he was finishing his tour.  As an old sage said, “War is Hell!”  I don’t know about that as I’ve never been to hell, and I don’t intend to visit the place.  I do know that war isn’t the solution to world problems.

I grew up in the small town of St. Mary’s, Kansas that had survived dust storms and the great depression.  Never got further than Salina, Kansas to the west or further than Kansas City, Missouri to the east.  Probably wouldn’t have traveled that far if I hadn’t learned to hitchhike.  Now I was seeing Europe.

Went to Berlin nine times.  Nearly became a citizen of Berlin when a German fighter jockey knocked out my windshield at 19,000 feet.  It was 55 degrees below zero.  Now that’s cold!  Hit the deck and was escorted back by a P-51.  On the way, flew over a Nazi flight school with the troops in formation.  Our gunners opened fire.  Arrived home base safe.

The trips were long.  Saw Leipzid, Buchen, Posen, Augsburg, Pennamundi, home of German heavy water and atomic scientists, Merseburg, Dorfmund, Munich 3 times, Ulm, Friedrichshafen, Frankfurt, Rassel, and several others.  Fighter protection was getting much better, but flak a lot worse.  I was most fearful of the fighters. A group of bandits would gather off the right side of the group.  They would fly along the group for about a minute.  I would imagine Fritz and Hans were debating which of us they would take out.  Fritz would say leader, another the #4 plane, another the #6 plane and another the #10 plane.  Hans would always select old Tail End Charlie.  Hans became the top war ace.  They would come at the group from 12 o’clock high or 6 o’clock low.  All missions were not that bad.  I remember going to bomb a fighter base shortly before D-Day.  No flak, P-51’s had control of the sky.  Jeffrey had lectured us on dropping bombs on the leader.  He wasn’t satisfied with our past patterns.  We arrived over the target, leader dropped his bombs, Red Blakeman’s had a malfunction, and he managed to salvo.  There was criticism of the crews that failed to follow Jeffrey’s instructions until the film was developed.  The group had a fair hit on the airfield.  Blakeman’s bombs had wiped out the fuel dump.  Red flew 35 missions, then transferred to Division Headquarters, I presume to find targets of opportunity.

Another pleasant and satisfying trip was again to southern France.  No flak.  No fighters, and bombing from 500 feet.  I had only buzzed once and that was St. Mary’s, Kansas.  An old codger that lived a few blocks from my mother’s house told her I flew so low I sucked the soot out of her chimney.  We didn’t get that low on the mission, but dropped our cargo of guns to the French underground.  You could see them rushing out of the forest to get the cargo and rushing back into the forest.  It was a delight to see.

D-Day came along and we were on the last flight of the day.  We were to bomb forward for the Gliders.  As we came off the bomb run, we could see hundreds of Gliders being pulled by their mother ships.  What a sight.  You absolutely had to admire their courage.  I thought, “We never had it so good”.

Shortly after D-Day, and thirty missions, eight pilots, 2 from each squadron, were called into headquarters.  Col. Price told us that squadron commanders and operations officers were completing their missions and they needed experienced people to take over command.  We were offered 30 days leave stateside if we would volunteer for a second tour. We accepted.  Randy Chadwick proclaiming himself to be “Duke of Clayborne Parish”, and I were from the 350th Squadron.

The 30 days in the states were wonderful.  Arrival, jubilant, departure, sad and worrisome.

We were shipped to the East Coast for some tests.  Five of our eight were declared to have combat fatigue.  I don’t know what the test was supposed to prove.  I was cleared to go back to England.  Probably found out I had no brains.  I did get to spend a weekend in Atlantic City and, as luck would have it, got caught in the hurricane of 1944.  While there I did attend the Miss America Pageant.  (I still think Miss Florida should have won.)  Left the flooded hotel and got on the Mariposa troop ship back to England.  It was on the Mariposa that I med Bud Anderson, a P-51 pilot fighter ace, going back for his second tour.  He couldn’t understand why anyone would go back to the 100th a second time. I guess he confirmed the test.  I lacked brains!  Bud and his friend, Chuck Yeager, were assigned to the 357th Fighter Group and had escorted the 100th Bomb Group on a few occasions.

I arrived back at Thorpe Abbotts in September 1944.  Found out that the training command had sent a group of Majors and Captains and they had taken over all the billets.  It was discouraging, as we had no crew, no jobs, nothing to do but loaf.  Played lots of craps and probably learned to drink.

Going to the club for dinner and perhaps shooting some craps, we were stopped by a Major driving a jeep, who jumped out and wanted to know why we didn’t salute.  I replied that I didn’t recognize an officer driving the jeep.  He asked if I had seen the Major emblem on the bumper?  I apologized and saluted.  He ten asked the “Duke” the same question.  Randy replied that he wasn’t saluting any “PISS ANT’ (his favorite Louisiana saying) jeep!  They cleared me, but Randy got the 104th (disciplinary) and restricted to quarters for 30 days.  I recalled my first mission to Berlin.  A major gets the Silver Star for disobeying orders and Randy gets the 104th.  It seemed to me a strange cadet discipline!  It didn’t bother Randy.  He was a commercial artist and made some extra cash painting logos on our A-2 flight jackets.  Not long after his 30 days he had combat fatigue and went home.  Of the eight, two were still in the 100th, one in the 349th, and myself in the 350th.

Nothing to do! It was absolutely boring.  I recall in cadets, don’t ever volunteer for anything.  Guess I didn’t learn the lesson.

Finally, in December 1944, the Battle of the Bulge, they assigned me to ride the right seat as Deputy Commander, thus my second tour began.  I rode that seat to Freesburg, Mannhiem, and a couple of other places.  Fighter cover was good but flak increased.  I was fairly confident, as after the March 9th hit, that lightening would not strike twice.

On my 36th mission, I flew the same position.  The target was the Ruhr.  Flak was intense.  The leader made two passes but failed to bomb.  I asked the bombardier if he had the target? He replied, “yes.”  I broke radio silence and told the group we had the target, and to form on our plane.  They did, and we went in and bombed.  Col Price was awaiting my landing and, of course, greeted me with why I had taken such action?  I guess I grew up that day and politely replied that the group didn’t’ seem to have a job for me and I didn’t have a crew, so why not send me to the South Pacific or the states where I might be of some value?  He replied, “I’ll see to it.”  I didn’t like the tone of his voice, so I assumed my life in the 100th was over, plus whatever else they had in mind.   About a week later I was named to 350th operations officer and promoted to Captain.  I’m sure that Rosie (Major Rosenthal, Squadron Commander) saved my hide or at least my military career.  I set up the crews to fly the next mission which was to Hamburg, where Rojohn did his epic landing feat.  I lost the majority of my crews on that mission, primarily to flak, and concluded very rapidly that I would rather fly the missions than assign crews.  I wasn’t to be.

The rest of the second tour wasn’t bad.  Fighter escort was outstanding.  I prayed that lightening would not strike twice!

My 49th mission was on April 7th.  I was designated to fly right seat and lead the 100th to Buchen.  We were briefed that we might encounter jets.  We did!  There were only a few, not like the 121 Mes that attacked us on the Berlin mission.  We suffered on this mission to Buchen.

Upon arrival back at base, I was again met by Col Price.  This time he was a little more pleasant.  He told me I had been through enough and this was the end of my tour.  I argued that I really wanted to fly my 50th mission, but the answer was no, and ordered me on leave and not to return until the war was over.  I obeyed, went to the beaches of southern England, laid on the beach, drank some scotch, and gained 10 pounds.

All my time was spent on the beach where I got rid of my pallor.  VE Day came, and I laid on the beach, said some Hail Mary’s and thought to myself, “It’s over”.

I returned to the base and in a few days Bucky Cleven arrived.  I can’t say he was my idol, but certainly he had a great impact on me.  I sat on the grass around the squadron headquarters and was amazed at the loyalty and respect this Major received from his men.  Its best described by Sgt. Jack Sheridan in his book, “They Never Had It So Good.”

XXVII

As the snow fell on the countryside of Norfolk a very good thing came to the Squadron.  Major Gale W. Cleven came back from the other side and sat with his men again.

The Major, who had gone down on the 8th of October, 1943, came back.  He had gone down on his twentieth mission with a tremendous record of achievement and glory behind him.  When he had gone down he had taken with him the heart of the Squadron as well.  All the months that had slipped by since he had languished behind the barbed-wire of German camps.  Now he came home to us.  A little thinner and a little harder – but home.
***********************************************
Missions of Lt Sterling "Red" Blakeman
Date Crew Nbr Mission Nbr Last Name Initial Rank Position Aircraft Nbr Target
3/3/1944 52 122 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 231220 BERLIN
3/4/1944 52 123 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 39830 BERLIN
3/13/1944 52 128 BLAKEMAN S B LT BOM 31986 NOBALL/ 11 (SCRUBBED)
3/17/1944 52 131 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 39830 MUNICH
3/18/1944 52 132 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 31969 MUNCIH
3/26/1944 52 136 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 37621 SCHKEUDITZ/JU-88 PLANT
3/27/1944 52 138 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 37621 CHATEAUDUN/ EVREUX
3/27/1944 52 137 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 37621 BORDEAUX/ MERIGNAC
3/31/1944 52 139 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 37621 LUDWIGSHAFEN/RECALLED
4/7/1944 52 141 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 37621 QUACKENBRUCK (SCRB)
4/8/1944 52 142 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 37621 QUACKENBRUCK
4/9/1944 52 143 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 37621 KRZESINKI (POSEN)
4/10/1944 52 144 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 37621 RHEIMS/ CHAMPAGNE
4/11/1944 52 145 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 37621 POSEN / ROSTOCK T.O.
4/13/1944 52 147 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 37621 AUGSBURG
5/1/1944 52 110 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 31537 SAARGUEMINES/WIZERNES
5/24/1944 52 121 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 97621 BERLIN
6/4/1944 36 130 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 97621 BOULOGNE
6/6/1944 36 -132 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 97621 FALAISE/OUISTREHAM
6/8/1944 36 -136 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 97621 TOURS (BRIDGES)
6/25/1944 36 148 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 31895 SOUTH OF FRANCE
6/29/1944 36 150 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 31895 BOHLEN (OIL REF)
7/7/1944 36 155 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 97621 BOHLEN/MERSEBURG
7/8/1944 36 156 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 97621 CLAMECY-JOLGYN
7/17/1944 36 161 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 97621 AUXERRE & MONTGOURNOY Lt G.W. Clark-Pilot
7/18/1944 36 162 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 102657 KIEL & HEMMINGSTADT      Lt G.W. Clark-Pilot
7/19/1944 36 163 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT BOM 97621 SCHWEINFURT & DUREN      Lt G.W. Clark-Pilot
7/24/1944 35 166 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT NAV 31537 ST LO (GND SUPPORT)        Lt Fitzroy was Pilot
7/25/1944 35 167 BLAKEMAN S.B. LT NAV 31537 ST LO (GND SUPPORT)        Lt Fitzroy was Pilot

MEMO 2:

To read an account of July 29, 1944 shot down of Frank Buschmeier and Lt Fitzroy Crew, please go to this website http://www.theygaveitall.org/#/frankbudbuschmeier/

Frank W. "Bud" Buschmeier of Milford, passed away on January 13, 2019 at the age of 95 years, beloved husband of the late Elaine Buschmeier, devoted father of Linda (Jim) McGarry, Nancy (Mike) Brennan, Mike (Sarah) Buschmeier, the late Robert Buschmeier, William (Natalie) Buschmeier, Richard (Rae) Buschmeier and Christine (Chad) Beuerlein, loving grandfather of Christe (Jimmy Keiser) and Patrick (Jan) McGarry, Keri Brennan and Katie (Derek) Benn, Jessica (John) Barber, Jennifer (Sam Wulfeck) Buschmeier, Michaela (Jonny) Walker, Michael Scott (Leanne) Buschmeier, Elizabeth Buschmeier, Julie, Kimmy and Billy Buschmeier, Brandon (Brittany) Buschmeier, Caige and Chase Beuerlein, and the late Daniel and Michael Brennan, great-grandfather of Addie, Aaron, Aubrey, Jared, John, Jaxton, Josie, Sofia, Aria, Mila, Clarissa, Jonny Joe, Layla, Noah, Mackenzie and Luke, dear brother of Margaret Suer and the late Florentine Rumsey and Catherine Bartucci, also survived by many loving nieces, nephews and a host of friends.

Born on born February 28, 1923 at his grandmother's home in Madisonville, Frank grew up in Terrace Park with his mom, dad and sisters Flo, Cathy, and Margaret, sharing many family stories. He loved his God who protected and guided him and made him the man he became. He played on the T. P. high school baseball team and took shop which led to his career as a master carpenter.

He very proudly served in WWII as a waist gunner in B-17s in the "Bloody 100th Bomb Group" over Europe. He was shot in the leg and parachuted on his 34th of 35 missions, was captured and became a POW till he was liberated at the end of the war. As we grew older he started sharing his war stories and kept in touch with his comrades till his death.

The day he met Elaine started a lifetime of love and devotion that never ended. They started their family of three girls and four boys and it is still growing. He loved hunting and fishing as a young boy which he passed on to his sons. Frank was the coach for baseball, basketball, football and was the assistant scout master for many years.

When the grandchildren and then great-grandchildren came along he was always eager to attend their sporting events, dance recitals, band concerts and was equally proud of all  their scholastic achievements.

The family would like to Thank Mt Washington Care Center for going above and beyond in their love and care for our Dad, Grandpa, and Great Grandpa. We also want to Thank our extended family and dear friends for their visits, cards, gifts, and loving him.

What a legacy he has left his family and countless friends. We can not be more grateful for the laughs, life lessons, and memories he gave us. What a life he lived, and lived well! For this we can smile as big as he did!


Frank Buschmeier 350th Squadron January 13, 2019
“Bud”, one of the most recognizable vets in the 100th BG, served as its Association President in the early 1990’s, attending reunions with his extended family. In 1943 Bud trained at Las Vegas Gunnery School, was offered a Gunnery Instructor position, but volunteered for overseas combat assignment instead; his mother implored him to become an Instructor! Assigned to the John Gibbons crew as a Waist Gunner, Bud arrived at Thorpe Abbotts in February 1944 along with fellow Waist Gunner, “Ty” Ettus (see TAPS below). The crew’s first three missions were to Berlin in March, truly “trial by fire”. Flying many tough missions through July 1944, often deep into Nazi Germany, Bud was preparing to go home when the required mission number was raised from 30 to 35. On July 29, his 34th mission, Bud was assigned to a make-up crew with Pilot William “Buzz” Fitzroy heading to Merseburg oil refineries. Their plane was shot down.  Captured and hospitalized for his injuries, Bud subsequently survived a grueling POW experience at Stalag Lufts IV and I (see Splasher Six Fall 2015).  Saying he “never regretted that decision” to choose combat over gunnery instruction, Bud returned home to live a full life, always with a smile, serving the 100th Bomb Group through the years. Inspired by her father’s service, Bud’s daughter, Nancy Brennan, designed and handmade 100th BG-themed quilts which were auctioned off at reunions to benefit the 100th BG Foundation. Mark Copeland, Foundation Board member, spoke at the funeral gathering to honor Bud’s WWII service. 

KIA / MIA / EVA / INT INFORMATION:

TARGET: Merseburg DATE: 1944-07-29  
AIRCRAFT: "Randie Lou" (42-31537) CAUSE: EAC-FLAK  

BURIAL INFORMATION

PLOT: ROW:  
GRAVE: CEMETERY:  

PHOTOS:

S/Sgt Frank Buschmeier, WG John Gibbons Crew.  

Frank Buschmeier in training Stateside. (courtesy of Patrick Daniel McCue and Frank Buschmeier)

Frank Buschmeier on leave in London. (courtesy of Patrick Daniel McCue and Frank Buschmeier)

Stalag Luft I Dog tag of Frank Buschmeier (courtesy of Patrick Daniel McCue and Frank Buschmeier)

Medal shadowbox of Frank Buschmeier. Photo courtesy of Matt Mabe 

Frank Buschmeier holding special pencil drawing by Robert Bailey of Frank Buschmeier, John Gibbons  and Ed Walker.  Photo by Matt Mabe 

Report of Missing In Action for Frank Buschmeier WG, flying with Lt Fitzroy on July 29, 1944.  Photo courtesy of Bud Buschmeier by way of Matt Mabe. 

Frank Buschmeier during stateside training (photo courtesy of Frank Buschmeier)

Enlisted Crew of Major John P. "49 Missions" Gibbons
L-R front Row: Bernard Spragg, Archie Bunting, Frank Buschmeier
L-R Back Row: Ira Arnold, Myron 'Ty" Ettus, Walter Waggoner    

Myrtle Beach 1982 100th reunion; From left; Howard Venzie, George Browning, William H. Fletcher, Bud Buschmeier and John Gibbons who flew two combat tours with the 350th.   Joe Lee Collection

 John P. Gibbons crew: Kneeling, L -R; Walter W. Waggoner, Bernard L. "Bernie" Spragg, Archie W. " Bugs" Bunting, and Frank W. Buschmeier; Standing; Ira L. Arnold, John P. Gibbons, Robert "Bob" Dykeman, Sterling B. Blakeman, Everett Max Johnson and Myron J. "Ty" Ettus. Detailed Information (100th Photo Archives) 

 John P. Gibbons crew: Standing, L-R: Sterling B. Blakeman, John P. Gibbons, E. Max Johnson, Robert Dykeman;
Kneeling: Ira L. Arnold, Carmine V. Roberto, Myron J. Ettus, Bernard L. Spragg, Archie W. Bunting, and Frank W. Buschmeier Detailed Information 

Miss Irish Nose Art, courtesy of Frank Buschmeier.  

John P. Gibbons crew: Standing, L-R: Sterling B. Blakeman, John P. Gibbons, E. Max Johnson, Robert Dykeman;
Kneeling: Ira L. Arnold, Frank W. Buschmeier, Carmine V. Roberto, Myron J. Ettus, Bernard L. Spragg, Archie W. Bunting, (courtesy of Bud Buschmeier)

Regal Eagle and Crew around her.  (courtesy of Patrick Daniel McCue and Frank Buschmeier)

S/Sgt Frank Buschmeier and S/Sgt Myron "Ty" Ettus  WG's on Capt John P. "49 Missions" Gibbons.  Photo Courtesy of Bud Buschmeier by way of Matt Mabe.

Patrick Daniel McCue was having lunch with Frank Buschmeier! He shared this photograph of he and Archie "Bugs" Bunting in front of Miss Irish! Frank is on the left.

John P. Gibbons Crew by Little Mike.  Courtesy of Matt Mabe

 Loyd Cresap posing with "Miss Irish". Photo from collection of Jim Potts. Photo courtesy of Daughter Eileen Potts Smith, 

 

SERVED IN:

Crew 1

Crew 2

ID: 669