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S/SGT  Lester H. BUSH


Comments1: 22 OCT 44 MUNSTER



DATE: 11 Sept.1944     350th Sqdn.                  A/C #42-102657  (BOSS LADY but not painted on aircraft)

Mission: RUHLAND                                MACR #8820,Microfiche#3238

1st Lt Albert E.Trommer            P       KIA
1st Lt Timothy H,Bradshaw       CP       POW
2nd Lt James H.Wright            NAV     KIA
2nd Lt Levi F.Groce,Jr.            BOM     KIA
 T/Sgt William M.Stone            ROG    KIA
T/Sgt AlVin J.Severson            TTE    KIA
S/Sgt John C.Kluttz                 BTG    POW
 S/Sgt Thomas C.Kentes          WG     POW
S/Sgt Charles E.Wilson              TG     POW

This crew,as above, with the addition of Sgt,Lester H.Bush as WG,  had joined
the 100th Group on 15/6/44.  On 16/8/44 the crew was given a seven day R & R.
Crew was on its 24th mission on Sept 11, 1944.  Charles Wilson was on his 21st mission
due to flak injury, he missed 3 missions.

EYEWITNESS:  "The group in which A/C 42-102657 was flying was attacked by from
50 to 70 E/A.  The attack caused at least three of our A/C to explode on the first
pass and most of the others appeared to be damaged.   Many of them were attacked
again as stragglers.  In a few moments all but one disappeared beneath the under-
cast.   Since none of them returned, no account of the loss of specific A/C is
available.   About half of them appeared to be under control as they disappeared
into the undercast.  Two chutes were seen before the A/C disappeared.  Which A/C
they came from is unknown."

A/C #42-102657 was flying #2 position in the lead element of the 100th Group C
Squadron which was flyinG as the low squadron of the Group.   At 1205 hours at
5035N - 1310E at 26,000 feet the 100th  C  Squadron was attacked by approximately
40 e/a, FW-190s and ME 109s.  The e/a came in a "swarm" from 6 o'clock opening
fire with 20 mm from 400 yards.  After this one mass  attack,  a few single e/a broke
away from the "swarm" and made a 360 degree turn and again attacked crippled air-
craft in tlle 100th  C  Squadron from 6 o'clock low   In a few moments all but one of
our A/C disappeared beneath the undercast about half of them appearing to be under
control.   Since none of the A/C from the 100th  C  squadron returned from this mission
no account of the loss of specific AC is available.

The following is quoted from a letter written by Lt. Bradshaw in 1945:
  "The action took place on Sept. 11,1944,  we were flying SE of Leipzig, Ger.
   when we were attacked by approximately 100 enemy fighters.  We were set on
   fire in the right wing and the bomb bays. The order was given to bail out.
   I sent Sgt.Severson down to make a double check on the Bombardier (Groce)
   and Navigator (Wright).   When I reached the escape hatch Sgt.Severson was
   trying to release it but it was stuck.   I also tried,but failed,to release it.
   Finally Sgt.Severson and I started kicking on it and finally it fell out.
   I told Sgt.Severson to go, but because I had been slightly wounded, he asked
   me to go ahead.  As far as I know Sgt.Severson and Lt.Wright followed 

   "I was free for about 3 hours,but when I was picked up I was put in a cell
    with my ball-turret gunner, Sgt. Kluttz and my tail gunner, Sgt.Wilson.They
    told me at this time they had seen  Sgt.Stone or at least a person whom
    they thought was Sgt.Stone on a stretcher.  They also thought he was alive
    at this time because he raised his hand to shade the sun from his eyes.."





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