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LT  Albert F. AMIERO

UNIT: 349th BOMB Sqdn POSITION: P

SERIAL #: O-794207 STATUS: KIA
MACR: 03019 CR: 03019

Comments1: 6 MAR 1944 BERLIN (EAC)

COMMENTS & NOTES

MEMO 1:

CREW:

1st Lt Albert F.Amiero                      P KIA    6 MAR 44   BERLIN         (this with a pick up crew, see note below)
1st Lt Kenneth I.Menzie                  CP XFR   7 OCT 43  ALCONBURY  (transferred to 482nd BG, Pathfinders, see note below)
                                                                                                    (on Aug 17, 1943 Capt. Norman Scott Crew, see note below)
2ND Lt Lloyd A. Hammarlund         BOM INT   17 AUG 43 REGENSBURG (flying with Lt Oakes Crew in High Life, see note below)
2nd Lt W.C. Abbey                      NAV CPT             ?                       (Transferred to 418th BS)
T/Sgt Russell G.Gilbert                  TTE KIA    6 MAR 44  BERLIN         (Flew with Lt Amiero "pick up" Crew,  see note below)
S/Sgt Earl Griggs                          BTG KIA    3 SEPT43  PARIS          (Flew as BTG with Lt Floyd Crew, see note below)
S/Sgt  Joe Raff                            LWG CPT  30 JAN 44  BRUNSWICK  (Flew with Capt Moede Crew, see note below)
S/SGT James W. Gregg                RWG POW  3 MAR 44  BERLIN         (Flew with Lt Gossage pick up Crew, see note below)
S/SGT Richard A. Tangradi               TG POW  4 FEB  44  FRANKFURT  (Flew with Lt John Brown Crew, see note below)
SGT    Jerry Korman                      ROG XFR    7 OCT 43  ALCONBURY  (transferred to 482nd BG, Pathfinders, see note below)

349th BS. Joined the 100th BG in July 1943. 

Our crew was assembled in Casper Wyoming Jan. 1943, from there we went to Lowrey Field in March 1943, on to Boise Idaho in May 1943 for advanced bombing and gunnery incidently we met the actor Jimmy Stewart who also was in training.  From Boise we went to Kearney Neb. To pick up our big bird, what a beautiful plane!  I say this because when we got to ta (Thorpe Abbotts) we were shocked to see what we had to fly in, a once proud lady was now a dirty smelly hulk! From Kearney we flew to Bangor Maine, we laid over in Bangor for a few days then we flew to Iceland.  We knew then were we were going,  we then flew to Prestwick Scotland, very pretty girls.

Now it gets interesting after we got to ta and settled in,  the enlisted men of our crew were sent to a place on the English coast. It was a camp for advanced air to air gunnery; it was run by a tiger by the name of Capt Cohen.  I'll never forget it when we went for our first briefing Capt Cohen walked in and said "good mourning gentlemen forget all they taught you about gunnery in the United States" gulp! We were there for about a week and he was right "shoot em and kill em". I also found out you can get hurt in this war  we went back to ta and found out the crew had been busted up. After awhile thru the grape vine and other resources we found why.

Lt. Amiero had a medical problem that took him off flying status for a while.  We never saw the four officers again! Lt. Amiero was probably stuck in some office job, one was sent to the 351st Sqdn (Lt Hammarlund) one was sent to the 418th Sqdn (Lt Abbey)  Lt Menzie was transferred to a pathfinder outfit (482nd BG) I believe he was the copilot… S/Sgt Richard Tangradi, TG Dec 8, 2005

Sgt J. Raff flying with Capt.Moede crew completed his 25th mission 30-1-44.  From what heard Joe transferred to a B-26 Marauder outfit and did 25 more, the danm nuttttt….rich

____________________________________________________________________________________
LT AMIERO and S/SGT GILBERT NOTE:

CREW

1st Lt Albert F.Amiero       P   KIA   6/3/44  BERLIN
F/O Howard L.Kilmer         CP  KIA   6/3/44  BERLIN
2nd Lt Albert P.Rule       NAV  KIA   6/3/44  BERLIN (from Lt. Leon Morgan Crew)
S/Sgt Thomas S.Elliott   TOG  KIA   6/3/44  BERLIN
T/Sgt John J.Kovacs      ROG  KIA   6/3/44  BERLIN (original 100th air echelon)
T/Sgt Russell G.Gilbert    TTE  KIA   6/3/44  BERLIN (from original Lt Amiero Crew)
S/Sgt Virgil F.Summers   BTG  KIA   6/3/44  BERLIN (from Lt Ford Crew)
S/Sgt Hobart H.Spires    WG  KIA     6/3/44  BERLIN (from original Sammy Barr Crew)
S/Sgt Owen D.Stockton  WG  POW  6/3/44  BERLIN (from Lt J.W. Brown Crew)
S/Sgt Thomas D.Baer      TG  KIA   6/3/44  BERLIN (from Lt Victor Reed Crew)

349th Sqdn.   See MACR #3019 (Micro fiche #1021).  Flying A/C #42 31731 on 6/3/44

This appears to be a "pick up" crew. Kilmer joined the 100th on 26/2/44 as an individual. Baer was from the original crew of Lt V.Reed. Kovacs was a "spare" on original 100th Air echelon. Stockton was from the crew of J.W.Brown. Hobart Spires (flying his 24th mission) was from the original crew of Sam L. Barr.
S/Sgt Virgil Summers was from the original Crew of Lt Ford. 2nd Lt A.P.Rule on original crew of Leon R.Morgan.

Mike
Let me tell you a bit more of the story.  This is how Owen Stockton's
widow related the story to me.  

As you know from the MACR, Owen Stockton was the left waist gunner on
Capt Amerio's pick up crew.  (Amerio must have just pinned on Captain as
the records before that show him as a 1Lt.)  On the first encounter with
German fighters, the tail gunner, "Teddy" Baer was mortally wounded.
Someone from the crew dragged him out of the tail and up on to the floor
of the radio compartment.  Apparently he was shot up pretty badly as the
crew didn't think that they could help him other than to give him a
morphine injection to ease his pain.  Somehow it was determined that
someone else would go back and man the tail gun.  (I don't know if that
was a pre-mission decision, or who made that call.  Maybe it was some
sort of "pecking order" thing among the waist gunners. Maybe it was
whoever was the smallest in stature.  In any case, she didn't know if
the aircraft blew apart, or spiraled down, but the stress on the
fuselage, in any case, caused the tail section to break off.  (I
understand this was not necessarily an unusual occurrence)  Owen
Stockton stayed with the tail section.  He told his wife that he
couldn't get out.  (I suspect the G-forces of the tumbling tail section
may have precluded his getting to and hooking up his parachute - I
understand that the chute was kept behind the tail gunner's back rest)
Apparently the tail section landed in some trees and Owen Stockton's
back was broken (in two places).  I suspect there was some initial
confusion on the part of the Germans because there must have been some
distance between where the tail "fluttered" down and where the rest of
the aircraft crashed.  Besides, as I'm certain your book will recount,
there were a number of aircraft falling out of the sky at that point.
Mr. Stockton was immobile from his injuries and, once captured by the
Germans, was taken to a hospital along with other POWs.  Mrs. Stockton
told me that he spent the better part of a year in the hospital before
being transferred to a Lueftstalag (she didn't know which one) for the
remainder of the war.  She indicated that he had chronic back problems
for the rest of his life.  She also told me that he had significant
psychological issues because he was the only one form his crew to have
survived.  (I'm a bit confused about that as it was a pick-up crew.
They didn't have much time to have bonded)  Regardless, she told me that
he lived with those demons for all his remaining life and that he rarely
talked about the mission on March 6th.  He was, however, a member of the
100th Bomb Group Foundation.  That's about all I know about what
happened inside that aircraft on that mission.   

I have read a bit about that mission and things certainly didn't go
well.  In one account I read, it said, "After the mission, there was
talk of lynching the lead navigator."  The break in the bomber stream
certainly proved fatal to the 100th.  I've also been to the area where
the target (Bosch magneto works) was located in Berlin.  That was a bit
spicy as it was East Berlin when I was there.  Unfortunately, at that
time, we weren't allowed to take photos.

I would love to have the opportunity to buy your book.  My wife is the
director of the Scott AFB Base Library and they have an outstanding WWII
collection.  I know that she'll buy one for the library also.  See -
you've got two sold already.  If there's anything I can do to help you -
manuscript proof reading, etc. - I'd be glad to help.

When you get a chance, I'd appreciate any additional info about Virgil
Summers - like mission log, etc.

Cheers
Craig


CRAIG L. KOONTZ
Contractor Support to USTC-PA
(618) 229-4746 (DSN 779)

____________________________________________________________________________________
1st Lt KENNETH I. MENZIE AND SGT JERRY KORMAN NOTE:

Note on Menzie: was with 350th at the time of transfer. On 7/10/43 Special Orders #21 (Hdq. 3rd Bomber Division) the following crew was transferred from the 100th Bomb. Gp to the 482nd Bomb.Gp for Pathfinder training. Crew departed Thorpe Abbotts on 10/10/43 for Alconbury to join the 482 Bomb Group (Pathfinders)

1st Lt Kenneth I.Menzie   P (on Aug 17, 1943, copilot on Capt. Norman Scott Crew, manned gun in the nose)
* 2nd Lt Kenneth O. Blair  CP
2nd Lt Vanden J.Willey NAV
* Capt Norris G.Norman  BOM
Sgt Jerry (nmi)Korman ROG
* T/Sgt James E.Parks  TTE
* Sgt Blazier Paddy       TG
* Sgt Lewis D.Miller      BTG
Sgt Gordon D.Griffith  WG
* Sgt Britton I.Smith    WG

Those with Asterisks are members of the original crew of Norman H.Scott. According to Norris Norman,these men all CPT with the Pathfinders.  Scott and Strout were transferred to Bovingdon, to indoctrinate replacement crews.
_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
2ND LT LLOYD A. HAMMARLUND NOTE:

CREW
1ST LT DONALD K. OAKES
ORGINAL 100TH PILOT, 351st BS

CREW #19  A/C #42-30080  "HIGH LIFE"

1ST LT  DONALD K. OAKES                   P: INT  17 AUG 43 REGENSBURG
F/O     JOSEPH C. HARPER                   CP: INT  17 AUG 43 REGENSBURG
2ND LT  HIRAM E. HARRIS, JR.           NAV: INT  17 AUG 43 REGENSBURG
2ND LT  HOWARD G. BALL                BOM: POW  3 MAR 44 BERLIN
T/SGT   GEORGE W. ELDER               TTE: INT  17 AUG 43 REGENSBURG
S/SGT   NOLAN D. STEVENS              WG: INT  17 AUG 43 REGENSBURG
T/SGT   JAMES P. SCOTT                 ROG: INT  17 AUG 43 REGENSBURG
S/SGT   LESLIE D. NADEAU               BTG: INT  17 AUG 43 REGENSBURG
S/SGT   LEONARD P. GOYER              WG: INT  17 AUG 43 REGENSBURG
CPL     VINCENT E. McGRATH              TG: INT  17 AUG 43 REGENSBURG

HOWARD BALL'S PLACE ON CREW #19 WAS TAKEN BY 2ND LT LLOYD A. HAMMARLUND (from Lt Amiero original crew) WHO WAS INTERNED WITH THE OTHERS.

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
S/SGT EARL GRIGGS NOTE:

CREW #23
351st  BS
Mission: Paris (Beaumont AF)
M.A.C.R.#685
Date: 3 Sept.1943
Aircraft #42-30059 "BARKER'S BURDENS"
Time: 0920
A/C last seen: Over Beaumont Airdrome at Evreux,France

CREW ABOARD:
Charles W.Floyd,Jr.    2nd Lt P KIA
Jack C.Boyd             2nd Lt    CP KIA
Robert M.Rosenberg 2nd Lt NAV POW
Frank C.Coon           2nd Lt BOM POW
Theodore W.Price     T/Sgt ROG  KIA
John M.Neal              S/Sgt TTE KIA
Earl Griggs                 S/Sgt BTG KIA    (Replacement)
Dale P.Huffer            Sgt RWG  KIA (Replacement)
Peter J.Theodore      1st Lt LWG KIA   (Gunnery Officer)
John K.Williams          S/Sgt TG KIA


The following is from a conversation between Cowboy Roane and Paul West in 1991…Cowboy's remarks are from notes:

"I was with them at Paris and saw King's plane hit amidships by flak. It pitched up in and extreme nose high attitude and struck the tail section of Alvin's (Barker) plane. It seemed like slow motion, or maybe that is just my memory but they seemed to hang there for a time and then Richard (King) went straight down and Alvin (Barker) just exploded then and there. It was and still is a sad day for me, I had been Richard's (King) co-pilot in the states, the entire crew were my close friends. I also knew Alvin (Barker) from back in the states where we were squadron mates as well." 

Crash Information: FROM LT KING CASUALTY REPORT
The third aircraft to be involved in a massive mid-air collision in the Paris, France area. A salvoed bomb (from the high group) hit the No# 3 engine of aircraft 42-30059 piloted by 1/Lt Charles Floyd, which collided with aircraft 42-5865 piloted by Lt Victor Fienup, resulting in loss of control. The aircraft piloted by Lt. Richard King received a diredt falk burst amidships and sudden moved upward striking aircraft piloted by Lt Charles Floyd, this aircraft exploded.

When Al Barker, regular pilot of this crew, was made Squadron Operations officer, Charles Floyd moved from the co-pilots to the pilots seat and Jack Boyd, who had flown overseas with the 100th unassigned to a crew, became the new co-pilot.

Earl Griggs and Dale Huffer were flying in place of regular crewmen, Willis Stroud and Robyn Fulton, while Lt. Peter Theodore flew this mission in place of Edwin Morgan.
____________________________________________________________________________________
S/SGT JOE RAFF NOTE:

Bruce E.Alshouse of the J.G.Gossage crew writes (1986) that after the Gossage crew loss on 24/9/43, He, Theodore Don, and Mike Gillen (Bom & ROG) were assigned to the crew Of Capt. Donald H. Moede. Also on the Moede crew:

Capt. Donald H. Moede     P
2nd Lt Theodore Don    BOM (originally with the JG Gossage Crew)
M/Sgt. Art Gibbon          NAV
T/Sgt. Mike Gillen           ROG (originally with the JG Gossage Crew)
Sgt  Joe Raff                  WG (originally with Lt Amiero Crew, CPT on 30 JAN 44 Brunswick)
Sgt  Don Sackrider          WG (he was wlth J.G.Gossage on 3/3/44 and became a POW)
Sgt Richard Pearson       BTG
Sgt Bruce E. Alshouse      TG (originally with the JG Gossage Crew)

The CP was usually a replacement; Moede flew "The Laden Maiden" after Owen "Cowboy" Roane had flow her for 13 missions..jb

Sgt Joe Raff - FLEW 3 SEPT 43 PARIS MISSION WITH LT HENRY HENINGTON.
____________________________________________________________________________________
S/SGT JAMES W. GREGG NOTE:

CREW

1ST LT JOHN G. GOSSAGE                   P         POW     3 MAR 44 BERLIN (LNDED IN DENMARK)
2ND LT BERTRAND D. McNEILL            CP       POW     3 MAR 44 BERLIN (LNDED IN DENMARK)
F/O EDWARD A. WARNER        NAV POW 3 MAR 44 BERLIN (LNDED IN DENMARK)
1ST LT HOWARD G. BALL         BOM POW 3 MAR 44 BERLIN (LNDED IN DENMARK)
T/SGT MICHAEL G. POLANICK      ROG POW 3 MAR 44 BERLIN (LNDED IN DENMARK)
T/SGT ARTHUR A. COOPER       TTE POW 3 MAR 44 BERLIN (LNDED IN DENMARK)
S/SGT THOMAS R. WOODERSON  BTG POW 3 MAR 44 BERLIN (LNDED IN DENMARK)
S/SGT JAMES W. GREGG          RWG POW 3 MAR 44 BERLIN (LNDED IN DENMARK)
S/SGT DONALD B. SACKRIDER      LWG POW 3 MAR 44 BERLIN (LNDED IN DENMARK)
S/SGT ARTHUR V.R. CONGROVE      TG POW 3 MAR 44 BERLIN (LNDED IN DENMARK)

MACR #3025,
Microfiche #1023
A/C #42-38017
349th Sqdn..
Lt Howard Ball was from the "Original” crew of Lt Donald Oakes and was wounded on 10 Jul 1943 Le Bourget mission. He had been hospitalized for a considerable period. On 3 Mar 44 this crew was flying in the #2 position of the lead element to the lead squadron. There was a tremendous cloud build up and as the lead element entered the cloud some following ships believed they saw an explosion as if a collision had occurred. Later VHF was heard from Gossage saying he intended to try for Sweden. Actually, he landed the plane on a Schlewig airfield (Denmark) thinking he was in Sweden. This probably gave the Germans their first intact B-17 which they later operated.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

S/SGT RICHARD A. TANGRADI NOTE:

Rich Tangradi 
349th, TAILGUNNER 
HORNY 1&2 & LADEN MAIDEN
POPB17TAN@aol.com
mr faley have many pics and stories of 349th came to thorpes abbotts july 43 as crewmember of lt al amiera (lt amiero) check spelling its along story why crew was dismantled. I  became spare gunner flew many missions lt hennington,  flew 25thmission to paris with the '' cowboy''  his 25th I mean trying to get all this stuff together ill close now keep in touch    rich tangradi (message board 100th bg)


Mr. faley got your message thanks  as best I can I will start from the beginning all dates are aprox. Our crew was assembled in casper wyoming jan. 1943,  from there we went to lowrey field in march on to boise idaho in may for advanced bombing and gunnery  incidently we met the actor jimmy stewert who also was in training, from boise we went to kearney neb. To pick up our big bird what a beautifull plane I say this because when we got to ta (thorpe abbotts)  we were shocked to see what we had to fly in, a once proud lady was now a dirty smelly hulk! From kearney we flew to bangor maine which was at the time the vd capitol of the states keep this statement in mind  we laid over in bangor for a few days we flew to iceland we knew then were we were going we then flew to prestwick scotland  very pretty girls.

Now it gets interesting after we got to ta and settled in the enlisted men of our crew were sent to a place on the english coast. It was a camp for advanced air to air gunnery, it was run by a tiger by the name of capt cohen ill never forget it when we went for our first briefing  capt cohen walked in and said "good mourning gentleman forget all they taught you about gunnery in the united states" gulp! We were there for about a week and he was right "shoot em and kill em".  I also found out you can get hurt in this war  we went back to ta and found out the crew had been busted  after awhile thru the grape vine and other resourses we found why.  

Mike, here is a list of the crew.
 
Pilot - Lt. Al Amiero -  Page 172, Row 2, No. 7
Co-Pilot - Lt. Menzie - No photo
Bom. ? - Lt. L. Hammerlund - Page 206, Row 6, No. 4
Nav. ? - Lt. W. Abbey - Page 218, Row 1, No. 1  (not sure)

TTE/G - T/Sgt. R. Gilbert - Page 175, Row 4, No. 3
RO/G - S/Sgt. E. Griggs - Page 206, Row 4, No. 8
W/G - S/Sgt. J. Raff - Page 180, Row  3, No. 1
W/G - Sgt. J. Gregg  - Page 175, Row 6, No. 7
BT/G - T/Sgt. G. Holton - [Not sure - either with this crew or Hennington, either BT/G or TTE/G) -  Page 176,  Row 4, No. 8
T/G - S/Sgt. R. Tangradi - Page 181, Row 7, No. 7
 
I am not a member of the 100th Bomb Group Foundation.  Here is the information you need:
 
                 Richard A. Tangradi
                 HCR 1, Box 16P
                 Paupack, PA  18451
                 Tel. (570) 226-6387
 
The crew members photos are 2x3 and other photos are 4 x 5…….Rich Tangradi….TG on Amiero Crew (Dec 10, 2005

Mike a little confused here on last report you sent me sgt j. raff flying with capt.moede crew was shot down and captured  going thru pictures to send to you soon came across shot of joe being congratulated on completion of his 25th mission  bottom of shot are letters  gpr-98-2-100-30-1-44 -j.l.raff -25 missions.  From what heard joe transferred to B-26 maurder outfit and did 25 more  the damn nuttttt  am I right mike….   Rich tangradi TG on original Amiero Crew

mike,
 on my last message to you I meant to say I  would get back to you after xmass day have a little more to do on my missions and stories I came across something very interesting about our missing bt/g . On 12/11/05 you listed lt.menzie crew  I stopped at sgt. Jerry korman's name a bell went off  I know this guy I flew with him in the states im not sure mike but if I flew with korman it means he was a menber of lt. amiero's crew! He's not listed as a ro/g on menzies crew. Lets go back to same date s/sgt.earl griggs on org. crew of lt.amiero griggs flew bt/g on lt. floyd's crew kia as bt/g  lets go back to our training in the states. All gunners where classified like t/g was bombers armorer w/g was asst. armorer I think this was j.raff  tte/g took care turrets and sigths bt/g asst.engineer same job ro/g could be korman! w/g j.gregg asst. ro/g   mike I can't recall any turret gunner taking over ro/g position  don't forget theywere trained as radio/operaters  I don't think were looking for a bt/g mike!!!!!  One thougt I'll leave you with if I was lt. menzie and was told to get a crew together woud'nt you pick a guy from your original crew !!!??- I HOPE THIS MAKES SENSE TO YOU MIKE     A POOPED OUT  RICH TANGRADI


CREW
2ND LT JOHN W.BROWN                    P EVADEE 4 FEB 44 FRANKFURT
2ND LT ALBERT F. FITZPATRICK          CP POW    4 FEB 44 FRANKFURT
2ND LT THEODORE H. KLEINMAN      NAV EVADEE  4 FEB 44 FRANKFURT
2ND LT LAWSON W. CLEMENTS        BOM POW    4 FEB 44 FRANKFURT
 S/SGT CHARLES R. AMBRUST            WG NOC
 S/SGT RICHARD F. BRADY              ROG NOC
 S/SGT LAWRENCE M. PRATT            TTE NOC
    SGT MILTON GRABEL                     TG KIA        25 MAY 44 BERLIN
    SGT GORDON F. KEON                BTG POW     4 FEB 44 FRANKFURT
   SGT  OWEN D. STOCKTON            WG POW     6 MAR 44 BERLIN

349th Sqdn. Crew joined the 100th Gp on 28 Nov 1943.. Sgt Gordon Keon was the only enlisted man of this crew to particiapte in the Frankfurt mission of 4 FEB 44.  Other aboard for this mission and their fate is a follows:

 S/SGT GEORGE E. TOOMEY  ROG POW  (FROM C.I. MONTGOMERY CREW)
 S/SGT LOLA D. FLORIDA       TTE POW  (FROM C.I. MONTGOMERY CREW)
 S/SGT WILLIAM F. KEMP        WG KIA    (FIRST MISSION)
 S/SGT HAROLD F. JANDERUP  WG POW  (FROM LT HENINGTON CREW)    
 S/SGT RICHARD A. TANGRADI  TG POW (FROM original LT AMIERO CREW)

MEMO 2:

KIA / MIA / EVA / INT INFORMATION:

TARGET: Berlin DATE: 1944-03-06  
AIRCRAFT: (42-31731) CAUSE: EAC & Explosion  

BURIAL INFORMATION

PLOT: D ROW: 11  
GRAVE: 7 CEMETERY: Ardennes, Neuville-en-Cond, Belgium  

PHOTOS:

 Lts. Kenneth Menzie (CP), W. C. Abbey (NAV), Lloyd Hammarlund (BOM), & Albert Amiero (P) in Casper, Wyoming. February 1943. (100th Photo Archives) 

 Albert F. Amiero, Pilot. Detailed Information Photo courtesy of Richard A. Tangradi 

 Kenneth I. Menzie, CP on the Albert F. Amiero crew. Kenneth was later transferred with the Norman H. Scott crew for "Pathfinder" training. (Albert F. Amiero Crew) Detailed Information (Norman H. Scott Crew) Detailed Information Photo courtesy of Richard A. Tangradi 

 Joe Raff, LWG on the Albert F. Amiero crew. Detailed Information Photo courtesy of Richard A. Tangradi 

 Lloyd A. Hammarlund, BOM on the Albert F. Amiero crew. Detailed Information Photo courtesy of Richard A. Tangradi 

 T/Sgt. Richard Tangardi (TG) on the original Albert Amiero crew. (100th Photo Archives) 

 Joe L. Raff (WG) of the Albert Amiero crew on left and Cryin Joe Kelly on the right (100th Photo Archives) 

Albert F. Amiero  349th  P  Illinois  KIA  6 Mar 44  Berlin   Albert F. Amiero Crew    (100th Photo Archives)

 

SERVED IN:

Crew 1

Crew 2

ID: 72