Intermission – B-17


I don’t remember if I had posted this before.

Anyway… here goes!

The crew of 379th Bomb Group’s “Ye Olde Pub.” Left to right standing: S/Sgt. Bertrand “Frenchy” Coulombe, Sgt. Alex Yelesanko, T/Sgt. Richard Pechout, S/Sgt. Lloyd Jennings, T/Sgt. John “Hugh” Eckenrode, and S/Sgt. Sam Blackford. Left to right kneeling: 2nd Lt. Charles “Charlie” Brown, 2nd Lt. Spencer “Pinky” Luke, 2nd Lt. Al Sadok, and 2nd Lt. Robert Andrews.

Delivered Cheyenne 6/3/43; Dow Fd 15/4/43; Assigned 423BS/306BG [RD-Z] Thurleigh 19/4/43; transferred 527BS/379BG [FO-S] Kimbolton 17/6/43; battle damaged over Bremen 20/12/43, with Charlie Brown, Co-pilot: Pinky Luke, Navigator: Al Sadok, Bombardier: Bob Andrews, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Frenchy Coulombe, Radio Operator: Dick Pechout, Ball turret gunner: Sam Blackford, Waist gunner: Lloyd Jennings (8 Returned to Duty); Waist gunner: Alex Yelesanko (wia later died),Tail gunner: Hugh Eckenrode (2 Killed in Action); force landed Seething Afd, Nfk; 2 BAD Warton 4/4/44; never flew in action again. Returned to the USA Homestead 16/4/44; Reconstruction Finance Corporation (sold for scrap metal in USA) Altus 11/8/45. YE OLDE PUB.

After the war Charlie Brown researched and found the pilot who shot him down, Franz Stigler. He related at a 379th reunion years later that he felt sorry for the injured crew in the severely damaged plane and stayed with them and directed them towards England. Some 25 veterans heard the story just because Stigler never fired his guns that day. Both men eventually died in 2008.

“Lt. Brown and crew pose beside Boeing B-17 ‘Carol Dawn’ at an 8th Air Force Base in England. 8 April 1944.”

Charles L Brown – pilot Spencer G Luke – co-pilot Garland A Page – left waist gunner Charles V Liddle – tail gunner Robert M Andrews – bombardier Bertrand Oscar Coulombe – engineer (was born on march 1st, 1924 – passed away on march 25th, 2006) Lloyd H Jennings – right waist gunner Samuel W Blackford – ball turret gunner (was born on oct 26th, 1923 – passed away on june 16th, 2001) Roy M Miller – radio operator Albert (NMI) Sadok – navigator