Delivered Cheyenne 2/8/42; Sacramento 1/9/42; Assigned 26BS/11BG New Hebrides 12/9/42; Missing in Action Tonolei, Bougainville, shot down and ditched Vella LaVella, Baga Is 18/12/42 with Maj Alan Sewart (CO 26BS), Co-pilot: Jack Lee(2 Killed in Action); Navigator: Nelson Levi, Obs-Col Saunders (CO 11BG took over as pilot – 2WIA); rest RTD, USAAF contacted by coastwatcher Jack Keenan, crew picked up by US Catalina, Methodist nurse Merle McFarland treated wounded. Missing Air Crew Report 16407. (movement card reads: retUS 14/7/43; Homestead 14/6/45.

Details 41-24531

The B-17F-20-BO (s/n 41-24531) visible on the right was shot down by a Japanese Mitsubishi A6M Zero fighter over Tonolei harbour, Buna Island, Solomon Islands, on 18 November 1942. During the attack the pilot Maj. Allen J. Seward, and the copilot Lt. Jack Lee were killed. One engine caught on fire, but Col. LaVerne Saunders made a water landing about 50 km from Tonolei harbour near a very small island. An Australian coastwatcher reached the survivors about three hours later. The crew was taken to Vella Lavella Island an picked up by a U.S. Navy Consolidated PBY-5 Catalina flying boat and returned to Guadalcanal.

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