B-17 Flying Fortress B-17 42-102706

B-17 #42-102706zoom_in


MACR: 12145 & 14764


History of
B-17 42-102706

Delivered Cheyenne 26/3/44; Hunter 19/4/44; Morrison 3/5/44; Assigned 817BS/483BG Sterparone 5/5/44; Missing in Action Hall, Aus 16/2/45 with Max Solowitz, Lillish, Dye, Short, O’Dwyer, Pedersen, Heckler, Cox, Chenowith, (9 Killed in Action); hit by bomb from B-24, severing tail; crashed Innsbruck; 9KIA; Missing Air Crew Reports 12145 & 14764.

Last updated: 17. February 2022


B-17 42-102706 Details


We were coming in on the bomb run at Hall, Austria. We had bomb bay doors open, and at bombs away I was watching for flak and planes, when I happened to look towards six o’clock and saw ship No. 706 flying no. six (6) position hit by a bomb and explode in mid-air. I couldn’t see where the tail went, for at that time a Squadron of B-24’s came thru our formation, simultaneously as they passed above us.

The ship nosed over and went into a dive earthwards. I saw that it still had bomb bay doors open and the ship was following its first two or three bombs. It went into spin when I last saw it. At that time I was calling the pilot to tell him what had happened to No. 6 ship. I did not see any chutes come out of the plane. The only markings that I saw on the B-24’s was the top-part of the rudder was yellow.

S/Sgt. Tom J. Hanges
Tail Gunner

We were going over the target when a formation of B-24’s drifted in just over our second element. When our bombardier called bombs away the 24’s released their bombs at the same time and one of the bombs struck Ship No. 6 (706). The bomb struck the tail and blew it off from the rest of the ship. The ship went straight down. No chutes came out of the ship.

S/Sgt. Gordon L. Harrison
Tail Gunner

Ship No. 706 of the 817th Squadron was hit over the target, and burst into two pieces, tail and fuselage. The ship went into a spin and crashed north of the target. I watched the ship go down and crash, however, I did not see any chutes open.

Cpl. G. A. Tapia
Ball Turret Gunner

Source: MACR 12145


B-17 42-102706 Crew

Position Rank Name Status Note
P 1LT Max Solowitz KIA
CP 2LT George C. Tillish KIA
BOMB 2LT Jay E. Short KIA
ENG/TT SGT Roger J. O'Dwyer KIA
RO SGT Jonathan C. Heckler, Jr. KIA
BT SGT Walter F. Cox KIA
WG SGT Clyde R. Pedersen KIA
TG S/SGT Robert C. Chenoweth KIA

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