B-17 Flying Fortress B-17 42-102918 / Idiot’s Delight

B-17 #42-102918 / Idiot’s Delightzoom_in



MACR: 6688 / KSU/ME/KU: 1651


History of
B-17 42-102918 / Idiot’s Delight

Delivered Cheyenne 17/4/44; Hunter 29/4/44; Grenier 14/5/44; Assigned 342BS/97BG Amendola 26/5/44; first 15AF aircraft to land in Russia on shuttle mission after bombing Debrecen marshalling yards 2/6/44; Missing in Action Munich 19/7/44 with 1Lt Marion W Williams, 2lt Robert E Frost, 2lt Albert Lee Thomas, 2Lt Morris Brownstein, T/Sgt Angelo J Cirigliano, Sgt Kenneth H Smith, Sgt Frank J Compton, Sgt Charles Androski, S/Sgt Walter S Bond, Sgt Charles W Ranson, Sgt Herbert R Bauer; flak hit caused fire in bomb bay, aircraft went into a spin and tail broke off, crashed Ascheim; Missing Air Crew Report 6688; IDIOT’S DELIGHT.

Last updated: 3. May 2020


B-17 42-102918 / Idiot’s Delight Details

Photo: fold3.com

Statement of Eye-Witnesses

We had gone over the target and dropped our bombs, when I saw an aircraft with #2, engine on fire. The flames extending along the length of the fuselage and at times nearly obscuring the plane from my sight.

The flaming aircraft followed in formation an completed the turn off the target in place maintaining altitude. When the turn was completed the burning aircraft left the formation and I observed at (5) five chutes come out of the aircraft, and the all opened. After the men left aircraft the tail section separated from the aircraft and the fire went out as the aircraft plunged straight down.

T/Sgt. William J. Farrell

We had just dropped our bombs and closed the bomb-bay doors when I saw aircraft #918 in D box formation hit by flak in #2 engine. It started burning but the aircraft stayed in formation until we completed our turn off the target and out of the flak area. I saw (7) seven chutes come out of the aircraft, and they all opened. Finally the tail broke off of the aircraft at the waist gun position and the aircraft started down. That is the last I could see of the aircraft.

S/Sgt. Thomas B. Summers
Tail Gunner

When I say that Lts. Williams and Frost had no possible chance to escape, I mean when I was blown thru the nose they were in pilots seat and were undoubtly hurled into the instrument panel, either fatally unjuring them or rendering them unconciuos.

S/Sgt. Kenneth H. Smith


B-17 42-102918 / Idiot’s Delight Crew

Position Rank Name Status Note
P 1LT Marion W. Williams KIA
CP 2LT Robert E. Frost KIA
BOMB 2LT Morris Brownstein POW
ENG/TT SGT Kenneth H. Smith POW
RO T/SGT Angelo J. Cirigliano POW
BT S/SGT Walter S. Bond KIA
WG SGT Charles Androski POW
WG SGT Frank J. Compton POW
TG SGT Charles W. Ranson KIA
--- SGT Herbert R. Bauer KIA Asst. RO

Susan Androski Tillotson
17. May 2021 access_time 22:36
18. May 2021 access_time 8:13

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