B-17 Flying Fortress B-17 42-29789 / Big Time Operator

B-17 Bomber Flying Fortress – The Queen Of The Skies 42-29789 / Big Time Operator


  • RCL: MS-O

MACR: 473


History of
B-17 42-29789 / Big Time Operator

Delivered Cheyenne 18/2/43; Salina 8/3/43; Pueblo 8/4/43; Smoky Hill 6/5/43; Dow Fd 19/5/43; Presque Is 21/5/43; Assigned 535BS/381BG [MS-O] Ridgewell Stone, Joe Mello, Bill Grayson; Missing in Action 4m Romilly 3/9/43 with Ben Zum, Navigator: John WillisWounded in Action, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Bob Italiano, Waist gunner: Frank Crocittio, Waist gunner: Chas Bang,Tail gunner: Ferdinand Christofero (5 Prisoner of War), Co-pilot: Chas Hoover, Radio Operator: Edwin Myers, Ball turret gunner: Floyd Terry (3 evaded capture), Bombardier: Luther Clark (KIA-chute failed); shot down by enemy aircraft crashed Provine, 18 miles W of Romilly, Fr. Missing Air Crew Report 473. BIG TIME OPERATOR.25/5/43 with Marvin Lord, George Darrow, Frank Shimek, Tom Hester, Fred Berg, Tom Campbell, Chas Fry, Ken

Last updated: 20. June 2020


B-17 42-29789 / Big Time Operator Details

The only thing that I may offer in connection with 2LT. Luther C. Clark is a statement that was made by the Navigator, 2LT. Willis, to the effect that Lt.Clark bailed out before him and apparently in good condition.

Lt. Willis made this statement shortly after we were taken prisoner – Sept. 3, 1943.

Charles F. Bang

I saw A/C 42-29789 leave formation just west of the target and beeing attacked west viciously by enemy fighters. Crew members on the ship in which I was flying reported seeing chutes appear from A/C believed to be 42-29789.

Elton D. Jukes
1st Lt. Air Corps

Source: MACR 473


B-17 42-29789 / Big Time Operator Crew

Position Rank Name Status Note
P --- Benjamin J. Zum POW
CP --- Charles H. Hoover EVD
BOMB --- Luther C. Clark KIA
ENG/TT --- Robert W. Italiano POW
RO --- Edwin R. Myers EVD
BT --- Floyd H. Terry EVD
WG --- Charles F. Bang POW
WG --- Frank J. Crocittio POW
TG --- Ferdinand Christofero POW

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