B-17 Flying Fortress B-17 42-37812 / Heavenly Body

B-17 #42-37812 / Heavenly Bodyzoom_in



  • RCL: DI-O

MACR: 2990 / KSU/ME/KU: 1191

Missions: 23


History of
B-17 42-37812 / Heavenly Body

Delivered Long Beach 7/9/43; Grand Island 1/10/43; ass 570BS/390BG [DI-O] Framlingham 26/10/43; MIA [23m] Berlin 8/3/44 Pilot: Bill Branum, Co-Pilot: Odell Stanphill, Navigator: John Sullivan, Bombardier: Edwin Nicholls, Engineer / Top Turret Gunner: Bob House, Radio Operator: John Noonan, Ball Turret Gunner: Curtis Lillard, Waist Gunner: Ernie Peiffer, Tail Gunner: Maurice Michalek (9POW); Waist Gunner: Ken Pyle (KIA-died in Lazarette hospital due to compound fracture of his leg); Enemy aircraft, KO’d #2 & set fire to wing, crashed Poucher Forest, six miles SE of Bitterfeld, 25 miles W of Torgau, Germany. MACR 2990. HEAVENLY BODY.

Last updated: 4. September 2021


B-17 42-37812 / Heavenly Body Details

A/C 812 was observed about 1400 hours near 51 deg. 41 min. N – 13 deg. 40 min. E with #2 engine afire after attacks by fighters, A/C made 180 deg. turn and was under attack by enemy aircraft. No chutes reported. A/C 812 observed to shoot down several enemy aircraft. Two crews reported gas leaking from gas tank of A/C 812.

Source: MACR 2990

42-37812 / Heavenly Body Ground Crew – 05 March 1944
T/Sgt. Ford was not on mission with Lt. Branum crew on 08 March 1944. Robert House flew on 08 March 1944 with Lt. Branum crew.

B-17 42-37812 / Heavenly Body Crew

Position Rank Name Status Note
P 1LT Lt. William S. Branum POW
CP 2LT Odell Stanphill POW
BOMB 2LT Edwin H. Nicholls POW
ENG/TT T/SGT Robert House POW
RO T/SGT John M. Noonan POW
BT S/SGT Curtis T. Lillard POW
WG S/SGT Kenneth E. Pyle KIA Died of wounds in hospital
WG S/SGT Ernest H. Peiffer POW
TG S/SGT Maurice E. Michalek POW

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