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Archive Report: US Forces
1941 - 1945

Compiled from official National Archive and Service sources, contemporary press reports, personal logbooks, diaries and correspondence, reference books, other sources, and interviews.

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14.10.1943 525th Bomb Squadron, 379th Bomb Group B-17F Flying Fortress 42-29511 “The Iron Maiden” FR-W 2nd Lt. Roland Martin

Operation: Schweinfurt,Germany

Date: 14th October 1943 (Thursday)

Unit: No. 525th Bomb Squadron, 379th Bomb Group

Type: B-17F Flying Fortress

Serial: 42-29511 (“The Iron Maiden”)

Code: FR-W

Base: USAAF Kimbolton, Cambridgeshire, England

Location: South of Wurzburg, Germany.

Pilot: 2nd Lt. Roland H. Martin, Jr. O-735093 USAAF PoW Stalag Luft 1 Barth

Co-Pilot: 2nd Lt. Linden H. Price, Jr. O-743277 USAAF PoW Stalag 7a, Moosburg

TT/Eng: T/Sgt. Nicholas J. Macri 32435006 USAAF PoW Stalag 17b Braunau

Nav: 2nd Lt. Daniel J. Maher O-676083 USAAF PoW Stalag Luft 3, Sagan

Air/Bmr: 2nd Lt. Irving M. Rittenberg O-670255 USAAF PoW Stalag 7a, Moosburg

Radio/Gnr: T/Sgt. Edwin L. Mattern 32381614 USAAF PoW Stalag 13c, Hammelburg

BTT/Gnr: S/Sgt. Elihu Peacock 34354103 USAAF PoW Stalag 17b, Braunau

RW/Gnr: T/Sgt. John L. Cihonski 33285690 USAAF PoW Stalag 17b, Braunau

LW/Gnr: T/Sgt. Daniel A. Sirianni 32550944 USAAF PoW

T/Gnr: S/Sgt. Adam A. Janik 16144807 USAAF PoW

REASON FOR LOSS:

This the second operation on the Schweinfurt area by USAAF bombers. Consisting of some 229 B-17’s of the isa and 3rd Bomb divisions. Following early withdrawal of escort fighters, the Americans suffered dreadful losses during this operation with 60 of their aircraft lost together with 600 aircrew killed or taken PoW.

Rockets although hampered their performance, were fitted to to some of the Luftwaffe aircraft with great effect.

42-29511 (“The Iron Maiden”) was claimed to have been shot down by Lt. Ludwig Wirtz of Luftbeobachterstaffel 7, his first claim of the war at 17:00 hrs, crash-landed South of Wurzburg, Germany. He was later killed on the 08th January 1944 in a crash at Venlo Airfield due to blocking of flying controls of Fw190 after take off (2 night, 1 day confirmed claims)

Burial details:

None - all crew survived as PoW.

Researcher - Michel Beckers for Aircrew Remembered - August 2016. Photographs form the Michel Beckers collection.

MB - 13.08.2016

Acknowledgments: Sources used by us in compiling Archive Reports include: Bill Chorley - 'Bomber Command Losses Vols. 1-9, plus ongoing revisions', Dr. Theo E.W. Boiten and Mr. Roderick J. Mackenzie - 'Nightfighter War Diaries Vols. 1 and 2', Martin Middlebrook and Chris Everitt - 'Bomber Command War Diaries', Commonwealth War Graves Commission, Tom Kracker - Kracker Luftwaffe Archives and Fred Paradie - Paradie Archive (both on this site), Robert Gretzyngier, Wojtek Matusiak, Waldemar Wójcik and Józef Zieliński - 'Ku Czci Połeglyçh Lotnikow 1939-1945', Anna Krzystek, Tadeusz Krzystek - 'Polskie Siły Powietrzne w Wielkiej Brytanii', Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses', Aircrew Remembered Databases and our own archives. We are grateful for the support and encouragement of UK Imperial War Museum, Australian War Memorial, Australian National Archives, UK National Archives and Fold3 and countless dedicated friends and researchers across the world.
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Last Modified: 13 August 2016, 20:47