Lowe's Crew


LT Lowe and crew left the ZOI from Savannah, GA on 24 Feb, '45. After a stop at Grenier Field, NH, they arrived at Goose Bay, Labrador, the next day. From there they flew to Bluie West, Greenland, arriving on the 26th. There next stop was Meeks Field in Iceland, arriving March 12th. They arrived at Valley, Wales two days later and continued onto Sudbury.

The Lowe crew took part in the mission on April 10th, 1945. The following account is submitted by Robert Lowe, Jr.:

My father's crew was over the Bradenburg Gate area when flack got one of the right motors. This explosion also injured Al Horvath (entered underneath and went to body) and Charley Wilcox (legs). They didn't report in so Larry Workman went to the waist area to give them first aid. Larry started to pass out before he discovered that he had hooked up to a damaged oxygen bottle and was short of oxygen. Fred Marston came up from the tail and helped Larry get hooked up to a good bottle of air.

Flack then got the other right motor. My father ordered his men to bail out at that time as he was having difficulty flying. The men were concerned about jumping (since none had any experience) and wanted to get the ship level. Larry Workman was concerned about the 2 injured men and getting them stabilized. They would also need someone to jump with them and help. They all decided that there was no way they were going to jump if there was a chance they could ride it down.

In order to save weight, they threw all of the gear, including guns, out the doors. A British Mosquito Squadron picked them up and escorted them to a bombed out German Field in Holland. The field was near Breda, Belgium and Tillberg on the Dutch side. This field was currently in British possession and was in the middle of Montgomery's battle for that area.

While trying to land they discovered that only 1 landing gear was operable. The other would not manually crank down. They landed on 1 wheel as best possible. There were 170 holes in the plane.

The two injured airmen went to the hospital and were not heard from again. The remaining crew spent a couple of nights there and decided to find a way out. Seems like all vehicles were needed elsewhere. The only person with any money was Larry Workman. He gave it to my father. My father went to " talk" with a British Captain in supply. He returned with an old truck, which they promptly got in. My father drove the truck to Brussels and into government square. As there was some sort of band playing, the crew then had a party.

Name Rank Position First Mission Last Mission Status
Robert R. Lowe LT Pilot 09/25/44   Completed 7 missions.
Carl Pierson   Copilot      
Eldon E. Flatt   Navigator      
John "Long John" Bayer   Bombardier     Transferred to a lead crew after 2 missions.
Charley Wilcox   Flight Engineer   04/10/45 WIA
Larry Workman   Radio Operator      
Charles Wyrick   Ball Gunner      
Al Horvath   Waist   04/10/45 WIA
Fred Marston   Tail Gunner      
arr. Sudbury 03/45       B17G
180 04/07/45   TS 43-37928 B17G
181 04/08/45   TS 43-37928 B71G
183 04/10/45   TS 43-37928 B17G
186 04/15/45   TS 43-37970 B17G
187 04/16/45   TS 43-37970 B17G
189 04/19/45 Red Raider NK 43-38787 B17G

Completed 6 missions

Created 09/10/99 Modified 12/23/16

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