Paynter's Crew

(submitted by Morris Robley)

Harry Paynter's crew at Pocatello Army Air Base, Pocatello, Idaho, October 1943. Front (L to R): Clarence M. Flaig (G), Robert M. Morgan (G), Frank T. Sullivan (B), Frank A. Edwards (N), Ivan R. Hofmeister (FE). Standing (L to R): Morris D. Robley (G), William G. Seitz (R/O), Harry A. Paynter (P), William A. Sandblom (CP), Edward L. Kimball (G).

Our crew was formed in Boise, idaho in August of 1943. We then spent three months traning in B-24s at Pocatello. We were transferred to Tucsonn (arriving the day before Thanksgiving 1943) to become one of the 834th squadron crews. This was the crew that went to England. We flew the first two missions flown by the 486th: Liege, France and Brussels, Belgium on the 7th and 8th of May respectively.

The ground crew in Tucson and England was Art Beach, Austin Bell, and Sam Morris. When the 486th transferred to England from Tucson, Art Beach went with the crew on the plane, and I went by boat. This was the case with all of the crews. I guess they thought there may be a need for a mechanic more than a gunner on the way over.

Also, after a few missions, William Sandblom was assigned as first pilot and given his own crew. We received Herbert Hitzke as our new co-pilot. As time went on, some of our gunners had to fly missions with other crews because we became a lead crew with more officers than gunners. I flew two missions with other crews.

On our mission to Munster, GR, on October 5, 1944, we received too much damage to return to England and made an emergency landing in Belgium. We were not in American Beauty on that mission. [Frank Sullivan was wounded on this mission].

- Morris Robley


Name Rank Position First Mission Last Mission Status
Harry Paynter 1st LT Pilot 05/07/44 10/05/44 Completed tour.
Herbert Hitzke 2nd LT Copilot 05/09/44 10/05/44 Completed tour.
Frank A. Edwards 2nd LT Navigator 05/07/44 10/05/44 Completed tour.
TImothy F. Sullivan 2nd LT Bombardier 05/07/44 10/05/44 Completed tour. WIA. Silver Star.
Reinheart Zirbel LT Mickey Operator 09/10/44 01/21/45 Completed tour.
Ulysses W. Miller 2nd LT Pin Pt. Navigator 05/07/44 10/05/44 Completed tour.
Ivan R. Hofmeister TSGT FE/Top 05/07/44 10/05/44 Completed tour.
William G. Seitz TSGT Radio 05/07/44 10/05/44 Completed tour.
Clarence M. Flaig TSGT Gunner 05/07/44 10/03/44 Completed tour.
Edward L. Kimball SSGT Gunner 05/07/44 10/03/44 Completed tour.
Robert M. Morgan SSGT Gunner 05/07/44 09/26/44 Unknown.
Morris D. Robley SSGT Gunner 05/07/44 10/05/44 Completed tour.
Arthur R. Beach   Crew Chief   //45 Completed tour.
Austin Bell   Ground crew   //45 Completed tour.
Sam Morris   Ground crew   //45 Completed tour.
Mission Date Name ID S/N Type
001 05/07/44 Cancer DB 42-52650 B24H
002 05/08/44 Cancer DB 42-52650 B24H
003 05/09/44 Cancer DB 42-52650 B24H
005 05/20/44 Cancer DB 42-52650 B24H
006 05/23/44 Cancer DB 42-52650 B24H
009 05/27/44 Gemini DB 41-29490 B24H
010 05/28/44   DB 41-29490 B24H
017 06/06/44 Dynamite'n DoDo NE 4x-xx522 B24H
024 06/16/44   DT 4x-xx873 B24H
027 06/20/44 Cancer DB 42-52650 B24H
030 06/25/44 Cancer DB 42-52650 B24H
032 06/27/44   DT 4x-xx873 B24H
036 07/01/44   DT 4x-xx873 B24H
038 07/04/44 Old 486 DA 41-29486 B24H
051 08/02/44 Low Pressure Lulu NA 43-37646 B17G
056 08/07/44 Low Pressure Lulu NA 43-37646 B17G
062 08/15/44   NS 43-37800 B17G
069 08/30/44   DS 42-98001 B17G
074 09/10/44   PH 44-8039 B17G
077 09/13/44   PB 44-8025 B17G
080 09/21/44   PS 43-39037 B17G
082 09/26/44   PS 43-39037 B17G
084 09/28/44   PN 44-8132 B17G
086 10/03/44 Lady V II PK 44-8130 B17G
087 10/05/44   PF 44-8035 B17G

Completed 28 Missions

Created 05/16/99 Modified 12/23/16

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