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427th Flesh Crew
William R. Flesh, Pilot
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WILLIAM R. FLESH CREW - 427th BS
(Assigned 427BS: 25 January 1944)

1Lt William R. Flesh (P), 2Lt Americus V. Combs III (CP),
1Lt Robert V. Doyle (N), 1Lt John J. Reeder (B)

T/Sgt Glenn N. Albright (E), T/Sgt John J. Murphy (R),
S/Sgt Richard M. Price (BTG), S/Sgt Kenneth C. Strough (LWG),
S/Sgt Jack Kossin (RWG), S/Sgt John P. Williams, Jr. (TG)


100th BG George W. Ford Crew -- with some Flesh Crew members

(Back L-R) Geroge W. Ford - Pilot, Nathan Cooper - BOM,
Glenn M. Lashbrook - NAV, Americus V. Combs - CP

(Front L-R) Jack Kossin - WG, George N. Ofeish,
Virgil F. Summers - BTG, John P. Williams - TG John J. Murphy - TTE

Not pictured above is Kenneth C. Strough - WG who took this photo of FURLOUGH MYRTLE and her crew.

On the left are 100th BG pilots 1Lt William R. Flesh and 1Lt John G. Gossage. Photos are courtesy of the 100th BG Photo Archive.

The Flesh Crew was originally assigned to the 100th Bomb Group, then after 11 mission, transferred to the 482nd Bomb Group Pathfinder Group at Alconbury on 26 Nov 1944. Most of the crew then joined the 303rd BG on 25 Jan 1944. Albright and Price were also from the 100th Bomb Group. They were in the original Crew of Lt Victor Reed.

Thirty-Four Dispatched (32 credited) missions flown by 1Lt William R. Flesh:
As Combat Crew Pilot: 102 (30 Jan 44), 103, 104(A), 107(AS), 114, 115, 116, 118, 119, 122, 123, 126, 127,129, 130, 132, 133, 134(A), 135 (13 Apr 44), 257, 261, 262, 263, 264 (30 Oct 44)
As Lead Crew CoPilot and Pilot: 206 (18 July 44), 210, 211(AS), 218, 222, 223, 225, 227, 233, 240
Note: Additional missions, of which we have no record, were flown as a 305th BG(H) Lead Crew Pilot
(A) Mission aborted - no credit --- (AS) Credited abortive sortie - no bombs dropped
For mission dates and targets see the missions list.

Crew Notes - Missions flown as a combat crew:
Pilot, CoPilot and Enlisted Crewmen flew combat missions, on detached service, with the 305th BG(H), who was providing Lead Crews to 1st Division Bomb Groups - We have no record of these missions.

  • 1Lt William R. Flesh (P) - All missions as a combat crew pilot. Completed combat tour on 13 April 1944. Volunteered for a second combat tour as a Lead Crew Pilot.

  • 2Lt Americus V. Combs, III (CP) - Missions flown: As Flesh Crew CoPilot - 102, 103, 104(A), 115, 116, 118, 119, 122, 123; As 1st Pilot - 135, 136, 138. Completed 30 mission combat tour - mission 138 - 20 April 44.

  • 1Lt Robert V. Doyle (N) - Missions Flown: William R. Flesh crew - Seven missions (102, 103, 104(A), 107(AS), 115, 116, 118) ; George W. Shope, Jr Crew - Six missions 53, 54, 55, 56, 57(A), 59); Howard C. Ness Crew - 5 missions (72, 73, 74, 77, 78); Seven Other Pilots - Nine missions (51, 60, 63, 64, 65, 69, 114, 117, 118). First mission (51) 17 July 43. Completed 25 mission combat tour - mission 118 - 6 March 1944.

  • 1Lt John J. Reeder (B) - Missions Flown: William R. Flesh Crew - Five missions (102, 104(A), 107(AS), 115, 116); George W. Shope, Jr. Crew - six missions (53, 54, 55, 56, 57(A), 59); Howard C. Ness Crew - five missions (72, 73, 74, 77, 78); Four other Pilots - five missions (51, 63, 64, 114, 117). First mission (51) 17 July 1943. Completed 25 mission combat tour - mission 117 - 4 March 1944.

  • T/Sgt Glenn N. Albright (E) - Missions flown: William R. Flesh crew - Ten missions (102, 103, 104(A), 107(AS), 114, 115, 116, 118, 119, 122). Completed 25 mission combat tour on 18 March 1944.

  • T/Sgt John J. Murphy (R) - Missions flown: William R. Flesh crew - Fourteen missions (102, 103, 104(A), 107(AS), 114, 115, 116, 118, 119, 122, 123, 126, 127, 129). Completed 25 mission combat tour on 27 March 1944.

  • S/Sgt Richard M. Price (BTG) - Mission flown: William R. Flesh crew - Nine missions (102, 103, 104(A), 107(AS), 114, 115, 116, 118, 119. Completed 25 mission combat tour on 8 March 1944.

  • S/Sgt Kenneth C. Strough (LWG) - Missions flown: William R. Flesh crew - Eleven missions (102, 103, 104(A), 107(AS), 114, 115, 116, 119, 122, 123, 126). Other Pilots (125, 126). Completed combat tour on 23 March 1944.

  • S/Sgt Jack Kossin (RWG) - Missions flown: William R. Flesh crew - Fourteen missions (114, 116, 118, 119, 122, 123, 126, 127, 129, 130, 132, 133, 134(A), 135); Other Pilot - one mission (137). Completed combat tour on 19 April 1944

  • S/Sgt John P. Williams (TG) - Missions flown: William R. Flesh crew - 12 missions (102, 103, 104(A), 107(AS), 114, 115, 116, 118, 119, 122, 123, 126). Other pilots - two missions (125, 126). Completed combat tour on 23 March 1944.
Substitute Crewmen - Missions 102 through 135:
  • Co Pilots - Seven different on nine missions (107(AS), 126, 127, 129, 130, 132, 133, 134(A), 135)

  • Navigators - Five different on twelve missions (114, 119, 122, 123, 126, 127, 129, 130, 132, 133, 134(A), 135)

  • Bombardiers - Ten different on fourteen missions (103, 114, 118, 119, 122, 123, 126, 127, 129, 130, 132, 133, 134(A), 135)

  • Engineers: Two different - S/Sgt Lee F. Souder, Jr. - Eight missions (126, 127, 129, 130, 132, 133, 134(A), 135); Other - mission 123

  • Radio Operators: Four different on Five missions 130, 132, 133, 134(A), 135

  • Ball Turret Gunners: Two different - S/Sgt Bonnar P. McMahan - Nine missions (122, 123, 127, 129, 130, 132, 133, 134(A), 135); Other - Mission 126

  • Left Waist Gunners: Two different - Sgt Wilbert Rider - Seven missions (127, 129, 130, 132, 133, 134(A), 135); Other - mission 118

  • Right Waist Gunners: Four different on four missions 102, 103, 104(A), 107(AS)

  • Tail Gunners: S/Sgt Jesse W. McLaughlin - Seven missions (127, 129, 130, 132, 133, 134(A), 135)

[Researched by Historian Harry D. Gobrecht]