Hess Crew - Assigned 754th Squadron - July 29, 1944
|1Lt||Glenn A Hess||0702277||Pilot||28-Feb-45||CT||Completed Tour|
|1Lt||William G Work||0767700||Co-pilot||28-Feb-45||CT||Completed Tour|
|1Lt||Carl C Kwiatkoski||0712603||Navigator||28-Feb-45||CT||Completed Tour|
|1Lt||Clayton E McGran||0886736||Bombardier||04-Mar-45||UNK||Rest Home Leave|
|T/Sgt||Charles Dykstra||39200942||Radio Operator||28-Feb-45||CT||Completed Tour|
|S/Sgt||Kenneth S Smith||36305683||Flight Engineer||28-Feb-45||CT||Completed Tour|
|S/Sgt||Robert H Robinson||17092031||Aerial Gunner||28-Feb-45||CT||Completed Tour|
|S/Sgt||Francis R Johns||36550427||Aerial Gunner||27-Feb-45||CT||Completed Tour|
|S/Sgt||Max E Stone||14061014||Armorer-Gunner||22-Feb-45||CT||Completed Tour|
|Sgt||Thomas L Santilli||32759169||Aerial Gunner||Sep-44||RFS||Removed from Flying Status|
2Lt Glenn Hess and crew came to the 754th Bombardment Squadron at the end of July 1944. Their first mission, on August 9th, did not make for an auspicious start. The crew was forced to abort due to engine trouble and crash-landed back at Horsham St. Faith. They only had one other aborted effort, on October 7th, and for the same reason - runaway engines. All but two of the crew's missions were flown against targets in Germany.
Sgt Thomas L. Santilla had trained with the crew as a gunner in the States. Shortly after their arrival in England he had to be relieved of flying duties due to stomach ulcers. It is believed that he was sent Stateside.
F/O Clayton E. McGran, bombardier, appears to have been removed from the crew at some point, possibly assigned as a lead navigator/bombardier. He is shown next to SPOTTED APE, the 458th's second assembly ship holding a map (see photo below). McGran was promoted to 2nd Lieutenant during the winter of 1944/45, and 1st Lieutenant in March 1945. Group records show that he went on Rest Home leave on March 4, 1945 - about a week after Hess' final mission.
While not mentioned in the group's records, Charles Dykstra's mission log (below) shows that the crew completed their tour around the same time as their pilot.
Hess Crew Missions
|Date||Target||458th Msn||Pilot Msn||Serial||RCL||Sqdn||A/C Msn||A/C Name||Comments|
|09-Aug-44||SAARBRUCKEN||109||ABT||42-95163||K||Z5||--||DIXIE BELLE||#1 RAN AWAY Crash Land|
|14-Aug-44||DOLE/TAVAUX||113||1||42-95018||J||Z5||37||OLD DOC'S YACHT|
|18-Sep-44||HORSHAM to CLASTRES||TR02||--||849||T1||NOT 458TH SHIP||ON LOAN FOR TRUCKIN'|
|19-Sep-44||HORSHAM to CLASTRES||TR03||--||42-50349||X||44BG||T1||FLAK MAGNET II||LOAD No. 1|
|21-Sep-44||HORSHAM to LILLE||TR05||NTO||42-50349||X||44BG||T2||FLAK MAGNET II||NO TAKE OFF|
|22-Sep-44||HORSHAM to LILLE||TR06||--||42-95001||Z||44BG||T4||TS TESSIE||TRUCKIN' MISSION|
|05-Oct-44||PADERBORN||128||6||42-51199||U||Z5||1||UNKNOWN 023||RACK MALFUNCTION|
|06-Oct-44||WENZENDORF||129||7||42-110070||K||Z5||38||ELMER / LADY LUCK|
|07-Oct-44||MAGDEBURG||130||ABT||41-28963||V||Z5||--||UNKNOWN 007||#2, 4 PROPS RUN AWAY|
|09-Oct-44||KOBLENZ||131||8||42-110070||K||Z5||40||ELMER / LADY LUCK|
|26-Oct-44||MINDEN||138||10||42-95108||B||Z5||41||ENVY OF 'EM ALL II|
|04-Nov-44||MISBURG||141||11||42-51196||Q||J3||9||THE GYPSY QUEEN|
|06-Nov-44||MINDEN||143||12||42-51196||Q||J3||10||THE GYPSY QUEEN|
|09-Nov-44||METZ AREA||145||13||42-51196||Q||J3||11||THE GYPSY QUEEN|
|16-Nov-44||ESCHWEILER||147||14||42-95018||J||Z5||56||OLD DOC'S YACHT|
|30-Nov-44||HOMBURG||151||16||--||--||--||--||No FC - Sqdn Rec's|
|11-Dec-44||HANAU||155||17||42-51196||Q||J3||15||THE GYPSY QUEEN|
|12-Dec-44||HANAU||156||18||44-40126||L||Z5||30||SPITTEN KITTEN / SKY TRAMP|
|24-Dec-44||SCHONECKEN||157||19||42-51196||Q||J3||17||THE GYPSY QUEEN|
|28-Dec-44||ST. WENDEL||160||20||42-95108||B||Z5||51||ENVY OF 'EM ALL II|
|30-Dec-44||NEUWIED||161||21||42-51196||Q||J3||20||THE GYPSY QUEEN|
|31-Dec-44||KOBLENZ||162||22||42-51196||Q||J3||21||THE GYPSY QUEEN|
|02-Jan-45||REMAGEN||164||23||42-51179||P||Z5||55||DUSTY'S DOUBLE TROUBLE|
|07-Jan-45||RASTATT||166||24||42-51196||Q||J3||25||THE GYPSY QUEEN|
|08-Jan-45||STADTKYLL||167||25||42-51196||Q||J3||26||THE GYPSY QUEEN||LANDED OFF LOCATION|
|10-Jan-45||SCHONBERG||168||26||42-51196||Q||J3||27||THE GYPSY QUEEN||LANDED OFF LOCATION|
|21-Jan-45||HEILBRONN||173||27||44-40126||L||Z5||43||SPITTEN KITTEN / SKY TRAMP|
|29-Jan-45||MUNSTER||175||28||42-51196||Q||J3||30||THE GYPSY QUEEN|
|06-Feb-45||MAGDEBURG||178||29||42-95120||M||Z5||67||HOOKEM COW / BETTY|
|08-Feb-45||RHEINE M/Y, OSNABRUCK||REC||--||42-95120||M||Z5||--||HOOKEM COW / BETTY||RECALL - WEATHER|
|09-Feb-45||MAGDEBURG||179||30||42-95120||M||Z5||68||HOOKEM COW / BETTY|
|15-Feb-45||MAGDEBURG||182||31||42-51196||Q||J3||34||THE GYPSY QUEEN|
|17-Feb-45||ASCHAFFENBURG M/Y||REC||--||42-95108||B||Z5||--||ENVY OF 'EM ALL II||RECALL - WEATHER|
|19-Feb-45||MESCHADE||184||32||42-95108||B||Z5||61||ENVY OF 'EM ALL II|
|21-Feb-45||NUREMBERG||185||ASSY||41-28697||Z||Z5||A62||SPOTTED APE||ASSEMBLY CREW|
|22-Feb-45||PEINE-HILDESHEIM||186||33||42-95108||B||Z5||63||ENVY OF 'EM ALL II||HYDRAULICS OUT|
|27-Feb-45||HALLE||191||34||42-51196||Q||J3||38||THE GYPSY QUEEN|
|28-Feb-45||BIELEFELD||192||35||42-51196||Q||J3||39||THE GYPSY QUEEN|
Hess Crew - After 2nd mission
August 9, 1944 - Mission Abort
DESCRIPTION OF ACCIDENT
About 0945, 9 August 1944, B 24 H, 42-95163, called in for landing instructions to AAF Station 123 after aborting from an operational mission. No 1 engine was feathered and A/C had salvoed it’s bombs in the North Sea, but was unable to close the bomb-bay doors.
The pilot Lieutenant HESS, was not able to get properly aligned with R/W 23, tried to go around, but he could not gain airspeed. The A/C crash landed in the middle of the airfield. No one was hurt but the A/C was completely destroyed.
RECOMMENDATION: That pilots be carefully briefed that first attempt must be made on all non 4 engine landings.
STATEMENT of 2d Lt. GLENN A. HESS, 0-702277, AC 754th Bomb Sq (H), 458th Bomb Gp (H). PILOT.
On 9 Aug 44 we started on an operational mission at 8000 feet. #1 Supercharger went out. At forming altitude (16,000 ft) #1 prop ran away. We feathered #1 and jettisoned the bombs in the channel, having trouble doing so. After getting the bombs away, the bomb doors wouldn’t close. The Engineer tried without success to close them. We came over the field at 1400 feet, called for landing instructions. We were told a left hand pattern on R/W 23, wheels locked down. I called for flaps. We sank rapidly. I was too far out so decided to go around. Used 2700 RPM and #10 position on supercharger. I still lost altitude. Called for wheels up. I was so low I couldn’t lower the nose to gain airspeed. My airspeed was 130 and I couldn’t build it up. Made the field and stalled left wing out at about 20 feet above the ground.
At the time of landing I had a gas load of approximately 2400 gallons of gas and bomb doors stuck open. Outside of these facts I do not know why the plane should not have flown reasonably well on three engines.
GLENN A. HESS2d Lt. Air Corps
STATEMENT of Sergeant KENNETH S. SMITH, 36305683, 754th Bombardment Squadron (H), AAF 123, APO 558. Engineer.
On 9 Aug 44 started flight on engine run-up. #1 engine threw a great deal of oil out of breather. Ground crew claimed it was due to plug put in prop dome before prop was unfeathered in ground work. Plane checked out OK for flight though. Took off about 0800. Short time after take-off super-charger on #1 dropped off. I changed transmitter but it’s operation was not good. Supercharger gate went to close back of throttle so as to get use out of engine. A short time later, prop governor on #1 ran away. Controlled it by feather button for a short time, while I checked governor switch and fuse. I then feathered engine #1. We went out over the Channel to drop bombs. Tried the usual ways then dropped the bombs using a screw driver out on bob-bay catwalk. Tried to close bomb-bay doors but was unable to do so after putting into use all methods known.
Came back to field for landing. Lowered wheels down and locked them. The ship seemed on a stalled out attitude. Engine picked up to a high RPM an I could feel the ship settling though we needed some flaps. Sam the Co-pilot put flap handle in down-to-lower position. Never felt ship shudder as usually do when flaps came out. The ship went on settling. I went on settling engine and went to more power, still the tail was down, flying in what seemed a stalled out manner. Started forward from back of flight deck, thinking we were going around the field again. Lt HESS said we were going to hit. Saw the wheels were part way up. Lt WORK cut switches. Right wing went down, we hit and slid.
KENNETH S. SMITHSgt. 36305683
STATEMENT of 2d Lieutenant WILLIAM G. WORK, 0-767700, Air Corps, 754th Bombardment Squadron (H), AAF 123, APO 558. CO-PILOT.
Scheduled for an operational flight on 9 Aug 44 we took off with a heavily loaded aircraft. The airplane reacted very well on take-off with the load it had. Upon climbing up to altitude we lost #1 supercharger. The engineer replaced the unit and enabled us to use that engine. At reaching our forming altitude (1600 ft)[sic] #1 prop governor ran away necessitating the feathering of that engine. After dropping our bombs in the Channel we came to base for a landing.
Calling the tower we received landing instructions, R/W 23 and a left hand pattern. Entering the traffic at 1400 feet wheels down. At this time the aircraft began sinking very rapidly without a build of airspeed. All available power on the three good engines was applied but we couldn’t gain airspeed and hold altitude.
Making a wide circle because we were too low to bank the airplane in a turn we approached the field. The pilot called wheels up but they seemed very slow in reacting. Approximately in the middle of the field the left wing stalled and crashed cutting all power and switches it came to rest 200 feet beyond point of impact.
WILLIAM C. WORK
2d Lt. Air Corps,
I FIRST SPOTTED B-24 5163 “K” APPROACHING THE FIELD FROM THE EAST. THE APPROXIMATE ALTITUDE OF THE AIRCRAFT WAS 200 TO 300 FEET. THE BOMB BAY DOORS OF THE AIRCRAFT WERE OPEN, AND THE TAIL WAS MUSHING DOWN. THE LANDING GEAR WAS IN FULLY LOWERED POSITION. THE AIRCRAFT PASSED RUNWAY IN USE (23), ABOUT 200 YARDS NORTH OF THE APPROACH END, AND BEGAN TO BANK LEFT, AS IF HEADED FOR RUNWAY 17. BEFORE TOUCHING DOWN, THE WHEEL BEGAN TO RETRACT. THE AIRCRAFT CRASH LANDED IN THE VICINITY OF RUNWAY 17.
SGT JAMES. H GRAHAMAIRFIELD CONTROLLER
(Photos Michael Dykstra)
2Lt Clayton E. McGran and Spotted Ape
T/Sgt Charles Dykstra - Mission Log
Mission 18/4/1944 Achiet-Airfield in France
Didn't have any flak. Dad and Willie were the 1st members of their crew to go on a mission. Dad flew with a Lt. Livermore and Willie flew with another crew.
Mission No credit
8/9/1944 Ship #163-K "Dixie Bell"
[Dad told me about this mission verbally. He said they were on a mission to Saarbrucken when they lost all hydraulic control. Apparently the #1 engine runs the pumps for the hydraulics. They turned back over the channel and had to crash land because they couldn't lower the landing gear. He said that it was not a very auspicious beginning for their 1st mission as a whole crew. He was talking to one of the ground crew men and the man told him that this plane had been all shot up on it last mission.]
8/14/44 Dijon-airfield Ship #018-J
Was pretty scared because gas was leaking badly over the overflow. Pretty long run. Flak at a distance.
8/24/1944 Misburg-oil refinery Ship # 059-T
Intense, accurate flak
9/5/1944 Karlsrohe- marshalling yards Ship #059-THad to fly in pretty bad weather but we made it. Moderate - inaccurate flak.
9/8/1944 Karlsrohe- marshaling yards Ship #059-TWeather was worse than last time- even pretty awful. Jerry was on the ball and really put the flak up today. It was intense and accurate and they put some holes in our ship.
9/11/1944 Magdeburg-oil refinery Ship #059-T
We really had a bad time today. # 2 engine hit by flak an hour before time to reach the target. Horgan's ship was hit here (Colbenz) and bailed out. We kept going with # 2 smoking badly. Reached and bombed the target and then feathered # 2 and came home alone on three engines. Some P-51's escorted us back to the Dutch coast. Had quite a few holes.
10/5/1944 Paderborn -airfield
Really hit it today. Too easy of a mission. No flak. Bombs didn't drop.
10/6/1944 Wenzendorf -airfield
My birthday. Went off course before target and shot at before and after coming back to Madgus. Mad because we were off course. Otherwise we wouldn't of had a big hole thru the right aileron.
10/9/1944 Coblenz-marshaling yards
Inaccurate - meager flak
10/15/1944 Cologne-marshaling yards
Intense, accurate flak. Got a couple of holes in tail section. Flew with Skidmore today. Had flak for a long time after leaving target and still in Germany.
10/17/1944 Cologne-marshaling yards
Funny thing, no flak today in our formation.
10/19/1944 Mainz -marshaling yards
Weather could have been better. Not much flak but it was accurate, McGran stopped a piece with his leg and got a purple heart. Wasn't hurt badly.
10/26/1944 Minden-Mittleland canal
No flak. Carried 4 one-ton bombs. Don't like those, too big.
11/4/1944 Mitzberg-oil refinery
Intense-accurate flak. Hole in dome of upper turret with me in it. Scared the wits out of me. Piece of something hit me in the back of the head pretty hard. Scared to feel back there for a while.
11/6/1944 Minden-Mittleland canal
4x2000 again. Flak along the bomb run and another hole in the top turret, smaller this time.
Mission No credit
11/9/1944 Metz-pill boxes
4x2000, bombs dropped early didn't get credit for mission. Had pictures to prove bombs dropped in Germany, but no soap.
11/16/1944 Eschweiller-ground defenses
Flak light but fairly accurate.
11/30/1944 Harburg-marshaling yards
Meager flak, 48x100 G.P's and 2x500 incend
12/11/1944 Hanau-marshaling yards
Meager flak , 6x1000
12/12/1944 Hanau-marshaling yards
10x500 G.P's and 2x500 M17's. Quite some flak today
Largest force of 8th Air Force planes to bomb to date. 1884 reached and bombed targets. Light to moderate flak but very accurate. [Writers' note: During this mission the formation was making a turn and because of a slight miscalculation in speed Dad's ship was out of position and ended up leading the whole Eighth Air Force for a while. His crew all thought that this was kind of neat.]
12/28/1944 St.Wendel-marshaling yards Ship #108-B "Envy of 'em all [II]"
Entire group returned with bombs as G.H. equipment went out on lead ship. Had 10x500 G.P.'s and 2x250 incend.
12/30/1944 Neuwied-railroad bridge Ship #196-Q "Queenie"
No flak. 6x1000
12/31/1944 Coblenz-railroad bridge Ship #108-B "Envy of 'em all [II]"
Meager but accurate flak before and after leaving target.
1/2/1945 Coblenz-railroad bridge Ship #179-P
Saw 12 bursts of flak which isn't much but it was pretty accurate. Weather was bad again. Had fog and bad visibility. 3x2000
1/7/1945 Rastatt-marshaling yards Ship #196-Q "Queenie"
Light but accurate flak 6x1000
1/8/1945 Stadkyll-road/communication center Ship #196-Q "Queenie"
Boy, we thought we had it today. The weather wasn't fit for anything - not even a bird. Actually took off in a blizzard. Willie and Hess both had to fly it on takeoff. It was snowing something furious - plus a terrific crosswind between 35 and 50 MPH. Thought we were going to crackup on takeoff. All the ships made it but only by a miracle of that I'm sure. Even at altitude the visibility was very bad and the ships were all over the sky. We ran low on gas and had to land at a different "limey" base (Manston). It was awfully cold - 57 degrees below centigrade - about 65 degrees below Fahrenheit.
1/10/1945 Schonecken-highway bridge Ship #196-Q "Queenie"
Terrible weather again- 56 below centigrade and persistent contrails. Our bombs didn't drop but we managed to toggle one out. It was snowing at our base and we landed at another base. Got some gas, had the bombs taken off and went home in the dark. [Writers' note: Dad was telling us about process they used to remove the bombs. They put a wooden palate under the bomb bay and toggle them out. After the first bomb was removed this way he decided that it was a good time to get a cup of coffee and left the area until they were done.]
1/29/1945 Munster-marshaling yards Ship #196-Q "Queenie"
Bombed secondary target, primary was a viaduct at Bielefeld by visual means. Had 10/10 clouds at primary. Suppose to be heavy flak but "Ludwig" didn't get his rations so we didn't get any flak.
2/9/1945 Magdeburg -marshaling yards Ship #120-M Mike [Hookem Cow]
Primary was Magdeburg oil refinery, bombed secondary with 10x500 G.P.'s. Had 2700 gals topped off and it was a long haul. Had 120-M Mike and it really took off like a scared rabbit. Robby didn't have to push it over the pub today.
2/15/1945 Magdeburg - oil refinery Ship #196-Q "Queenie"
2500 gals of gas and 12x500 G.P.'s. Little old Q-Queenie again its our ship now permanently. I saw just 1 flak burst but Robbie said there was quite a lot. I didn't look to hard for it.
2/19/1945 Meschade-jet propulsion unit plant Ship #108-B "Envy of 'em all [II]"
2700 gals of gas, 4x500 demolition and 5xM17. No flak at target but crossing the battle line on the way out we got shot at for a few minutes. #3 engine hit but just damaged an oil line, didn't know about it til we landed.
2/21/1945 Nurenburg-marshaling yards Ship #018-J "Old Doc's Yacht"
10x500. Flew with Canady today, he finished his tour. Had flak crossing the battle line - also a few bursts at the target. The whole 8th air force went there today, I guess they really got a bang out of us today.
2/22/1945 Peine-marshaling yards Ship #108-B "Envy of 'em all [II]"
Our roughest mission. Bombed from 10,000 ft. and really hit the target but the flak was terrible. Went slight off course and really got pasted. Ship behind us got a direct hit and went down. Another ship went off by itself and hasn't come back. Our hydraulics and interphone in waist and tail turret hydraulics were shot out. Landed at emergency field with a left flat tire. Had "Envy of them all" today and the old gal won't fly for quite a time. Had well over 50 large holes. Robby caught a nick in his leg. Stone finished his tour.
2/27/1945 Halle-marshaling yards Ship #196-Q "Queenie"
Had 18x250 G.P.'s and 2M17s. A long trip 2700 gals -topped. Johns finished today. Flak was pretty rough again but they were to late to shoot at our formation.
2/28/1945 Bielefeld-viaduct Ship #196-Q "Queenie"This was the day, our last combat mission. What a long time to get to the target!! Had 6x1000 and 2500 gals of gas. Old Q-Queenie took us back okay. What a reception committee we had waiting for us! All the guys liked Lt. Hess and boy they were all there congratulate him on his return. I'm glad it is all over with. Wish all the boys could get thru as we did. The guys down stairs have our ship now. They'll treat her okay cause they're well on their way to being thru.
B-24H-30-DT 42-51196 J3 Q The Gypsy Queen
(Photo: Kenneth Hosker)
February 28, 1945 - 35th Mission
Kneeling: Francis Johns, Unknown, Robert Robinson, Charles Dykstra
(Photo: Michael Dykstra)