A Gunner’s Tale . . . continued

N.K.Dewey Army Air Corps

N.K.Dewey Army Air Corps

"Can You Qualify for the Army Air Corps^ ...

“Can You Qualify for the Army Air Corps^ – NARA – 514024 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

N. K. Dewey’s “Daily Scedual” continues with entries about his life as a B-17 tail gunner over Germany. Grammar and spelling are unchanged.

28-29-30 Nov. Havent done much these past three days – Some of the rest of the crew went on a mission today and I suppose our next mission will be to together and it might be tomorrow.

Got paid today and also had a practice mission Gun Camera today and there was a crash here also and it burned and all were killed except one also several were lost today over target it was Merseburg again I guess they missed target again and it was visual bombing no excuse for missing I guess there was a lot of flak more even then when I went over it.
Dec 44
1st. Nothing done today and the weather is pretty foggy over Germany and not to good here
Dec 2. Some of the rest of our crew went today and I layed around in the sack.
Dec 3. Nothing doing today
Dec 4. On pass today went London

12-10-44 = Went to Koblenz – today marshling yards pretty easy run
12-11-44 Went to Giessen today more rail yards were the targets and the air force hit pretty heavy today.
12-15-44 Went to Hanover today and we werent represented as a crew – the Ball Gunner and I went as spare gunners and the 8 [th] air force put up 1,600 bombers Largest yet. Flack average

12-23-44 Went to Kaiser-Lautern and hit railyards
seen my first fighters and they lost several ME109s and I shot about 80 rounds No luck
12-24-25 – Went to an air field near Frankfurt and just out of Brussels ran into fighters and went thru a hell of an air battles and lost 13 bombers 3 P-51s and serveral ME 109s went down. I shot about 40 rounds at one but no luck.

12-25-44 Went to planes today and mission was scrubbed so we layed around Barracks this X mas day I now have 8 missions to my credit 27 to go. There will probably be a mission tomorrow so to the sack I am now going
26th Dec 44
No Mission today had a long sleep for a change after writing several letters.
30th Went to Manhiem today just over lines and hit rail yards hardly any flack. Hit the sack early cause weather looked good.

31st Hamburg today and we really took a beating – got hit by flack lost an engine Keegan got hit and we didnt have much gas left didn’t want to buck the North Sea and didn’t want

English: B-17 Flying Fortress bombers flying t...

English: B-17 Flying Fortress bombers flying through dense flak. Captions in English works: A very famous view of the formation flying through a field of flak. Believed to be at Merseberg, Germany [sic] Aircraft of the 457th Bomb Group in Flight (html). The 457th Bomb Group Association 1. Retrieved on . Русский: Группа бомбардировщиков B-17 Flying Fortress, летящих сквозь разрывы зенитных снарядов. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

to go to Sweeden very bad so went down German coast in case of more trouble we could bail out over Gem [Germ]?. Came back over channel landed on coast Hit – Nalbach

2nd. Jan. 44 Front line job today not much Flak or should I say none we were in enemy territory 10 min. Bombed a wooded area where tanks were supposed to be concentrated and a repair base. They really p[b]lasted it and was about our easiest mission yet and our shortest. Weve been breaking in some new crew members lately.

Hit Germund 3rd of Jan. 45 and its my 12th mission the unlucky one coming up next. Rail junction there mostly maturnety homes and milk farms.

“13” Pronsfeld “13” 5th of Jan. 45 Here it is my 13th [mission] and Im still alive even going on pass tonight. Rail yard and army truck pick up point and small town probably wiped off the map. Not much flak no fighters we got one big hole in the wing.

Continued next week . . .

A footnote: It is said that although the B-17 bombers were fortresses and withstood a lot of damage, they were considered sitting ducks in the air and 14 missions for a crew was the average before they were shot down.

Thank you for reading. Looking forward to seeing you next week!


About Dana J. Dewey

I was a slow learner as a child and to overcome my fear of school, as an adult I attended many of them. I ended up with a master of science degree in counseling psychology and I'm a licensed mental health counselor who is passionate about mental health. This blog is about life, joy, and the pursuit of good mental health, and the eclectic way in which it's achieved. I'm blogging a memoir, The Tail Gunner's Daughter, and later, Parent-Able: Seven Strategies for Raising a Physically Disabled Child Without Going Insane.
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