457th Bomb Group 457th Bomb Group Honor Roll
Mission No. 23
751st Bomb Squadron
457th Bomb Group 751st Bomb Squadron
                                         (457th Home) (Back)            Updated 12/03/2000, 19:17:14

Mission Narrative

Mission No. 23
Date - April 09, 1944
Target - Gdynia
Over three hundred bombers were sent to bomb a FW-190 aircraft plane in Gydnia, Poland. This was the longest mission that the 457th had flown to date. Because of the distance friendly fighter protection would not be available near the target. The group lost three planes to a furious fighter attack both before they hit the target and on the way home. The route was over the North Sea, across Denmark and then East across the Baltic Sea. Many planes dropped out due to extremely bad weather conditions but the weather cleared as they approached the target. The bomb run and results were good in spite of enemy fighter attacks. Flak was moderate. The 457th lost three planes to enemy action. The 8th Air Force lost 32 bombers on this mission.
Plane 42-97465, piloted by Lt Robert K. Walker, was reported to have been shot down after dropping it's bombs. The plane was last seen spiraling toward the ground, the left wing came off the plane and it broke into pieces. Most ot the crew parachuted safely. The pilot, Lt Robert Walker was killed when he went down with the plane. The waist gunner Sgt Kneeland I. Parshley, died of his wounds on the way to a German hospital.

......... Crew

The crew was as follows:
     Plane s/n 42-97465     
PilotLt Robert K. Walker KIA
Copilot J. B. Latham ----------------POW   POW
NavigatorFrank S. Jackson -------------POW   POW
BombardierLt Marlin D. Greenawalt --------------POW   POW
Aircraft EngineerSgt Lionel W. Havlas ------------POW   POW
Radio OperatorSgt David M. Gerber --------------POW   POW
Left Waist GunnerSgt Leland E. Mills ------------POW   POW
Right Waist GunnerSgt Kneeland I Parshley KIA
Ball Turret Gunner Sgt Frank L. Croft, Jr -------------POW   POW
Tail GunnerSgt Bruce L. Kustaborder -----------------POW   POW
                                         (457th Home) (Back)            Updated 12/03/2000, 19:17:14
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