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  B-17F-5-BO Flying Fortress Serial Number 41-24427  
5th AF
19th BG
30th BS

Pilot  Captain Robert L. Williams, O-023070 (MIA / KIA) SC
Co-Pilot  2nd Lt Robert R. Wilson O-430646 (MIA / KIA) NJ
Navigator  2nd Lt William A. Dietch, O-433137 (MIA / KIA) IL
Bombardier  1st Lt Marion L. Wheeler, O-412742 (MIA / KIA) IA
Radio  Sgt William D. Lewis, 6914241 (MIA / KIA) IL
Engineer  S/Sgt Marion C. Taylor , 19054589 (MIA / KIA) MT
Gunner  Sgt Thomas L. Cotner, 6274735 (MIA / KIA) WY
Gunner  Sgt Glenn C. Keclik, 6932077 (MIA / KIA) KS
Gunner  Sgt Ernest L. Pugh, 6947173 (MIA / KIA) VA
MIA  September 15, 1942
MACR  none

Aircraft History
Built by Boeing at Seattle. Constructors Number 3110. Delivered to the U.S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as B-17F-5-BO Flying Fortress serial number 41-24427. Ferried oversea via Hickam Field then across the Pacific to Australia.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 5th Air Force (5th AF), 19th Bombardment Group (19th BG), 30th Bombardment Squadron (30th BS). No known nickname or nose art.

Mission History
On September 15, 1942 took off from 7 Mile Drome near Port Moresby at 5:30pm for a night bombing mission against Rabaul. After take off, no further contact was made with this bomber. On September 16, 1942 at 1:30am, when this B-17 failed to return from the mission, it was officially declared Missing In Action (MIA).

The entire crew was officially declared dead on January 7, 1946. All are memorialized on the tablets of the missing at Manila American Cemetery.

Dietch has a memorial marker at Arlington National Cemetery at section MJ site 84.

Wheeler has a memorial marker at Sorden Cemetery in Webster, IA.

Keclik has a memorial marker at Fort Scott National Cemetery at Fort Scott, KS at section Ma site 36

USAF Serial Number Search Results - B-17F-5-BO Flying Fortress 41-24427
"24427 (19th BG, 30th BS) lost on mission Sep 15, 1942. Crew KIA"
History 30th Bombardment Squadron
Knudson Diary
PNG Museum Aircraft Status Card - B-17E Flying Fortress 41-24427
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Robert L. Williams
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Robert R. Wilson
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - William A. Dietch
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Marion L. Wheeler
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - William D. Lewis
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Marion C. Taylor
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Thomas L. Cotner
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Glenn C. Keclik
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Ernest L. Pugh
FindAGrave - William A Dietch (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - Lieut Marion Lonner Wheeler (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - Glenn Clifton Keclik (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - Sgt Glenn Clifton Keclik (tablets of the missing photo)
Thanks to Steve Birdsall for additional information

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Last Updated
September 13, 2021


Tech Info

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