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Built by Boeing at Seattle. Constructors Number 3259. On August 11, 1942 delivered to the U.S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as B-17F-25-BO Flying Fortress serial number 41-24574. The next day flown to Cheyenne, WY. On November 9, 1942 flown to Hamilton Field then ferried overseas via Hickam Field then across the Pacific to Australia.
On November 14, 1942 assigned to the 43rd Bombardment Group (43rd BG), 63rd Bombardment Squadron (63rd BS). Nicknamed "Tuffy" with the nose art of a cartoon cat. The tail was adorn with dark green tiger stripe markings.
During 1943, this B-17 flew extensive combat missions over New Guinea.
On March 26, 1943 took off from 7-Mile Drome near Port Moresby piloted by Derr on a night bombing mission against enemy shipping in Wewak Harbor. Over the target, nothing was sighted and harbor installations were bombed instead.
On April 27, 1943 took off from 7-Mile Drome piloted by Lt James Murphy on a reconnaissance mission.
On October 16, 1943 took off from 7-Mile Drome on a weather reconnaissance to Rabaul. This was her last combat mission.
On November 3, 1943 this bomber departed for the United States. During August 1945, this B-17 was sent to Althus for salvage and was scrapped sometime afterwards.
USAF Serial Number Search Results - B-17F-25-BO Flying Fortress 41-24574
"24574 delivered to Cheyenne Aug 12, 1942; transferred to Hamilton Nov 9, 1942; assigned to 43rd BG, 63rd BS and 403rd BS in Hawaii Nov 14, 1942 and named ("Tuffy"); RETUS to Rapid City,398th BG as a trainer Nov 9, 1942; To RFC Altus Aug 30, 1945."
Pride of Seattle (1998) pages 15, 18
Diary of the 63rd Bomb Squadron, 43rd Bomb Group
"26 March 1943 – Departed Jackson at 0130. Target: shipping Wewak Harbor. Bomb load; 4 ships with 8 X 500# inst demo, 3 with 4X 100# inst demo.
554 Murphy didn't take off on account of engine trouble. Nothing was sighted by the remaining crews.
358, Denault, 537 O'Brien, 574 Derr dropped their bombs on harbor installations.
455 Diffenderfer, 543 Staley, 417 Trigg dropped theirs on the town and runway.
543 Staley landed at Dobodura on the way back because of lack of gas. Search party consisting of Lt Murphy and Capt Thompson's crew were organized and were about to take off when 543 landed. Squadron on readiness at 1500."
Thanks to Steve Birdsall for additional information
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