Date: 1943 Nov13/13 A/C Type: B-24H Liberator SN: 42-7483 Code: A/C Nickname: Big Dog
 File: 147 Airforce: USAAF Sqn/Unit: 392 BG - 578 BS Mission/Raid: Bremen
1 Pilot 2Lt. Isaac S. Marx 9 LWG S/Sgt. Rich S. Wright
2 Co-pilot 2Lt. James H. Chenet 10 TG S/Sgt. Jack O. Steward
3 Nav 2Lt. Victor J. Ferrari                Evd. back to England 11    
4 B 2Lt. Omar E. Roberts              Evd. until Pyrenees. 12    
5 RO T/Sgt. Nicholas Mandell        Evd. back to England 13    
6 E T/Sgt. Harold E. Pose 14    
7 BTG S/Sgt. Edgar B. Fletcher 15    
8 RWG S/Sgt. Mario G. Sanna 16                    

Returned from a bombing raid on Bremen. With two engines out became a straggler and was attacked by several German fighters over Holland. Aircraft was set on auto-pilot and 6 of the crew jumped by parachute. Four of the crew were in the aircraft when it made a successful belly landing in canal Meppelerdiep (E of Zwartsluis) with nobody in the cockpit. 7 POW. 

Read the whole story, including a photo of the aircraft in the water, here: 

The Dutch set a pole with flag next to the wreck to warn shipping-traffic. Civilians took ammunition from the wreck, the Germans later shot two people for this.

Lt. Victor Ferrari and Lt. Roberts were hidden by pilot helpers and resistance men Willem van Nooten and Peter van den Hurk in Meppel (Medal of Freedom 1947 and resp. Medal of Freedom in Gold 1946). They were hidden on an attic for 2 months. Roberts had a broken shoulder. Sgt. Mandell found refuge in Genemuiden, Dedemsvaart and Staphorst. After a dangerous trip through The Netherlands, Ferrari, Roberts and Mandell saw each other back in Brussels, which was the start of the Comete-line to Spain.



- Book 'Pyama House' (Harrie Otten, Erp) by Dr. Frans Govers, 1992. 

© ZZairwar (Zuyder Zee Air War)