Date: 1944 Nov 21/21 A/C Type: B-24H  Liberator SN: 42-95180 Code: A/C Nickname: Satan's Little Sister
 File: 341 Airforce: USAAF Sqn/Unit: 446 BG - 706 BS Mission/Raid: Harburg (Hamburg-south)
1 Pilot 1Lt. John H. Quinn       sheltered until liberated 9 RWG S/Sgt. Frank H. Pietszch  KIA - Doornspijk
2 Co-pilot 2Lt. Melburn O. Simmons  sheltered until liberated 10 TG  
3 Nav. 2Lt. Robert F. Brooks        KIA - Spakenburg 11    
4 B T/Sgt. Patrick J. Flaherty  KIA - Nijkerk 12    
5 E T/Sgt. John W. Cahill       KIA - Spakenburg 13    
6 RO S/Sgt. Ben F. Tillotson    KIA - Kampen 14    
7 BTG S/Sgt. Lewis R. Hoyal     KIA - Kampen 15    
8 LWG S/Sgt. John S. Todd        KIA - Kampen 16                    

This aircraft was hit by a Flak under the left wing, motor no. 1 and 2 out. On the return to England turned south to try to reach liberated south-Netherlands. Fuel ran out, pilot let crew jump on southern coastline Lake IJsselmeer, but wind blew 7 parachutes in the water. Only the two pilots landed on the dyke. The other seven drowned.  


Pilot 1Lt. John H. Quinn did not let the crew jump near Texel Island, because he still had control over the aircraft, albeit wit only two engines functioning on his right wing. He tried to get to the Southern Netherlands that were in Allied control since October 1944. However fuel tanks were punctured and fuel ran out. The bail-out signal was given. Quinn held the aircraft level to allow everybody to jump and self jumped out as last. They were above the shoreline, but the wind blew the first seven parachutists into Holland's central Lake IJsselmeer (Old Zuyder Sea). The Mae-West life vest was not designed for the thick 1944-flying suits and all seven were pulled under and drowned in the sight of horrified spectators on the shore. Fishing boats that sailed out from Spakenburg to help did not find anything.

Below. Washing ashore positions and initial burial locations of the crew. Lt. Brooks and Sgt. Cahill were found in the lake by fishing boats and buried via Spakenburg-port in city of Amersfoort. On 18 April 1945, the Canadian army spearhead reached the lake-coast at Nijkerk, Harderwijk and Kampen. T/Sgt. Patrick Flaherty was buried in presence of Canadian soldiers in Nijkerk. The frontline was a few km to the West between Eemnes and Bunschoten and lasted until May 5, 1945. Lt. Quinn and Simmons were first hidden in Bunschoten and later undergound in Blaricum and Eemnes and had to wait until liberated because it was too dangerous to cross the frontline.  

A few days after the liberation on May 5 1945, the pilots came out their hiding in Weesp, Blaricum and Eemnes and put back on the remains of their uniforms. On below photo dated 9 May 1945, they are ready to leave the villa of doctor Kruize in Blaricum and return in the care of the USAAF. Left to right: 2Lt. Claude Murray (P-38 42-67128) , Captain Gene Maddocks (B-24 42-51495), Mrs. Sieke Kruize, 2Lt. Melburn Simmons and 1Lt. John Quinn (B-24 42-95180)

Sources/read more:


- Articles Historical Society Blaricum/Eemnes/Gooi

- Nose art B-24 42-95180:

- Website PATS:

- Initial cemetery Amersfoort:

- Initial cemetery Nijkerk:

- Initial cemetery Doornspijk:

- Initial cemetery IJsselmuiden (Kampen):

© ZZairwar (Zuyder Zee Air War)