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359th Manning Crew
John P. Manning, Pilot
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JOHN P. MANNING CREW - 359th BS
B-17F #41-24565 Rambling Wreck BN-P
(crew assigned 359BS: 21 July 1943 - photo: 13 Sep 1943)

(Back L-R) Capt John P. Manning (P), 1Lt George H. Blossom (CP),
1Lt Edward J. Pullman (B)(WIA)(POW), 1Lt Jack Antman (N)

(Front L-R) S/Sgt Albert G. Santella (WG), T/Sgt Arthur J. Kolling (WG)(WIA),
S/Sgt Harley F. Jennings (TG), T/Sgt Kenneth P. Fitzsimmons (R),
T/Sgt George R. Keesling (E), S/Sgt LeRoy K. Mace (BTG)

(Ranks and grades at time of last combat mission)

Twenty-eight dispatched (26 credited) missions flown by Captain John P. Manning:
52 (24 July 1943), 56, 57, 58, 59, 62, 63, 64, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 76, 78, 79, 80(A), 81, 82, 83, 87, 88, 92, 93(A), 96 (5 January 1944). For Mission dates, targets and Mission Reports, see Combat Missions.
(A) Non-credited aborted missions:
  #80 - 03 Nov 43 - (Flight time 2:18) - Oil cooler shutter stuck in closed position causing excessive oil temperature.
  #93 - 30 Dec 43 - (Flight time 3:57) - No 2 engine failed. Had to be feathered. Turned back two miles inside France
  Failed to take-off on mission #60 - 17 August 43 to Schweinfurt, Germ. Expander tube burned out.

Nine B-17Fs flown by Capt John P. Manning on his 28 dispatched combat missions:

  • 42-24565 Idaho Potato Peeler (359BS) BN-P - 8 missions (56, 57, 64, 66, 67, 69, 70, 71)
  • 41-24605 Knockout Dropper (359BS) BN-R - 7 missions (73, 78, 80(A), 81, 82 (50th Mission), 83, 87)
  • 42-5177 Fast Worker Mk II (359BS) BN-U - 3 missions (52, 59, 62)
  • 42-3029 Wallaroo (359BS) BN-N - 2 missions (58, 68)
  • 42-5306 (No name) (359BS) BN-Q - 2 missions (76, 79)
  • 41-24635 The '8' Ball Mk II (359BS) BN-O - 2 missions (88, 96)
  • 42-31314 Scorchy (359BS) BN-M - 2 missions (92, 93)
  • 41-24561 The Duchess (359BS) BN-T - 1 mission (63)
  • 42-24605 Cat-O-Nine Tails (359BS) BN-W - 1 mission (71) For named B-17s nose art photos see Nose Art Photos
Crew Notes:
  • Capt John P. Manning (P) - First mission (52) flown with the 1Lt Robert L. Mattison crew on a combat orientation mission. One mission (70) flown as a combat orientation Pilot with the F/O Thomas J. Quinn crew. All other missions flown as a First Pilot. Ten missions flown as a Squadron Lead Crew (SLC) or a Group Lead Crew (LC) Pilot or CoPilot: As SCL Pilot (73, 78 - To Schweinfurt, Germany, 79, 81, 82, 87, 92) as a LC CoPilot (88, 93(A), 96). Promoted to Captain following mission 92 on 24 December 1944. Completed 28 dispatched (26 credited) missions on 5 January 1944 (Mission 96).

  • 1Lt George H. Blossom (CP) - Flew on 18 dispatched (17 credited) missions with 1Lt Manning (56, 57, 58, 59, 62, 63, 64, 66, 67, 68, 69, 72, 76, 79, 80(A), 81, 83, 97) Flew on 6 credited missions as CoPilot with other Pilots: 2Lt Elmer W. Young (100, 102, 104, 107, 114); Maj Richard H. Cole 113-LC). Upgraded from CoPilot to Pilot on orders dated 04 February 1944. Flew on three missions as First Pilot (116, 118, 119). Completed 26 credited missions on 8 March 1944 (Mission 119).

  • 1Lt Jack Antman (N) - Flew on 24 Dispatched (22 credited missions with 1Lt Manning (All Manning missions except 52, 70, 88, 92) and four credited missions with other Pilots: 1Lt Arthur H. Pentz (55); 2Lt Harold J. Bolsover (91, 95, 97). Completed 26 credited missions on 7 January 1944 (Mission 97).

  • 1Lt Edward J. Pullman (B) (WIA)(POW) - Flew on 12 credited missions with 1Lt Manning (56, 57, 58, 59, 62, 63, 64, 66, 67, 68, 69, 73) and one mission with 1Lt Victor J. Loughnan (74). Wounded from glass in his left eyebrow, from a break in the plexiglas nose, and became a POW on mission 74, 4 Oct 1943, to Frankfurt, Germany in B-17F 42-39846 (No name), All crewmen successfully parachuted from their damaged B-17 southwest of Aachen, Germany, close to the Belgium lines. The B-17 crash near St. Vith, Belgium. Completed 13 credited missions.

  • T/Sgt George R. Keesling (E), T/Sgt Kenneth P. Fitzsimmons (R), S/Sgt Albert G. Santella (WG) -- Few on 26 dispatched (24 credited missions with 1Lt Manning crew (All Manning missions except 52 and 70) and two lead crew missions with other Pilots: LtCol Calhoun (P) and B/Gen Travis (CP) - mission 98; Maj Cole (P) and Capt Mackin (CP) - mission 100. Completed 26 credited missions on 21 January 1944 (Mission 100).

  • S/Sgt Lloyd S. Traylor, Jr. (BTG) (WIA) - Flew on 4 credited missions with the 1Lt Manning Crew(56, 57, 58, 59). Seriously wounded and hospitalized with 30 mm bullet in his back on mission 59, 16 August 1944. Replaced by S/Sgt Leroy K. Mace.

  • T/Sgt Arthur J. Kolling (WG) (WIA) - Flew on 7 credited missions with the 1Lt Manning Crew (56, 57, 58, 59, 62, 63, 64). Sustained a serious foot wound from flak on mission 64, 27 Aug 1943, but stayed with his guns during subsequent fighter attacks. Was hospitalized after landing at Molesworth. Replaced by S/Sgt Robert J. McNamara. Resumed his combat missions on 29 March 1944 and on 31 dispatched (30 credited) missions with other Pilots: 1Lt Russell Meier (19 credited missions - 155, 157, 159, 160, 161,162, 164, 165, 170, 171 (Spare-non credited), 172, 174, 175, 176, 177, 178, 179, 184, 185, 186); 1Lt Weldon Harrison (4 missions 144, 146, 148, 149); 1Lt John N. Savage (4 missions - 139, 140, 142, 152); Other pilots (3 missions -131, 137, 138) Completed 37 credited missions on 20 June 1944 (Mission 186).

  • S/Sgt Harley F. Jennings (TG) - Flew on 24 dispatched (22 credited) missions with 1Lt Manning (All Manning missions except 52, 70, 82, 96) and three credited missions with other Pilots: Lead Crew missions LtCol Calhoun (P) and B/Gen Travis (CP) (98); Maj Cole (P) and Capt Mackin (CP) (100); Regular mission - 2Lt Neil G. Bech, Jr. (101). Completed 25 credited missions on 29 January 1944 (Mission 101).
Substitute Replacement Crewmen:
  • S/Sgt LeRoy K. Mace (BTG) - Replacement for S/Sgt Arthur J. Kolling (WG)(KIA) - Flew on 21 dispatched (19 credited) missions with the 1Lt Manning crew (63, 64, 66, 67, 68, 69, 71, 72, 73, 76, 78, 79, 80(A), 81, 82, 83, 87, 88, 92, 93(A), 96) and 7 credited missions with other Pilots (94, 95, 98, 100, 101, 104, 107(A), 109). Completed 26 credited missions on 20 February 1944 (Mission 109).

  • S/Sgt Robert I. McKenna (WG) Replacement for S/Sgt Arthur J. Kolling (WG)(WIA) - Flew on 13 credited missions with the 1Lt Manning Crew (66, 67, 68, 69, 72, 73, 78, 79, 80(A), 81, 82, 83, 87, 92) and 16 credited missions with other Pilots (101, 102, 104, 119, 129, 131, 134, 136, 137, 143, 146, 148, 151(A), 152, 153, 155, 157). Completed 29 missions on 22 May 1944 (mission 157).
Mission Notes: Mission 82, 16 November 1943, to Knaban, Norway - 50th mission of B17F Knockout Dropper (359BS) BN-R. Occasion of the first Eighth Air Force B-17 to complete 50 combat missions. 1Lt John P. Manning (P) and Capt George T. Mackin (CP). Crew Chief M/Sgt Buford G. Pafford. See: Knockout Dropper 50th Mission

[photo from the 303rdBGA Archives]
[Researched by Harry D. Gobrecht, 303rdBGA Historian Emeritus]