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360th Erickson Crew
Roger W. Erickson, Pilot
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ROGER W. ERICKSON CREW - 360th BS
B-17 Iza Vailable Too #42-97254 (360BS) PU-K
(crew assigned 360BS: 21 April 1944)

(Back L-R) 1Lt Roger W. Erickson (P)(KIA), 1Lt Oscar A. Tellinghuisen (CP),
1Lt William J. Roche (N), 2Lt John D. Moul (B)

(Front L-R) S/Sgt John W. Jacobs (RWG), Sgt Charles W. Johnson (TG),
T/Sgt Charles Manser (E), S/Sgt Harry R. Davis (LWG),
S/Sgt Judson F. Watson, Jr. (BTG), T/Sgt John D. Haynie (R)

Ranks and Grades at time of last combat mission

Nineteen credited combat missions flown by 1Lt Roger W. Erickson, Jr.
144 (29 April 1944), 145, 146, 147, 150, 155, 156, 158, 160, 161, 164, 170, 171, 175, 177, 185, 186, 187, 188 (22 June 1944)
For Mission dates, targets and Mission Reports, see Combat Missions.

Twelve B-17Gs flown by 1Lt Roger W. Erickson on his 19 combat missions:

  • 42-31432 Old Glory (360BS) PU-N - Mission 144
  • 42-97187 (P) Miss Umbriago (360BS) PU-I - Mission 145
  • 42-107196 (P) Temptresses (360BS) PU-G - Mission 146
  • 42-31405 Wallaroo Mk II (359BS) BN-X - Mission 147
  • 42-107147 (P) Sweet Melody (360BS) PU-C - Mission 150
  • 42-31483 (P) Bonnie "B" (359BS) BN-P - Mission 155
  • 42-31997 (No name) (360BS) PU-F - Mission 156
  • 42-31340 (P) Miss Liberty (359BS) PU-D - Missions 158, 160, 161, 172, 175
  • 42-97405 (P) Mary Carey (360BS) PU-H - Mission 164, 188
  • 42-31432 Old Glory (360BS) PU-N - Mission 170
  • 42-97805 (No name) (360BS) PU-Q - Missions 177, 185, 187
  • 42-102544 Sack Time (360BS) PU-K - Mission 186
    (P) See Nose Art Photos
Crew Notes - Original Crewmen
  • 1Lt Roger W. Erickson (P)(KIA) - 19 credited missions flown: First two missions as CoPilot with combat orientation Pilots - 2Lt John C. Williams (144), 2Lt Nelson B. O'Beirne (145). Three missions as Co Pilot with 1Lt Paul R. Ellsworth (164 ,170, 175). 11 missions as First Pilot (146, 147, 150, 155, 156, 158, 160, 161, 172, 177, 185). 3 missions as Lead Crew. As CoPilot with Capt Earl N. Thomas (186), As Lead Crew Pilot (187, 188).

    1Lt Erickson was Killed in Action on 22 June 1944 (Mission 188) to Wizernes, France in Lead Crew B-17G 42-97405 Mary Cary (360BS) PU-H. CoPilot was Capt Robert J. Lynch. The B-17 ed direct flak hits on the #1 and #2 engines over the target. The #2 engine could not be feathered. Capt Lynch signaled the deputy leader, 1Lt John T. Williams to take over the lead. Upon reaching the enemy coast on the way home, Mary Carey began to vibrate badly. The crew headed for Beachy Head, the nearest point off the English coast, rather than the briefed route. As they were nearing the English coast the #2 engine exploded and the crew was ordered to bail out. The B-17 exploded shortly before it hit the water. Five crewmen were killed and five who bailed out were rescued after 45 minutes in the water - One by a nearby Corvette and four by two destroyers (Missing Aircrew Report 7131). 1Lt Roger W. Erickson's name is on the Wall of the Missing Cambridge American Cemetery, England

  • 1Lt Oscar A. Tellinghuisen (CP) - 33 credited missions flown: 12 with 1Lt Erickson (146, 147, 150, 155, 156, 158, 160, 161, 172, 177, 185, 187), 5 missions as CoPilot with other Pilots (164, 178, 188, 192, 193 ). Was upgraded from CoPilot to Pilot and flew 15 missions as First Pilot with five crewmen from his original 1Lt Erickson crew (198, 199, 200, 201, 202, 205, 206, 207, 208, 209, 213, 214, 215, 216, 221). Last mission (222) on 7 August 1944 flown as CoPilot with Pilot 1Lt John R. Francis that completed his combat tour.

  • 1Lt William J. "Bill" Roche (N) - 32 credited missions flown: 12 with 1Lt Erickson (146, 147, 150, 155, 156, 158, 160, 161, 164, 172, 177, 185, 187).; 9 Missions flown with other 5 other Pilots - 1Lt Robert J. Lynch (Lead crew mission 166), 2Lt Leonard M. Brown (170, 175, 193, 194, 195), 1Lt Roger W. Erickson (172), 1Lt Paul R. Ellsworth (178) and 1Lt John D. Parker (194). Final 11 missions flown with 1Lt Tellinghuisen, who had been upgraded from the 1Lt Erickson crew CoPilot to First Pilot (198, 199, 200, 201, 202, 205, 206, 207, 208, 209, 213). Completed combat tour on 28 July 1944 (Mission 213).

    Served with the 303rd Bomb Group Association with distinction as Treasurer, Vice President- Administration , President and Chairman Past President Committee from 21 September 1992 through 8 August 2003. Was Chairman of the Reunion Committee for the San Diego, CA reunion 25-29 September 2000. See Bill Roche's Biography

  • 2Lt John D. Moul (B) - 14 credited combat missions flown: 12 with 1Lt Erickson(150, 155, 156, 158, 160, 161, 164, 170, 172, 177, 185, 187; 2 with other Pilots (175, 178). Requested relief from combat duty following mission 187 on 21 June 1944 and was assigned to a Photo ID unit in London Substitute Bombardiers used on other 1Lt Erickson missions.

  • T/Sgt Charles Manser (E) and S/Sgt John W. Jacobs (WG) - 34 credited missions flown: 16 with 1Lt Erickson (146, 147, 150, 155, 156, 158, 160, 161, 164, 170, 172, 175, 177, 185, 186, 187); 16 with 1Lt Tellinghuisen (198, 199, 200, 201, 202, 205, 206, 207, 208, 209, 213, 214, 215, 216, 221, 222); 2 with 2Lt Arley L. Atwell (223, 226). Combat tours completed on 12 August 1944 (Mission 226).

  • T/Sgt John D. Haynie (R) - 33 credited missions flown: 16 with 1Lt Erickson (146, 147, 150, 155, 156, 158, 160, 161, 164, 170, 172, 175, 177, 185, 186, 187); 16 with 1Lt Tellinghuisen (198, 199, 201, 202, 205, 206, 207, 208, 209, 213, 214, 215, 216, 221, 222; 2 with 2Lt Arley L. Atwell (223, 226). Combat tour completed on 12 August 1944 (Mission 226).

  • S/Sgt Judson F. Watson, Jr. (BTG) - 33 credited missions flown: 11 with 1Lt Erickson (146, 147, 150, 164, 170, 172, 175, 177, 185, 186, 187); 16 with 1Lt Tellinghuisen (198, 199, 200, 201, 202, 205, 206, 207, 208, 209, 213, 214, 215, 216, 221, 222); 6 with 1Lt Arley L. Atwell (223, 226, 227, 228, 229, 231). Combat tour completed on 24 August 1944 (Mission 231).

  • S/Sgt Harry R. Davis (WG) - 6 credited missions flown - All with 1Lt Erickson (146, 147, 155, 156, 158, 160). Last mission on 25 May 1944 (Mission 160). Substitute Waist Gunners were used through 25 May 1944 (Mission 160) when the second waist Gunner position was no longer utilized.

  • Sgt Charles W. Johnson (TG) - 2 credited missions flown - Both with 1Lt Erickson (146, 150). Last mission on 10 May 1944 (Mission 150). Substitute Tail Gunners used on other 1Lt Erickson missions.
Crew Notes - Substitute Crewmen
  • S/Sgt Victor H. Smith (BTG) - 33 credited missions flown: 5 with 1Lt Erickson (155, 156, 158, 160, 161); 18 missions with other Pilots - 3 with 2Lt Benjamin L. Spindler (146, 147, 165), 25 with Lt Dale E. Bartholomew (166, 167, 170, 171, 172, 174, aborted), 175, 176, 177, 178, 180, 181, 182, 183, 184, 185, 187, 189, 190, 192, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 200). Combat tour completed on 9 July 1944 (Mission 200).

  • S/Sgt Alfred V. Heitman (TG) - 20 credited missions flown: 9 with 1Lt Erickson (155, 156, 158, 160, 161, 164, 172, 175, 177); 4 with original 360BS crew, 2Lt John A. Castle (1, 2, 4, 5), 7 with other Pilots (132, 140, 141, 146, 165, 179, 180). Last mission on 14 June 1944 (Mission 180)

[photo courtesy of William J. Roche]
[Researched by Harry D. Gobrecht, 303rdBGA Historian Emeritus]