Quick Search
360th McGrath Crew
Leo B. McGrath, Pilot
 Home About Us Contact Us Donate Newsletter 8th AFHS Links FAQ Facebook Search
 Personnel Aircraft Nose Art B-17 Thunderbird Ground Support Uniforms Journals More Info
 Mission Reports Combat Crews Individual Photos Photos POW KIA MACR Overseas Graves TAPS


LEO B. McGRATH CREW - 360th BS
(Lt McGrath Assigned 360th BS: 06 Dec 1943)
(Upgraded from John H. Parrott Crew CoPilot to Pilot: 06 March 1944)


2Lt Leo B. McGrath (P)(POW)(A), 2Lt John M. Chapman, Jr. (CP)(POW)(1),
2Lt Anthony D. Volk (N)(POW)(A), S/Sgt Elmer L. Peterson (TOG)(POW)(2),

S/Sgt Jack E. Green (E)(POW)(3), S/Sgt Victor W. DeWitte (R)(4),
Sgt James E. Mayfield (BTG)(A)(POW), Sgt Harry V. Hosso (WG)(POW)(5),
Sgt Szymon A. Friedman (WG)(KIA)(6), S/Sgt Gilbert N. Laible (TG)(POW)(A)

Missions flown by the Lt McGrath Crew:
116 (3 March 1944), 117, 118 & 119 (8 March 1944)

Lt McGrath crew last mission:
Mission #119, 8 March 1944, to Erkner, Germany in B-17G #42-31471 Doolittle's Destroyers, (360th BS) PU-E. [MACR 2908]. Was last seen descending very rapidly under control to about 10,000 feet. Flak had damaged the #4 engine and setting it on fire. The B-17 was lagging behind the Group formation. After being hit by three ME-109s, the bail out order was given. All ten crewmen made successful parachute jumps and were made POWs. S/Sgt Charles J. Bonn (R) a substitute crewman, landed in a farm area with a badly injured leg. A French doctor made successful treatment of his injury.

The following three crewmen were substitutes on this final mission:

  • Sgt Charles J. Bonn (R)(POW) - On his 27th dispatched mission: Thirteen with the Lt William T. Baker Crew; five with the Lt Hershel R. DeWall Crew; Nine with five other Pilots.
  • Sgt Wallace L. Tharp (WG)(POW) - On his 11th mission with eight different pilots.
  • Sgt Joseph S. Klasnick (WG/TOG)(POW) - Dispatched on 14 missions as Waist Gunner (Between 03 Jan and 25 June 1943): First five missions with five different Pilots - Schulstad (#9), Castle (#11), Griffin (#23), Trojan (#33 aborted), Mack (#35). See 2Lt John A Castle Crew page for mission #11 where Sgt Klasnick was a substitute gunner on a crash landing; Nine missions with the Capt George F. Stallings Crew - Was injured after bailing out on mission #44, 25 June 1943. Was hospitalized and removed from combat status. Returned to combat on 06 March 1944 (Mission #118) and flew two missions with the 2Lt Leo B. McGrath Crew as Togglier.
Crew Notes:
  1. Original members of the Lt John H. Parrott crew assigned to the 360th BS on 06 December 1943. Dispatched on 15 missions #99 (14 Jan 44), 100, 101, 102, 103, 104, 106, 109(A), 110, 111, 112, 116, 117(A), 118 & 119 (8 March 1944)
  2. 2Lt John M. Chapman (CP)(POW) - 20 missions with seven different pilots. Crew photo - 1Lt Hershel R. DeWall Crew
  3. S/Sgt Elmer L. Peterson (TOG)(POW) - 24 dispatched missions with thirteen different Pilots. For crew comments see Capt Robert W. Cogswell and 1Lt Hershel R. DeWall Crews.
  4. S/Sgt Jack E. Green (E)(POW) - 15 dispatched missions with 4 different Pilots. For crew comments see 1Lt Hershel R. DeWall Crew
  5. S/Sgt Victor W. DeWitte (R)(POW) - Original member of the Capt Earl N. Thomas Crew. Dispatched on 35 missions: Fifteen with Capt Earl N. Thomas crew; Ten with 2Lt John H. Parrott Crew; Two with 2Lt Leo B. McGrath crew; Eight with three other Pilots.
  6. Sgt Harry V. Hosso (WG) - 14 Dispatched missions with 4 different Pilots - 7 missions with 1Lt Hershel R. DeWall, 4 missions with 2Lt Leo B. McGrath, two missions with 2Lt Finis A. Brumbeloe crew and 1 mission with another Pilot.
  7. S/Sgt Szymon A. Friedman (WG)(KIA) - Dispatched on 36 missions (3 aborts): 4 missions with 1Lt Hershel R. DeWall; 2 missions with 2Lt Leo B. McGrath (116, 117(A); 27 missions with the 1Lt Roy Eisele Crew, 3 missions with two other Pilots. Killed in Action on mission#178, 12 June 1944, to Cambrai, France in B-17G #42-107048 (No name), 1Lt Roy Eisele, Pilot.

[Researched by Historian Harry D. Gobrecht]