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  B-17E Flying Fortress Serial Number 41-2449  
USAAF
19th BG

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USAAF March 1942

Aircraft History
Built by Boeing at Seattle. Constructors Number 2260. During early December 1941 delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as B-17E Flying Fortress serial number 41-2449. On December 17, 1941 at Sacramento Air Depot (SAD). On December 26, 1941 at March Field. On January 7, 1942 at MacDill Field.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 19th Bombardment Group. No know nose art or nickname. On January 17, 1942 assigned to "Project X". On January 19, 1942 departed MacDill Field piloted by 1st Lt. Harold C. Smelser on a ferry flight via the "Africa Route" before arriving with B-17E 41-2484 on February 9, 1942 at Singosari Airfield on Java after a Japanese air raid.

On February 13, 1942 took off piloted by Northcutt at night one of eleven B-17s (three from the 19th BG and eight from the 19th BG) on a bombing mission against Japanese shipping off Makassar. This was the largest formation by Java based B-17s to date. Inbound to the target, B-17E 41-2466 aborted the mission due to engine trouble. The rest of the formation bombed through clouds, reporting: "Bombs were dropped on lights off shore - results undetermined." but claimed one ship hit.

On February 23, 1942 took off from piloted by Beran as one of six B-17s on a bombing mission against Japanese shipping off Makassar. The formation was led by B-17E 41-2452 piloted by Lt. Habberstad. The formation encountered intense anti-aircraft fire and bombed from 20,000'. Habberstad claimed one large transport sunk and another burning.

On March 1, 1942 after midnight took off from Djogjakarta Airfield piloted by Captain Smelser along with an LB-30 Liberator on a bombing mission over the Japanese Eastern Invasion Force landing on the north coast of Java near Soerabaja. This B-17 but aborted the mission due to faulty guns. Later that same day, one of sixteen B-17s that evacuated Java and flown to Broome Airfield in Western Australia.

On March 3, 1942 while parked at Broome Airfield destroyed by strafing A6M2 Zeros.

References
USAF Serial Number Search Results - B-17E 41-2449
"2449 (19th BG) damaged by strafing at Broome, Australia just after Java evacuation Mar 3, 1944"
Oz@War - Two DC-3's and a Lockheed Lodestar on 3 March 1942 during a Japanese Air Raid on Broome

Fortress Against The Sun pages 127, 132, 143, 147, 149, 157, 385 (Appendix B: B-17E 41-2449 19th BG, Destroyed by strafing at Broome, 3 March 42), 412 (footnote 8) 414 (footnotes 3, 38)
Thanks to Steve Birdsall for additional information.

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Last Updated
January 9, 2018

 

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B-17

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