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  B-17E Flying Fortress Serial Number 41-9118  
USAAF
13th AF
5th BG
72nd BS

Pilot  Captain David C. Everitt, O-417018 (MIA / KIA) Chicago, IL
Co-Pilot  1st Lt. Dan D. Drakulich, O-725134 (MIA / KIA) UT
Bombardier  1st Lt John W. Sears, O-728952 (MIA / KIA) KS
Navigator  1st Lt. Robert L. Rose, O-427839 (MIA / KIA) CT
Engineer  SSgt Jack L. Woody, 6983982 (MIA / KIA) KY
Asst Engineer  SSgt Glover N. Brown, 6999210 (MIA / KIA) IL
Radio  Cpl Benjamin C. Navage, 33080036 (MIA / KIA) Washington County, PA
Asst Radio  Pfc Floyd E. Marshall, 17031352 (MIA / KIA) NB
Gunner  Pvt Francis J. Foye, 11051762 (MIA / KIA) MA

Crashed  October 4, 1942
MACR  801

Aircraft History
Built by Boeing at Seattle. Constructors Number 2490. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as B-17E Flying Fortress 41-9118. Ferried overseas via Hickam Field to the South Pacific.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 13th Air Force, 5th Bombardment Group, 72nd Bombardment Squadron. No known nickname or nose art. When lost, engines R-182-65 serial numbers 41-23473, 41-22385, 42-79299 and 41-22503. Weapon serial numbers not noted in MACR.

On October 3, 1942 this B-17 was flown to Henderson Field on Guadalcanal and joined four B-17s from the 11th Bombardment Group, 26th Bombardment Squadron for a planned for the next next.

Mission History
On October 4, 1942 took off from Henderson Field at 3:00am piloted by David C. Everitt armed with twenty 100 pound bombs leading a bombing mission against Buka Airfield on Buka Island.

Inbound, the formation encountered bad weather and could not find the target and turned back for Guadalcanal. Off New Georgia, the bombers encountered six Japanese warships including Chitose, Nisshin plus destroyers Nowaki, Maikaze and Akitsuki. The B-17s were intercepted by Japanese floatplanes flying a combat air patrol over the fleet. During the interception, the bombers claimed two enemy aircraft shot down.

During the combat, this lead B-17 was deliberately rammed from below by a F1M2 Pete piloted by Kiyomi to prevent it from bombing Nisshin. The right wing of the F1M2 Pete impacted this B-17's right wing, tearing off the wing tip damaging the vertical stabilizer and immediately caused the B-17 to descend in a spiral before then crashed into the sea. Although the ramming damaged the right wing of the Pete, both Katsuki and his observer successfully bailed out and were rescued by destroyer Akitsuki. For this attack, Kiyomi earned a commendation and gold chevron.

When this bomber failed to return it was officially listed as Missing In Action (MIA).

Memorials
The entire crew was officially declared dead on December 14, 1945. All are memorialized on the tablets of the missing at Manila American Cemetery.

Everitt earned the Silver Star, Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) and Purple Heart, posthumously.

Drakulich earned the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) and Purple Heart, posthumously.

Sears earned the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) and Purple Heart, posthumously.

Rose earned the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) and Purple Heart, posthumously. He also has a memorial marker at Lake Park Cemetery in Laurel, MS.

Woodly earned the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) and Purple Heart, posthumously. He also has a memorial marker at Mapleview Cemetery in Marion, KY.

Brown earned the Air Medal and Purple Heart, posthumously. He also has a memorial marker at Gallagher Chapel Cemetery in Fancher, IL.

Navage earned the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) and Purple Heart, posthumously.

Marshall earned the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) and Purple Heart, posthumously.

Foye earned the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) and Purple Heart, posthumously.

References
Some sources incorrectly stated this B-17 was "rammed by a Zero"
72nd Bombardment Group History - October 4, 1942
"Lieut. Everitt's plane downed by Zero. On October 4th, 1942, Lieut Everitt's plane was downed on a bombing mission. A Zero [sic - F1M2 Pete] probably hit and out of control, crashed into the B-17, knocking off a wing tip and part of the vertical stabilizer. Some five miles from one of the Solomon Islands. Last seen in a spiral at 11,000' and entering an overcast . Two of the crew had bailed out. [Possibly a reference to crew of Pete who bailed out.]"
USAF Serial Number Search Results - B-17E Fortress Fortress 41-9118
"9118 (72nd BS, 5th BG) lost Oct 4, 1942, Solomons. MACR 801"
Missing Air Crew Report 801 (MACR 801)
Fortress Against the Sun pages 272-273, 433
IJN Seaplane Carrier Chitose Tabular Record of Movement
Imperial Japanese Navy Aces page 42, 68, 102, 104 (ace list) 109
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - David C. Everitt Jr.
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Dan D. Drakulich
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - John W. Sears
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Robert L. Rose
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Jack L. Woody
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Glover N. Brown
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Benjamin C. Navage
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Floyd E. Marshall
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Francis J. Foye
FindAGrave - Capt David Carney Everitt, Jr (tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - 1Lt Dan D Drakulich (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - 1Lt John W Sears (tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - Lieut Robert L Rose (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Robert Leroy Rose (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - SSgt Jack L Woody (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Jack L. Woody (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - SSgt Glover N Brown (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Sgt Glover N Brown (memorial marker photo)
FindAGrave - Corp Benjamin C Navage (tablets of the missing)
FindAGrave - PFC Floyd Eugene Marshall (tablets of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Pvt Francis J Foye (tablets of the missing photo)
Thanks to Jim Sawruk and Minoru Kamada for additional information

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Last Updated
October 10, 2018

 

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