On May 5th, 1944, the 449 Bomb Group was attacking targets in Ploesti. While over the target, Liberator No 42-52149 "Big Noise from Kentucky" was hit and one engine was damaged. The plane remained in formation, but over Bor was hit again, resulting in additional damage to another engine. Since they could no longer keep altitude, an order was given to bail out. On the ground, they were immediately assisted by Serbian farmers and Chetniks, except the copilot who was captured by the Germans. Names of the rescued airmen: Paul Harper
Robert Williams The rescued airmen were first taken to Chetnik HQ near Ćićevac, and later to the mountains where they hid for two weeks. On June 10th they went to Pranjani, where they waited with other airmen for two months to be rescued.
In their Escape Statement the airmen listed the names of many who assisted them, including a number of civilians. Ted Byfield, son of one of the rescued airmen, visited Pranjani in 2019 during the 75th Anniversary. Greetings to Ted on the excellent time we spent together in Serbia!