July 9th, 1944. (part 2/3)

Another plane lost on this day was a B-24 from the 449 Bomb Group, No. 42-78341. While over the target of Ploesti, the aircraft was hit by flak, which incapacitated two engines and flight controls. Without enough power, the Liberator started to lose speed and altitude and was unable to keep up with the formation. When they reached the vicinity of Užice in western Serbia, the crew had to bail out.

Clyde Driggers

Donald Rice

Wallace Brubeck

Allen Carrico

Wilburn Henley

Robert Spence

Kenneth Owens

John Chambers

Virgil Johnson

Upon reaching the ground, every airman was met by a local civilian, who brought them to a Chetnik officer. They saw many German and Bulgarian soldiers in the area. 

The crew stayed on farms on Zlatibor mountain, until August 4th, when they left for Pranjani. On August 10, they were evacuated in the first and largest evacuation of the Halyard mission.

Photo:

Airmen with local villagers and the Chetnik commander of Sljivovica village Đorđe Bojić (in the center, with a cap). Top row, left to right; Donald Rice, Virgil Johnson, Wallace Brubeck, Robert Spence. Middle row, Wilburn Henley (obscured), Clyde Driggers, John Chambers.

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