Recorded memoir of William G. Clayton (MC 371/882/31)
Recorded memoir of William G. Clayton
1 audio cassette (Maxwell UD46)
nd [c 1985]
93rd Bomb Group
William G. Clayton
[00:00-05:00] Recording starts 30 seconds into tape. Comments on induction into Army Air Force, 23 September 1943, call to active duty, 14 October 1943, classification and basic training at Greensboro, North Carolina. Explains taking part in experimental group of 750 enlisted men who took air cadet test usually given after college training, assignment to gunnery school, Laredo, Texas, and training as a spare ball-turret gunner. Mentions crew assignment, ?Westoverfield, Massachusettes and combat crew training, Chatham Field, Georgia. Names crew, giving their rank: David F. Kimberly (pilot); Harry Leatherman (co-pilot); ?Karian (navigator); Warren Michelson (flight engineer); Nicholas Caruso (radio operator) and Harold Wagner, Milton Watters and Michael ?Drena (gunners). Describes three days leave in Memphis, mentions hearing about D-Day. Comments on preparations for journey to England and flying a B-24 via Goose Bay, Labrador [Canada], to Northern Ireland, delivering aeroplane to Alconbury [Cambridgeshire] and transfer to Hardwick, Norfolk, July 1944. [5.00-10:00] Mentions first combat mission, 12 August 1944 and completing tour on 31 January 1945. Describes combat missions, battle damage and naming aeroplane 'Spare Parts.' Describes memorable mission to oil refinery, Harburg, Germany: damage to aeroplane; jettisoning equipment in sea; plugging fuel line with round of ammunition; P-47 and P-51 fighter escorts and emergency landing, Manston, England. Mentions visiting London with crew members and sightseeing, including Westminster and St Paul's Cathedral. Recorded on side A only.