Summary

Conflict Period:
World War II 1
Branch:
Army Air Forces 2
Branch:
Army 1
Rank:
Sergeant 2
Birth:
1923 1
Pittsburgh PA 2
Pennsylvania 1
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Personal Details

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Person:
Walter A Stuebgen 1
Level of Education: 2 years of high school 1
Marital Status: Single, without dependents 1
Birth:
1923 1
Pittsburgh PA 3
Pennsylvania 1
Male 3
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Birth:
Mother: Ruth Querry 3
Father: Charles Stuebgen 3
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World War II 1

Branch:
Army Air Forces 2
Branch:
Army 1
Rank:
Sergeant 2
Enlistment Date:
29 Mar 1942 1
Army Branch:
Medical Administrative Corps - For Officers only 1
Army Serial Number:
13059973 1
Enlistment Place:
Pittsburgh Pennsylvania 1
Enlistment Term:
Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law 1
Source of Army Personnel:
Civil Life 1
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Occupation:
Semiskilled chauffeurs and drivers, bus, taxi, truck, and tractor 1
Race or Ethnicity:
White 1
Source Information:
Box Number: 0120 1
Film Reel Number: 1.120 1

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Stories

This is part of a letter my daughter received while searching for information on Walter... Weather conditions were bitterly cold and icy which may have contributed to the crash. The aircraft was serial number 42-3544 Stars and Stripes with the target assigned as Bordeaux, France. After taking off at 0725 hours, the plane climbed to about 200 feet then a wing dropped and it struck the ground at Brook Farm, Badwell Ash in Suffolk. It was carrying 16 M31 bombs, two exploded and the rest were scattered over an area of approximately 300-400 yards along with the wreckage. The only survivor, tail gunner, S/Sgt Burnell T Hamilton was seriously injured and the following crew members perished. Pilot: Flight Officer William H Morris; Co-pilot 2/Lt Denis J Ziebarth; Navigator, 2/Lt Richard S Proctor; Bombardier, 2/Lt Robert M Totaro; Engineer, S/Sgt Russell A Stevens; Radio Operator, Sgt Chester A Rober Jr; Ball Turret Gunner, Sgt Walter A Stuebgen; Waist Gunner, Sgt Stanley Lowitz. I note that your grandfather is still buried in the US Military Cemetery over here at Madingley (Grave E-0-53) and wonder if you would like me to place some flowers there on your behalf when next I visit?

Badwell Ash, Suffolk, England

Just to reiterate what has been said already:

On 5th January 1944 the B-17 #42-3544 “Stars and Stripes”, based with the 385th Bomb Group at Great Ashfield, Suffolk, England, crashed just outside of Badwell Ash. On that day the Stars and Stripes was one of 117 B-17s set to target the Bordeaux/Merignac Airfield.

The following details have been supplied by Ian McLachlan, the military historian and author of several books about the US Army Air Force:

“Weather conditions were bitterly cold and icy which may have contributed to the crash. The aircraft was serial number #42-3544 Stars and Stripes with the target assigned as Bordeaux, France. After taking off at 0725 hours, the plane climbed to about 200 feet then a wing dropped and it struck the ground at Brook Farm, Badwell Ash in Suffolk. It was carrying 16 M31 bombs, two exploded and the rest were scattered over an area of approximately 300 to 400 yards along with the wreckage.”

Staff Sergeant 10359973 Walter A Stuebgen was the Ball Turret Gunner with the Morris Crew in the B-17 42-3544 Stars and Stripes and was killed when it crashed shortly after taking off from Great Ashfield.

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