461st plaque

461st Bombardment Group (H)

764th Crews 765th Crews 766th Crews 767th Crews

 Alexander - #11-2  Arnholt - #155  Baird - #3-1  Baker - #84-0  Batenic - #3-3  Bean - #3  Beson - #86R  Blanchard - #2  Bloxom - #4887  Bock - #10-1  Boozer - #17-1  Britton - #2  Brown - #18R  Brown - #  Burton - #8  Cain - #19-0  Carlisle - #5-  Clay - #88R  Crumbo - #151  Dughi - #6-1  Emmert - #5628  Freeman - #1  Fuller - #05  Garrett - #16-2 (152)  Gilbert - #2R-2  Gilley - #4/16  Hefling - #09  Herrin - #17-1  Inskeep - #85R  Johnson - #4/7  Kollenborn - #4  Kursel - #6-1  Lalewicz - #85  Lightbody - #97R  Lively - #18/99  Longino - #116  Lucas - #5  McGoey - #8R  Miller - #1-1  Mitchell - #12  Nahkunst - #13-2  Oliver - #15-1  Olson - #4/16-6  Parsonson - #14-3  Petty - #1/6  Powell - #4-2  Rathfelder - #16-3  Rosenberg - #4887  Ross - #115R  Russell - #19-0  Rutter - #7/3  Ryder - #17  Sargent - #98R  Saur - #17-2  Sayre - #13  Schultz - #3-1  Skalomenos - #136  Sklansky - #9-1  Smith - #3-2  Souther - #12-1  Spehalski - #87R-2  Spencer - #5-1  Steele - #16  Stephens - #14  Stevens - #1  Stevens - #4-3  Stitch - #4983  Taylor - #10/31  Tetzlaff - #129  Tiffany - #2-1  Toothman - #13-3  Trenner - #18  Turner - #14-2  Underwood - #7-1  Veiluva - #07  Vilesis - #100R  Wallace - #11  Wastman - #10  Weber - #19-2  Weir - #06  Wilson - #15  Wyllie - #11-1  Young - #15

Alexander - #11-2

Alexander crew #11-2

from Torretta Flyer No. 14, page 12

Back Row L-R: Unknown; Unknown; Alexander, Clair B. (P); Davies, Henry R. (TG); Brown, Jeff L. (CP); Gaudio, Frank J. (B)

Front Row L-R: Emanuel, Larvel R. (E/G); Askerman, Donald L. (BTG)

Alexander, Clair B., Pilot

Prophett, Charles, Co-Pilot

Rathfon, Robert C., Navigator

Gaudio, Frank J., Bombardier

Askerman, Donald L., Ball Turret Gunner

Davies, Henry R., Tail Gunner

Eitel, Ray, Radio Operator– Mechanic/Gunner

Emanuel, Larvel R., Engineer/Gunner

Holcombe, Oscar J., Gunner

Kassay, William R., Engineer/Gunner

Clair Alexander

Courtesy of Ken Alexander

1st Lt. Clair (Alex) B. Alexander Jr., Pilot; standing in front of the tent he shared with 2nd Lt. Charles (Chuck) Prophett, Co-pilot; 2nd Lt. Frank Gaudio, Bombardier & 2nd Lt. Robert (Bob) Rathfon, Navigator. (Officers of B-24 crew no. 11-2)  Tent was located with officers' tents (living quarters) within the 764th Bomb Squadron area. 461st Bomb Group, Torretta, Italy. 1944/45.  Tuffa stone walls were built over a poured concrete floor.  Walls, floor & window frames & door were constructed by Italian workers so the GI tent would fit down over the walls.  Tufa limestone blocks were quarried nearby.  Window covering was made from the plastic hood included in the gas mask kit issued to each crewmwmber and nailed onto wooden frame.  The tent was moved from an earlier location and re-erected over the walls on December 17, 1944.

Alex, Chuck & Frank

Courtesy of Ken Alexander

1st Lt. Clair B. Alexander (P), 2nd Lt. Charles Prophett (CP) and 2nd Lt. Frank J. Gaudio (N)

764th Texts, Winter 1944

Courtesy of Ken Alexander

764th Bomb Squadron officers' tents winter of 1944 Torretta, Italy. Quarried tufa stone walls & poured cement floors & doors built by Italian workers. Windows created using mustard gas protection bags materials they'd been issued. US tents erected on top with stove pipe protrusion. Wires for electricity from generators.

Don cleaning ball

Courtesy of Ken Alexander

Donald L. Askerman cleaning his ball turret

Don Askerman on bombs

Courtesy of Ken Alexander

Sgt. Don Askerman, Ball Turret Gunner for B-24 Crew No. 11-2, 764th BS, standing on bombs to be loaded into bomb bay of a B-24.  Don was qualified as the assistant armorer and often helped the crew's armorer, Hank Davies, with bomb preparation after loading the ammunition for his ball turret and checking his equipment before a mission.  461st BG, Toretta, Italy 1944/45.  The .45 cal. shoulder holster indicates the photo was taken before February 1945 when crewmen were required to turn in their sidearms.

Don Askerman at prop

Courtesy of Ken Alexander

Don Askerman standing under B-24 engine, Toretta, Italy in late 1994/early 1945 wearing a white parachute silk scarf and shoulder holster with .45 cal. semiautomatic sidearm. (Crewmembers were required to turn in their sidearms in early February 1945.) Don was the ball turret gunner/photographer of crew No. 11-2.  As the photographer, he was responsible for taking the bomb strike photos for the squadron during a combat sortie (mission).  Don was qualified on all of the turrets on a B-24 and was the assistant armorer.  He also qualified as a radio opperator.  Front of engine nacelle and propeller dome were painted a dark "British racing green" color to denote the 764th Bomb Squadron of the 461st Bomb Group.  Steel mat hardstand for the bomber.

No. 5 Side

Courtesy of Ken Alexander

Engineer stands at the ready with fire extinguisher as the engines are started.  "Jo" is the B-24 Clair was on for his trip back to the US.  He relieved the pilot, Capt. Guy Lively and copilot, Lt. Bob Bertrand during the trip.  Navigator was Alex Casement.  This 764th BS Willow Run-produced B-24J-1 serial No. 42-50613 was a replacement aircraft transfered from the 34th BG, Eighth AF in England where it was named: "Holy Joe".  Field modifications include enclosing the waist gun positions and the bubble windows at the navigator's and at the radio operator's positions.  Armor plate below cockpit window was installed by the Eighthh AF in England. Markings: Top of tail, bar, inside of vertical stabilizer & top of horizontal stabilizer were red denoting 461st BG.  Engine nacelles & propeller hubs British racing green and the aircraft number (5) black on white background denoted 764th BS. (764th BS A/C numbers could also be white on green background.)  Rear bomb bay door is a replacement and painted gray.  Most likely scavengend from a Liberator painted olive drab with gray lower.  Location unknown, taken sometime between June 2 and 7, 1945.

No. 5 Tail

Courtesy of Ken Alexander

Tail of "Jo" the B-24 Clair was on for his trip back to the U.S. from Italy.  He spelled the pilot Capt. Guy Lively and co-pilot Lt. Bob Bertrand during the trip.  Navigator was Alex Casement.  This Willow Run-produced B-24J-1 model Serial No. 42-50613 was a replacement aircraft from the 34th BG, Eighth AF in England where it was named: "Holy Joe" Note the field modification to enclose the waist gunner's window.  Markings: Top of tail, bar, inside of vertical stabilizer & top of horizontal stabilizer were red denoting 461st BG. Engine nacelles & propeller hubs British racing green and the aircraft number (5) black on white background denoted 764th BS.  (764th BS A/C numbers could also be white on green background.)  Location unknown, taken sometime between June 2 and 7, 1945.

No. 12 Side

Courtesy of Ken Alexander

764th Bomb Squadron Willow Run-produced B-24 L-10-FO Number 12, Serial No. 44-49746 at 461st Bomb Group Airfield, Torretta, Italy.  On February 7, 1945 in this aircraft on a sortie to Vienna, Austria, flak knocked out the no. 3 engine, removed the top of the front turret and injured Ray Eitel, radioman/waist gunner shattering his shoulder.  Remaining 3 engines ran away with propellers in flat pitch.  Pilot Clair Alexander, co-pilot Herb Franks and engineer Bill Kassay got the engines under control and made their way to the emergency landing strip on the Yugoslavian island of Vis in the Adriatic Sea.  Between 60 & 70 flak holes were counted in the plane.  Photo was taken after aircraft No. 12 was repaired and returned to the squadron in February, 1945.  Clair was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) for his actions on this mission.  Markings: Outer top third of vertical stabilizer, bar, inner top and top surface of horizontal stabilizer are red and denotes 461st Bomb Group.  Engine cowling, propeller domes, and aircraft number background squares are "British racing green" with white numbers and denote 764th Bomb Squadron.  (Aircraft numbers were sometimes black on a white square.)

No. 12 Wing

Courtesy of Ken Alexander

Henry "Hank" Davies, Gunner, on the wing of 764th Bomb Squadron Willow Run-produced B-24 L-10-FO Number 12, Serial No. 44-49746 at 461st Bomb Group Airfield, Torretta, Italy. February 7, 1945 in this aircraft on a sortie to Vienna, Austria, flak knocked out the no. 3 engine, removed the top of the front turret and injured Ray Eitel, radioman/waist gunner shattering his shoulder.  Remaining 3 engines ran away with propellers in flat pitch.  Pilot Clair Alexander, co-pilot Herb Franks and engineer Bill Kassay got the engines under control and made their way to the emergency landing strip on the Yugoslavian island of Vis in the Adriatic Sea.  Between 60 & 70 flak holes were counted in the plane.  Photo was taken when aircraft No. 12 was repaired and returned to the squadron in February, 1945.  Clair was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) for his actions on this mission.  Markings: Outer top third of vertical stabilizer, bar, inner top and top surface of horizontal stabilizer are red and denotes 461st Bomb Group. Engine cowling, propeller domes, and aircraft number background squares are "British racing green" with white numbers and denote 764th Bomb Squadron.  (Aircraft numbers were sometimes black on a white square.)

764TH BOMBARDMENT SQUADRON

Office of the Operations Officer

APO 520              U S Army

27 April 1945

CERTIFICATE

I certify that 1st Lt. Clair Alexander, Jr., 0-827214, has completed the following sorties, with dates, time and targets below.

DATE

TIME

TARGETS

12 Oct 44

5:30

Bologna, Italy

14 Oct 44

7:30

Bratislava, Czechoslovakia

16 Oct 44

8:00

Linz, Austria

1 Nov 44

7:30

Graz, Austria

4 Nov 44

8:00

Augsburg, Austria

6 Nov 44

7:30

Vienna, Austria

17 Nov 44

7:30

Vienna, Austria

18 Nov 44

7:00

Villa Franca, Italy

19 Nov 44

7:00

Vienna, Austria

21 Nov 44

5:00

Sarajevo, Yugoslavia

2 Dec 44

8:00

Blechhammer, Germany

11 Dec 44

8:00

Vienna, Austria

15 Dec 44

7:30

Linz, Austria

29 Dec 44

8:00

Rosenhein, Germany

4 Jan 45

7:00

Trento, Italy

19 Jan 45

5:30

Brod, Yugoslavia

5 Feb 45

8:00

Regensberg, Germany

7 Feb 45

8:00

Vienna, Austria

20 Feb 45

6:30

Fiume, Italy

27 Feb 45

8:00

Augsburg, Austria

1 Mar 45

8:00

Moosbierbaum, Austria

8 Mar 45

8:00

Hegyeshalom, Hungary

14 Mar 45

7:00

Wiener-Neustadt, Austria

16 Mar 45

7:00

Moosbierbaum, Austria

20 Mar 45

7:00

Wels, Austria

22 Mar 45

7:30

Vienna, Austria

25 Mar 45

7:30

Wels, Austria

5 Apr 45

6:00

Brescia, Italy

8 Apr 45

6:00

Gorizia, Italy

12 Apr 45

6:00

St. Veit, Austria

15 Apr 45

Aborted

Secret

17 Apr 45

6:00

Secret

19 Apr 45

6:00

Avisio, Italy

20 Apr 45

6:00

Lucia, Italy

21 Apr 45

6:30

Attnang, Austria

24 Apr 45

6:30

Roveretto, Italy

Total number of Combat Sorties, 35; total number of combat flying hours, 247:00.

ERNEST C. PARSONSON,

Captain, Air Corps,

Operations Officer.

764TH BOMBARDMENT SQUADRON (Hv) AAF

461ST BOMBARDMENT GROUP (Hv)

APO 520 c/o PM NY, NY

CERTIFICATE

THIS IS TO CERTIFY THAT THE FOLLOWING OFFICER/ENLISTED MAN IS ENTITLED TO THE PRIVELEGE OF WEARING THE DECORATIONS LISTED BELOW:

ALEXANDER, CLAIR B.                0 823214                    1ST LT

DECORATION AUTHORITY
EAME RIBBON WD CIRCULAR 1 1943
Germany Battle Star ETO ltr 200.6, 14 April 1945
Air Combat Balkans Battle Star MTO ltr 200.6/040, 19April 45
Air Medal 15th AFGC 4478, 13 Nov 1944
1st OLC/AM 15 AFGO 323, 22 Jan 1945
2nd OLC/AM 15 AFGO 2078, 4 April 1945
3rd OLC/AM 15 AFGO 3058, 6 May 1945
4th OLC/AM 15 AFGO 3279, 19 May 1945
5th OLC/AM 15 AFGO 3280, 20 May 1945
DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS 15 AFGO 3054, 6 May 1945

LESTER C. HUME

1st Lt. A.C.

Adjutant