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Thread: B-17 Pilot's Diary

  1. #1

    Default B-17 Pilot's Diary

    I know a lot of you guys fly the B-17, so thought this might be of interest.

    I found this incredible diary which documents the full tour of 25 missions that Kermit David Wooldridge (Lt. Col. USA Ret.) made in his B-17 in 1943.

    He typed his diary on small sheets and these have been scanned in so you can read his account in its original form. Each of the 25 missions has its own entry. Most are only a page or two (the pages are quite small). The more hairy missions are a little longer. All are fascinating, but if you are pressed for time, you should read missions 2, 5 & 18.

    Here it is ... http://mysite.verizon.net/res72uuj/diary.html.

    PPanPan

  2. #2

    Default Re: B-17 Pilot's Diary

    Quote Originally Posted by PPanPan
    I know a lot of you guys fly the B-17, so thought this might be of interest.

    I found this incredible diary which documents the full tour of 25 missions that Kermit David Wooldridge (Lt. Col. USA Ret.) made in his B-17 in 1943.

    He typed his diary on small sheets and these have been scanned in so you can read his account in its original form. Each of the 25 missions has its own entry. Most are only a page or two (the pages are quite small). The more hairy missions are a little longer. All are fascinating, but if you are pressed for time, you should read missions 2, 5 & 18.

    Here it is ... http://mysite.verizon.net/res72uuj/diary.html.

    PPanPan
    Fascinating PPanPan ! That's a "keeper". I love first-person documents of the war.

    Thanks.

    Trapper
    Some see the glass as half empty, some see it as half full. I see a glass that's too big.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Default Re: B-17 Pilot's Diary

    Wow, their second mission sounded like on hell of a nail biter.

    On mission 5, does anyone know what rocket fired weapon he is referring to on page 2?
    Insane how that mission even played out, it makes you scratch your head.

    Mission 14 is rather humorous with the landing at the RAF base, and retake-off to return in the damaged ship for supper.
    Also shows the increasing efficiency of German Flak and Fighter cooperation in attacks. Never heard of it before with signal shells.

    Mission 18 on Schweinfurt is rather disturbing on the # of losses. Course they don't call it "Black Thursday" for nothing with 1 in 4 bombers shot down.

    Mission 25 - what a cruel joke to be pulled by the CO at the end haha.

  4. #4
    Administrator wheelsup_cavu's Avatar
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    Default Re: B-17 Pilot's Diary

    Great find PPanPan.
    I like the first person accounts very much.


    Wheels

  5. #5

    Default Re: B-17 Pilot's Diary

    Great news. I have now heard from Kermit David Wooldridge's daughter, Frances Wooldridge Bekafigo, and his diary is once again live at a new address ... http://sites.google.com/site/ww2pilotsdiary/

    Frances says, "I want as many people as possible to have access to his diary."

    Spread the word!

    Cheers

    PPanPan


  6. #6
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    Default Re: B-17 Pilot's Diary

    Wow Thanks PPanPan!

    This is a great website.... I loved reading though the Diary, and trying to comprehend what Mr Wooldridge and his crews went through back then. Absolutely amazing! One thing that I observed from the diary, was how calm he seemed describing how shells were coming through the cockpit all around him. I haven't read all of them yet but I'm sure I will find time today to finish up reading the rest of it. S!


    Ribbs

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