301st Bombardment Group (H)
The 301st Bombardment Group was a highly decorated group of B-17 Flying Fortresses that served primarily in Africa and Italy.
The (H) designation stands for Heavy Bombardment, and that means B-17's, the Flying Fortress.
The 301st BG flew its first missions as part of the 8th AF, Bomber Command, in England. They were transferred to the newly created 12th AF and sent to North Africa in November of 1942. In October of 1943 the heavy bombardment groups of the 12th AF were merged into the new 15th AF. The 301st BG completed the war in Europe attached to the 15th Air Force.
The 301st Bombardment Group Heavy was comprised of 4 bomb squadrons. The 32nd, 352nd, 353rd and 419th. We are here to honor the memory of those men who fought, died and survived World War II as members of the 301st Bombardment Group.
Pictured below is the "Bad Penny", Tail Number 41-24363. This is the first aircraft of the 301st Bomb Group lost in combat. This photo taken in England in the fall of 1942 has King George VI congratulating the crew.
The Bad Penny was one of the group's original aircraft. Assigned 18 Aug 42. MIA Bizerte 28 Nov 42 on its sixth mission. John Bruce crew, Earl, Knop, Tannehill, Hughes, McGriff, Backus, Scott, Gilger. All KIA. (MACR 16197).
The top photo of Wabash Cannon Ball (41-24361) is one of many Colour photos taken during the war by Robert Capa, that appeared in "Collier's Weekly Magazine". It flew its first mission on Oct. 12, 1942 to Muelte, France
King George with the 301st BG at Chelveston
Lt. Gen. Spaatz and Lt. Col. Gormly in North Africa