Men of the 64th Bomb Squadron, 43rd Bomb Group prepare for a mission against the Japanese on November 17, 1942. The photo was taken at Mareeba, Australia. L-R: Captain David Hassemer, 2nd Lt. Jacob Franz, Lt. John Crockett, Lt, Raymond Holsey, Captain Eugene Halliwill, Lt. Jack Ryan and Sgt. John Rosenberger.
Though the B-17’s role in Europe has been studied for decades, the Flying Fort started its USAAF combat career in the Pacific. The 19th Bomb Group, stationed in the Philippines in 1941, carried out the first American B-17 raids of WWII. Later, the 19th moved to Australia, supporting the Dutch East Indies campaign along with the 7th Bomb Group before joining the fight over New Guinea and Rabaul. The 7th later went on to serve in the China-Burma-India Theater.
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