Original U.S. WWII B-17 "Me and my Gal" Ball Turret Gunner Grouping - 422nd Bomb Squadron

Item Description

Original Items: One-of-a-kind set. Tech Sergeant David Spaight who served as a Ball Turret Gunner on Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress with the 422nd Bombardment Squadron, 305th Bomb Group, 8th Air Force (later 9th AF). Sgt. Spaight flew on multiple aircraft in Lieutenant P.B. Sparks crew including on the B-17 #42-29800 Me and My Gal and B-17 #41-24615 Target for Tonite.

The 422nd Bomb Squadron was established in June 1942 as a B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombardment squadron; it trained under the Second Air Force. The squadron deployed to the European Theater of Operations (ETO) in September 1942, being assigned to VIII Bomber Command in England. It began flying long-range strategic bombardment missions on 17 November 1942 and attacked such targets as submarine pens, docks, harbors, shipyards, motor works and marshalling yards in France, Germany and the Low Countries. It continued attacks on enemy cities, manufacturing centers, transportation links and other targets until the German capitulation in May 1945.

The ball turret gunner was one of the most dangerous assignments in World War II. Ball Turret Gunners on B-17 bombers were protected only by a glass bubble jutting out from the bowels of the plane. Permanently fixed and unable to be retracted, there was no hiding from enemy attack. It was an enclosure that at any time could become an airman’s coffin. And often did. Spaight made it through the war and back to his home in Michigan and lived to the age of 93. These items were purchased from his estate.

Included in this fantastic grouping are the following items:

•- Original U.S. WW2 Ike Jacket featuring sterling silver pin back aerial gunner wings. Medal ribbons as follows: Air Medal, Army of Occupation Medal, European–African–Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with two bronze battle stars, WWII Victory Medal. Ruptured Duck patch, Meritorious Unit Citation Patch, Technician Sergeant chevrons on both sleeves, 9th Air Force Patch and 1 hash  left sleeve with 3 bars for a total of 2 1/2 + years of overseas service.

- Original U.S. WW2 "50 mission" visor cap with British made red silk interior.

- Original 6 inch 422nd Bomb squadron patch for flight jacket

- Copy of a picture of his crew with Capt Sparks.

- Copy of a picture of B-17 #42-29800 Me and My Gal

- Copy of a picture of B-17 #41-24615 Target for Tonite. .

- Copy of 1943 crew list showing his crew, aircraft number, and name [he was assigned to Target For Tonite in this mission]

- Copy of association roster showing his name and address in Michigan.

- Paper 305th Bomb Group "Can Do" insignia.

A great grouping from a Ball Turret gunner on known B-17 aircraft.

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