Original U.S. WWII B-17 Navigator of Wild Oates 351st Bomb Group and Prisoner of War Named Uniforms and Documents
Original Items: A real hero was 2nd lieutenant Anthony J Nardone, serial number O-718398 of the 351st Bombardment Group, completed 6 operational missions over German, prior to being shot down on September 12th, 1944 over Plauen, Germany.
The 351st Bombardment Group (Heavy), Eighth United States Army Air Force, based at Polebrook, Northamptonshire, England, during World War II. During the three years at Polebrook, the 351st B.G. had a total of 279 B17 Flying Fortresses on charge. These flew 9,075 sorties with 7,945 of them dropping 20,778 tons of bombs. The gunners in the Group fired off 2,776,028 rounds of ammunition and were credited with destroying 303 enemy aircraft. The Group flew 311 credited missions and lost 124 B 17's in combat.
EYEWITNESS DESCRIPTIONS OF CRASH of WILD OATES on 9/12/1944:
I Myron. C Anderson, 37678540, was flying as tailgater of Aircraft 43-37571, in No. 1 position of the low squadron, low box, during a mission to Ruhland, Germany on 12 September 1944/ The Plane piloted by Lt. Adams was flaying in No.3 position of the same squadron. Before we reached the target I saw a dog fight between FW 190s and P51s. Then about 12 FWs came through the formation, beginning to fire at about 800 yeards. It looked as if the No. 3 engine of Lt. Adam’s plane was on fire. The plane went into a couple of tight spins, out of control. I lost sight of it then, without observing any parachutes.
When the plane was severely damaged by enemy planes, the bail-out order was given, and this is how each member left the disabled plane:
Lt. Anthony Nardone Navigator
Jumped from the escape hatch in the nose of the plane.
All of the above were taken prisoners shortly after landing, and since their liberation, all have been returned safely to the United States.
Included in the amazing grouping are the following:
Khaki officer tunic named Nardone with 8th metal wire embroidered Army Air Force Patch, Silver Wings, Lieutenant bars. etc.
OD officer tunic with 8th Army Air Force Patch, Silver Wings, Lieutenant bars, medal ribbons with three combat stars.
Lovely Khaki Officer’s crush peaked visor cap.
Dog Tags named to ANTHONY J NARDONE
Blue Officer tunic with trousers.
Duffle Bag named to Nardone
Army Airfare marked and named folding uniform bag.
34 pages of copies of original documents in a binder from the crash on 9/12/1944
Navigator books, and training manuals
Photo of Nardone (circled) and his training group from March 20, 1943.
All in all an amazing set of a true air hero from WWII that survived a burning B-17, was a POW for six months and returned to the USA in one piece.
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