B-17 Bomber Crash, 1944

On February 25, 1944, a B-17G bomber from the Grand Island Army Air Field crashed half a mile east of here on the Langenheder farm, killing nine aboard. The Grand Island base served as a training location for aircrews prior to their leaving for overseas. The B-17 was on a training flight in the early morning hours, crashing shortly after takeoff and sliding in the field before impacting a berm next to an irrigation ditch and exploding. Losing their lives were 2nd Lt. John T. McMillen, Cleveland, OH; 2nd Lt. Kenneth E. Pierce, Brownsville, VT; F/O Alfred R. Flock, Boise, ID; S/Sgt. Glen M. Cox, Newport, KY; S/Sgt. Donald J. Vitale, Crockett, CA; Sgt. John M. Robertson, Atlanta, GA; Sgt. Stanley S. Sala, Cohoes, CA; Sgt. Lloyd D. McNeil, Somers, IA; and Sgt. Edward Machos, Manchester, NH. Pilot 1st Lt. Howard T. Talbert was the lone survivor.

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5537 St. Paul Road, Grand Island