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S/SGT  Hugh F. FANTONE

UNIT: 418th BOMB Sqdn POSITION: TG
SERIAL #: 13118733 STATUS: INT
MACR: 03031 CR: 03031

Comments1: 6 MAR 44 BERLIN LANDED IN SWEDEN (EAC)

COMMENTS & NOTES

MEMO 1:

CREW

1st Lt Samuel L.Barrick           P  6 MAR 44  BERLIN    (INTERENED IN SWEDEN)
2nd Lt Ira A.Munn                CP  6 MAR 44  BERLIN    (INTERENED IN SWEDEN) 
2nd Lt James G.Guerrini      NAV  6 MAR 44  BERLIN     (INTERENED IN SWEDEN) 
T/Sgt James D.Brady         TOG  6 MAR 44  BERLIN     (INTERENED IN SWEDEN)    from the original Lt Robert H. Wolff Crew
T/Sgt Clifton E.Barton        ROG  6 MAR 44  BERLIN     (INTERENED IN SWEDEN)   TARGET WAS BERLIN
T/Sgt Walfred J.Johnson     TTE  6 MAR 44  BERLIN     (INTERENED IN SWEDEN)      
S/Sgt Edward J.Marlen        BTG  6 MAR 44  BERLIN     (INTERENED IN SWEDEN)
S/Sgt William D.Sapp          RWG  6 MAR 44  BERLIN     (INTERENED IN SWEDEN) (changed name to William Sapp Dixon after the war)
S/Sgt Frederick C.Thorpe     LWG   6 MAR 44  BERLIN     (INTERENED IN SWEDEN)
S/Sgt Hugh F.Fantone,Jr.        TG  6 MAR 44  BERLIN     (INTERENED IN SWEDEN)

418th Sqdn. Assigned to 100th BG on Dec 1, 1943
MACR #3031 Micro fiche #1028
A/C #42 39994.  "SNORT STUFF"
Crew landed Sweden - severe damage by fighters. All crew members repatriated by Nov.1944. Lt. James M. Henry was the regular bombardier on this crew. According to Lt Barrick, Lt Henry was sick in Base Hospital for March 6th Mission to Berlin.  He CPT. 29/1/45. 15/03/44 BRUNSWICK (LT JAS M. HENRY BECOMES BOMBARDIER FOR LT WILLIAM THOMAS CREW FROM CREW OF LT SAMUEL BARRICK).   He CPT. HIS TOUR ON KASSEL MISSION  29/1/45.  See Note below on his time with Lt Thomas Crew. 

Letter to Colonel Bill E. Thompson dated 18 Feb 1996 and forwarded to Paul West 26 Feb 1996…

Olympia, WA
18 February 1996

Dear Bill,
On 7 March 1945 I was released as an internee and flew as a passenger in a C-87 (converted B-24 to   
Scotland and was assigned to a Casual Pool in a Replacement Depot at Stone, England. We were informed   
that we internees would be returned to the United States but would first go back to our Groups for   
debriefing. I was ordered back to the 100th Bomb Group for ten days temporary duty. The debriefing   
consisted of describing what had happened on the mission, and signing a bunch of Security papers so I   
couldn't talk about being interned or what we did there. I then went to London to buy a new uniform and   
other gear, then back to the Replacement Depot for shipment to the States.

You didn't ask for the following information, but I thought you might find it a bit interesting. Do with it what   
you will.

On about 1 July 1944 I was summoned to the American Legation in Stockholm to meet with Colonel   
Hardison I had been "volunteered", along with some other Pilots to form a maintenance unit to recover,   
repair and fly interned aircraft to a storage site in Sweden. On June 20 and 21 twenty four B-17s and B-24s   
had landed at Bulltofta airfield at Malmo. Ten aircraft had previously landed there, and were in process of   
repair by a small contingent of one Officer and nine enlisted men.  

The air field was a mess. Airplanes were scattered all over the small field, some had belly landed, others had   
landed on one gear, two had crashed head on into a sheer bluff, one had smashed its right wing into a   
building, and another had gone over an embankment, and nosed down into a police pistol range. Others were   
erect, on three wheels. Two B-24s had crashed and burned.

We had no special tools or maintenance equipment at the start, but with the assistance of the Swedish fighter   
unit and ABA airline facility, we were able begin work. A Major Joe Filkins arrived from the UK on June 19   
on an inspection trip, and remained to oversee our operation, and was successful in obtaining Kennedy type   
tool boxes, and special tools from the UK. Later, he was successful in getting a Jeep and Trailer. We had an   
operation going!

We looked at every airplane to determine if they could be repaired, if not, they would be used for   
salvageable parts and scrapped.

Most of these airplanes had landed in southern Sweden, in places other than Malmo. It was necessary to   
send teams to these locations to retrieve them. One B-17 had belly landed in a peat bog, the team even laid a   
short narrow-gauge railroad to salvage the parts.

The most complex repair accomplishment was on my own B-17G 42-39994. We replaced the entire left   
wing and landing gear, with parts from another aircraft. The feat was described, with fair accuracy, in a July   
1945 issue of Air Force magazine.

This was a "salve to my wounds in that there were several magazine articles at the time that described the   
"life Or Riley" we internees in Sweden and Switzerland had enjoyed. Implications were made that we had   
shirked our combat duties, and ran away.   

Too bad these writers could not have been there to attend the funerals in Sweden, visit the wounded in the   
hospital, and see the extensive battle damage most of the airplanes had received.

Too bad they didn't know about the long hours spent under field conditions, repairing aircraft and some that   
would have been junked back in the UK. We really had a balll

While at Malmo, I was called back to Stockholm to sit on an evaluation board to determine whether the   
crews were justified in the landings in Sweden. Only one was found to be questionable. No action was taken   
against the Aircraft Commander.

During the period I was there, One hundred and thirty two B-17s and B-24s came to Sweden. Of that   
number, we repaired, flight tested, ferried and maintained in flyable storage eighty eight of them and   
scrapped the rest. At the end of the war, they were flown back to the UK and scrapped.  

The crew were released and flown in a C-87 to the UK on September 30, 1944, returned to the 100th BG   
and were then sent to the States in November.

Sam Barrick
9315 Tri Lake Ct SE
Olympia, WA 98513

 MISSIONS FOR LT SAMUEL BARRICK: SEE BARRICK PART II IN SQUADS



To Sweden (this was written in response to questions from a 16 year old high school student)

My name is Bill (Sapp) Dixon.  I was a right waist gunner/armorer in the B 17 named
Snort Stuff (but misreported in several publications as Barrick’s Bag), aircraft 42 39994, 
assigned to the 418th Bomb Squadron, 100th Bomb Group, 13th Bomb Wing, 3rd Bomb Division, 
8th Air Force, United States Army Air Force.  (Isn't that a mouthful?!?!)
The 100th BG was located at Station 139, Thorpe Abbotts, on the line between Norfolk
and Suffolk counties, East Anglia, England.

My pilot was named Samuel L. Barrick, copilot Ira A. Munn, navigator James
Guerrini, toggelier James Brady, engineer/top turret Walfred Johnson, radio
operator Clifton Barton, ball turret Edward (Shorty) Marlin, left waist
Frederick Thorpe, tail Hugh Fantone.  We were a comparatively old crew  
Munn was the youngest at 20, Johnson, Thorpe, and Brady all were 33 or 34 in
1944.  I was 24 at that time.  (You can figure out how old I am now.)

We were shot down on 6 March 1944 on our way to Berlin on the first big
Berlin raid.  We had been to Berlin two days earlier when only 31 of us got
there   the rest of the Air Force had been recalled but we missed the
recall.  I was on my 13th mission when we were shot down.
However, we were lucky in several ways.  We had been flying in the high
squadron until, at 11 o'clock, we switched to the low squadron to replace 
planes that had aborted.  When the fighters hit us at noon, I saw the whole
high squadron go down before I saw an enemy fighter.  We had two engines hit
in the initial attack and would not have been able to keep up with the
formation except that there was no formation to keep up with   we had lost
14 planes and, including our plane, this left seven planes flying.  We had
one engine on fire when we turned off to try to make it back over the North
Sea.  Fortunately, the fire went out after a couple of minutes but the prop
was windmilling and couldn't be feathered.  The prop actually fell off after
we landed because only the wind pressure was holding it on.  The navigator
said we didn't have enough fuel to make the North Sea, which was
understandable to me because I could see right through one of the wing
tanks.  As a result, we headed for the Baltic Sea and Sweden.  While we were
still over the last little spit of land in Germany, we passed directly over
a German airfield, no planes came up but a warship of some variety which was
moored in the bay next to the airfield fired some flak at us and did hit us
with shrapnel from two rounds.

We were doubly lucky because we had an excellent pilot and navigator who,
between them, got us to Sweden.  Sweden was a neutral country.   While we
were still over the Baltic, two Swedish fighter planes came out and escorted
us to their airfield.  One of them nearly caused us to crash because he kept
crossing in front of us which made us go through his propwash and we were
just barely hanging onto flying speed as it was.  We lowered the gear and
were going in for a landing when it suddenly dawned on us that we didn't
know whether we had tires or shredded rubber to land on.  Also there was a
small hill at the edge of the landing field, a sod field, i.e., no runways,
and we just barely cleared the hill.  I kissed the ground when I got out of
the plane.
 
A Swedish soldier with a submachine gun came running up as I got out and
said, in English, "Welcome to Sweden.  Does anybody speak Swedish?"
I said, "Yes.  Skol. And jag alskar dig."  The only Swedish I knew at the
time.  "Skol" means the same as "Cheers" when you have a drink with someone
and "jag alskar dig" means I love you (I had learned that from a young lady
when I was attending the University of Chicago before the war.)

This is the way my seven month vacation began.  If you want to learn more
about skiing lessons, sailboating, canoeing, drinking French champagne, etc,
you will have but to ask me!


Bill (Sapp) Dixon response on the act of Buzzing the tower and haystacks:

Low enough to mow hay…One of our forbidden, but often practice stunts was to come in low and fast; pull up immediately after crossing the hay pile resulting in a gross redistribution of said hay pile. The maneuver, not always successful, cost a few lives…..Gene Carson

Rank amateurs!  One of our pilots took out a barn and the farmer's prize bull while buzzing the control tower.  He was showing off for a couple of Red Cross girls he was taking for a sightseeing ride in his B-17 and lost an engine as he started to pull out.  His name was Frank Valesh and he went through at least five planes before completing his missions.  They quit counting the holes in his planes; they just counted the number of parts missing after every mission.  He was transferred to flying a Mickey lead plane because he could do everything with a 17 except fly it backward --- and I'm not sure he hasn't done that.

We came damn close to doing that on a mission to Regensberg in Feb. 1944 because of the strength of the headwinds.  I was told that at times our ground speed was ~35 mph.  Of course on the way back, we were really rocketing along.  
That was the mission on which we caught an 88mm in the bomb bay where we were carrying incendiaries.  There was a big hole in the bomb bay doors and stuff was leaking out, you could smell it in the waist and tail, and the front office was having a discussion about whether we should drop the load or not.  Finally the tail gunner called to the ball gunner and asked, "Shorty is that stuff sorta yellowish green?"  Shorty answered in the affirmative and the tail called back, "Well, it is floating by here in chunks!"  
That ended the discussion in the front and we salvoed….Bill (Sapp) Dixon

Hi Mike,
 
I was having a casual e-mail conversation with William "Bill" Dixon from the 100th BG (Sam Barrick crew) about the gunnery school at Las Vegas and his time before going to England and one thing led to another. Below is what he sent me.  Perhaps you have seen it before because he remembers sending you a lot of stuff in the past.  Anyway's, it closes another small gap in my fathers history I didn't know about and I thought you might like to see it.  The Queen Mary story sounds familiar.  
 
Ray Cary
………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
 
 I was in the same group with your father from Aug 1943 until I was shot down on 6 March 1944.  I even recognized him in the picture you sent. 
 
Your father was assigned to an air crew in August 1943 in Moses Lake, Washington.  The others on the crew were Raymond V. Monrad, pilot; Arthur E. Dehn, bombardier; George L. Lewis, assistant engineer; Talbert E. Spenhoff, radio operator; Nicholas Perovich, armorer gunner; and, of course, your father, engineer.  The rest of the crew was assigned in Kearney, Nebraska. (I will scan the portions of the orders moving us from Moses Lake to Kearney that include your father's crew and send them to you separately.)  On 11 August, we went by train to Kearney.
 
We took overseas training in Kearney from mid August until mid October when we were given overseas leave.  We did get several hours of flight time in B-17s in Kearney, but not enough was formation flying and there was only one practice bomb and gunnery flight.  There was no practice for gunners in looking for, tracking, or leading fighter planes.  We did not, however, realize just how untrained we were.
 (A personal note: The girl to whom I was engaged and my parents came out to Kearney on 20 August and she and I were married on 21 August in the rectory of the Catholic Church there.  Still married in our 64th year.) 
 
On returning to Kearney, we were put aboard a train and taken to Fort Dix, New Jersey.  We were processed there, shots checked, physicals again, paperwork in re insurance, deductions, bond purchases, etc.  We were allowed to go into New York City twice while in Dix.
 
(The following is a true account that I wrote some years ago about our trip in the Queen Mary.  Your father was in the same room with me so he, too, experienced this.)  
 
 
The Black Hole

Early in the morning of November 14, 1943, we were taken from Ft. Dix, across to New York harbor, and marched through a hole in the side of the Queen Mary for our trip to Jolly Old England.  

After entering the ship, we walked as far forward as it was possible to go and then down as far as it was possible to go.  At that point we reached a room that had a sign over the door “Max. Occupants 13”.  

We entered, all 63 of us, and found hammocks slung in every available inch of the room.  Another door stood open even farther forward, but it was the head, (toilet) an open trough through which a continuous stream of water flowed.  Oh joy!  Oh my!  

We later learned that there were over 15,000 troops aboard.   

I was the last one to enter the (what should I call it?  I know – the floating dungeon) and so I had to take the last of the hammocks.  The only hammock left was over the only way into the head.  

I learned, in the next few days, exactly what is meant by a head butt.  Every time someone went in the head, his head met my  -- well, you get the idea.  

We did have one recreational device in the dungeon and that was a small metal table that was bolted to the floor.  There were hammocks swung over it.  But that didn’t stop some of our brave soldiers from shooting dice on that table – 24 hours a day.  

If you have never heard the constant sound of dice hitting a metal table for 24 hours a day, you haven’t lived!

After the three fellows who had the hammocks over the table threatened vile and hurtful actions to the dice players, they persuaded three of the dice players to switch hammocks with them.  Fortunately, it took only four and one-half days to get to Scotland or some of those dice players may have had to swim part of the way.

Food or ----- What?

Our first meal aboard the Queen Mary was served Army mess style in the Grand Dining Room and consisted of kidney stew  with real beef kidneys (at least I think they were beef) and stewed apricots that had to be scraped off the serving spoon onto our trays.  Now, my grandmother had been born in England and raised in Wales and so I was not unfamiliar with both stewed apricots and kidney stew.  But my grandmother always soaked the kidneys well before preparing them to eat.  And, she knew when to stop cooking the apricots, too.  This was not the case with those who, on the Queen Mary, prepared both of these dishes.  

The routine followed by most of the soldiers was the routine I followed.  I went through the line received my food(?), kept moving until I reached the garbage cans, scraped both apricots and kidneys into the cans, placed my tray in the used tray pile, and departed as hastily as possible because the odor  was beginning to penetrate my pores. 

Early on the second day we had what would normally be called a lifeboat drill but they certainly didn’t have enough lifeboats for 15,000 people and so they called it a submarine drill.  I called it “The prepare to drown drill” if there really was a submarine around.  

Upon leaving the Queen Mary, we boarded a train for a destination unknown.  Our trip south ended somewhere on Salisbury Plains.  (My father had encamped on Salisbury Plains during World War I before being sent to France.)  It was at this camp that we were assigned to our 8th Air Force Group, the 100th Bomb Group.    When others at the Camp heard that we were going to the 100th, we heard for the first time the reputation of the Bloody Hundredth.  It was supposed to be the hard luck outfit of the 8th AF.  The story was that one of the planes of the 100th had lowered its wheels, a sign of surrender similar to waving a white flag, and, when German fighters came up to lead the B-17 to a landing, the gunners had shot the fighters down.  After that, the story goes, the Luftwaffe sought out the 100th in revenge.  We later learned that the story was apocryphal although it is still brought up every once in a while by someone who served in another Group.  And, at least one German Luftwaffe General has said that if he had ever heard of one of his pilots picking out a particular Group, he would have shot him himself because they didn’t have time to waste looking for specific targets – any old U.S. bomber would do!

We reported to the 100th Bomb Group at Thorpe Abbotts in East Anglia on December 1, 1943.

Bill (Sapp) Dixon

BERLIN RECOLLECTIONS:

Mike - In my lexicon "anybody" means bombers.  I know there was at least one mid-air because I saw it but it was not one of the 100th planes.  We were not leading the force and so other Groups had apparently penetrated the front but, in effect, turned around to come out. The result was airplanes all over the sky.  Also, three days later I was living in Sweden so probably didn't know 100th losses were not from mid-airs. 
Barrick (entire entry for Mar. 3): "Group recalled on way in.  Three B-17s missing."

Mike - I believe I received official credit for a Berlin mission on the 4th and I still remember climbing out of clouds and seeing no other aircraft until we saw a bunch to our left and went over and joined them - it was the 95th, i.e., Square B. 
 
Barrick (entire entry for Mar. 4): "Force recalled, turned back near Kassel, Germany.  Couldn't find B group, went in with 95th.  Two FW-190s and one Me-109 passed at us.  P-47 escorts knocked them down.  Some flak, not bad.  Alt 27,000'.  Ten from 100th went over target.  Seaton down.  Takeoff in snow storm and landed in snow storm.  Richerdson flew with us as Bombardier, Henry, is in hospital.  A/C crashed and burned beyond runway after takeoff.  Was Lloyd Marks." …(this is incorrect, Lt Marks crashed on take off in Jan 1944)

Barrick added a note before he sent it to me.
"Note: Marks and Co-Pilot were only survivors.  Marks was severely burned while trying to get crew out of airplane.  He was returned to states, and was later divorced by his wife because of his disfigurement."  (this is incorrect, Lt Marks crashed on take off in Jan 1944)
Bill to Mike: I ran into Lloyd in San Jose, CA in 1959.  He was working at IBM at that time.  He loaned me his copy of Contrails and so I stopped by his house at least twice, once to pick it up and once to return it.  As I recall, I met his wife - although it could have been his second wife.  He was horribly scarred.  

SEE FULL BARRICK HISTORY IN AIRMAN 2

William Sapp Dixon
********************************************************************************************************
Note on Lt Henry:

CREW

2ND LT WILLIAM H. THOMAS            P CPT 29 MAY 44 LEIPZIG, AC REPAIR DEPOT
2ND LT J. J. RARING                       CP KIA 19 MAY 44 BERLIN, CITY (WITH THE M.D. RUPERT CREW)
2ND LT HERBERT J. BRICE             NAV CPT 13 APR 44 AUGSBURG
2ND LT LOUIS BROWNSTEIN         BOM CPT 25 MAY 44 BRUSSELS, MY  TAPS: 11 AUG 1971
2ND LT JAS M. HENRY                  BOM CPT 29 JAN  45 KASSEL  (FROM LT SAMUEL BARRICK) 
S/SGT CHARLES A. LEAVITT          TTE NOC
T/SGT CLIFFORD E. AKIN              ROG CPT 20 APR 44 MARQUENVILLE & FLOTTEMANVILLE-HAGUE
S/SGT WILLARD W. MOORE         RWG CPT 28 APR 44 SOTTEVAST (NOBALL)  TAPS: 19 JUN 1988
S/SGT DANIEL S. McGILL                TG CPT 27 APR 44 FLOTTENANVILLE (NOBALL)
S/SGT JOHN D. SMOOT                BTG CPT 27 APR 44 FLOTTENANVILLE (NOBALL)
S/SGT EDWARD A. VOLLMER        LWG CPT 27 APR 44 FLOTTENANVILLE (NOBALL)

418TH SQDN.. CREW, AS ABOVE, JOINED THE 100TH ON 26 FEB 1944. THE CP HAD TRANSFERRED FROM THE 349TH TO THE 418TH ON 26 FEB 1944.
ACCORDING TO THE DAUGHTER OF S/SGT DANIEL MCGILL, THIS CREW WAS TRANSFERRED FROM NORTH AFRICA TO ENGLAND AND WERE ASSIGNED TO 100TH BG.  INFO SKETCHY ON THIS BUT WOULD ACCOUNT FOR THIS CREW COMPLETING THEIR TOUR OF DUTY OF 30 MISSIONS  BY THE END OF APRIL.   SINCE SOME OF THE CREW WERE ONLY IN THE  GROUP UNTIL APRIL 44, THEY COULD NOT HAVE COMPLETED 30 MISSIONS IN THAT PERIOD OF TIME UNLESS THEY HAD FLOWN OTHER MISSIONS IN THE 12AF OR 15TH AF.

INCOMPLETE LIST OF MISSIONS FOR THIS CREW:

03/03/44 BERLIN
04/03/44 BERLIN
06/03/44 BERLIN
09/03/44 ORANIENBURG, NEAR BERLIN  (LAST LISTING FOR LT BROWNSTIEN ON CREW)
15/03/44 BRUNSWICK (LT JAS M. HENRY BECOMES BOMBARDIER FOR CREW FROM CREW OF LT SAMUEL BARRICK)
16/03/44 AUGSBURG
22/03/44 ORANIENBURG
23/03/44 BRUNSWICK
27/03/44 BORDEAUX
10/04/44 RHEIMS
12/04/44 SCHEUDITZ, RECALL
13/04/44 AUGSBURG

Subj: RE: 100thBG Form Submission 
Date: 6/10/2001 11:59:09 PM Pacific Daylight Time 
From: bridgid.macseoin@mildenhall.af.mil (Macseoin Bridgid K MSgt 100ARW/XPI)To: MPFaley@aol.com ('MPFaley@aol.com')  
Michael 
Yes, my father was Daniel S. McGill. I remember him saying he flew with another Bomb Group in North Africa and Italy, and his crew was moved to Thorpe Abbotts to do a comparison of missions (?) I did find records saying he participated in the Rome-Arno campaign, and that he was in North Africa in September 1943. I'm trying to get copies of his military records to confirm all this. My dad passed away in December 1994, so I can't ask him these questions. He served in the Air Force for 30 years. He also served in the 513th and came over to Mildenhall when the 513th was renamed the 100th. So I feel a real connection to this unit.

MEMO 2:

KIA / MIA / EVA / INT INFORMATION:

TARGET: Berlin DATE: 1944-03-06  
AIRCRAFT: "Snort Stuff" (42-39994) CAUSE: EAC - Interned in Sweden  

BURIAL INFORMATION

PLOT: ROW:  
GRAVE: CEMETERY:  

PHOTOS:

 Hugh Fantone, Tail Gunner on the Samuel Barrick crew. Photo taken in Rattvik Sweden in late March or early April, 1944. (Photo courtesy of William Dixon) Barrick crew information 

 Hugh Fantone, Tail Gunner on the Samuel Barrick Crew. Photo taken in Rattvik Sweden in late March or early April, 1944. (Photo courtesy of William Dixon) Barrick crew information 

The Sam Barrick crew in Sweden
(Starting at lower left and going around the table) - Hugh Fantone-tail gunner, James Brady-togglier, Frederick Thorpe-left waist gunner, Walfred Johnson-engineer/ttg, Samuel Barrick-pilot, Ira Munn-copilot, Edward Marlen-ball turret gunner, James Guerrini-navigator, Clifton Barton-radio operator.
(Photo courtesy of William Dixon)

 Hugh Fantone TG, left and William Dixon Sapp, Samuel L. Barrick's crew in Sweden Detailed Information (100th Photo Archives) 

 

SERVED IN:

Crew 1

ID: 1565