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SERIAL #: 32518322 STATUS: POW
MACR: 03017 CR: 03017

Comments1: 6 MAR 44 BERLIN (EAC)




1st Lt William B. Murray                  P     KIA      6/3/44  Berlin
1stLt Richard M. Lambiotte           CP    POW     6/3/44  Berlin
2nd Lt Orrin H. Heinrich              NAV    POW    6/3/44  Berlin 
2nd Lt William G. Carr                 BOM    POW    6/3/44  Berlin
  T/Sgt Emory L. Brandt             TTE    POW     6/3/44  Berlin
  S/Sgt Fred C. Schillinger            ROG   KIA       6/3/44  Berlin
  S/Sgt Jim Peace                      BTG    POW     6/3/44  Berlin
  S/Sgt Palmer J. Hanson            RWG    POW    6/3/44  Berlin
  S/Sgt Mahlon A. Hall                   TG    KIA      6/3/44  Berlin
    Sgt Nick E. Hamalak               LWG    POW    6/3/44  Berlin

349th Sqdn. Assigned 100th BG on Dec 1, 1943.   MACR #3017, Microfiche #1020, A/C #42-30799. BIGASSBIRD II

Lt. Lambiotte was the regular CP on the crew of F.H. Mason.  The crew on its 16th mission.

Some Missions of this Crew

Jan    7, 1944   Ludwigshaven
Jan    ?  1944   Frankfurt
Feb  24, 1944   Posen
Feb  29, 1944   Brunswick
March 2, 1944   Chartres
March 4, 1944   Berlin-Recalled
March 6, 1944   Berlin-Shot Down

"Murray's head blown off by 20mm and his body destroyed by fire and explosion after plane
crashed."  Sgt. Hall was in the radio room having his head dressed by Sgt Schillinger and
either fainted or remained to long in the plane and was killed in the crash.  When this
crew joined the 100th group on 1/12/43, 2nd Lt Fred (?) Craft, Jr. was the CP.  No further
record of him has been found.  On 3/3/44 one R.L. Phillips flew on this crew as CP.  

A letter of 9/10/86 from Palmer J.Hanson reads that he recalls that"Fred Craft left our
crew when both his ear drums were damaged."  . . . . . "R.L.Phillips flew with us on Mar.
4,1943. He was a regular on Lt Lohof's Crew. On Mar.6th Lt.Lambiotte joined the crew,  
He was a regular on the F.H.Mason crew.  This was our 15th & last mission."

The only crew member that Hanson had located was Emory L.Brandt "who lives ln Missouri".

Subj: thanks and reply
Date: 6/13/2001 1:36:49 PM Pacific Daylight Time 
From: (Murray Hanson)
To: (100th Bomb Group)  
Wednesday, June 13, 2001

Dear Michael, thank you so much for the prompt reply!I was excited to see your email message.I will be visiting with my mother in Albert Lea, Minnin late July, and she and I will look through papersand see what else we can send you. She and my sister,Vicki Wintheiser are visiting in Savannah, Georgiathis week, one of the reasons was to visit MightyEighth Museum.I do know my Dad corresponded with Orrin Heinrich inWisconsin before his death. I remember when I wasabout 12, we vacationed and stayed with Emory Brandtin Missouri. My mother still corresponds. I rememberMy Dad telling me info about Fred Craft and his eardrums. I thought the plane was something like Murray's Maid …? But on last mission for some reasonthey had to use Big Ass Bird, and they didn't like the name … he was always sad about those lost …obviously about Lt Murray, as I was named for him. He was older than the rest of the crew … "the old man"of 27, I think they teased him .. "the great whitefather" … they rest of the crew obviously had great affection and respect for Murray. Dad referred to Freddy Schillinger who died … as his close buddy and found it so hard to have lost him … I know Dad has more long hand notes on this … on the POW experience, on Christmas as a POW, on some talks he gave to a church group late in life, and on private notes on Forced March.

SUBMITTER: Joseph D. Heinrich
PURPOSE: Report a death (TAPS)
INTEREST: I am the veteran's child

VETERAN: Orrin Harold Heinrich
DATE OF DEATH: 02/16/2003
FAMILY CONTACT: Wife is still living, Charlotte Heinrich
N424 Sugar Bush Road
Antigo, WI  54409


Great website.  Orrin's name is misspelled as "Orin" and should be "Orrin".  There are crew photos which include his name.

On August 7, 1942 Orrin joined the United States 8th Air Force.  He was drafted in at Camp Dodge, Iowa and then reported to Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.  Between August 1942 and November 1943 (15 months), he was in training at the following places:

Aberdeen Proving Grounds in Iowa – basic training. 
San Antonio Aviation Cadet Center – for classification. 
Ellington Field - for preflight training. 
Hondo, Texas for advanced navigation training. 
July 15, 1943:  commissions 2nd Lieutenant and Navigator.  Furlough until July 28. 
Moses Lake, Washington – for 1st phase training. 
Kearney, Nebraska – for 2nd and 3rd phase training. 
November 4, 1943 – arrived at Point of Embarkation (POE) at Camp Kilmer, New Jersey, the staging area prior to being shipped overseas. 

On December 31, 1943 Orrin flew his first mission to Paris, France, with Lt. Gossage and crew, but the mission was aborted due to technical problems. Between January 4, 1944 and March 6, 1944, Orrin flew on missions with Lt. Gossage and Lt. William Murray, over locations in Germany (Kiel, Ludwigshaven, Osnabruck, Frankfurt, Brunswick, Rostok, Regensburg, and France (Hesdin, St. Omer, Romilly, Furgess). At various times during his service he received passes for going into London for some R&R (rest and relaxation).  He flew on several B-17’s, including:  “Ol Dad”, “Bertha the Blues”, “The Bigassbird II”.  He specifically mentions other crew members in his journal:  Lt. Gossage, Lohof, Vollmer, Phillips, and Lt. William Murray. 

On March 6, 1944, Orrin’s plane was shot down by German fighters in the vicinity of Haseluenne and Holdorf, in Vechta County, Germany (about 80 miles south of Bremerhaven on the north coast of Germany).  This was his 16th mission after flying 153 total hours.

An article in the Antigo Daily Journal, Antigo, Wisconsin (December 23, 1987), describes Orrin’s experience after his plane was shot down over Germany on March 6, 1944:

 Heinrich’s story began March 6, 1944, when his B-17 bomber with a ten member crew was shot down by German ME-109 fighters over the Diepholz swamp in Vechta County.  The 28 year old lieutenant and flight navigator was one of seven who survived [three did not].  He and another crewman parachuted to earth somewhere in the southern part of the county.  Heinrich says he remembers landing near a barn and farmhouse, located at a crossroads.  A fish pond was nearby.  The downed airmen, both wounded, were treated well by a tall pipe-smoking farmer and his 14-year old son who spoke English.  “They didn’t bother us at all.  They wanted us to walk the four or five miles to town.  I was wounded and my companion was wounded and I didn’t think we’d make it,” Heinrich says.  “I got him to hitch up the horse and wagon and take the two of us to town.” 

 They both saw a doctor who then dressed their wounds. 

 On March 10, 1944 he was registered as a POW at Dulag-Luft.  Dulag-Luft was a central German Air Force Interrogation Center near Frankfurt. His identification number (KGF) was 3377. Orrin spent 14 and 1/2 months as a prisoner of war at Stalag Luft I, as “a guest of Germany”, 

As a result of his service he received the following medals of Honor

Air Medal w/2 OLC
Prisoner of War 
Purple Heart 




TARGET: Berlin DATE: 1944-03-16  
AIRCRAFT: "The Bigassbird II" (42-30799) CAUSE: EAC  




 349th Lt. William Murray crew. Standing (L to R): Mahlon Hall, California; William Carr, Michigan; Orrin Heinrich, Wisconsin, William Kraft, Pennsylvania; William Murray, Pennsylvania; Emory Brandt, Missouri Kneeling (L to R): Fred Schillinger, Pennsylvania; Jim Peace, Louisiana; Palmer Hanson, Minnesota; Nick Hamalak, New York Detailed Information (100th Photo Archives) s



Crew 1

ID: 2131