Dedicated to Col. Wm. L Ross III Service to the Army Air Corps and his Collection of 12th Air Force   97th Bomb Group   414th Squadron History in Algeria and Tunisia, January-July 1943


Site Edited and Maintained by his son-in-law  Doug Cook 

Last update September 26, 2017

Contacts from 97th BG and 414th Squadron Welcome!




97th BG History under the 8th AF, 12th AF, and 15th AF


97 BG Moto Venit Hora”  The hour has come…


97th BG Bomb Squadrons: 340th, 341st, 342nd, and 414th



414th BS LOGO “On a Wing and a Prayer” after the B-17 “All American” Story


8th Air Force

12th Air Force

15th Air Force


97th BOMB GROUP (Heavy)



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Comments and Corrections from Readers


B-17 Specs


B-17 Flight Instruction Video


Col. Wm. L. Ross III  Biography and Career Chronology


Col. Wm. L. Ross III  Air Mission Awards Announcements


Air Medals Explained


12 Air Force 97th Bomb Group 414th Squadron Chronology


97th Bomb Group Reunion 2006


B-17 Heavy Bomber Pilot Training


Transport to Base in Tunisia


North Africa Campaign Video


414th BS “On a Wing and a Prayer”   - Video


97th BG Precision bombing of Rome-  Video


414th BS 1943 Bombing Foggia, Italy- Video


414th BS B-17 Old Ironsides and her Last Crew


414th  BS B-17 Ball Turret Gunner  Frank Dancey’s story and DANCEY MISSION LOG


414th BS Pilot Col. Hank Tillman’s story and TILLMAN MISSION LOG


414th BS Pilot Col. Robert Rast’s story: B-17 downed on 49th mission and became POW


414th BS Pilot Truman W. Cummings  B-17 ‘Ther-N-Bak

Career Pan Am Pilot


414th BS Pilot 2nd Lt. Paul B. Slaten   KIA  July 6, 1943


414th BS Navigator Lt. Harry C. Nuessle:  B-17  All American” Story


B-17 Pilot Will S. Arnett’s Combat Diary  - 301st and 97th BG


414th BS B-17 Top Turret Gunner / Flight Engineer Tech Sgt Ray Womack’s story and Mission Log


414th  BS  B-17 Tail Gunner S/Sgt. Kenneth Tucker’s  book

‘Last Roll Call’ :    B-17 “Kwitchurbitchin  Shot down over the Adriatic Dec. 25, 1944


414th BS  B-17 Tail Gunner

Sgt. Ned S. Smith


414th BS  B-17 Tail Gunner and Maintenance Officer

ESAF E9 CHIEF M. SGT. (Ret.)  James N. Bracewell


414th BS B-17 Engineer

SFC Doug (Jenkinson) Laurence


414th BS  B-17 Ordinance & Gunnery Maintenance Crew

Sgt. Lloyd A. Merrifield


414th BS Mechanic and Asst Crew Chief Sgt. Ernst F Knobloch


340th BS  B-17 Tail Gunner

S/Sgt. William R. Bowers


341st BS B-17 Radioman and Gunner Lt. Col. Jesse S. Raybourn


414th Squadron Planes and Crews to 1943


414th Squadron Planes 1944-45


414th Sq. Missions, Targets, and Combat Action


R&R in Algeria and  Tunisia


Tunisia Camp Photos







414th Bomb Squadron B-17 in flight



LIFE  Magazine Mar. 1, 1943    Tunis Airfield Bombed



12 Air Force 1st Fighter Group 71st Fighter Squadron 


97th Bomb Group B-17 escort

P-38 Pilot  Major Fredric Arnold


P-38 Specs



B-17 Memphis Belle (Hollywood movie)

In Heavy Flak - video



 25TH MISSION (actual 1943 combat action)


B-17 vs fighters - video


B-17 Raid Schweinfurt-video


97th BG 414th BS B-17 “Dottie  Crash  Feb. 27, 1945 Includes crew stories


Link to more WWII Air Combat Video



97th Bomb Group Memorial at Wright Patterson Museum Dayton, OH

(photo credit Bob Lineberger)