• 9 February 1944
  • -
  • Gotha Mission Cancelled

On 9 February, the Group was briefed and launched for the target of Gotha, but the mission was recalled an hour after take-off. On his return, 1/Lt Albert Lishka, Jr., pilot of B24H 42-7480, My Diversion, had a landing accident. According to his statement in the Report of Aircraft Accident, "I took off on a combat mission at 0750 with a bomb load of twelve 500 pounders and 2700 gallons of gas. At 0830 mission was recalled. On return landing I hit a little short of runway. The landing wasn't too rough but with the load we had, it snapped the left landing gear causing the accident." Further investigation revealed that the ship had landed approximately 25 yards short of the perimeter track at the runway and perimeter track intersection. The left landing gear struck a ditch mound alongside the roadway and a pile of loose gravel being used in construction work. The left landing gear collapsed about 600 yards down the runway and the left wing was dragged, causing the ship to break in two behind the bomb bay. Luckily, no one was injured.

Click on images to enlarge.

When #42-7480, My Diversion, had a landing accident on 9 February 1944, these men were aboard: pilot 1/Lt Lishka, A.; copilot 2/Lt Feld, B.H.; navigator 2/Lt Moorehead, J.C. Jr; bombardier 2/Lt Brockway, O.E.; engineer T/Sgt Carlson, C.E.; radio operator T/Sgt Roberts, E.M.; and gunners S/Sgt Halstead, H.C., S/Sgt Dohm, H.E., S/Sgt Drylie, J. Jr., and S/Sgt Svoboda, J.J.