Howard McClellan mission February 17, 1944

I was Bombardier in the B-24 crew commanded by Bob Pudelwitts. We were transferred from the 514th Bomb Squadron after the loss of the 512th aircraft and fliers about December 1943. Early in the morning of 17 Feb 1944, we were told there would be no combat that day. Many of the officers went into the 'town. But after the middle of the morning, we were called in for bombing Anzio ridge. We went to get the data and were ready to take-off just after noon. Our crew co-pilot, Lt. Jjm Foster. was in the city. Ours went to the city. Then Lt. Col. Gillett volunteered as co-pilot and we took off. I noticed the B-24 we flew the load of 500 pound bombs.
We flew North, climbed and used the masks. When we arrived north of Anzio. we had to drop lower. I had to drop the load using the sight. As we flew South. we were fired at by the German artillery. And as we went down the run going South. the firing was bad. I was using the Nordon. We received a shot just in front and below the No.3 engine. The flak came through to hit my right lower leg. I was on the Nordon. In a few seconds I dropped and called for the medical kit. In a second later, aft Gunner looked into the bomb rack aft and called a bomb was hit forward and hanging. I grabbed the intercom and said to leave it alone and I would go to the trouble. As I opened the bomb doors I picked up a .50 caliber round and went onto the bomb rack. Enclosed herewith is a copy of my the award to of the Silver Star and Purple Heart.
After the bomb dropped, I went up to patch my leg. Our aircraft went to Naples and spent the night there fixing the fuel problem. I went into the local hospital to get my leg fixed.
The following day. we took-off for our base.
Several weeks later. as I was standing at the bar. a courier pilot came in and from one end, he slid the Silver Star down to me. I still have it. And my Purple Heart is with me too.
Again. enclosed herewith is my B-24 bomber crew. All but two are still alive as I can locate.

376 ARCHIVES

At the 2017 reunion, the board approved the donation of our archives to the Briscoe Center for American History, located on the University of Texas - Austin campus.

Also, the board approved a $5,000 donation to add to Ed Clendenin's $20,000 donation in the memory of his father. Together, these funds begin an endowment for the preservation of the 376 archives.

Donate directly to the 376 Endowment

To read about other endowment donation options, click here.

2018 REUNION

DATES :  TBD

CITY : Dayton, Ohio

HOTEL: TBD

2018 reunion details


previous reunions

For Sale

The Other Doolittle Raid


The Liberandos


Three Crawford Brothers


Liberando: Reflections of a Reluctant Warrior


376th Bomb Group Mission History


The Last Liberator


Full Circle


Shadows of Wings


Ten Men, A "Flying Boxcar," and A War


I Survived Ploesti


A Measure of Life


Shot Down In Yugoslavia


Stories of My Life


Attack


Born in Battle