19th Bombardment Group Stories - Introduction 2

19th Bombardment Group Stories - Introduction 2

This second page of introduction originally accompanied a series of paintings by Pfc Ernest Berkowitz, who painted a series of pictures of the aircraft and men of the 19th Bombardment Group while they were all based at Dyersburg Air Force Base, Tennessee, after their exploits in the Far East. Although we don't have the paintings, the stories themselves are still of great interest. Berkowitz later went on to become succesful artist under the name Ernest Berke, mainly producing paintings of Native Americans and their horses.

Many thanks to Dennis Gagomiros for sending us these documents.

These men waited long heartbreaking weeks for more of the new Model "E" Fortresses they had been promised. At length, a few more made the long hard trip without mishap, and it was then that the Japs felt the weight, accuracy and punch of the new "B-17E Flying Fortresses." Many a Zero peeled off in flames after attempting to attack a Model E from the rear - they never suspected that this "17" had a stinger in its sleek tail. It is told that one day a cautious Jap pilot hovered at a distance from the fight and watched four of his henchmen go down in flames after being caught by the withering blasts of fire from the tailgunners machine guns. It is further told that the cautious Jap returned to his base with a story of the new "Fabulous Fortress" whose steel tenticles spat death from every direction.

Yes, almost everyone has heard of the 19th, but there are many who wonder where these men are now, and what they are doing. They have been replaced with new, fresh crews who have received their combat training under the watchful and experienced eyes of these veterans. This very day, they are teaching our vastly expanding Air Forces crews of Fortresses and Liberator bombers all of the tricks of the trade, at every place where these birds of manmade ingenuity come home to roost.

Their heroism will live forever in the hearts of man, and especially the men who are the crews of B-17's, to all men who live and fly the "Queens of the Sky."

On the following pages are portraits of some of these men, and their record of exploit during those never-to-be-forgotten days. Each has his individual story and each his own unique personality.

How to cite this article: Rickard, J (26 February 2021), 19th Bombardment Group Stories - Introduction 2 , http://www.historyofwar.org/Pictures/pictures_19th_BG_story_02.html

Help - F.A.Q. - Contact Us - Search - Recent - About Us -  Subscribe in a reader - Join our Google Group - Cookies