Record of Miss B Haven’s last mission:
The 401st furnished the three Squadrons making up the 94th Combat Wing “A” formation. The Lead and Low Squadrons bombed visually and the High Squadron by PFF, all with good results.
This day it was the turn of the B-17’s to face the attack of mass formations of Luftwaffe F-190 fighters. In one pass, 18 B-17’s were shot down, 11 of them aircraft of the 303rd Bomb Group at Molesworth.
Fortunately, the 401st did not encounter Luftwaffe fighters but met intense flak over the target. As a result, “Little Moe” (No. 42-31069), piloted by Lt. E. H. Daves, went down when its No. 2 engine was hit and burst into flames. All crew members were able to parachute safely and were captured upon landing.
Another 401st ship, “Miss B Havin” (No. 42-31863), piloted by Lt. Charles W. Utter, also had one engine knocked out and another operating at less than full power. Steadily losing altitude, Lt. Utter decided to land on a 1,500 foot fighter strip near Ghent, Belgium. He set the crippled B-17 down safely, coming to a stop six feet from a deep drainage ditch, and two days later the crew was flown back to Deenthrope in C-47’s.
|401st Bomb Group (H) — Aircraft Data|
|Manufacturer:||Boeing Aircraft Company, Seattle, Washington|
|Delivered by Manufacturer:||27 Dec 1943 at Denver|
|Nickname:||Miss ‘B’ Haven|
|Date Assigned to 401st BG:||6 Feb 1944|
|Date Lost:||28 Sep 1944|
|Nature of Loss:||Battle Damage|
Force-landed in Belgium. Scrapped.
|1)||16 Jul 1944||Munich (110)||1st Lt F.M. Taylor and crew|
|2)||20 Jul 1944||Leipzig (113)||1st Lt J.W. Kovach and crew|
|3)||24 Jul 1944||Saint-Lo (115)||1st Lt F.M. Taylor and crew|
|4)||25 Jul 1944||Saint-Lo (116)||1st Lt F.M. Taylor and crew|
|5)||31 Jul 1944||Munich (119)||1st Lt H.P. Silverstein and crew|
|6)||1 Aug 1944||Chartres (120)||1st Lt F.M. Taylor and crew|
|7)||3 Aug 1944||Strasbourg (121)||1st Lt F.M. Taylor and crew|
|8)||4 Aug 1944||Anklam (122)||1st Lt F.M. Taylor and crew|
|9)||5 Aug 1944||Nienburg (123)||1st Lt A. Harasym and crew|
|10)||6 Aug 1944||Genshagen (124)||1st Lt H.P. Lerwick and crew|
|11)||8 Aug 1944||Hautmensil (125)||1st Lt W.G. Rozzell and crew|
|12)||9 Aug 1944||Luxembourg (126)||2nd Lt L.R. Hayes and crew|
|13)||11 Aug 1944||Brest (127)||Capt J.J. Brown Jr. and crew|
|14)||13 Aug 1944||Elbeuf (128)||Capt J.F. Risher and crew|
|15)||14 Aug 1944||Haggenau (129)||Capt J.J. Brown Jr. and crew|
|16)||25 Aug 1944||Peenemunde (133)||Capt J.J. Brown Jr. and crew|
|17)||30 Aug 1944||Coubronne (137)||1st Lt H.C. Mays and crew|
|18)||3 Sep 1944||Ludwigshaven (138)||Capt C.W. Utter and crew|
|19)||9 Sep 1944||Mannheim (140)||Capt C.W. Utter and crew|
|20)||10 Sep 1944||Gaggenau (141)||2nd Lt F.E. Cook and crew|
|21)||13 Sep 1944||Merseburg (143)||1st Lt H.P. Silverstein and crew|
|22)||17 Sep 1944||Groesbeck (144)||Capt J.J. Brown Jr. and crew|
|23)||19 Sep 1944||Hamm (145)||Capt J.J. Brown Jr. and crew|
|24)||22 Sep 1944||Kassel (146)||2nd Lt L.R. Hayes and crew|
|25)||27 Sep 1944||Cologne (149)||2nd Lt P.F. Wittman and crew|
|26)||28 Sep 1944||Magdeburg (150)||Capt C.W. Utter and crew|
And as this is about my 8th website over the years since the Internet went critical mass, I’ve always named them the same, part for the fun of it, part to honor my friend, and part to honor Capt. Utter, his crew and those aviators before me that gave so much to so many, so we might enjoy our lives today.