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These are photos of the B-17 "Ritzy Blitz" after being shot down on 25 July 1943 near Kreuzkamp, Germany during a bombing mission to Hamburg and Warnemunde. There were actually two planes named "Ritzy Blitz" in the 91st BG and this is aircraft 42-29813.

Below is an account of the crash of "Ritzy Blitz" borrowed from luftfahrtspuren.de/ and translated from German to English.

This Sunday, the 8th flew One days USAAF attack on Rostock and Hamburg. The specific Warnemunde aircraft did not come, however, to their target and attacked it on their secondary target user. The B-17 of the 91st Bombardment Group flew west, a Hamburg and should then depart to the north or northwest. Already occurred by flak over Hamburg to first loss and had difficulty keeping the Combat proven boxes in the lineup. It should additionally be noted that at that time was the approach of the Americans still without fighter protection.

Shortly before 17:00 clock some Messerschmitt Bf 109 of JG 11 came closer to the platoons, with several bombers were shot down. On this day 9 U.S. aircraft were lost over Schleswig-holsteinischem area. One of them was "Ritzy Blitz" and belonged to the 91st BG. The machine had 48 missions since then and was 2/Lt. Marshall Pilert flown. Ritzy Blitz had damage to the rudder as the plane was shot down by a Bf 109 at low altitude in the space Heath. The crew could leave the bombers with their parachutes and was widely scattered in space Meldorfer down. Although the ball turret Gunner Sergeant Haynes had a parachute harness, however, no. He opened his umbrella even on the plane and jumped into the deep. The screen dissolved and Haynes opened unabated, and he was killed. Lt. Pilert came down to a meadow near Meldorf and was captured by some farmers and a soldier. In the first raid by the German soldiers Pilert said, "I have no weapons." Two elderly ladies were surprised that he spoke German and they marveled at him like an alien. He heard a "... and also so young "and was taken to the police station to Meldorf. Here are my some of his comrades had already been collected. Two hours later, we took the bus to Neumünster and the next day to the transit camp Dulag Luft to Oberursel. There all downed Allied pilots were subjected to a first interrogation.

Briefly return to the actual crash with Meldorf. Indeed, while hovering the Americans to their parachutes to earth Ritzy Blitz flew at low altitude still a good deal further and surprised some puzzled Wattwanderer who had indeed heard shooting the flak and the aircraft remain the same could discourage their Sunday stroll. An eyewitness from Meldorf who also provided the pictures, saw the plane approach hovering almost like landing. It struck just 200 meters meters away from the small group. The enthusiastic young people immediately began all risks forgetting to examine the Fortress. One of the motors life for a while, which apparently no one bothered in the assessment of the giant bird. Only add a geeilter customs officer made ​​the youthful folly to an end. It was referred to the place and the crash site has been cordoned off. Ritzy Blitz brought a few days later of a mountain command of the Luftwaffe at the airfield Schleswig and soon scrapped it.Neun der zehn Besatzungsmitglieder überlebten den Absturz und kamen ins STALAG LUFT III in Sagan (Oberschlesien), wo ein weiteres Besatzungsmitglied (Sgt Carrier) später verstarb. Marshall Pilert besuchte vor einigen Jahren Meldorf, um sich das Geschehene nochmals zu vergegenwärtigen.


Photos and info brought to our attention by Oliver Willa (from Germany) and luftfahrtspuren.de/