November 8, 1944 Boyertown Times, Boyertown, PA
US Air Force Captain Earl Fryer, fighter pilot, embarked on his 200th and final mission in his Mustang fighter plane, named "Spunktown". Flying out of an aerodrome in the south of the Netherlands, he was the commander of two squadrons, who operated above German occupied territory, carrying out precision bombing and shooting of enemy targets. The Spunktown carried 9 swastikas on its side, signifying 9 successful hits on the enemy. Captain Fryer was classified as missing in action, giving no location, and one year later he was automatically declared dead. The Spunktown was found by a young couple, Mr. and Mrs. Van Den Brink of Wagningen, as they were evacuated in Ede, at Christmas 1944. The plane was in pieces and beside the cockpit was a grave with a wooden cross. In the surroundings the Van Den Brinks found papers with further information. Sometime later, via the War Department in Washington, they contacted Captain Fryer's mother and sister, Mrs. Catherine Yoder. After the liberation, Captain Fryer was returned to America and buried at the Union Cemetery in Engelsville, close to his loved ones.
P-51D CG-Z 44-13804 "Spunktown"
Mr. Robert M. Littlefield from the author's book Double Nickel - Double Trouble
ASN - 0-805025
Born in Boyertown 'Spunktown', Pennsylvania, 30 December 1916.
17 May 1944 - Joined the 38th Fighter Squadron
12 July 1944 - Promoted from 2nd Lieutenant to 1st Lieutenant
05 September 1944 - Appointed Assistant Operations Officer
27 September 1944 - Promoted from 1st Lieutenant to Captain
MACR No. 10440
2/Lt. Huey R. Coward reported: "On 8 November 1944, I was flying Captain Fryer's wing at the time he was hit. We went down through the clouds to strafe a train in the area between Osnabruck and Hannover at approximately 1150 hours. When we broke away from the train Capt. Fryer's airplane was trailing a long plume of what appeared to be coolant. In about 2 minutes this stopped and Capt. Fryer said he was setting course for 270 degrees and heading home. I then saw another train off to our left about 2 miles and requested permission to go strafe it. Capt. Fryer said to go ahead and take Lt. Sill with me. We destroyed the locomotive and tried to find Capt. Fryer and Lt. Holleman, but could not do so. We the set course of 270 degrees and started out ourselves. At about 1220 or 1225 we heard Capt. Fryer call and say he was leaving the plane and to tell his wife he was all right. I believe he got to Holland before he bailed out."
Capt. Fryer made an unsuccessful crash landing near Renkum, Holland and was buried next to his plane in his parachute by the Germans
Special thanks to Betty Burdan for suggesting this memorial as one of her most sentimental Boyertown heroes.
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