William Hautz was the co-pilot of the USAAF B17 bomber “Flying Fortress” named “Jean” which had a 10-member crew. 4 officers and 6 sergeant gunners. Their mission was to the Dornier Aircraft factory. Their aircraft received a direct hit to the cockpit and disintegrated over the target Operpffenhofen near Munich on April 24, 1944. Eight crew members perished when the ship exploded. The radio gunner and left waist gunner survived by parachuting out. The left waist gunner reported that two crew members were getting in their chutes and getting in position to bail as he parachuted out of the aircraft. That was the last he seen them.
Aircraft received a direct hit to the cockpit and the aircraft disintegrated and crashed at 1400 hours 500 miles southwest of Leutstellen near Starnbe. Two crew members (Gray & Gustafson) parachuted out. Two crew members (Pastorella & Olstad) were preparing to bail out but did not get out in time. The eight perished crew members were originally buried in the POW cemetery on May 3,1944 in Furstenfeldbruck.
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