Aircraft mechanics of the USAAF 398th Bombardment Group change a B-17 engine, Nuthampstead, England, United Kingdom, May 1944 to Apr 1945

Caption     Aircraft mechanics of the USAAF 398th Bombardment Group change a B-17 engine, Nuthampstead, England, United Kingdom, May 1944 to Apr 1945 ww2dbase
Photographer    Unknown
Source    ww2dbaseUnited States Air Force
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B-17 Flying Fortress   Main article  Photos  Maps  
Added By C. Peter Chen

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
16 Jun 2010 08:00:46 PM

Keep'em Fly'in

Ground crews kept the aircraft combat ready
the flight mechanics,were enlisted personnel
After basic military training,they were sent
to technical schools, and received training
on engine maintenance,hydraulics,instruments
electrical systems. Specialists needed to
keep the aircraft in the air. Radio repair,
armours to maintain the weapons, bombsight
technicians, and other specialists they were
all part of a team, and its mission, was to keep the aircraft ready for any maximum
effort. Anything the bomber crews needed to keep their aircraft combat ready, was passed on to the ground crew.
The crew chief was the man in charge of the
aircraft, and he made sure it was ready to
fly. Every man was a specialist and those
men did what ever it took to keep their ship
part of the squadron or group.
Sometimes a homemade fix,would solve a small
problem, flack and bullet holes were repaired with metal skin patch, and a few
rivets while others took more time to repair,but the ground crews did a impossible job, they were the unsung heroes of
World War II.
By 1944 the USAAF had 2,400,000 personnal,
80,000 aircraft and over 700 bases world wide
Other Nations had seperate Air Forces, the
British had the RAF,Germany had the Luftwaffe
The USAAF, would remain part of the US Army
until it became independent of the Army, and
became the United States Air Force on
September 17, 1947.

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