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USAAF B-24 bomber 42-50668 on Black Hameldon, Lancashire
Looking West toward Burnley. Photo above taken April 2009.
1st Lt. Charles A. Goeking, Pilot, Injured
1st Lt. George H. Smith Jr, Co-pilot, Died of Injuries
T. Sgt. Howard E. Denham Jr, Engineer, Died of Injuries
T. Sgt. Leslie E. Johnson, Radio operator, Injured
1st Lt. Frank E. Bock, Navigator, Died of Injuries
Sgt. Robert E. Hyett, Passenger, Injured
2nd Lt. Joseph B. Walker III, Passenger, Killed
F/O David A. Robinson Jr, Passenger, Killed
F/O Gerald Procita, Passenger, Killed
2nd Lt. Elmer R. Brater, Passenger, Killed
Sgt. Randolph R. Mohlenrich Jr, Passenger, Killed
USAAF B-24 bomber 42-50668 of the 854th Bomb Squadron was flying from the American airbase at North Pickenham in Norfolk to Burtonwood airbase near Warrington on 19 February 1945.
Pilot 1st Lt. Charles A. Goeking had descended through low cloud trying to get a visual fix. Seeing a town below, which he thought was Liverpool, Lt Goeking headed East towards where he expected Burtonwood to be. Tragically the aircraft was 40 miles North East of Liverpool and the town he saw was in fact Burnley. Heading East took the B-24 towards the moors of the South Pennines.
Lt Goeking became aware of the dark shadow of Black Hameldon ahead and tried to lift the aircraft over but without success; the B-24 struck the moor, tail first and under full power. The tail section broke away, killing the crew members within. The front section of the aircraft continued some 100 yards up the slope, catching fire as it broke up.
5 of the crew died at the scene, 3 more died within days of wounds.
Charles A Goeking visited the site with his wife in 1972. He died in 1989.
Below; photos from visit March 2016
Please scroll down through the comments section for more photos provided by Alan when he visited the crash site in September 2020 and also a bit further are some photos taken by Kate Toye in April 2021.