USAAF Flying Fortress 44-8683 “Dear Mom”, Great Whernside
On 17 May 1945, B-17 ‘Dear Mom’ was on a long navigation exercise, flying a triangular circuit from Knettishall in Suffolk, north to Newcastle, then to south west to Land’s End and finally east and home.
When the weather deteriorated over the Pennines, pilot First Lieutenant Cole may have turned back towards Newcastle but the B-17 struck the flank of Great Whernside in the Yorkshire Dales. All on board died in the crash. They were;
1st Lt Harry Cole, pilot
2nd Lt Vince Fergusson, co-pilot
2nd Lt James Young, navigator
Sgt Hoyt Dixon, engineer
S/Sgt Dario Battista, radio operator