Air and Maintenance Sections
Top row: Tec. 5 Chester O. Bowman, Pfc. Louie H. Peeler, Pfc. Elmer L. Windham, Tec. 5 Robert Goglin, Tec. 5 John F. Einsfeld.
Bottom row: Tec. 3 Jack W. Rubey, Tec. 5 Edwarde J. Reidt, Jr., Tec. 4 Henry W. Belliveau, Tec. 4 Willis H. Riggensbach, Pvt. Matthwe Kaczowka.
The Pillsbury Bomber Crew has always been a colorful part of the Division Artillery. Through the fullfillment of their normal duties under trying, adverse, and at times almost impossible conditions, and the execution of a few airobatics of their own design, they have earned for themselves a variety of nick names that have expressed some admiration for and amusement at them. Among some of the fancier monickers have been "Joe's Boys," with Major Joseph H. Peck being the god-father to that one, and "The Polish Air Force," the parentage of which is not known.
One of the most hectic misadventures experienced by the unit was an overflooded field in the Moselle Valley near Pont a Mousson. Quick thinking, quicker action, and a constant alertness on the part of the crew saved the "Birds" from drowning.
Another colorful episode was the precision bombing done by our pilots. They found that a grenade instead of a bomb when hurled down on a machinegun nest was an effective neutralizing agent.
Of course, the section would not be complete without mentioning the men of the section upon whom the responsibility of servicing and supplying these planes rested. Supply Sgt. and Chief of Section T/Sgt. Sidney T. Shores had but one weakness and that lay in England. Tec. 3 Ernest F. Koerperich rated highly with all who knew him because of his ability and never erring fairness. When it came time to demolish things we always called upon the one man demolition squad, Tec. 5 Chet O. Bowman. When it came to demolishing things, Pfc. Peeler was no mean hand with the flapjacks. Lacing all the experiences and gripes together was the ready, facile wit of Pfc. Elmer Windham.
Flat tires, smashed fenders, ripped tops, damaged gas tanks, mangled ĄPeeps," worn out tracks, etc., ad infinitum make up the list of feats performed by the maintenance section. They were the men who insured the mobility of Headquarters Battery. In the many races upon which the unit embarked not a vehicle was left behind because of mechanical difficulties or failures.
After action battle loss reports speak well of this crew. They could always make negative reports to vehicles lost because of mechanical failures.
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Last updated: March 2, 2002