Donald R. Anderson

Top Turret Gunner Flies 51 Combat Missions Over Europe

Staff Sergeant Donald R. Anderson, top turret gunner on a B-24 Liberator bomber, cleans up the turret after the successful bombing of the important Schleisheim airdrome installations at Munich, Germany.


15TH AAF IN ITALY--Staff Sergeant Donald R. Anderson, 23, whose wife, Mrs. Rose Anderson, and parents, Mr. and Mrs. Roy E. Johnson, reside at 1603 Emery Street, Eau Claire, WI, top turret gunner on the B-24 Liberator Buzz-Job, has recently flown on his 51st combat mission.

Since arriving overseas last April, Sergeant Anderson has participated in attacks on such important targets as enemy air fields, harbor installations, freight yards, oil refineries, and industrial centers in Germany, Italy, France, Romania, Hungary, and Austria.

"I sure was lucky on that last raid," said the blond gunner. "We went to Munich, Germany, and the flak is always rough there. I was hit six times by small pieces of the stuff; luckily, they were almost spent when they hit."

They almost had to walk home from that one. Their plane was full of flak holes, the hydraulic system was out of commission, and all the controls on the left side of the ship were out of order. But with a rare combination of skill, courage, and determination, the crew brought the plane back to a safe landing.

Sergeant Anderson is a graduate of Eau Claire High School, Class of 1939, where he starred in basketball. He enlisted in the Army in September 1942 and received his gunner's wings at Laredo, Texas in July 1943.


Sergeant Don Anderson is spending a 23-day furlough with his wife and mother at 1603 Emery Street. Sergeant Anderson recently returned from Italy, where he had completed 51 raids against the enemy. He did bay bombing in a heavy bombardment group,.

He entered the service on September 10, 1942, went overseas in March of this year, and was stationed in North Africa prior to going to Italy.

Sergeant Anderson will report to Lincoln, NE on September 30.