JEROME "JERRY" WILNER|
World War II
Memories and Biography
(Taken from a letter to Will Lundy)
May 9, 1996
Thank you very much for your letter of April 16, 1996. After 50 years, it is a pleasure to be able to correspond with someone with whom I can identify as a member of the old 44th. Up to now, the only tangible mementos I have had are the books 44th Liberators Over Europe, written and compiled by Capt. Ursel P. Harvell (group photo officer), and The Destruction of Germany as seen on the Trolley Mission, published in May 1945 by the Group Public Relations Office.
Early this year, when I returned a locator card to Art Hand, I requested information about my old crew. Subsequently, I have received from him and from you, names and addresses of men I do not remember - except for William M. Croft. Ned Anderson's name rings a small bell, but I remember nothing about him.
What I really wanted was information about my original crew with whom I trained in Charleston, South Carolina and flew the major portion of my 30 missions. I do not remember all of their names, but here are those I do recall:
William A. Dolan, Jr. Pilot MA 10/25/44
Charles N. Hall, Copilot GA 10/25/44
Bert E. Brumgartner, Radio ? ?
Joseph F. Placzkowski, Engineer, MN ? and, of course,
William M. Croft, PA, Ret. 201, 5/28/45.
I would welcome any information that can be obtained about my former buddies.
Now that I am a dues-paying member of the 44th BGVA, I look forward, with anticipation, to receiving the publications, letters, notices, etc. that will be coming my way.
Jerry Wilner (Bomb)
4 Nov 44 P-260 Gelsenkirchen Lili Marlene
6 Nov F-349 Surkrode Fock Magnet
8 or 9 Nov T-805 Mitz None
16 Nov L-553 Archer None
21 Nov M-755 Karburg None
26 Nov E-101 Bielfield Corky
29 Nov M-925 Attenbeken rail bridge None
4 Dec Y-509 Kolschausen (TO) Landed Munston Wana
11 Dec P-260 Aborted Lili
12 Dec V-427 Aschaffenburg Paritonicol Witch
18 Dec X-509 Recalled Wana
24 Dec X-711 Four targets-Big Bulge (Eller) None
31 Dec Z-001 Neowied RR Bridge T.S. Tessi)
Missions 1945 (Dolan)
14 Jan 45 J-504 Lady Geraldine
16 Jan X-711 Landed B-82. Low on gas. Dresden. None
31 Jan J-504 Recalled. Landed Yorkshire Lady G.
6 Feb Y-509 Madgeburg M/Y Sec. Waver
9 Feb T-021 Abort, San Antonio Rose
20? Feb Y-193 Murnburg (recalled) 3 Kisses for Luck
21 Feb Y-193 Murnburg Mission 3 Kisses for Luck
22 Feb J-504
25 Feb J-504 Aschaffenburg M/4
26 Feb J-504 Berlin
2 Mar J-504 Madgeburg
5 Mar J-504 Harburg
15 Mar J-504 Zossen Military Hq.
18 Mar J-504 Berlin
30 Mar J-504 Wilhelmshaven Docks
31 Mar T-021 Brunswick M/Y (See) San Antonio
10 Apr M-588 ParChim None
11 Apr J-504 Neumarket M/Y
16 Apr J-504 Landsheil M/Y
18 Apr J-504 Passau M/Y Sec.
May 27, 1996
Many, many thanks for helping me to put together the pieces of a puzzle that has lasted for 50 years. I was surprised and delighted to see so many items of information you were able to send to me.
When I last wrote to you and gave you the names of my crew I could remember, I did not include the name of the navigator because all I seemed to remember was "George." When reading the interrogation form for the December 24, 1944 mission, the navigator's name, William Zoellmer, rang a bell. However, the name George still stuck in my mind. Then I read the page copy from Webb Todd's book. One paragraph contained the names of the men who joined the squadron in October 1944 (which you highlighted). There, buried in the middle of the paragraph was the name George Medenwal - Bingo! I do not remember when, or why, he left our crew and was replaced by William Zoellmer, but he is the last piece of the puzzle.
(Will's remarks: C/T Bomb flew home with Garbade 4/18/45 as part of crew. Box 183 Laona, Wisconsin. I traced him 16 April 1990 - no answer).
Sorry - I do not have any records, orders, or papers of any kind that I could send to you for copying and tracing. Over the years, everything I had just disappeared (including uniforms). I suspect that someone did not want any of that stuff hanging around the house. All that is left are the two books I referred to in my last letter.
I did receive the spring 8-Ball Tails and am looking forward to subsequent issues.
Thanks again for all your efforts and I will keep in touch.