HARPER F. ZOLLER|
World War II
Memories and Biography
(Taken from a letter BY Robert Zoller (nephew to Harper) to Will Lundy)
4060 Hawthorne Cir
Longmont, CO 80503
26 April 2000
It's been a long time since I last wrote you years ago about my Uncle Buster (Harper F. Zoller) who flew with the 44th BG-66 Squad. You supplied me with a lot of information, etc. and I also have copies of several of your books which you have done a great job on!! I appreciate all the fine work in preserving all this information the 44th Bomb Group. Without your hard work and interest this information would be lost.
I have enclosed a little article about my Uncle Buster, which I put in the Yankee Air Museum newsletter last May 1999 (at Willow Run Airport in Michigan), including several pictures, which I have scanned.
My Uncle Buster was a member of the "Lady Luck," No. 41-23778 crew. The first crew flew another aircraft (because of some mechanical problems) on the morning of the Ploesti mission of 1 August 1943. They were all lost over the target in "Scrappy II," and that left "Lady Luck" without a crew and is how my Uncle's crew received this plane. My Uncle's crew went down two weeks later in Foggia mission of August 16th in which all but one was lost.
There is one question about my Uncle Buster that I was hoping that you might be able to help me answer and I don't know whom else to ask. All crew listings I have ever seen only give gunner positions as only "Gunner." Unfortunately, the only survivor of "Lady Luck," No. 41-23778 died a number of years ago and he would have known. I do keep in contact with his wife often, but she did not remember hearing anything about all the positions on the aircraft. I would appreciate if you have any information that would suggest where each gunner was positioned, especially my Uncle Buster. In talking to my father, he could not really remember, but thought he might have been a tail gunner or waist gunner. In talking to one of my Uncle's best friends a few weeks ago, he also thought he might have been a tail gunner but both were really not sure. I sure would appreciate if you know of any crew listings of No. 41-23778 that might give gunner positions or if you might know where I might write to find out. Thanks in advance for any help that you might be able to give me.
Also, have you ever heard of Sgt. Pitts? He was a mechanic on my Uncle's crew. His picture is in one of the photos I have enclosed that was sent to me by Walter Patrick. I have been very fortunate and lucky to have received letters right out of the blue from previous crew members of Lady Luck and crew members of other planes flying even alongside of my Uncle's plane during the Foggia mission in which he was lost.
P.S. I have a nephew, Lt. James Price who is flying B-42s at Barkesdale AFB in Shreveport, LA. He also has the same interest as I do in my Uncle.