Lester F. Schrenk                    Crew photo from Lester Schrenk 08 DEC 2014         Updated: 12 NOV 2018                                        

Airman: o888186.htm Surname: Schrenk Init: L F Rank: Sgt Service: USAAF Sqdn: 327

P_link: p271.htm Plane: B17 42-31377 Operation: Attack DK Crash_site: Near Hørdum

Crash_d: d220244 Buried_d: o888 C_link: o888.htm At_Next: POW

B17 42-31377 med navnet Pot O´Gold var 22. februar 1944 sammen med en del andre fly på bombetogt til Aalborg West Lufthavn (her) som afledningsmanøvre
for et større bombetogt mod Ruhr-området i Tyskland. Dårlig sigtbarhed forhindrede flyene i at bombe lufthavnen. På tilbagevejen blev dette fly beskadiget af tyske
Me109 og Ju88 over Nordsøen, så Pilot 2nd Lt W.R. Lavies valgte at vende om for at nå Thy (omkring her). Alle 10 flyvere sprang ud med faldskærm. Flyet styrtede
ned her ca. 500 m nordvest for Koustrup Møllegård, Damsgårdvej 3, Sønderhå, 7752 Thisted (Kilde: Niels Møller).
En vinge styrtede ned ved gården omkring her. Se dele af flyet B17 42-31377 "Pot O' Gold" på gårdspladsen. 9 af flyverne landede på jorden. Se ID+Lester Schrenk.
Se Lester Schrenk - Den dag jeg blev taget til fange og Beretning fra Herluf Munkholm efter Kom ned med faldskærm i Thy i dag for 70 år siden 2014.

Se Schrenk og H.H. Müller i uniform og Schrenk og H.H. Müller i 2012 og TV indslag 25 APR 2012 2 min. 47 sek. TV/MIDT-VEST: Dødsfjender bliver venner
(klik på ikonet for AFSPIL og til højre på linjen på ikonet for FULD SKÆRM) Se tekst. Se også FILM fra 27. marts 2013 28 min.30 sek. TV/MIDT-VEST: Dødsfjender.

Pilot 2nd Lt W.R. Lavies landede på tynd is i Ove Sø omkring her. Hvis tyskerne ikke havde forhindret danskere i en hurtig redning, kunne han måske have overlevet.
Nu blev den døde flyver trukket op i en lille båd og bragt til tyskernes hovedkvarter på den skole, der nu er Svankjær Efterskole (her). Sgt L.F. Schrenk blev bedt
om at identificere ham. (Kilde: På sporet af Pot o´Gold (film, 23 minutter) om Schrenk, 84 år i 2008, der igen besøgte Thy, sendt af
TV/MIDT-VEST 4. januar 2009.)

Den film blev 12. februar 2010 fulgt op af Bunkerne - Dødens Forposter (film, 36 min.) med mere om nedskydning af B17 42-31377 med Lester Schrenk og
LAN EE138, se Stadil - Flyverminde. Der er sekvenser med Lester Schrenk og Jessie Bowler, enke efter E.A.C. Thirkettle fra LAN EE138. Hendes historie blev
også fortalt i
Det lange farvel The long Farewell (film, 21 min.)

Næste dag blev de 9 overlevende flyvere sendt med tog til Tyskland. Alle overlevede krigen, men i maj 2008 var kun en enkelt flyver og Lester Schrenk tilbage.

Schrenk fra Minnesota, Byers fra Arkansas, Harman fra Ohio, Guastella fra Florida, Walcott fra Pennsylvania og Swindler fra Colorado blev ført til Tyske krigsfangelejre.
Fra Dulag Luft blev sergenterne ført til
Stalag Luft 6 Heydekrug. De blev adskilt under den hårde transport til Stalag Luft 4 Gross-Tychow. "Swindler og Walcott var i en anden lejr men stadig i Stalag Luft 4, og vi så dem ikke igen fra da af. Vi mødtes dog igen i England." (Lester Schrenk) I februar 1945 kom de på en march på 86 dage
og omkring 1100 km - se
kort -  gennem det nordlige Polen og Tyskland for at undgå Allierede styrker. De blev befriet af den engelske 8 Armé den 3. maj 1945.

Sergeant Lester Schrenk besøgte Thy i maj 2008. Thisted Dagblad bragte 31. maj 2008 artikler om Lester Schrenk (pdf 8.99 MB) af Poul Erik Tarp.
Han holdt et kort foredragSønderhå-Hørsted Friskole og besvarede spørgsmål. Han sendte den lange udgave af his speech in Denmark (pdf 2.19 MB).
Han skrev i december 2000 BALL TURRET om at være Ball Turret Gunner. Se fotos omkring Lester Schrenk. B-17 Ball Turret, Ammunition og Ball Turret Gunner.


I januar 2009 sendte Lester Schrenk mere til www.airmen.dk - meget mere end bare hans egen historie! Se THE SOUNDS AND SMELLS OF COMBAT
BEFORE FLYING AND DURING EACH MISSION * MY MOST DIFFICULT MISSION * MY POW EXPERIENCE * THE EVACUATION OF STALAG LUFT VI.
Også et udvalg af  POEMS BY LESTER SCHRENK. I februar 2009 sendte han kommentarer til patroner fra B-17 på Samsø. Se også ID + Lester Schrenk fra 2011.

Se Loss of Lives. Den 21. marts 2010 sendte Lester Schrenk denne video! (2 min.)
Se Foto af en B-17 + B-17 i airmen.dk
og maleri af Pot O' Gold. B-17 Flight 2013. 10 flyvere.

On 22 February 1944 together with a number of other planes B17 42-31377 "Pot O´Gold" was on a bombing raid to Aalborg West Airfield (here) as a diversion for
a greater bombing raid to the Ruhr area in Germany. Bad visibility prevented the planes from bombing the airfield. This plane was damaged on the return flight by
German Me109s and Ju88s over the North Sea, so Pilot 2nd Lt W.R. Lavies decided to return to reach Thy (about here). All 10 airmen bailed out. The plane crashed
here about 500 m northwest of Koustrup Møllegård, Damsgårdvej 3, Sønderhå, 7752 Thisted (Source: Niels Møller). A wing crashed at the farm about here.  
See parts from the plane B17 42-31377 "Pot O' Gold" in the yard. 9 of the airmen landed on the ground. See ID + Lester Schrenk.
See also The day of my capture and Account from Herluf Munkholm after Came down by parachute in Thy on this day 70 years ago 22 FEB 2014.
See
Schrenk and H.H. Müller in uniforms and Schrenk and H.H. Müller in 2012 and TV items 2 min. 47 sec.TV/MIDT-VEST: Mortal Enemies become friends (click on icons for PLAY and for FULL SCREEN. Print the speech) sent on 25 APR 2012 and FILM 27 MAR 2013 28 min. 30 sec. TV/MIDT-VEST: Mortal Enemies.
See How I met the German Pilot and the letter that started it all.
See also The day of my capture and Account from Herluf Munkholm after Came down by parachute in Thy on this day 70 years ago 22 FEB 2014.

Pilot 2nd Lt W.R. Lavies landed on thin ice in the lake Ove Sø about here. He might have survived, if the Germans had not prevented the Danes from a fast rescue.
Now the perished airman was taken up in a small boat and taken to the German HQ at the school, which is now Svankjær Efterskole (here). Sgt L.F. Schrenk
was asked to identify him. (Source: På sporet af Pot o´Gold On the Track of Pot o´Gold (film, 23 min.) about Lester Schrenk, 84 in 2008, who revisited Thy, sent
on 4 January 2009 on
TV/MIDT-VEST. In Danish, but with many sequences with Lester Schrenk.)

On 12 February 2010 that film was followed by Bunkerne - Dødens Forposter The Bunkers - Outposts of Death (film, 36 min.) with more about the shotdown of
B17 42-31377 Pot O'Gold with Lester Schrenk and
LAN EE138, see Stadil - Memorials. There are sequences with Lester Schrenk and Jessie Bowler, the widow
of E.A.C. Thirkettle from
LAN EE138. Her story was also told in Det lange farvel The long Farewell (film, 21 min.)

Next day the 9 surviving crew members were sent by train to Germany. All of them survived the war, but in May 2008 only a single airman and Lester Schrenk were left.

The enlisted men Schrenk from Minnesota, Byers from Arkansas, Harman from Ohio, Guastella from Florida, Walcott from Pennsylvania and Swindler from Colorado
were taken to
German POW-Camps. From Dulag Luft Oberursel they were taken to Stalag Luft 6 Heydekrug. They got separated during the Heydekrug Run to
Stalag Luft 4 Gross-Tychow. "Swindler and Walcott were in another compound, but still at Stalag Luft 4 and we did not see them from then on. We did meet again in England." (Lester Schrenk) In February 1945 a march of 86 days some 700 miles (see map) across northern Poland and northern Germany started to avoid capture by Allied forces. The group was liberated by the British Eighth Army on 3 May 1945.
(Source: MY POW EXPERIENCE and THE EVACUATION OF STALAG LUFT VI by Lester Schrenk)

Sergeant Lester Schrenk revisited Thy in May 2008. See articles about Lester Schrenk (pdf 8.99 MB). He sent his speech in Denmark (pdf 2.19 MB).
Actually he held a shorter version and opened for questions. In Dec. 2000 he wrote BALL TURRET. See also B-17 Ball Turret, Ammunition and Ball Turret Gunner.


In January 2009 Lester Schrenk sent more to www.airmen.dk  - much more than just his own story! See THE SOUNDS AND SMELLS OF COMBAT *
BEFORE FLYING AND DURING EACH MISSION * MY MOST DIFFICULT MISSION * MY POW EXPERIENCE * THE EVACUATION OF STALAG LUFT VI.
Also a selection of the POEMS BY LESTER SCHRENK. In 2009 he sent comments on Ammo from B-17 found on Samsø. See also ID+Lester Schrenk from 2011.

See Loss of Lives. On 21 March 2010 Lester Schrenk sent this video! (2 min.)

8 Air Force, 1 BD, 40 CBW, 92 BG, 327 BSRAF Podington * 92nd USAAF-USAF Memorial Association with Missions 1944, see Losses 22 FEB 1944.
See Photo of  a B-17 + B-17s in airmen.dk and painting of Pot O' Gold *
Crew photo from Lester Schrenk 08 DEC 2014 * B-17 Flight 2013. 10 airmen.