Summary of My Uncle Bob’s Mission over Berlin, Germany on March 6, 1944
PERKINS, ROBERT FRANCIS
Technical Sergeant: Serial Number 42-31869
#401 Hell and High Water (B-17 Bomber)
Mission on 06-March-1944
Target, Berlin (Erkner)
GERMANY. Ball Bearing Plant (The 91st Bomb Group lost 6 B-17s 8th Air Force lost 69 Heavy Bombers on March 6, also called “Black Tuesday.”
Robert Francis Perkins was my Dad’s brother. (Francis Joseph Perkins, Jr)
The remaining fliers on “Hell and High Water,” bailed out of the aircraft safely and landed on German soil where they were held in a prison until the end of World War II. Top Turret Gunner and Assistant Flight Engineer Perkins and Tail Gunner EG Zahler were killed in action on the mission.
Sergeants Perkins and Zahler are buried in the American Cemetery in the Ardennes, Belgium along with thousands of their Mighty Eighth Air Force buddies.
Today, soldiers from the Army of Belgium take meticulous care of the Perkins and Zahler grave sites.
“Lest we forget…”
Sergeants Perkins and Zahler are resting with their buddies from the Mighty Eighth Air Force in Belgium
In Chapter 17 of the Last Flight of the Daisy Mae: A Story of Heroism and Hope at 17,000 Feet, I tell the story of two Dutch airmen, who were trained by my Dad, Francis J. Perkins Jr. after he was wounded on his last mission in the Central Pacific in 1943.
Dutch airmen were sent to gunnery school in Jackson and Fran Perkins took young Ferdi and Van Geehm under his wing.
I wish Ferdi and Van Geehm were still alive to have participated in Andre’s concert for the Allied Veterans.
Also, I hope you enjoy the short series of videos, by Andre Rieu. Andre hosting 3000 Veterans in the Netherlands to celebrate the liberation by allied forces in 1944. Little is told in America about the appreciation held by many who were not even born yet in the German occupied, Netherlands from 1940 to 1945.
Next Andre features an American who helped liberate his city from the Germans in 1944. Also you will view a collection of restored World War II vehicles that Andre’s son is working on. “Lest We Forget.”
Clip 3 by Andre Rieu includes a tribute of the Andrews Sisters Music that helped inspire Allied troops during World War II. Andre’ orchestra plays by Dad’s favorite, “The Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy of Company B.”
Andre meets with 99 year old Dame Vera Lynn at her home in England. Her music inspired so many Allied troops during World War II. Also is a tribute to Glenn Miller who lost his life during World War II while flying to entertain the troops.
Andre Rieu caps his dedication for the Allied Veterans with “Amazing Grace.”
This is a book about heroism and hope at 17,000 feet. You will find that the heroism and hope was paid forward by these 11 brave men representing thousands of descendants who have never read or heard the story. The book is based on a true story of a little publicized bombing mission over Wake Island on July 24, 1943 during the darkest hours of World War II.
Award winning Author, Bob Kern has caught the essence of what it was like for soldiers patrolling and manning positions along the Korean DMZ, fifty years ago during the “DMZ War.
Chapter Two features the story told by Daisy Mae author Wayne Perkins as well as many of the pictures featured in the video.
Wayne and his buddy Mel Law from California, stood on a hill with an Infrared Search Light becoming the night time eyes for several American troops below them along the DMZ fence line. You can see Wayne’s shadow if you look closely taking a picture of the sand bagged position he and Mel manned from September to December of 1967. In the picture you will see the area the searchlight jeep parked each night when Wayne and Mel stood watch, looking out at the dangerous Korean DMZ.
Bob Kern’s book We Were Soldiers Too: The DMZ Conflict, The Second Korean War has many stories told by the men who were there a half century ago.
“Mel and I stood on the last American position on the Korean DMZ.