Introduction

Flight Engineer Link Ellingson was part of first attack on Berlin

Berlin First B-17 Crew

Flight Engineer Link Ellingson was part of first attack on Berlin

Harold "Link" Ellingson
Harold “Link” Ellingson, from Spring Grove, Minnesota.

An article pulled from the Spring Grove Herald recalls Harold “Link” Ellingson’s experiences in the 8th Air Force. Harold was the uncle of one of our parents.

The flag that our Legion Post 249 is flying this month is the flag of Staff Sgt. Harold “Link” Ellingson of Spring Grove who served in the U.S. 8th Air Force stationed in England in World War II.

He flew 50 missions over France and Germany. One of his harrowing experiences during a mission was belly landing his bullet riddled B-24 Liberator bomber because the pilot had been killed and the co-pilot was badly wounded.

Link was not a pilot; he served as the flight engineer and gunner, but managed to get the plane down safely. On another mission, their fuel lines were severed by flack, so they had to ditch the plane in the English Channel and were picked up by an English boat.

A picture that Link is in of a heavy bomber crew is in the centerfold of the March 27, 1944 issue of Life Magazine, as their group was part of the first American daylight attack on Berlin. We proudly fly his flag for the month of December.

Harold survived the war and had 4 children! He was a Mobile gas hauler.

Berlin First article in Life Magazine

More on the B-17 pictured in the article of Life Magazine.

“Berlin First”  B-17-G Flying Fortress, aircraft model: 42-32002, Squadron: 335 X.

The airplane was shot down by a fighter near Quakenbrück with motors #3 & #4 damaged, motor #2 in fire, crew bailed. Crash Location near Barnsdorf.

 

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