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John C. Ebert Crew
720th Squadron



Ebert Crew

Rear (L - R):
Lt. John C. Ebert - Pilot
Lt. Louis W. Lessard - Bombardier
Lt. Victor K. Todd- Co-Pilot
Lt. Julius Nathanson - Navigator

Front (L - R):
Sgt. Horace J. Holland - Ball Turret Gunner
Sgt. Eugene E. Avery - Radio Operator/Left Waist Gunner
Sgt. William Crawford Dudley - Tail Gunner
T/Sgt. Charles B. Black - Engineer/Top Turret Gunner
Sgt. Neil F. Coulter - Nose Gunner
Sgt. John A. Decamillo - Right Waist Gunner

Ebert Crew

Rear (L - R):
Lt. John C. Ebert - Pilot
Lt. Victor K. Todd- Co-Pilot
Capt. Grant D. Caywood - C.O. 720th Squadron
Lt. Paul Radue - Asst. Operations Officer, 720th Squadron
Lt. Julius Nathanson - Navigator

Front (L - R):
Sgt. William Crawford Dudley - Tail Gunner
Sgt. Horace J. Holland - Ball Turret Gunner
Sgt. Charles B. Black - Engineer/Top Turret Gunner
Sgt. Neil F. Coulter - Nose Gunner
Sgt. John A. Decamillo - Right Waist Gunner

This picture was taken just after the crew received the Air Medal

Ebert Crew

Rear (L - R):
Lt. Julius Nathanson - Navigator
Lt. Victor K. Todd- Co-Pilot
Lt. Paul Radue - Pilot
Lt. Merdy E. Cherry - Bombardier

Front (L - R):
Sgt. John A. Decamillo - Right Waist Gunner
Sgt. Horace J. Holland - Ball Turret Gunner
Sgt. Neil F. Coulter - Nose Gunner
Sgt. William Crawford Dudley - Tail Gunner
Sgt. Charles B. Black - Engineer/Top Turret Gunner
Jack R. Noe - Radio Operator - replaced Avery after he was shot down over Orbatello

This picture was taken just before their mission to Trieste, Italy on 10th June 1944




The following is a short history of Lt. Ebert's crew and the B-24 Destiny Deb, which was the plane we picked up at Hamilton Field, California.
When we named the B-24 Destiny Deb everbody chipped in and paid for having the picture of the Deb riding on a bomb painted on the side.
The crew of Lt. Ebert was made up in Salt Lake City on about November 15, 1943.
The lower ball turret gunner on the original crew was Sgt. Cummings of Baker's Field, California.
We were sent to Pocatello, Idaho to begin training and get acquainted with our positions on the plane and flying together as a crew.
From there, due to bad weather we were sent to Muroc, California to complete our phase training. About February25, 1944 Sgt. Horace Holland replaced Sgt. Cummings as lower ball turret gunner.
We completed our trianing in the middle of March 1944 and went to Hamilton field California where we picked up the new B-24 which we named Destiny Deb and flew to West Palm Beach, Florida.
On March 26, 1944 we took off from there to fly to Manduria, Itlay to become a part of the 450th Bomb Group of the 15th Aif Force and the 720th Bomb Squadron.
We arrived at the Air Base at Manduria on April 2, 1944. I flew my first credited mission on April 12, 1944 to Weiner-Neustadt, Austria.
I believe we had flown four sorties in the Deb and the ship known as the Destiny Deb was shotdown in the Ploesti area on April 24, 1944 while Lt. Varvil's crew was flying her that day.
I think most of them bailed out safely and became Prisoners of War. Of the original crew known as Lt. Ebert's crew, Lt. Ebert and Lt. Lessard were grounded before completing their fifty missions.
Sgt. Avery was shotdown on April 28th on a raid to Orbetello, Italy when we were flying as a split up crew. I flew left waist on this mission and Decamillo flew right waist.
We were in the lead ship of our group piloted by Col. Mills. Todd, Nathanson, Black, Dudley, Decamillo, and Coulter of the original crew all completed their fifty missions.
Sgt. Holland also completed these missions with us.

Pictures and Information courtesy of William C. Dudley, 720th Squadron


Avery Signature

Nazi Flag displayed at the 8th AAF Museum - Shows Eugene Avery's signature.

Ebert Crew

Coulter, Dudley, DeCamillo & Avery

Ebert Crew

Todd, Rear Center with Baseball Cap on

Ebert Crew

Ebert, Lessard, Nathanson & Todd

Ebert Crew

Todd, Lessard, Ebert & Morlley

Ebert Crew

Officers Quarters

Pictures courtesy of Judith Lessard






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