USAAF Nose Art Research Project


 

Gremlin Gus II
B-17F-110-BO 42-30595

388th Group, 560th Squadron

Appearance
Gremlin Gus II

The Gremlin Gus emblem was designed by staff at Walt Disney for an animated movie which was based on Dahl's story but did not come to fruition. Gremlin Gus was an old but wise character allegedly married to a Fifinella. He has more recently reappeared in Disney's "Epic Mickey" adventure game for Nintendo's gaming console.

The 388th carried two similarly named Forts on its inventory. "Gremlin Gus II" survived at least 55 combat missions before being declared "WW" war weary and transferred out to be converted for the Aphrodite Project. This conversion involved the removal of the cockpit roof to create an open top to facilitate the easy escape of the pilots once the aircraft (packed with high-explosive) had been switched to remote control and aimed at the target. It was never actually used and in June 1946 was finally scrapped.

It flew it's first mission on 13 August 1943 to Bonn and as many as eleven of its early sorties were then flown by Lt Ralph Jarrendt's crew. Later Robert Olin took it for a further ten missions and the crew dubbed it "Olin's 69ers" (although no image has yet come to light to show if this was ever actually painted in the aircraft.

"Gremlin Gus II" survived numerous attempts to bring it down by the flak crews below. Ralph Jarrendt sustained hits on three consecutive raids in September '43 and Olin's took severe damage on 13 December and was hit again on the 30th. Patched up, it was taken by Lt Sande's crew on 5th January but received another beating from flak and 20mm cannon fire which was serious enough to put the plane out of action for the rest of the month. The final recorded mission was flown on D-Day to strike the invasion beaches in France.

Known Mission List

Date Pilot

Target

Notes
13 Aug 1943CunninghamBonnR/E (NS) - oxygen (BT)
15 Aug 1943R T JarrendtMerville-Lille
16 Aug 1943D KarnezisPoix-Abbeville
17 Aug 1943R T JarrendtRegensburg
24 Aug 1943R T JarrendtBordeaux
27 Aug 1943D KarnezisWatten
31 Aug 1943R T JarrendtBrussels
2 Sep 1943E S MelvilleBrussels
6 Sep 1943R T JarrendtStuttgartCat A - flak + emg
7 Sep 1943R T JarrendtWattenCat A - flak
9 Sep 1943R T JarrendtParisCat A - flak + 20mm
26 Sep 1943O C IngebritsenRheims-ChampagneCat A - flak
2 Oct 1943R T JarrendtEmden
4 Oct 1943R T JarrendtFrankfurt
9 Oct 1943G K PentonGdyniaCat A - 20mm
14 Oct 1943A A ChaffinSchweinfurt
11 Nov 1943R T JarrendtMunster
13 Nov 1943R T JarrendtBremen
16 Nov 1943R J OlinRjukan(RW) gloves burned out
19 Nov 1943R J OlinGelsenkirchen
29 Nov 1943R J OlinBremen
5 Dec 1943R J OlinBordeaux
11 Dec 1943O C IngebritsenEmden
13 Dec 1943R J OlinKielCat AC - flak
22 Dec 1943J A WisehartMunster
24 Dec 1943R E Bohne Maison Ponthieu (B) V-siteCamera a/c
30 Dec 1943R J OlinLudwigshavenCat A - flak
4 Jan 1944R J OlinMunsterCat A - flak
5 Jan 1944J M SandeBordeauxCat A - flak + 20mm
4 Feb 1944R F ReedFrankfurtFlew with 96BG
6 Feb 1944R H FiskRomilly
8 Feb 1944R J OlinFrankfurt
20 Feb 1944R J OlinPosnanCat A - flak
21 Feb 1944R J OlinBrunswick
29 Feb 1944W E HulcherBrunswick
6 Mar 1944R H ThompsonBerlinCat A -flak
8 Mar 1944R H ThompsonBerlin
15 Mar 1944M T StuartBrunswick
16 Mar 1944R W OwensAugsburg
20 Mar 1944R L CampbellFrankfurt
22 Mar 1944R H ThompsonBerlin
23 Mar 1944R H ThompsonBrunswickR/E (NS)
29 Mar 1944G MontgomeryChateaudun
8 Apr 1944M P SoldatoAchmer
13 Apr 1944R H ThompsonAugsburg
22 Apr 1944J J GablerHamm
8 May 1944J J GablerLa Glacerie
12 May 1944G A LittleBruxR/E (NS) - gas leak
13 May 1944D G McArthurOsnabruckCat A Flak + shell cases
19 May 1944H E MapleBerlin
24 May 1944S HanuschakBerlin
25 May 1944H E MapleLiege
27 May 1944A M CoddingStrausbug
29 May 1944G MontgomeryLeipzig
6 Jun 1944R M Rowe French coast
25 Jun 1944 Transferred to Aphrodite project
24 Jun 1946 SALVAGED



 


© Ray Bowden 8 August 2020