My father S/Sgt Floyd Byfield was a tail gunner on the Big Noise from Kentucky. On 4 May 1944 one hour after dropping ordinance on Ploesti Marshalling Yards over Bor Yugoslavia, his ship #26 was hit by German flak. After seeing his crew bailing out, he decided no one was flying the Big Noise. The flak destroyed commo from pilot to crew, he received no orders to bail, so he went out the escape door and parachuted to the ground. As he was gathering his chute, two fellows in German uniforms approached him and he slowly raised his hands in surrender, but the two men told him that he was not captured and that they were with the Chetnik underground forces. He and 8 others of his crew were collected and protected until operation Halyard rescued the downed airmen.
My dad was originally assigned to Lt. McFain’s crew on the ship (Peepy). But on his 5th mission he substituted for the tail gunner on the Big Noise. The pilot on the Big Noise was Lt. Harper. His MACR 4661 gives interesting details of the action. I could go on and on but this is a brief synopsis of his story. Thanks so much from all of you for maintaining the legacy of these brave airmen.
Thank you sincerely, Ted Byfield. If anyone has more info regarding my dad or his crew members, here is my email address: firstname.lastname@example.org