Saturday, April 18, 2009

Correcting a Mistake about the Memphis Belle

Every so often, I get a letter or email from a reader who points out a mistake in my books. However, the letter received yesterday marks perhaps my most egregious mistake in the entire book---crediting the Memphis Belle, the most famous B-17 of World War Two to the incorrect bomb group. The letter notifying me of this came from Lt. Col. Donald W. Alman of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, who flew with the 91st Bomb Group as a B-17 navigator for 35 missions in 1944 out of Bassingbourn, England.

Lt. Col. Almon writes, in part, "Morgan and his crew were members of the 91st Bomb Group (H) at Bassingbourn. The 324th Squadron at Bassingbourn was included in the 91st Bomb Group (H)--- never being connected in any way whatsoever with the 92nd Bomb Group. When I was at Bassingbourn, the crews were kept aware of how the Memphis Belle's achievements would long be a source of pride for the 91st."

Somehow, and I do not know how, I credited the 92nd Bomb Group with the Memphis Belle. Even though the book was read in manuscript by editors, and even though Col. Robert Morgan, pilot of the Memphis Belle, read over the chapter, this egregious error was missed.

I will make the attempt to have future editions of Untold Valor either corrected in the book itself or have an errata slip inserted in the front, and I offer my sincere apologies to Lt. Col. Almon and all the brave members of the 91st who were slighted by my error. Thank you, Lt. Col. Almon, for stepping up and going to bat for your bomb group to correct this error.

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