Widstrom Crew

The following information was provided by Elaine Balsley, niece of William McQuoid

Front Row - Left to Right:
Radio Operator Rudolph Palumbo; Bomb. Al Halpern; Pilot Roy "Whitey" Widstrom.

Back Row -
Tail Gunner, William "Mac" McQuoid; Engineer, Roy "Willie" Williams; Ball Gunner, Bob "Junior" Johnston; Right Waist Gunner, Clarence "P.P." Brown; Left Waist Gunner, Bernard "Red" McDonald; Co-Pilot, Joe “Murph” Woolsey.

Top: Rudolph Palumbo, Clarence Brown, Bernard McDonald

Bottom: Bob Johnston, William McQuoid, Roy Williams

All of the crew was killed in 1945 over Germany on their last mission, except the belly gunner, Bobbie Johnson, who was captured by the Germans and put in a prison camp. It is believed that their plane's name was "Flak Happy".

Bob "Junior" Johnston was a POW. His father wrote to my mother....

August 30, 1945
(Postmarked Sep 8, 1945)

The National Cash Register Company
969 Broad Street
Newark 2, New Jersey

Dear Mrs. McQuoid,

I am taking the liberty of answering your letter addressed to my son Bobbie, who is at this time in a rest camp in Georgia.

There isn't very much to tell. When the plane left formation, after being hit, they headed for Switzerland, when about six miles from the border, they were hit by another shell, which broke the plan in two. Bobbie lost consciousness and when he came to, he was a German prisoner. He doesn't recall opening the parachute--all he recalls was the explosion.

Bill was all right until the second shell hit the plane and he was fighting at his post until the second hit. Bobbie said that you should be very proud of him. No one from the plane was saved outside of Bobbie.

If there is anything further you want to know, please write. If possible, we will be glad to answer any of your questions.

Very sincerely,

A. A. Johnston