The Boeing B-17 “Flying Fortress” is a four-engine heavy bomber aircraft developed in the 1930s for the United States Army Air Corps (USAAC). The B-17 was primarily employed in the daylight precision strategic bombing campaign of World War II against German industrial and military targets. From its introduction in 1938, the B-17 Flying Fortress evolved through numerous design advances.
The B-17F “Memphis Belle” (serial number 41-24485, nicknamed in honor of the pilot's wartime sweetheart) became the most famous Flying Fortress, because it was the first heavy bomber in WW2 to complete 25 combat missions over Europe without any loss to its crew (flying from November 7, 1942 to May 17, 1943). At the time, 80% of the bombers were shot down during the first three months of America's combat flights over Europe, so command generals set 25 missions as an incentive for air crews to go home.
The Memphis Belle participated in some of the most risky raids of the war, when the Luftwaffe still had a commanding fighter superiority and the defenses of the Nazi regime were strong. It was bullet-ridden, flak-battered, and on five separate occasions had one of her engines shot out.
During its 25 missions, it flew 148 hours, 50 minutes, and covered more than 20,000 combat miles. Its gunners were credited with destroying eight enemy fighters, with five others probably shot down, at least a dozen more damaged, and more than 60 tons of bombs dropped over France, Germany, and Belgium. Her targets included supply depots, railway yards, aircraft plants, and an assortment of military bases. Its 25th and last mission was a bombing raid against Lorient, a German submarine base.
The 26th mission was to return to the States during the summer of 1943 on a public relations tour to thank the American public for supporting the war effort. After that, the Belle flew stateside in the training command. The Memphis Belle inspired the making of two movies: a 1944 documentary film, “Memphis Belle: A Story of a Flying Fortress,” and a 1990 Hollywood feature film, “Memphis Belle.” The aircraft is currently undergoing extensive restoration at the National Museum of the United States Air Force.
Bonus contents in this pack include one double-sided industrial complex card and special rules.
Requires: WW2 Rules and Accessories Pack to play
Contents: One 1/200 scale model, gaming base, altitude stands, airplane cards, manoeuvre cards, Industrial Complex card and rules, counters, rules