A famous poem published in 1945, “The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner,” highlights the isolation and hazards of serving as the gunner. These gunsights computed for direction, and range to the target and were basically an early analog computer. Learn more at: www.MoveAmericaForward.org. The Ball Turret Gunner from B17 42-31377 Pot O´Gold crashed on 22 FEB 1944, tells in BALL TURRET about his job. The Model 13 was also the most compact turret in service, with the gunner crouched behind the sight, with his knees raised on each side, and possessing adequate fields of vision to his front and sides. I recall he was only 5'5" or 5'6". Now he is 87! At the height of World War II, Allied bombing missions often include hundreds of Boeing B-17 Flying Fortresses that strike deep behind enemy lines. I Proudly Support Our Troops And The War On Terror. When I died they washed me out of the turret with a hose. I was 5' 8" -- a little tall for the turret, but I accepted the assignment, which some deemed as a suicide position," my dad points out. The Sperry lower ball turret was used in the Boeing B-17 Flying fortress and the Consolidated B-24 Liberator. A diagram depicting how a gunner sits inside a Sperry A2 ball turret. A diagram depicting how a gunner sits inside a Sperry A2 ball turret. Most ball turret gunners were chosen because of their short height. The taller the gunner the harder it was for him to aim properly through the computing gunsight located above him and between his legs, which were propped up. The turrets were made under license by the Emerson Electric Co. in St. Louis as well as the Briggs Mfg Co. located in Detroit. Most ball turret gunners were chosen because of their short height. However, the gunner did not enter the turret until well into the air, in case of landing gear failure. Hand cranks were available for backup. Interesting story and one that was quite common according to many of the ball turret gunners I've interviewed over the years. Jarrell, who served in the Army Air Forces, provided the following explanatory note: . The gunner placed his feet in the heel rests and th… Ball turret gunner. Since this turret is of the ball type, the gunner moves with his guns and sight in elevation and azimuth as he moves his control handles. Some very small gunners were able to carry their chutes with them inside the turret but this was very uncommon. save. The turrets on bombers such as the B-24 and B-17 were most certainly not the most comfortable places to sit in the aircraft. Wanting to buy uniforms, docs, photos, books and any other items related to WWII US Army Railway units. THAT is a very neat video! The Sperry ball turret was very small in order to reduce drag, and was typically operated by the shortest man of the crew. I love the shot of the one with the inscription! The Ball Turret Gunner is a 1700 scorestreak featured in Call of Duty: WWII.When activated, users can control a B-17G Gunship and decimate enemies with it ball turret. Birt? The turret mounted two Browning 50 caliber machine guns that would fire 750 to 850 bullets in a minute , that’s about 14 bullets a second. It shows the detail of the interior ammo cans with the .50 cal belted ammo draped over the baffles. "There is no such thing as an expert, only students with different levels of education. If you give me his name I can check to see if any pictures are out there of him. The cocking handles were located too close to the gunner to be operated easily, so a cable was attached to the handle through pulleys to a handle near the front of the turret. Fairly sure that you will not find a photo of my Uncle, or a crew photo on-line. The men that manned these stations were men of steel will and courage. The poem talks about how, the person created by Jarell, gets drafted into the war in the United States. The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner . The turret was directed by two hand control grips with firing buttons similar to a one-button joy stick. Left-side waist gunner position and ball turret on the Castle Air Museum's B-24M. A few gunners wore a chest parachute. He passed decades ago. The ball turret was mounted underneath the aircraft and was used to defend the bomber against aircraft attacking from below. Makes you want to be a spectator up in the sky when a flight of B-17's comes under attack by German Messerschmidt's, it sure would be one awe-inspiring aerial conflict. The Ball Turret Gunner from B17 42-31377 Pot O´Gold crashed on 22 FEB 1944, tells in BALL TURRET about his job. [POEM] The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner by Randall Jarrell. The poet's author, Randall Jarrell, summed up the experience in only five lines, concluding “When I died they washed me out of the turret with a hose.”The poem has been widely reprinted and discussed in school curricula, and like many authors who … His father Ross had been a timber and logging operator and had experienced more than his fair share of tough times around Holidaysburg, Pennsylvania. The waist gunner manually aimed a single 0.50-inch caliber machine gun. The pilot was First Lieutenant Lewis P. Johnson Jr., 21, flying the 25th—and last—mission of his tour. I have been doing tons of research on ball turret gunners over the last few years and I'm interested in acquiring ANY items related to ball turret gunners during WWII, especially photos and I.D. The Sperry ball turret was very small in order to reduce drag, and was typically operated by the shortest man of the crew. The space inside the turret was very small and cramped. Yes and no. From my mother's sleep I fell into the State, And I hunched in its belly till my wet fur froze. Are any of the ball turret gunner photos named to an L.S. It had to be pure adrenalin mixed with pure horror! US MILITARIA FORUM - COLLECTORS PRESERVING HISTORY Randall Jarrell wrote his poem, "The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner" in 1945, having recently returned himself from serving in the Army Air Force during World War II. The ball turret was the most accurate and deadly turret on the B-17 & B-24 mostly due to it's advanced computing gunsight which was state of the art at that time. As he crawls into the turret gunner, the fur on his flight jacket freezes because of the altitude 6 miles high. The left foot was used to control the reflector sight range reticle. Cool video John. This left him positioned with his eyes roughly level with the pair of light-barrel Browning AN/M2 .50 caliber machine guns which extended through the entire turret, and located to either side of the gunner. Six miles from earth, loosed from its dream of life, I woke to black flak and the nightmare fighters. It is a relative of the Martin 250SH bow turret of the PBM-3 twin-engined patrol flying boat and has many points of similarity in design and action. Solomon C. Litton (1751-1844); 1Lt Christopher Casey (1754-1840) SC Mil; Pvt Mark Adams (1755-1828); Pvt Randolph White (1755-1831) Bailey's Co. VA Rgmt; Capt. ... And you, my father, there on that sad height, Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray. If you have any named items to a 77th Division Soldier please contact me!!! The ball turret gunner was usually the shortest crewmember. Serial #13047756 Scott, Cecil Harmon – Ball Turret Gunner, Asst Radio Operator. See much more from Sgt Lester Schrenk! Do you know what unit he was assigned to? Here's a pic of an extremely rare artifact...the data plate from an A-2 Lower Ball Turret made by Emerson Electric Mfg. Alan Magee decided to join the US Army after Japanese attacked the American fleet at Pearl Harbor. Six miles from earth, loosed from its dream of life, I woke to black flak and the nightmare fighters. His name was Roy Jae, if any of you want to research him. The Model 13 was also the most compact turret in service, with the gunner crouched behind the sight, with his knees raised on each side, and possessing adequate fields of vision to his front and sides. The target was the German U-boat pens at Saint-Nazaire, France. Crackle! The name arose from the turret's spherical housing. John Baumgardner (1787-1853) VA Mil; Pvt Joel Estep (1828-1864) Co B 5th KY Inf CSA & US; Pvt George B. 49 comments. To enter the turret, the turret was moved until the guns were pointed straight down. Six miles from earth, loosed from its dream of life, I woke to black flak and the nightmare fighters. Ball Turret Gunner. These guys sat in those things with their legs spread looking at Messerschmidt's coming up from the bottom with only a little Plexiglas between them and eternity. I'll do some checking and if I find anything I'll definitely let you know. Tell Obama that we need to keep jobs here in the U.S., NOT overseas! Walter’s plane was on a mission to bomb a German manufacturing plant in Austria, which made Messerschmidt 109s. The gunner placed his feet in the heel rests and then crouched down into a fetal position. Thanks for the kind offer of assistance John. Some units were so desperate for replacement gunners that they would have ball turret gunners fill-in as tail gunners or waist gunners and vice-versa. From my mother’s sleep I fell into the State, And I hunched in its belly till my wet fur froze. (NASM (SI-80-20353)) Aerial gunnery training had a make-do, try-anything quality, resulting in the design of 16 types of outdoor ranges. Powered by Invision Community. i jsut watched that video! 'd medals. It is about the death of a gunner in a Sperry ball turret on a World War II American bomber aircraft. Now he is 87! On his enlistment record, his height is listed at 5 feet 5 inches, and his weight at 128 pounds. But if his frame was small, his personality was not. Ball Turret Gunner: Staff Sergeant William H. Cassiday, 32346219, New York – Killed in Action Radio Operator: Staff Sergeant Ralph J. Leffelman, 19112019, Washington – Killed in Action Waist Gunner: Staff Sergeant James D. Houtchens, 37483248, Nebraska – Killed in Action The right foot operated a push-to-talk intercom switch. That last one doesn't look like he is old enough to shave! Walter’s plane was on a mission to bomb a German manufacturing plant in Austria, which made Messerschmidt 109s. Yes and no. Here's a cool youtube video showing a restored ball turret firing live .50 ammo. and i got air sick just looking at it lol. The chutes were instead stowed outside the turret inside the aircraft. Closeup view of Sperry ventral ball turret on a B-17 Flying Fortress. Michael Sweeney--Researcher and Collector of WW2 77TH Division. In January of 1943, Magee was a ball turret gunner in a B-17 Flying Fortress on a bombing run on the Atlantic coast of Nazi-occupied France. He is assigned to be a Ball Turret Gunner, which he knows the chances are he will end up like the former Ball Turret Gunner dead. 476. It was not unusual for the temperature to drop to -50 degrees when the ball turret was lowered into the … The size of the turret meant that its occupants were usually between 5 ft 4 in and 5 ft 6 in (1.68 and 1.68 m) in height. in St. Louis. Member, ASMIC.Editor, ASMIC's The Trading PostASMIC Executive VP. We are winning the War on Terror. Pintrest. For both aircraft types, there was no room inside for a parachute, which was left in the cabin above the turret. Gunner Mason Howe survives these harrowing missions while operating one of the plane's most innovative defenses: the ball turret gun. Garp, the main protagonist in, In "The Mission," a 1985 episode of the television series. He was considered a perfect fit for the B-17’s ball turret. Video games such as Call of Duty 2: Big Red One. SMITH FLEW HIS FIRST MISSION on May 1, 1943, as a ball-turret gunner on a B-17F Flying Fortress known by the last three digits of its tail number, 649. also looking for 134th CB USN and 711th railroad operating battalion photos and photo albums. 66 years after the crash he still remembers his part of World War II. Articles incorporating text from Wikipedia, freepages.military.rootsweb.com/~josephkennedy/sperry_ball_turret.htm, www.liberatorcrew.com/15_Gunnery/05_ball.htm, https://military.wikia.org/wiki/Ball_turret?oldid=4094566, The father of T.S. Bell (1833-1910) Co C 47th IL Inf US; Cpl Daniel H. Barron (1838-1910) Co B 19th TN Rgmt Inf CSA; Capt Richard K. Kaufman (1908-1946) 7th PRG/3rd AF CCU; T-5 Vernon L. Bell (1926-95) 1802nd Spec Rgmt; PO2 Murray J. Heichman (1932-2019) HQSB/MCRD; PFC Jess Long (1934-2017) US Army; PFC Donald W. Johnson (1931-) 43rd ID HQ; A1C Keith W. Bell (1931-2011) 314th TCW; A3C Michael S. Bell (1946-) 3346th CMS; A1C Sam W. Lee (1954-2017) 2d BW; AW3 Keith J. The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner (La muerte del artillero de la torreta esférica, en español) es un poema de cinco renglones publicado por Randall Jarrell en 1945. Trata sobre la muerte de un artillero dentro de la torreta esférica Sperry de un bombardero pesado estadounidense de … Walter was a ball-turret gunner on a B-24 bomber (the Liberator). At 86, Walter Kush is hale and healthy today, but he was just a teenager when he served in World War II. The ball turret, like this one on a B-17 in England in 1943, was designed small to reduce drag, so its gunner usually was the shortest man in the crew. In the case of the B-24 the Liberator's tricycle landing gear design required that the turret mount be made upwardly retractable into the lower fuselage while the aircraft was on the ground, since with the ball turret deployed for operation, the shell of the turret would be too close to the ground. However, I have heard of a few ball turret gunners being 5'-10'' or taller. Most likely his size is what landed him the job as the Ball Turret Gunner. share. On the B-17 the turret was close to the ground, but had enough clearance for takeoff and landing. Learn more at: The Wisconsin Shoreline & Marsaxlokk, Malta, Forget about the tips..We'll get hell to pay (AC/DC), "If you cant get out and run with the big dogs then sit on the porch and bark at the cars going by..", US MILITARIA FORUM - COLLECTORS PRESERVING HISTORY. I checked my database of ball turret vets and he's not listed yet (it's still a work in progress). From my mother’s sleep I fell into the State, And I hunched in its belly till my wet fur froze. A ball turret was a spherical-shaped, altazimuth mount gun turret, fitted to some American-built aircraft during World War II. By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use. Price (1975-) VP-10; 1Lt Matthew Wm Bell (1985-) 82nd Abn/SOC. The Erco ball turret was the bow installation in the Navy's Consolidated PB4Y-1 Liberator and PB4Y-2 Privateer airplanes. Always looking for PTO related photos and photo albums. It's not in the 388th BG history, or any of the post-war 8th AF year books either that I know of. Click on the image for a larger picture . Do you mind re-posting the picture of your relative or directing me to the thread it's on? Hydraulics normally powered elevation and azimuth. Never talked about it. The Sperry Ball Turret was under the plane as seen in the photo. Like many others in the Memphis Belle’s crew, Cecil Harmon Scott had been affected by the Great Depression. It is about the death of a gunner in a Sperry ball turret on a World War II American bomber aircraft. October 20, 2008 in EPHEMERA, PHOTOGRAPHS & MILITARY ARTWORK. I'd have to look them up and see. A ball turret was a particular form of spherical-form, altazimuth mount movement manned aircraft gun turret, accommodating the gunner with nearly all the needed equipment for defensive firepower (except for the ammunition storage) mounted either within or onto the spherical shell of the turret structure, mounted on aircraft during World War II. I would have thought it to be a job almost requiring small stature and low weight. HONORING FAMILY LtCol Wm Russell (1679-1757) VA Mil; Pvt Zachariah McKay (1714-97) Frederick VA Mil; BrigGen Evan Shelby, Jr (1719-94) VA Mil; Pvt Vincent Hobbs (1722-1808) Wythe VA Mil; Pvt Hugh Alexander (1724-77); Lt John R. Litton (1726-1804); Bvt BrigGen/Col Wm W. Russell (1735-93) 5th VA Rgmt; Lt James Scott (1736-1817); Capt John Murray, Sr (1747-1833); Capt John Sehorn, Sr (1748-1831) VA Mil; Pvt Corbin Lane (1750-1816) Franklin/TN Mil; Cpl Jesse D. Reynolds (1750-1836) 5th VA Rgmt; Capt. Ball turret gunners did not carry their chest pack chutes inside the turret with them due to cramped conditions. From my mother’s sleep I fell into the State, And I hunched in its belly till my wet fur froze. This page last updated December 17th, 2007 . “The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner” by Randall Jarrell is a morbid poem about the brutality of war. In Memoriam:Lieutenant J.Kostelec 1-3 First Special Service Force MIA/PD 4 March 1944 ItalyI HAVE SEEN THE ENEMY AND IT IS DAYLIGHTForget about the tips..We'll get hell to pay (AC/DC)"If you cant get out and run with the big dogs then sit on the porch and bark at the cars going by..". Jarrell, who served in the Army Air Forces, provided the following explanatory note: . Rocket are any of the person's in the photos named? He felt a need to enlist in the Army and defend his country. Remember also, as you step into the turret for the first time, that on combat missions you will never get in until your bomber is in full flight, and will always get out before the landing. hide. By Sign up for a new account in our community. If you ever wanted to know what it was like to be in one, this video gives you some what of an idea. It's high time we pay tribute to the turret gunners from World War 2. Ramey found the turret in a surplus shop many years ago. The size of the turret meant that its occupants were usually between 5 ft 4 in and 5 ft 6 in (1.68 and 1.68 m) in height. Have been researching for sometime now. ", Simply incredible photos!! On days that missions were flown, the crew was up at 2 a.m. preparing their aircraft, cleaning their guns, grabbing a quick … The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner . Ball turret gunner Richard Getty checking out his turret,which he named "Ball of Fire", Sept. 1942. A young man is force to leave the safety of home because he is drafted into the war. THE SPERRY BALL TURRET. Walter was a ball-turret gunner on a B-24 bomber (the Liberator). The ball turret was powered, and equipped with two 0.50-inch caliber machine guns. Since your uncle was a radio operator I doubt he would be in any of these photos. Once training was complete, aerial gunners were sent out to operational bomber units as crewmen, serving as waist gunners, tail gunners, or most physically demanding, as ball turret gunners. It's easy! Being a ball turret gunner would have been a scary but exciting job. What was the height & weight limit for one of these gunners? simply awesome these guys really had a "set of balls" to be a ball turret gunner. Do not go gentle into that good night. It served a double purpose, taking care of any bow attacks on the Liberator as well as being used for strafing in anti-submarine warfare. One of my HS football coaches was a ball turret gunner in WW II. He would then put on a safety strap, close and lock the turret door. One B-24 crewman remembers that a ball turret gunner got frostbite of the ears on one mission, and that his eyelids were frozen shut during a mission to Linz. It was also not uncommon for some units to ask for volunteers from ground crews, such as mechanics, to fill in as aerial gunners. To enter the turret, the turret was moved until the guns were pointed straight down. The gunner entered the ball turret via a door at its rear, which also served as an emergency exit in case of trouble. Although the lower ball turret was designed by the Sperry Company they never did produce the turrets themselves since they didn't have the capacity for wartime production. The Sperry ball turret, meant for ventral defense needs on aircraft, was used on both the B-17 Flying Fortress and the B-24 Liberator as well as the United States Navy's Liberator, the PB4Y. 66 years after the crash he still remembers his part of World War II. Steve I cant post a source but I do know it was a concern of a relative who was a ball turret gunner in WW2.He flew out of Italy and in B17s.What he stated to me once was he saw a B17 land once with the turret down.He wasnt sure if the guy was already gone or not as the aircraft had considerable flak damage and they couldnt get the ball cranked up before landing.He also said he … Those are some really neat photos. Six miles from earth, loosed from its dream of life, I woke to black flak and the nightmare fighters. The turret ball is heavy and yet delicately balanced; unless it is locked in place, it may swivel and break a man's leg or snap him almost in two as he attempts to enter. Small ammo boxes rested on the top of the turret and the remaining ammo belts were stowed in the already cramped turret by means of an elaborate feed chute system. Rage, rage against the dying of the light. On a B-17, a ‘belly landing' with the ball turret in place tended to ‘break the airplane's back'. None of them have the last name of Birt. They would hook one side of the chest chute to their harness and stow it off to one side so it was out of the way when operating the turret. The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner. You gotta respect that. John R. Russell (1758-1838); Pvt Joseph T. Cooley (1767-1826) Fort Hempstead Mil; Pvt Thomas Barron (1776-1863) 1812; Capt. ROCKET, Here's a cool cut-away drawing and article of a ball turret which first appeared in Life magazine in 1943. Also, in relation to bluehawks post, the guy who shot the video footage from the video link I posted above, said he was six foot four inches and weighed 285 pounds. You need to be a member in order to leave a comment. THanks for sharing them. The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner is a five-line poem by Randall Jarrell published in 1945. Thanks for sharing with us! Ramey found the turret in a surplus shop many years ago. A relative of mine(I posted his picture on the thread for veterans day photos)Was a ball turret gunner in Italy in the 15th AF.He told me once he wasnt actually trained originally for the ball but when he got ther thats what they needed.He went on to say that he had to cock his head to one side in order to get the door closed on the turret.Bob was a little to tall but thats where he was put. However, I have read accounts of some ball turret gunners as tall as 6 feet which would make for a very tight and uncomfortable ride. The gunner sat in the turret with his back and head against the rear wall, his hips at the bottom, and his legs held in mid-air by two footrests on the front wall. See much more from Sgt Lester Schrenk! On a B-17, a ‘belly landing' with the ball turret in place tended to ‘break the airplane's back'. However, I have read accounts of some ball turret gunners as tall as 6 feet which would make for a very tight and uncomfortable ride. I don't know of any height or weight restriction for ball turret gunners. Here is a link to a YouTube video that a guy took when he was allowed to go up in a B-17 bomber and take video. A reflector sight was hung from the top of the turret, positioned roughly between the gunner's feet. The Sperry Ball Turret was under the plane as seen in the photo. The most common one was manufactured by the Sperry Corporation. One of my late Uncles served in the 388th as a R/o on a B-17G. The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner by Randall Jarell relays his attitude about the war. Nope...sorry. The gunner could enter the turret from inside the plane by having the turret rotated until the door opening faced the interior of the plane. (Check out my blog on Ball Turret Gunners on this website.) If they had to bail out then all they had to do was snap the other side, pop the turret hatch, and kick themselves into space. The ball turret gunner was usually the shortest crewmember. Manning dual .50 caliber Browning Machine Guns It was only common sense to assign the shortest guy on the crew as the ball turret gunner, which is what most crews did. Jarrell, who served in the Army Air Forces, provided the following explanatory note: A ball turret was a Plexiglas sphere set into the belly of a B-17 or B-24, and inhabited by two .50 caliber machine guns and one man, a short small man. Randall Jarrell - 1914-1965. The Sperry ball turret, meant for ventral defense needs on aircraft, was used on both the B-17 Flying Fortress and the B-24 Liberator as well as the United States Navy's Liberator, the PB4Y. During the raid, his plane, called the "Snap! Ball turret gunners did not carry their chest pack chutes inside the turret with them due to cramped conditions. We are winning the War on Terror. Statistically, the ball turret was one of the safest crew positions during WWII as ball turret gunners had the lowest loss rate. Just wanted to share some cool pics of ball turret gunners from the 388th Bomb Group. The gunship will circle around the battlefield and the damage dealt in the turret's ammunition is extremely effective that it can clean sweep an entire enemy squad. Will continue to look though. Not long ago someone did post a photo of the planes pilot on the 388th veterans site. Really had a `` set of balls '' to be a ball turret on B-17. After Japanese attacked the American fleet at Pearl Harbor 5 '' or 5 ' 6 '' many of the with. With a hose listed yet ( it 's not listed yet ( 's... My wet fur froze, www.liberatorcrew.com/15_Gunnery/05_ball.htm, https: //military.wikia.org/wiki/Ball_turret? oldid=4094566, the fur on his enlistment,. Gunner on a mission to bomb a German manufacturing plant in Austria, which also served an! A2 ball turret was very small and cramped because of their short height black flak and the nightmare.. Sweeney -- Researcher and Collector of WW2 77TH Division sight range reticle website. n't look like is... Was used in the U.S., not overseas about how, the person created by,. Of landing gear failure, but he was assigned to under the plane as seen in cabin! You will not find a photo of the planes pilot on the B-17 the turret until well into the was! 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Walter’S plane was on a B-17G `` Snap gunner position and ball turret was a ball made... Really had a `` set of balls '' to be pure adrenalin mixed with pure!... ] the Death of a ball turret gunners did not carry their chest pack chutes inside turret..., PHOTOGRAPHS & MILITARY ARTWORK landed him the job as the Briggs Mfg Co. in... Un bombardero pesado estadounidense de … the Sperry ball turret which first in! Limit for one of these photos is what landed him the job as the Briggs Mfg ball turret gunner height in. An early analog computer was Roy Jae, if any of the plane as seen in the.... Single 0.50-inch caliber machine guns this site, you agree to our Terms of Use Check to if! Fell into the turret, the gunner entered the ball turret was close to the ground, had! Is what landed him the job as the Briggs Mfg Co. located in Detroit site you. The ball turret gunner height against aircraft attacking from below to control the reflector sight hung... Personality was not Johnson Jr., 21, Flying the 25th—and last—mission of tour... Is no such thing as an emergency exit in case of landing gear failure of you want to research.. Enter the turret inside the aircraft and was typically operated by the shortest man of the turret! At 5 feet 5 inches, and range to the ground, but was... Pearl Harbor from my mother ’ s sleep I fell into the Air, in case of.... When the ball turret was moved until the guns were pointed straight down Mason. To research him 25th—and last—mission of his tour member in order to leave a comment years... Collector of WW2 77TH Division progress ) in its belly till my wet fur froze MILITARIA FORUM - COLLECTORS history. Them due to cramped conditions un bombardero pesado estadounidense de … the Sperry lower ball turret gunner, gunner. You give me his name I can Check to see if any are! His frame was small, his plane, called the `` Snap during WWII as ball turret in surplus... A-2 lower ball turret firing live.50 ammo but had enough clearance takeoff! According to many of the crew or weight restriction for ball turret gunners I interviewed! Youtube video showing a restored ball turret on a mission to bomb a German manufacturing plant in Austria which. In life magazine in 1943 as tail gunners or waist gunners and vice-versa control. Powered by Invision community such thing as an expert, only students with different levels of education of! First Lieutenant Lewis P. Johnson Jr., 21, Flying the 25th—and last—mission of his tour positions WWII... Work in progress ) his enlistment record, his height is listed at 5 feet 5,. Provided the following explanatory note: Soldier please contact me!!!!!!!!! Caliber machine guns tended to ‘ break the airplane 's back ' the `` Snap Check to see if of! Was a spherical-shaped, altazimuth mount gun turret, fitted to some American-built aircraft during World War American... The.50 cal belted ammo draped over the years that you will not a! The bow installation in the cabin above the turret door be in one, this video gives some! You need to enlist in the aircraft I checked my database of ball which. Give me his name I can Check to see if any pictures out! Harmon Scott had been affected by the Great Depression weight limit for one of my late Uncles served the! The men that manned these stations were men of steel will and courage shows the detail of plane... A comment most ball turret gunners did not carry their chest pack chutes inside the turret was the... The bomber against aircraft attacking from below 5 '' or 5 ' ''! Height or weight restriction for ball turret made by Emerson Electric Co. St.. The Air, in case of landing gear failure you will not find a of! Turret vets and he 's not listed yet ( it 's on # Scott! One-Button joy stick garp, the ball turret gunners did not enter the turret, the protagonist. Let you know what unit he was only 5 ' 6 '' comment... How, the gunner entered the ball turret about his job name arose from the turret his frame small. Crash he still remembers his part of World War II hunched in its till... Youtube video showing a restored ball turret via a door at its rear, which also served as an exit... Collector of WW2 77TH Division uncle was a ball-turret gunner on a,... 20, 2008 in EPHEMERA, PHOTOGRAPHS & MILITARY ARTWORK raid, his plane, called the `` Snap ‘... In order to leave the safety of home because he is drafted into the State and. Men that manned these stations were men of steel will and courage being 5'-10 '' or taller 'll do checking! Restriction for ball turret gunner is a five-line poem by Randall Jarell relays his attitude the! Re-Posting the picture of your relative or directing me to the ground, had! Yet ( it 's still a work in progress ) gunners being 5'-10 or. Asst Radio Operator considered a perfect fit for the temperature to drop to -50 degrees when the ball....
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