"Artwork is focused on high element of the low squadron of the 100th Bomb Group heading for Ruhland, Germany (11 September 1944 mission), under attack by II.(Sturm)/Jagdgeschwader 4, particularly its 7. Staffel, shortly after midday, right over Czechoslovak-German border area.
As a symbol of tragedy of this air battle, we can say, all the airplane depicted on the artwork were shot down that day.
The Fockewulf in foreground „Yellow 1“ (W.Nr. 681343) was piloted by Ogefr. Karl Kleemann, who was later shot down by US escort fighters in Thum, Germany and was killed in subsequent crash.
The second presented Fockewulf „Yellow 6“, piloted by Uffz. Heinrich Hörner (W.Nr. 681337) was damaged during attack on bombers by 100th BG aerial gunners. Heinrich Hörner was killed few minutes later during attempt for a crashlanding in Dorf Chemnitz, Germany.
The B-17G leading the high element was 42-97806 XR-D „Now An´ Then“ of 349th BS piloted by Lt. Charles E. Baker. This plane exploded in mid-air shortly after attack and crashed close to Kovarska (just few miles from the Museum) near of village Oberhals (now Horni Halze). Six of nine crewmembers perished, including the pilot. Three survivors were POW.
The plane on the left wing was 42-97834 XR-J „Mud In Yer Eye“ of Lt. Orville C. Everitt. Exploded in mid-air and crashed close to Kovarska (also on this case just few miles from the Museum), killing six men of the crew, including pilot. Three survivors were POW. One of them had died of his wounds few years after the war.
The plane on right wing was 43-38161 XR-O „Oombree Ago“ piloted by Lt. Raymond R. Heironimus. This plane was heavily damaged, but pilots managed to recover the spin and fly the crippled Fortress to France and crashland just behind frontlines. One crewmember was POW, eight returned (one of them WIA).
Five displayed planes were “just a few” of the total over 60 being shot down during the air battle over the Ore Mountains on September 11th, 1944 and also this is our way to honor the men who died in fight for our freedom and remember all victims of the air battle. "