S:Sgt Francis 'Bud' Owens was a waist gunner on B-17F 42-29928 when it was shot down over the Norman countryside in 1943. The aircraft was part of 533rd Bomb Squadron, 381st Bomb Group(H), and was taking part in a raid on the Gnome-Rhone plant in le Mans on July 4th when it was attacked by Messerschmitt Bf-109s and finally crashed near the small village of la Coulonche. Three of the crew of ten perished when the 'plane hit the ground, two of those who baled out were quickly captured. With local help, the remaining five attempted to make their way down to neutral Spain with a view to re-joining the fight against Nazism. Four of them made it to Spain but 'Bud' Owens, a man who on many occasions had put others before himself, was to die of exposure in the Pyrenees, aged just 21. He now rests in the Ardennes American Cemetery in Belgium. Please follow our project to honour and remember 'Bud' Owens and support it if you can. Thank you.
Saturday, 4 July 2015
A fantastic first day of filming in La Coulonche, Sainte-Opportune and
Champsecret, Normandy! We met some wonderful people and discovered a few
amazing places revealing the events surrounding the start of Bud Owens'
odyssey in France during the summer of 1943.
Walking to the site where the B-17 crashed.
To get the right shot, certain measures need to be taken...
Talking to the Duval sisters, witnesses to the crash in Val des Vees
With Mme Gandebeouf, daughter of resistant Anré Geslin.
Please continue to support our project. More updates to follow daily.... Thanks.