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.

Tuesday, 7 July 2015


Day 4 of our documentary shoot in the footsteps of Bud Owens. The group arrived in Saint-Girons, visited the Freedom Trail Museum and met a French evader, concluding the day with a number of interviews. Tomorrow is the beginning of the 3 day hike accross the Pyrenees. Updates will depend to a certain extent on wifi access. In the meantime you can help make this documentary a reality by making a donation via Paypal.

In the train station in Toulouse after the night-train from Paris.

The Hotel Eychenne is the last remaining hotel in Saint-Girons that welcomed evaders during World war Two.

Colleen signing the registry in the Freedon Trail Museum in honour of her uncle, 'Bud' Owens...

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